Wow. You've got to see this video
Wondering what your dog thinks? Neurocientists are on the right track to figuring it out.
In 2012, A couple of smart guys, Gregory Berns and Andrew Brooks of Emory University, watching a military dog assist Navy Seals as they overran the Osama Bin Laden compound, got a brilliant idea. If you can teach dogs to jump out of helicopters, surely dogs could be trained to enjoy themselves inside an fMRI machine while scientists calculate what the dogs are thinking by scanning their brains.
The researchers, who are dog-lovers, explained, "We want to understand the dog-human relationship, from the dog's perspective. From the outset, we wanted to ensure the safety and comfort of the dogs. We wanted them to be unrestrained and go into the scanner willingly." So they recruited a professional dog trainer, Mark Spivak, and two companion dogs, a Feist Terrier named Callie and a Border Collie named McKenzie. The team said that both dogs were trained over several months to walk into an fMRI scanner and hold completely still while researchers measured their brain activity.
In this photo Callie wears ear protection as she
prepares to enter the scanner. The research team
includes, from left, Andrew Brooks, Gregory Berns and Mark Spivak.
(Credit: Photo by Bryan Meltz)
This is what the researchers wrote in the journal article that was published in PLOS in 2012: "
To find out what they've discovered in the last 18 months, read this article in the October 5, 2013 issue of the New York Times.
Berns, Gregory, Brooks, Andrew and Spivak, Mark, Functional MRI in Awake Unrestrained Dogs (April 27, 2012).