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Dogs can understand human gestures, even if they've never been around humans

A 2009 study found that dogs have the intelligence of a two-and-a-half-year-old child. They can also understand up to 250 words and gestures. And they've had a long time to get it right. We started domesticating dogs 10,000 to 15,000 years ago, and that domestication runs deep. It turns out, even dogs who have never heard a human yell "roll over" might still understand basic commands. A new study found that stray dogs can understand human gestures, such as pointing, which suggests that dogs innately understand people.

Dr. Anindita Bhadra of the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research Kolkata and her colleagues studied 160 stray dogs across several cities in India. Two covered bowls were placed in front of each dog. One bowl contained raw chicken, and the other bowl was both empty and food-scented.


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Another experimenter then pointed at one of the bowls for varying amounts of time. The humans stood away from the bowls in order to allow the dog to "judge what the humans intention is and then make a decision," Bhadra told National Geographic.

Half of the dogs refused to come close to the researchers, and many seemed anxious. According to Bhadra, it's likely these dogs had prior bad experiences with people.

Of the dogs that did participate in the study, 80% of dogs went to the bowl that was being pointed at regardless of the length of time the pointing occurred. They hadn't ben trained to understand pointing, they just went. Researchers believe this indicates that dogs can understand complex human gestures. You have to give it to the dogs. Some animals would just sit there and smell the pointing finger.

"We thought it was quite amazing that the dogs could follow a gesture as abstract as momentary pointing. This means that they closely observe the human, whom they are meeting for the first time, and they use their understanding of humans to make a decision. This shows their intelligence and adaptability," Badhra told National Geographic.

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However, the dogs weren't above developing trust issues. If the dog discovered that the human was pointing to the empty bowl, the dog was less likely to follow the human's cues again.

Badhra says the study can help children and adults have "a more peaceful co-existence" with stray dogs by helping humans learn how to interact with the animals. There are approximately 300 million stray dogs in the world, many of which carry diseases such as rabies. Knowing how to deal with a stray dog can help prevent such attacks from occurring.

Now if only researchers could figure out if dogs innately know how to eat pasta from the same bowl as another dog, Lady and the Tramp-style…

Joy

Delivery driver's reaction to snacks left for him shows how a little kindness goes a long way

'Seeing a grown man get so excited about Capri Sun is extra wholesome.'

"Dee" the delivery guy stoked to get some Doritos.

Sometimes the smallest gesture can change someone’s day for the better, especially when that act of kindness lets them know their work is appreciated. Over the last few years, delivery drivers have done a fantastic job keeping people healthy during the pandemic, so Toni Hillison Barnett told News 11 that she and her husband started a tradition of leaving snacks for their drivers on the front porch.

The Barnetts, who live in Louisville, Kentucky, can see the drivers' reactions by recording them on their doorbell cameras. “I live for reactions like this to our snack cart! Thx to all of the delivery drivers out there! We appreciate you!” Toni wrote on an Instagram post.

Recently, one of the Barnetts’ delivery guys, a joyous fellow that we believe is known as Dee, went viral on TikTok because of his positive reaction to receiving some snacks during his deliveries. The snacks are tasty, no doubt. But it’s also wonderful to feel appreciated. After Toni posted the video, it received more than 100,000 views.

“Oh my God, you guys are the best, I gotta take a snapshot of this,” Dee can be heard saying in the video. “Oh, Capri Suns are my favorite, Yes!”

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Pop Culture

Christopher Meloni responded to a fan's 'Law & Order: SVU' themed wedding invitation

Fans have some hilarious suggestions for how to make the most of his appearance.

Nothing beats a response from the Zaddy himself.

You may have heard of Christopher Meloni. You know, the actor who’s starred in 12 seasons of a little show called “Law & Order: SVU"? Whose character was so popular he got his own spinoff show? The originator of the “zaddy” moniker? Yeah, that guy.

Well, it’s no secret that the 61-year-old actor, and the show that put him on the map, has a loyal fan base. Recently, a couple, clearly dedicated to the show, decided to tie the knot with a series of “Law & Order”-themed wedding invitations. Naturally, they invited Detective Elliot Stabler himself.

“Chris, please come to my wedding,” tweeted Kelly Heenan, the bride-to-be. Along with her request, she posted a photo of her wedding invitation, which was a spitting image of the show's iconic poster.

The couple’s dedication apparently paid off, because Meloni replied with a simple “and do what?” This set off a hilarious slew of suggestions from fans, who knew exactly how to make the most of this proposed appearance.

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Phil Collins and George Harrison

This article originally appeared on 12.01.21


Beatle George Harrison was pigeon-holed as the "Quiet Beatle," but the youngest member of the Fab Four had an acerbic, dry sense of humor that was as sharp as the rest of his bandmates.

He gave great performances in the musical comedy classics, "A Hard Days Night" and "Help!" while holding his own during The Beatles' notoriously anarchic press conferences. After he left the band in 1970, in addition to his musical career, he would produce the 1979 Monty Python classic, "The Life of Brian."

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Internet

Women reveal 10 things some men unknowingly do that are an instant turnoff

"Only treating women with respect if you find them attractive."

Women reveal 10 things some men unknowingly do that is an instant turnoff

If you ask most single people, dating is a pretty big poop show. Dating apps have taken an activity that was awkward enough on its own and turned it into a job-finding board. You have approximately 3.45 seconds to impress someone with your face, your hobbies, your job, political leanings and whether or not you want children.

That's it. If you're not ringing any buzzers in those first few seconds, the person on the other end swipes left and your profile picture is staring up at another potential suitor. But if you make it past the lightning round known as the dating app and actually meet in person, other things come into play that may be an instant turnoff.

A Reddit user asked, "Women, what are some things that make a man insanely unattractive but they don't realize?" It's safe to say that the ladies had a few non-negotiables since there are nearly 3,000 comments on the thread.

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