Dogs versus cats: Scientists reveal which one is smarter
Apr 26, · Dogs learn and respond to commands; cats usually don’t. But cats are cunning hunters with a boundless curiosity. To settle this debate, PBS NewsHour posed the Estimated Reading Time: 6 mins. Dec 03, · It seemed so cut and dry when last year, researchers at Vanderbilt University declared that yes, dogs were, in fact, smarter than cats. Their findings, published in the journal Frontiers in.
Rashmi Shivni Rashmi Shivni. Or are dogs? But cats are cunning hunters with a boundless curiosity. To settle this debate, PBS NewsHour posed the question to three scientists — a neuroscientist, a dog cognition expert and a cat behavior and cognition researcher. When one of these scientists counted the brain cells in these animals, there was a clear winner. Still, the latest behavioral research on animal intelligence challenges all our old-school notions on what it means to be smart.
Neuroscientist Suzana Herculano-Houzel studies animal intelligence by digging deep into gray matter. She liquifies animal brains to count their neurons. Neurons process and send information throughout the central nervous system.
What temperature to cook bread brains belonged to eight carnivorous mammals: cats and dogs, along with ferrets, mongooses, raccoons, hyenas, lions and brown bears.
The study was published in late in the journal Frontiers in Neuroanatomy. These were brains of already dead animals donated by a zoo, a forest preserve, a wildlife rehab facility and several pet owners. Subscribe to our Science Newsletter to explore the wide worlds of science, health and technology. The technique, developed by Herculano-Houzel and originally used to reveal the number of neurons existing in the human braindissolves the brain and liquefies each neuron.
This method helped the team discover that dogs possess about million neurons in the cortex, while cats have about million. For perspective, the human cortex contains 16 billion neurons.
Herculano-Houzel disclosed that she kept her biases out of the research, but said her dog, Mielina, is a great example of why dogs are smarter than cats. Photo by Suzana Herculano-Houzel. Beyond dogs and cats, the team found a few surprises among the other animals. For example, the largest animals in the bunch—the hyena, lion and brown bear—had fewer neurons than the smaller ones.
Another surprise in their research came from raccoons, those clever masked bandits. But they found herbivores packed as many neurons as their carnivore counterparts. The same balance applied when they compared domesticated versus wild animals. Intelligence comes in any sized package, Herculano-Houzel said.
Hare said many scientists avoid the term because intelligence is typically studied from a human-centric perspective. Each species has been shaped by evolution to solve the problems most critical to its survival and reproduction, he continued. Seeing a dolphin sitting in a tree looks as silly as a chimpanzee fishing in the sea. But research shows that both dolphins and chimps are geniuses in their natural habitats.
Consider hunting abilities, for example. Cats sit on the skilled end of the spectrum, while dogs sit in the middle and humans near what to do for razor burn low end. But if we test the three on math, humans shift toward the intelligent side while dogs and cats move away. But Vitale Shreve said we need comparative studies to see how overall behaviors relate to the physiology of the brain—particularly with what we now know about the neuron quantities in different brains.
Photo by Roger H. Also, few studies have directly compared dog and cat cognition, and in fact, only a handful of researchers study cats at all. In summary, intelligence is a nuanced and complicated thing. Support Provided By: Learn more. Thursday, Apr The Latest. World Agents for Change. Health Long-Term Care.
For Teachers. About Feedback Funders Support Jobs. Close Menu. Email Address Subscribe. What do you think? Leave a respectful comment. Close Comment Window. Yes Not now. By — Rashmi Shivni Rashmi Shivni. Leave a comment. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter. Which are smarter, cats or dogs? Dogs have more nerve than cats Neuroscientist Suzana Herculano-Houzel studies animal intelligence by digging deep into gray matter.
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Time for some new Cat Food?
Are cats smarter than dogs yes or no? The results show that cats possess about million neurons in the cortex, while dogs have about twice as that at million neurons. Based on this, we can say that dogs are smarter than cats. Be aware that how smart a cat or dog is, also depends on the funlovestory.comted Reading Time: 6 mins. Who is smarter, cats or dogs? If you're a pet parent to both animals, you may have witnessed many ways that both cats and dogs can top the intelligence charts. Dogs, for example, are easily trained to follow commands. Cats, on the other hand, may not follow instructions but Estimated Reading Time: 3 mins. Jun 19, · Dog owners say their pets are smartest because their pet is loyal, joyous and can be trained. Cat owners say it’s their pet — for exactly the opposite funlovestory.comted Reading Time: 2 mins.
Who is smarter, cats or dogs? If you're a pet parent to both animals, you may have witnessed many ways that both cats and dogs can top the intelligence charts.
Dogs, for example, are easily trained to follow commands. Cats, on the other hand, may not follow instructions but can open doors and solve puzzles. Are cats smarter than dogs? A study published in Frontiers in Neuroanatomy concludes that dogs may be the more intelligent species. Don't tell your cat. In this study, researchers aimed to determine how many neurons were in the cerebral cortex in certain carnivorous and omnivorous species: the domesticated dog, domesticated cat, ferret, banded mongoose, raccoon, striped hyena, lion, and brown bear.
But first, what does a neuron do, and why is it important to study? How is the measurement of neurons a good determinant of whether or not an animal is intelligent?
According to the U. National Library of Medicine , a neuron is "a type of cell that receives and sends messages from the body to the brain and back to the body. Neurologist Suzana Herculano-Houzel, one of the study's researchers, explains her choice of using neurons as a measure of intelligence to National Geographic.
She says, "neurons are the basic information processing units. The more units you find in the brain, the more cognitively capable the animal is. First, the researchers isolated the animals' cerebral cortices. The cerebral cortex synthesizes outside stimuli received by other parts of the brain to make decisions and solve problems, National Geographic writes, making it an ideal location to count neurons.
The animal cortices were then broken down into suspended nuclei from neural cells to allow researchers to begin counting neurons. It's also important to mention that a larger brain does not mean more space for more neurons. Herculano-Houzel's study featured two dogs, a pound mutt and a pound golden retriever, and both dogs' brains contained roughly the same number. The much larger bear, in contrast, had far fewer neurons.
The results indicate that the cerebral cortices of the dogs studied had approximately million neurons each, compared to the cat's million neurons. In comparison, the same area of the human brain is estimated to have as many as 16 billion neurons.
Critics of Herculano-Houzel's experiment argue that intelligence can't be determined by neurons alone. Some cats present themselves to be extremely smart, while some dogs may not quite live up to the standards set by science. Cuddly pets aside, raccoons were found to have around neurons, which for their brain size is enough to "mistake the raccoon for a small primate," according to The Washington Post. While the question, "Who is smarter cats or dogs?
In fact, the question, "Are dogs smarter than cats? Anyone who's ever had a cat and a dog together knows that both animals have positive traits. So, cuddle your furry friends and shower them with love and affection even if they don't take first prize in the "Who is smarter: cats or dogs?
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Published by. Researching Animal Smarts A study published in Frontiers in Neuroanatomy concludes that dogs may be the more intelligent species. Inside of a Dog First, the researchers isolated the animals' cerebral cortices.
But how the cats' and dogs' brains stack up? Your pets are waiting in suspense! The Pawful Truth The results indicate that the cerebral cortices of the dogs studied had approximately million neurons each, compared to the cat's million neurons. Author Erin Ollila. Pet Home Alone: Back to School's Effect on Your Pet Learn how heading back to school and suddenly leaving your pet home alone impacts them, and how you can help ease the transition.
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