It turns out that dogs that are loyal friends of people have quite an interesting ability to find directions. According to the research, dogs use the Earth’s magnetic field as a direction aid.
Researchers from the Czech University of Life Sciences, Virginia Tech, and Barry University found evidence of people’s loyal friends, dogs using Earth’s magnetic field as a direction aid.
In a previous study, it was found that dogs tend to orient themselves according to the north-south position when they are peeing, which showed that dogs have the ability to feel the Earth’s magnetic field. In the new study, the researchers combined these two studies to find a sense of magnetic field in dogs and whether they use it to find direction.
Studies on dogs
These two studies are actually very similar to each other. In both studies, GPS sensors were connected to multiple dogs and they were taken to their natural habitats and released to run. In all studies, the dogs returned to the person who left them. The only difference between these two studies was the number of dogs. There were four dogs in the first study and 27 dogs in the second study.
In the direction study the dogs took, the researchers found that the dogs used one of the two types of turns when going and coming. The first of these methods is called tracking. As the name suggests, dogs use the route they use when they swing on their comeback and possibly do this using their noses.
The researchers called the second type of turn used by dogs, the discovery. As can be understood from its name, dogs return in this method by using a different route, not the way they oscillate. The researchers also found that most of the dogs that used the type of reconnaissance on return showed strange behavior. The dogs were running 20 meters in the north-south direction before returning to the point where they started. Their display of this behavior helped dogs find their way.
The researchers stated that this run in the north-south direction is evidence that dogs use the magnetic field to get used to when they are not used to it. This method helps them find their way back home.