Tag: Chris Gomez

Nostalgia!

Dan sent me a wonderful photo a couple of days ago!

His covering email also included:

Here was my favourite car of all time. A 1957 Ford hard-top convertible. 312 cu. in. V8 rebuilt with 3/4 race cam and Holly 950 com 4 barrel carb. Reverse traction masters and front lift. Borg-Warner T-10 4 speed with reverse lock out.

Dan Gomez

Dan went on to add: Tana our wonderful Silver Grey German Shepherd and yes, that’s little bro Chris Gomez at 12 or 13. I was 19 and in Pasadena City College just before going to Switzerland to study French (and ski!) and then into the Navy during the Vietnam War.

Fifty-seven years ago!

How time flies.

Speaking with wolves!

An insightful look at the way that baby wolves play.

I’m gradually getting ourselves organised following the power failure and, on cue, Chris Gomez sent the following in two days ago.

It shows beyond doubt that young wolves play like dogs and that the two animals are more alike than dis-alike.

You watch the following video and see what I mean.

Then there is the article that is reproduced below.

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Baby wolves like to play fetch too – what this says about your dog.

By Fermin Koop

Playing a game of fetch with a dog means they are following a human social cue to recover the ball. But fetch isn’t just for dogs, wolf puppies are down to play too, which means they can also understand human communication cues, according to a new study.

Credit Wikipedia Commons

The findings, published in the journal iScience, were made after researchers put 13 8-week-old wolf puppies from three different litters through a series of tests usually used to assess dog-puppy behavior. Three of the pups were interested in playing fetch with a stranger, which included bringing a ball back when encouraged to.

The discovery was quite a surprise for the team as it was believed that the cognitive abilities necessary to understand communication cues given by a human were presented in dogs only after humans domesticated them 15,000 years ago. Dogs differ from wolves physically, genetically and behaviorally.

“When I saw the first wolf puppy retrieving the ball, I literally got goosebumps,” said Christina Hansen Wheat of Stockholm University in a press release. “I immediately knew that this meant that if variation in human-directed play behavior exists in wolves, this behavior could have been a potential target for early selective pressures exerted during dog domestication.”

Wanting to learn more about the effects of domestication on behavior, Hansen Wheat and her team raised wolf and dog puppies from the age of 10 days and put them through various behavioral tests. In one of them, the pup was thrown a ball by an unknown person, encouraging the wolf to get it and bring it back.

Expectations of the wolf pups catching on weren’t high, with the first two litters showing no interest in the balls, let alone of playing fetch. But everything changed with the third litter. A few of the puppies went for the ball and even responded to the social cues and brought it back.

“It was very surprising that we had wolves actually retrieving the ball,” said Hansen Wheat. “I did not expect that. I do not think any of us did. It was especially surprising that the wolves retrieved the ball for a person they had never met before.”

In the past, other research showed that domesticated and non-domesticated species will follow human gestures if a food reward is given, Hansen Wheat and her team said. But in those cases, the animals were previously trained to follow the cues or knew the person conducting the study.

While the new research has a limitation over the size of its sample, it could reassess our interpretation that understanding human social cues came from domestication. Instead, it could be possible that this behavior can be traced back to an ancestral population before wolves were domesticated into dogs.

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Despite this being the twenty-first century there are still things being discovered that cause us humans to be amazed.

Such as this story about the young wolves, way before they evolved into dogs.

Returning to happy dogs!

A republication of a post from exactly one year ago.

Yesterday, I was at our local Three Rivers Hospital having a colonoscopy. The procedure was a breeze but I wouldn’t recommend the bowel prep one has to take before the procedure! 😦

However, it ran on much longer than we expected and, consequently, there wasn’t sufficient time to do a new post for you good people for today.

So as I do in these situations, I republish the post that came out exactly a year ago: on the 12th August, 2015. As it happens it seemed a wonderful follow-on to yesterday’s post: Have A Lovely Day.

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More on those happy dogs.

Indebted, again, to Chris Gomez.

Jean and I were out for much of yesterday resulting in me not sitting down to compose today’s post until nearly 5pm (PDT) in the afternoon. I must admit I didn’t have a clue as to what to write about. Then sitting in my email inbox was another email from Chris Gomez with this short but valuable sentence, “Love is real….Check this out! (via ABC7 Los Angeles local news iOS app) Study reveals scientific reason your dog is happy to see you.” Chris included a link to the ABC7 news item. I’m republishing it here.

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STUDY REVEALS SCIENTIFIC REASON YOUR DOG IS HAPPY TO SEE YOU

A new study explains why your dog gets so happy to see you. (Shutterstock)
A new study explains why your dog gets so happy to see you. (Shutterstock)

Tuesday, August 11, 2015 11:04AM

Is your dog overwhelmed with joy anytime you walk through the door? There’s a scientific reason behind their excitement, a new study shows, and it’s not just because you feed them.

Researchers at Emory University used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to scan dogs’ brains for activity when they were shown images of dog faces, human faces and ordinary objects.

The dogs’ temporal lobes lit up “significantly more” when presented with the faces than with the objects. These findings suggest that dogs may recognize both human and dog faces.

Facial recognition causes dog brains to activate in the same areas as in monkey and human brains, the study found. This is separate from the “reward areas” that would be triggered by anticipation of food.

“What we’re finding with the imaging work is that dogs love their humans-and not just for food,” researcher Gregory Berns told io9. “They love the company of humans simply for its own sake.”

“The existence of a face-selective region in the temporal dog cortex opens up a whole range of new questions to be answered about their social intelligence,” the researchers explained, such as whether dogs can understand different facial expressions and whether they can read body language.

This isn’t the first time scientists have explored what makes dogs’ tails wag with excitement when reunited with their owners. A January study that Berns was also involved in found that dogs have a positive reaction to the scent of familiar humans compared with other smells, even those of other dogs.

The results of that study “suggested that not only did the dogs discriminate that scent [of familiar humans] from the others, they had a positive association with it.”

A 2013 behavioral study found that dogs can show when they’re happy to see their owners by lifting their eyebrows. Their left eyebrow went up when they saw their respective owners, the study found. They didn’t have this reaction for other things that may excite them, such as attractive toys.

….

Granted there was some overlap with Monday’s post but there was more than enough in the ABC7 article to warrant sharing it with you.

Thanks again, Chris.

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You all stay happy with your dogs!

 

More on those happy dogs.

Indebted, again, to Chris Gomez.

Jean and I were out for much of yesterday resulting in me not sitting down to compose today’s post until nearly 5pm (PDT) in the afternoon. I must admit I didn’t have a clue as to what to write about. Then sitting in my email inbox was another email from Chris Gomez with this short but valuable sentence, “Love is real….Check this out! (via ABC7 Los Angeles local news iOS app) Study reveals scientific reason your dog is happy to see you.” Chris included a link to the ABC7 news item. I’m republishing it here.

ooOOoo

STUDY REVEALS SCIENTIFIC REASON YOUR DOG IS HAPPY TO SEE YOU

A new study explains why your dog gets so happy to see you. (Shutterstock)
A new study explains why your dog gets so happy to see you. (Shutterstock)

Tuesday, August 11, 2015 11:04AM

Is your dog overwhelmed with joy anytime you walk through the door? There’s a scientific reason behind their excitement, a new study shows, and it’s not just because you feed them.

Researchers at Emory University used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to scan dogs’ brains for activity when they were shown images of dog faces, human faces and ordinary objects.

The dogs’ temporal lobes lit up “significantly more” when presented with the faces than with the objects. These findings suggest that dogs may recognize both human and dog faces.

Facial recognition causes dog brains to activate in the same areas as in monkey and human brains, the study found. This is separate from the “reward areas” that would be triggered by anticipation of food.

“What we’re finding with the imaging work is that dogs love their humans-and not just for food,” researcher Gregory Berns told io9. “They love the company of humans simply for its own sake.”

“The existence of a face-selective region in the temporal dog cortex opens up a whole range of new questions to be answered about their social intelligence,” the researchers explained, such as whether dogs can understand different facial expressions and whether they can read body language.

This isn’t the first time scientists have explored what makes dogs’ tails wag with excitement when reunited with their owners. A January study that Berns was also involved in found that dogs have a positive reaction to the scent of familiar humans compared with other smells, even those of other dogs.

The results of that study “suggested that not only did the dogs discriminate that scent [of familiar humans] from the others, they had a positive association with it.”

A 2013 behavioral study found that dogs can show when they’re happy to see their owners by lifting their eyebrows. Their left eyebrow went up when they saw their respective owners, the study found. They didn’t have this reaction for other things that may excite them, such as attractive toys.

ooOOoo

Granted there was some overlap with Monday’s post but there was more than enough in the ABC7 article to warrant sharing it with you.

Thanks again, Chris.