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25 Apr 2024, Edition - 3208, Thursday

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Columns

Ever wondered why dogs feel guilty like humans? Here’s why!

Covai Post Network

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KC Archana

They certainly won’t talk, but under scrutiny their guilt is evident. Who are we talking about? None other than our faithful, adorable, furry friends – Dogs!

All of them show signs of a guilt ridden culprit. Refusal to make eye contact, swallowing nervously and trying to pretend that nothing really happened.
It is intriguing that Dogs behave the same way humans do upon an embarrassing situation and being apologetic.

Why do they act guilty ?

Dogs indeed have the capacity to feel guilty. They may slink away, drop their ears and give us a whale eyed apologetic expression. Over time, dogs recognize the difference in the tone of the voice and body language of the owner, when he is not his usual chirpy self.

Scientists refer to this behavior as primary emotions which include happiness and fear in every animals. Secondary emotions like jealousy, pride and guilt is comparatively rare in most animals.

The cognitive level for an emotion like guilt requires a high amount of self-awareness and scientists haven’t exactly been able to pin-point the cause for this behavior among Dogs.

Popular Geologist Charles Darwin observed that among non-human primate species, the feeling of guilt was to reinforce social relationships and to reduce conflicts among others in the same social groups.

This particular trait was seen to be common among wolves and dogs. The behaviour among dogs is more evident because their immediate social group primarily includes humans.

One thing is clear from the numerous guilty dogs video compilations – they all promptly reciprocate human emotions, be it happiness, guilt or anger.
Can’t get enough of these adorable guilty dogs? This funny compilation of guilty dogs will have you in splits!

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