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Dog brains divide language tasks much like humans do

Meaning, intonation interpreted separately, study finds

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3:49pm, August 30, 2016
dogs with MRI machine

GOOD DOGS  To see how dogs process speech, these pooches were trained to undergo MRI brain scans. The results: Dogs are a lot like humans.  

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Editor’s note: When reporting results from the functional MRI scans of dogs’ brains, left and right were accidentally reversed in all images, the researchers report in a correction posted April 7 in Science. While dogs and most humans use different hemispheres of the brain to process meaning and intonation — instead of the same hemispheres, as was suggested — lead author Attila Andics says the more important finding still stands: Dogs' brains process different aspects of human speech in different hemispheres. 

Dogs process speech much like people do, a new study finds. Meaningful words like “good boy” activate the left side of a dog’s brain regardless of tone of voice, while a region on the right

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