In my house, dogs are family. They get their own birthday celebrations and, despite my efforts to train them otherwise, they even get to sleep in the bed. I also talk to them, sometimes in praise, other times in a desperate attempt to convince them that it is not, in fact, in their best interest to eat crayons ... again. But how much of what I say to them do they actually understand? Do they remember the things I’ve told them? I know that I love my dog, but does my dog love me or just the food that I provide?

How many words can a dog know?

Most dog knows what you mean when you say “sit” or “stay,” and mine certainly knows the word “no,” but how much more can they understand? I know an English bulldog whose owners had to stop using the word “dinner” when doing their meal planning because their pup would think it was time to eat. For a while they switched to “supper” but he eventually learned that too.

For the study, men were given t-shirts to sleep in for several nights in a row. Women were then asked to smell the t-shirts and rank them in order of their preference. Women tended to prefer the odors of men without similar MHC genes, suggesting not only a link between the MHC group of genes and body odor, but also our preference for MHC genes that differ from our own.  


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