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Do Dogs Have a Time Sense?
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Dogs Time Sense

You may have noticed that your dog comes in the morning to wake you up. Not only in the morning but also at mealtime, your dog may have reached for the bowl before you. Is this all just a coincidence? Well, I do not think all these scenarios could be coincidences. It may make you think and question yourself, like do dogs have a sense of time. We will discuss this here in detail so that you get the answer to your question. It all may sound strange to you, like your dog coming to you before the upcoming activity you are taking him to. Also, they come near the food bowl 5 minutes earlier for lunch or dinner.

These examples may make you think of coincidences and make you think that dogs can sense time. If you are also thinking the same, then you have visited the right place. Here we will offer you some explanations and discoveries which will clear your doubts and give you answers to your questions regarding the time-sensing ability of your pet dog. I recommend you continue reading till the end for fantastic explanations.

Discovery About Dog's Time Sensing Ability -

  • Scientists continue to test dogs for their ability to sense time. Unfortunately, we cannot say whether dogs are good at time-sensing or not because we cannot ask them. However, it is sure that your dog does not experience time as we do.
  • We know that animals cannot read the time through the ticking of clocks. Also, they do not know about the usage of stopwatches. But they can sense time somehow. So it may make you think that they have something special within themselves that is unique.
  • North-western University has done the research and brought out a surprising discovery in 2018. The researchers examined in their discovery that animals have a medial entorhinal cortex located in the mind's temporal lobe. Such a lobe is a junction for the perception of navigation, memory as well as time.
  • In this discovery, scientists found that the entorhinal cortex has many particular neurons. These neurons get activated like the ticking of a clock as quickly as your pet goes into the mode of waiting. Does it sound surprising? Have you ever thought that your dog's brain works like a clock during the waiting period?

Can Dogs Tell You How Much Time Has Passed?

Now you may have got the answer to your question, do dogs have a sense of time or not? But the next question that comes to mind is, can dogs sense the passage of time as well? In simple words, can they differentiate between minutes and hours too?

To know this, researchers had experimented with the concerned dogs. They opt to keep the dogs in the houses of their owners for different times and hours. They kept some of the dogs away from their owners for an hour or two. And others were kept alone for 3-4 hours.

They discovered that dogs who were kept away from homeowners for longer hours hugged their owners tightly. As a result, they met their owners more warmly and intensely. However, dogs separated for one to two hours do not meet as warmly as dogs kept alone for long periods.

This experiment was carried out by scientists in 2011 to determine the ability of dogs to quantify time. So now we can consider that your pet dog can differentiate hours from minutes.

The smell is also a factor:

What if we told you that your dog's ability to smell the time allows them to tell the time? Would you believe it? Well, dogs can indeed sense time with their ability to smell things. A discoverer wrote in his book that your dogs could smell the time also. So it means the smell is also a factor that contributes to letting the dog sense the time.

Dogs can smell environmental changes and can distinguish hot air, which usually rises in the afternoon. As the air starts to get cold, it helps your dog with time sense. I hope you may have got the answer to your question and other doubts about the time-sensing ability of your dog.


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