WSJ – With half as many neurons in their cerebral cortex as cats—and half the attitude, some would say—dogs are often taken to be the less intelligent domestic partner. While dogs drink out of the toilet, slavishly follow their master and need a chaperone to relieve themselves, cats hunt self-sufficiently and survey their empire with a regal gaze. But cats beware. Research in recent years has finally revealed the genius of dogs. Even the dog’s closest relative, the wolf, beat its cousin when food was placed on the opposite side of a fence, as shown in a 1982 study by Harry and Martha Frank of the University of Michigan. When the experimenters showed dogs a human rounding the fence first, the dogs could solve the problem immediately. This is the secret to the genius of dogs: It’s when dogs join forces with us that they become special. Nowhere is this clearer than when dogs are reading our gestures. Every dog owner has helped her dog find a lost ball or treat by pointing in the right direction. No other animal—not even our closest relatives, bonobos and chimpanzees—can interpret our gestures as flexibly as dogs. So are dogs smarter than cats? Species are designed by nature to be good at different things.
And there you have it. The most conclusive evidence in the history of mankind on why dogs are better than cats and every other animal on the planet for that matter. Sure by themselves dogs are just ordinary creatures cruising through life looking for meaning. But the second they team up with humans they become some sort of super geniuses. Connecting with humans on a real level that no other species can do. Reading our cues, understanding our feelings, basically dedicating their lives to make our lives better. Dogs were created for one reason and one reason only. To live with and bring joy to humans and vice versa. Man’s best friend indeed. Meanwhile cats were created to be smug assholes.
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