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  • Do you love your dog? I mean, really love your dog. … like it’s your child?

  • Hi guys, Crystal here for DNews

  • I live in LA and let me tell you, people there really love their dogs.

  • There are doggy gyms where your dog can meet with his trainer,

  • doggy spas where he can get a massage, restaurants that offerlocally sourced organicdog food, and places where you and your dog can get a side-by-side mani-pedi.

  • I know many dog owners would say that their dog is their child.

  • Well, researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital say that actually might not be as crazy as it sounds

  • When examining functional MRI data of women who were shown pictures of their dogs, pictures of their children, or neutral pictures of unrelated dogs or children,

  • researchers noticed that neural activation was similar if the subject was looking at either her own dog, or her own child.

  • This implies a similar level of attachment to both the dog and the child, and could explain why we really do treat dogs like part of our familieswe think they are!

  • In fact, in this study there were no brain regions active when subjects viewed photos of their own dog that were not also activated by pictures of their own child.

  • But before you go out and start a savings account for your dog’s college education,

  • there was a very important difference between a mother’s response to her child, and response to her dog.

  • Areas of the midbrain associated with the dopamine reward circuit were only activated when a mother was looking at pictures of her own child.

  • These crucial brain areas, the substantia nigra and ventral tegmental area, are swimming in receptors for all the feel good molecules associated with the feeling of beingin love”: dopamine, oxytocin, and vasopressin.

  • Activation of this midbrain region is usually associated with human pair-bonding, basically love and romantic relationships, and dogs, just can’t turn it on.

  • So you love your dog, but youre notin lovewith them. and as a person not unfamiliar with unrequited love, I thought I'd ask: How does your DOG feel about all this? Turns out, our dogs don’t necessarily reciprocate our feelings.

  • In an article published in Applied Animal Behavior Science, and titled “I like my dog, does my dog like me?”

  • scientists used the Monash Dog Owner Relationship Scale (yep that's a thing)

  • to determine that owners who interact more frequently with their dog, have dogs showing more affectionate, proximity-seeking behavior and this might be due to more positive reinforcement of close interaction by the owner.

  • Not any emotional attachment on the part of the dog.

  • There is no support from this study for the view that the strength of the relationship an owner feels to his/her dog is mirrored in the strength of the bond of the dog to its owner”.

  • In other words, you can’t force your dog to love you back.

  • But a day at a doggy spa probably wouldn't hurt.

  • What do you think? Does your dog really love you?

  • Subscribe to DNews and let us know in the comments down below! You can also come find me on twitter at Poly Crystal H D

Do you love your dog? I mean, really love your dog. … like it’s your child?

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B1 US child love doggy owner activation dopamine

Do We Love Dogs As Much As Babies?

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    彭彥婷 posted on 2014/10/16
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