Dogs perform better than babies in crowded room and have mastered the 'cocktail party effect'. New research shows that dogs can filter out background noises and hear their owner.
Dogs can filter out their names and hear their owner speaking in a crowded or noisy room says new research
* Dogs came out on top competiting against babies in this task
* The result of this research is a great development for trainers and owners of service dogs since it can help to train dogs
According to research, dogs perform surprisingly well in tasks where they have to filter out their own name in a room with lots of sounds. This research was performed by the Univerrsity of Maryland. The phenomenon, which is known by 'the cocktail party effect' has also been observed in humans. It involves the ability of the brain to effectively filter out noises deemed unimportant to be able to focus on priority sound. This makes that people can still have a conversation while in a crowded room. It now appears this skill is also shared with our favorite canines.
Dogs can filter out the background noise and focus on their name or the voice of their owner when spoken to at the same volume or louder than surrounding noises. When spoken to by their name, the dogs both responded to unfamiliar voices as well as an audiospeaker. This suggests they filtered out background noises and did not respond to the body language of their owner.
The results of the research (published in the journal Animal Cognition) provided valuable insights for handling working dogs. Both working and service dogs sometimes need to respond to urgent commands from people oher than their owner in a noisy environment.
The study affirms the importance for dog owners to use a dog's name in any busy situation.
Psychology professor Stanley Coren from the Univeristy of Brith Columbia says the following about it "Some people say you're better off giving hand signals—but the dogs are often scanning the room to see what's going on around them, so they miss them. So this says, no, you can cut through the noise by using the dog's name."
But even though we have come to the conclusion that dogs technically can filter out background noises to focus on you, as a lot of casual dog owners may have noticed, sometimes they just don't really feel like it.