Dog owners know their pooches understand language, and past research has shown that dogs respond to different parts of human speech, making a difference between content and emotional tone. New research shows that they process speech in a way similar to humans.
Naturally, this doesn’t mean that all dogs understand all human words. Dogs must learn our language, and different individuals can retain different amounts of words.
The study shows that dogs process words with the brain’s left hemisphere – just like humans do. This part of the brain processes syntax and words.
Dogs and humans both process emotional tone with the brain’s right hemisphere.
Does this matter?
It helps explain how dogs became man’s best friend – they can truly tell the difference between meaningless sounds and words that are important to them. They love us back, see us as their family, listen to what we say, and understand.