Dogs use same parts of brain to process speech as humans

September 4, 2016

Dod’s speech is processing by the same parts of a brain as humans ones, says the study. According to the recent research, dogs, like people, use the same hemisphere for a process of: a) a left hemisphere for the words, and b) a right hemisphere brain for an intonation.

Scientists revealed the dogs are able to process a word and intonation with the help of the same parts of a brain like humans do. Left hemisphere helps dogs and human to process a word, right one — for intonation.

The researchers from the Department of Ethology added that a praise activates dogs’ reward center only when both words and intonation match. The research was unique because the way how animals process human speech has not been analyzed this way elsewhere.

The scientists analyzed 13 dogs of different breeds, which were trained to lie completely motionless in an MRI scanner for 7 minutes. During this time researchers were able to measure their brain activity while they listened to words from their trainers. The dogs had headphones on, and heard praise words in praising intonation like “super”, “well done,” “good boy”. As a result, the praise activated dogs’ reward center only when both words and intonation match.