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17 April 2014 12:48 pm ,
Vol. 344 ,
Officials last week revealed that the U.S. contribution to ITER could cost $3.9 billion by 2034—roughly four times the...
An experimental hepatitis B drug that looked safe in animal trials tragically killed five of 15 patients in 1993. Now,...
Using the two high-quality genomes that exist for Neandertals and Denisovans, researchers find clues to gene activity...
A new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concludes that humanity has done little to slow...
Astronomers have discovered an Earth-sized planet in the habitable zone of a red dwarf—a star cooler than the sun—500...
Three years ago, Jennifer Francis of Rutgers University proposed that a warming Arctic was altering the behavior of the...
- 17 April 2014 12:48 pm , Vol. 344 , #6181
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ScienceShot: Doggie Doolittles
7 October 2011 4:07 pm
Young children often misinterpret a dog's snarling face as a smile, which may be one reason why kids suffer a high number of dog bite injuries. But youngsters 6 to 10 years of age have no trouble understanding the threat in a dog's aggressive bark, researchers report in the current issue of Applied Animal Behaviour Science. The scientists tested 30 children and ten adults, asking them to judge a dog's emotions by listening to its barks in three different situations: alone, facing a stranger at a gate, and when playing. Lonely barks are high-pitched and slowly repetitive, aggressive ones are deeper and fast, and happy barks are slow and rough. Only adults and 10-year-old children correctly understood the playful bark, and only adults and children ages 8 through 10 had no trouble recognizing barks that were lonely. But adults and children of all ages (and even kids whose families did not own dogs) scored correctly on the aggressive barks. Thus, children encountering strange dogs should ignore their facial expressions, the scientists say, and instead listen to what they have to say.
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