A study by Hungarian scientists has been published in the journal Neuolmage, which found that dogs are attached to people just as children are attached to their mothers. This was proved thanks to the results of MRI scans of the dogs’ brains.
Researchers from the Eötvös Loránd University in Hungary have established the mechanism by which dogs form attachments to people. They combined knowledge of animal behavior and new fMRI studies of dogs’ brains to reach their results. According to behavioral studies, dogs are strongly attached to their owners. This is due to the fact that animals perceive an owner as a source of security in all circumstances. The same thing happens in a child with his mother.
Scientists have made a correlation between dogs’ attachment to humans and a baby’s attachment to its mother. This is a good example to help understand the mechanisms that occur in the brain during displays of affection or vocal stimulation. This forms a close social bond between baby and mother. It mainly affects the auditory part of the brain, as well as the part that is responsible for human motivation and expectation of reward. This has been proven by studies of children’s brains when they hear their mother’s voice.
To establish this dependence in dogs, they were given to listen to the voice of their owners who stimulated and praised them. It was found that the animals responded more excitedly to the same words from the owner than they did from a normal person. And the closer the dog was to the owner, the greater the reaction the animal’s brain showed.
As a result, scientists concluded that the processes of perception of a close person in the brains of dogs and children are almost identical.