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Science

New study reveals the smartest dog breed—and it's not the one you might expect

Move over, border collies, there's a new top dog in town.

Photo by Anthony Duran on Unsplash

Belgian Malinois, the smartest dog breed.

If you Google "smartest dog breeds," most lists you'll find put border collies in the No. 1 spot, followed in some order by poodles, German shepherds and golden retrievers.

But a new study of canine cognition from the University of Helsinki puts a whole different breed at the top of the ladder—one that most of us have probably seen before but haven't heard the name of—the Belgian Malinois.

Best known as a police or security dog, the Belgian Malinois is a shepherd breed that looks very similar to a German shepherd. Both breeds are of similar height and coloring, but the Malinois is lighter weight and its ears are more triangular-shaped, according to the American Kennel Club.

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Nature

A major UCLA study says that at least 65 species of animals laugh

If you've never seen a fox giggle, you're in for a treat.

Foxes giggle like children on helium.

This article first appeared on 1.14.22

Laughter is one of the most natural impulses in humans. Most babies start to laugh out loud at around 3 to 4 months, far earlier than they are able to speak or walk. Expressing enjoyment or delight comes naturally to us, but we're not the only creatures who communicate with giggles.

Researchers at UCLA have identified 65 species of animals who make "play vocalizations," or what we would consider laughter. Some of those vocalizations were already well documented—we've known for a while that apes and rats laugh—but others may come as a surprise. Along with a long list of primate species, domestic cows and dogs, foxes, seals, mongooses and three bird species are prone to laughter as well. (Many bird species can mimic human laughter, but that's not the same as making their own play vocalizations.)

Primatologist and UCLA anthropology graduate student Sasha Winkler and UCLA professor of communication Greg Bryant shared their findings in an article in the journal Bioacoustics.

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Photo courtesy of Dr. Lisa Lippman
True

Chloe Lippman might just be the happiest dog in New York City.

The 11-year-old Rhodesian Ridgeback belongs to Dr. Lisa Lippman, a veterinarian with an expansive social media following who specializes in teaching pet owners how to spark joy in their furry friends.

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Photo by Jamie Street on Unsplash

This article originally appeared on 01.10.18


Anyone who's ever been on Tinder knows having a cute animal in the photo is usually a big hit.

But what if Tinder profile photos only featured that cute animal? And what if, instead of a millennial would-be hooker-upper, it was the adorable dog or cat itself looking for true love?

That's an idea some animal shelters are toying with.

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