Forget talking to your pets, it’s a pat they’re after

So we know we all love to tell our dogs they are beautiful. According to these researchers, though, they aren’t actually remotely interested in our “talk”. We have the details…

Since the very first puppy we ever had when I was little, I have talked to my dogs. All the way from gaga baby talk, to playing tea parties, to counselling me through the awkward teenage years, to just being the ultimate best friend to hang out with. Apparently, though, these dogs of mine are not interested in being told how beautiful they are over and over. They want one thing and one thing only: a good pat on the head.

Researchers had dogs come in and interact with two people in a room. One person pet the dog and the other person praised them verbally. They found that the dogs actually spent more time with the person who pet them, compared to the person who only interacted verbally.

Taking away the option of petting, the researchers then had one person in the room praise the dog, and the other person did not interact with them at all. There was no difference in the amount of time the dogs spent with each person!

So not only do they prefer petting over puppy talk, if there is a choice between having verbal praise heaped on them and being ignored – they’re still not fussed! Of course, being the beautiful animals that they are, in the real world our canine besties at least pretend to lap it up. I guess it’s just another reason to love them, and to give them more of what they are really after – a good pet!

It makes sense, Cadbury absolutely loves to be pet. If I really think about it, she isn’t all that fussed with me telling her how gorgeous she is as she sits under my desk. Having been told she’s gorgeous every day for years and years, I reckon she knows she is by now. What she’s really after is a quick pet between the day’s jobs (and a sneaky treat or two would probably be fine by her as well).