The internal compass of your dog could guide him.
Most dog owners have probably been puzzled (and perhaps impatient) to wait for their dog to do its job. Instead of just finding an area of soft grass to become number two, they make it all a ritual, turning in a circle before squatting. Fortunately, we can finally have answered the question of pet owners.
Some theories have circulated about why dogs might turn before pooping, and most are similar to why they turn before going to bed. A trampling in a circle would flatten the grass, which would prevent large blades from trapping their trash and hitting their boots while they pooped (yuck). Another explanation might be that they are looking for snakes and predators before they are fully occupied.
But the Czech researcher Hynek Burda has not quite adhered to these theories. The dogs evolved from wolves, who did not have to worry about the tall grass. And if they analyzed their environment, listening and sniffing would be more effective than giving the region a quick visit. Instead, Burda suggested that dogs turn to get an idea of the magnetic attraction of the Earth. Here are 16 more ways your dog is smarter than you think.
The Earth is surrounded by a magnetic field that protects it from radiation from space and some animals seem to use it to get an idea of the location of its North and South poles. For example, this is how birds know which way to migrate. In 2013, Burda published a study in the journal Frontiers in Zoology suggests that dogs also have a powerful internal compass. He and his team spent two years watching 70 poo and pee dogs and recording their orientation and strength of the magnetic field. (And when they’re done, that’s why the dogs gush out of the lawn after peeing.)
At the end, when the magnetic field was quiet (about 20% of the time when it was off), the dogs preferred to poop, facing north or south. When the magnetic field was less stable, they were face to face. The motive could not explain why dogs like to face the poles of the Earth, but researchers think it might help them remember where they marked their territory. “This and/or the calibration of his magnetic compass is probably easier for him when aligned with the magnetic field,” Burda told the Washington Post.
If they can remember the direction they were in, they might find it easier to find that place. So, before you roll your eyes, while your dog takes a long time to do business, remember that Fido may be doing some scientific research on his pot. To learn about other strange habits in your dog, check out the 12 secrets your dog’s tail is trying to reveal to you.
Read also:What to do if you find a dog
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