Science Says Dogs Are 'Not Exceptional' - World Says 'No One Asked You'

by Christina Marfice
Image via SensorSpot / Getty Images

This is what you get when you come at the internet insulting dogs

Literally everyone who’s ever owned a dog knows how perfect and rad and special they are. No matter what anyone says — no matter what science says — nothing will convince us that dogs are not genius angel babies sent from Heaven to walk through life by our side. And it’s a good thing, because science is officially saying that’s not the case.

A new study published in Learning and Behavior is trying to claim that dogs are “not exceptional,” i.e. they’re not any smarter or more special or better at bonding with humans than any other carnivore, social hunter or domestic animal. Researchers looked at pups’ ability to communicate, sense of smell, trainability and ability to pick up on cues from humans and follow hand signals and commands. Then they compared those to a bunch of other animals and found that other animals can pretty much do all those things as well or better than dogs.

The study compared canines to dolphins and chimpanzees, which, OK, because those are some of the smartest animals on Earth. But it also compared them to pigeons, and I’m sorry, but science is not over here telling me my dog is no smarter than a pigeon. This is the kind of thing that’s gonna get science in a fight.

Science should have known better than to come to a place like the internet and try to claim that dogs are not perfect geniuses. The internet ‘gon shut that down

Some people on Twitter presented their own dogs as proof that this study is wrong, wrong, wrong.

Even the dictionary got in on this, pointing out that according to the study’s own language, dogs could (and probably, definitely are) still be geniuses.

And at least one sleuthing tweeter tracked down the actual author of the study.

There is good news, though. Other studies have shown that owning a pup makes us less lonely and healthier both physically and emotionally. Somehow, dog ownership is linked to lower rates of heart attacks and cardiovascular disease. And dogs alleviate psychosocial stress, which means their owners are less likely to suffer from negative health affects that come with isolation and depression.

So while dogs may not be the best smellers, communicators or cue-followers, they truly are the best friends. Take that, science.