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Five Facts about The Brains of Dogs and What They Can Teach Us About Ours!

What goes on in the mind of a dog ? Are there any similarities to the human brain? As a professional development coach, I do a lot of reading and make use of a number of Neuro Linguistic Programming techniques, so I decided it was worth looking into the matter. The results are both interesting and surprising !

1- A dog, regardless of its size or breed, has a brain no bigger than a tangerine!.

This is not at all to say that dogs are stupid! As a matter of fact.

2- A dog’s brain has over 530 million neurons (versus 820 billion in humans).

The cerebral cortex of a dog’s brain (the wrinkled outer layers of the brain) is much denser than other carnivores. A cat, for example, has only 250 million. According to neuroscientist Suzana Herculano-Hanzel at Vanderbilt University, this high number “determines the richness of their internal mental state”.

3- One border Collie named “Chaser” was able to recognize over 1000 words and retrieve the corresponding objects.

Behavioral psychologists call this phenomenon “object permanence”, the ability to remember objects or people no longer in their field of vision. As opposed to humans, however, their memories are associative, not recall (or experience) based.

4- Dogs develop a sense of linear time much faster than infants!