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Researchers at U. Wisconsin-Madison Studying What Dogs Like Watching on Television

Researchers at U. Wisconsin-Madison Studying What Dogs Like Watching on Television

“This is interesting because there are increasing numbers of dog ‘TV channels’ that promote engaging content for dogs, but very little understanding about how exciting those channels are for the dogs”

I have the TV on pretty much all the time, and my Dachshund ‘Finn’ doesn’t seem to care what’s on unless he hears a dog barking.

The College Fix reports:

U. Wisconsin-Madison researchers studying what dogs like watching on television

A new study by researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison is asking dog owners to answer a survey about what their dogs enjoy watching on television.

The study, headed up by Professor Freya Mowat of the School of Veterinary Medicine, is intended as a way to test eyesight in dogs, as well as measure how aging affects vision in both canines and humans.

“The goal is to figure out what content is universally most engaging for dogs,” Mowat told Madison’s Capital Times. “This screen-viewing questionnaire was born from a need to figure out a quick yet meaningful and sensitive way of testing vision in dogs.”

Mowat also works in the School of Medicine’s Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences.

“We are interested to know how much dogs interact with screens (televisions, computer monitors, laptops, tablets or smartphones),” reads the survey Mowat is asking dog owners to complete.

“This is interesting because there are increasing numbers of dog ‘TV channels’ that promote engaging content for dogs, but very little understanding about how exciting those channels are for the dogs,” the survey says. “In addition, we as researchers are interested to understand dog vision better, and in order to do that we need to find out how dogs interact with videos in the home, so we might consider how to test vision in dogs using videos!”

The study also presents four short videos for owners to show their dogs to see if they remain interested.

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Comments

The Gentle Grizzly | April 2, 2022 at 11:37 am

How much taxpayer money is being spent on this study?

    I was going to ask something similar. The most important piece of this kind of story is almost never there: Who’s paying for it?

    I don’t care who does what kind of inane research. I just don’t want to have to foot the bill.

henrybowman | April 2, 2022 at 4:14 pm

Crap, I already know the answer to this.
Dogs like seeing other animals on TV.
I’ve never lived anywhere that had cable, and never bothered to buy satellite, but we encounter cable in RV parks. Some years ago, if we had to leave our dogs in the rig, we would turn on Animal Planet while we were gone. It didn’t matter what the animals were: buffalo, bugs, or Belugas, our dogs were rapt.
This was before cable turned entirely to shit, with a “music TV” channel that played no music, an “Animal Planet” channel of 24-hour badge-sucking warden worship and globular warmening propaganda, and a “science channel” that leads them all with its faux-country “Hell’s Kitchen” knockoff for “illegal” moonshine chefs. Now my dogs aren’t any more interested in TV than I am.

    The Gentle Grizzly in reply to henrybowman. | April 2, 2022 at 11:52 pm

    The last dog I had was in the days of small screens and black-and-white. I don’t think he paid much attention to it. But if I put some classical music on the radio or on my photograph he would go right up to it sit down underneath it and either listen or he’d just curl up in a ball and relax. I salvaged an old Magnavox radio phonograph TV and put it in my bedroom. I got the darn thing to work, and I got as much entertainment out of the socket expect. So did my German Shepherd

Albigensian | April 2, 2022 at 5:51 pm

When smell is added to TV then dogs will be interested in it.

Did it occur to these researchers that dogs mostly think with their noses?

    henrybowman in reply to Albigensian. | April 3, 2022 at 4:49 pm

    Yup, all true. Though dogs are sight-oriented, the 2D flatscreen environment seems to interfere with that. If we turned the sound entirely off, they had no interest at all. But if we left the sound on low, they would accept visual stimuli from the screen.

    Only one dog we’ve ever had seemed to be able to make fine visual distinctions from a TV screen. If a dog appeared on the screen, she would show interest and whine softly, even if the sound was off. She showed interest other animals as well, but whined only for the dogs.

      henrybowman in reply to henrybowman. | April 3, 2022 at 4:51 pm

      I should add… when our local geezer channel was running Rin Tin Tin reruns. I would turn them on and watch them with her. She thoroughly enjoyed watching them.
      Yeah, we spoil our pets some.
      Almost makes up for all the time spent scraping poop out of the Roomba (again this morning).

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