Guest: Prof Anne Burrows | Biological Anthropologist at Duquesne University.
Researchers have found that dogs have evolved muscles around their eyes, which allow
them to make expressions that particularly appeal to humans. A small facial muscle allows dog eyes to mimic an “infant-like” expression which prompts a “nurturing response”.
The study says such “puppy eyes” helped domesticated dogs to bond with humans.
Previous studies have shown how such canine expressions can appeal to humans, but
this research from the UK and US shows there has been an anatomical change around
dogs’ eyes to make it possible.
This allows dogs to create what the researchers call “expressive eyebrows” and to
“create the illusion of human-like communication”.