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Behavioral scientists at the University of Porto in Portugal have shown that dogs that are raised with humans show clear signs of empathy to humans.  Contagious yawning occurs only in a handful of animals, certain primates, humans, and dogs.  It is associated with empathy.  That dogs yawn in response to a human suggests that the dogs have empathy for us!   They could not prove that it is the same "human type" empathy but I suspect many dog owners would say, "Of course my dog understands my feelings."

My link to the study summary no longer works but I can send the summary.

--Dave

 


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