VIENNA, Austria - Your face says a lot about how you're feeling. People can obviously read your facial expressions, but now a new study says that dogs can also size you up just by looking at your mug.
Research conducted at Vienna's University of Veterinary Medicine found our four-legged friends know the difference between a big grin or a frustrated frown, and act accordingly to what expression we show them. This is the first time science is proving what pet owners have known all along.
During the course of the study, 11 dogs of various breeds played a video game in which they were shown "parts" of people's faces who were either smiling or frowning. Sometimes only the top half of a face was shown. Other times, just the bottom half of a face was given to the pooch.
Some of the dogs were rewarded for picking out the happy faces and some for finding angry faces. The study showed dogs were able to pick correctly most of the time. Researchers also noticed the dogs asked to pick mad faces did so, with more caution than their dogs looking at happy people, proving canines know to act carefully around an angry person. Smart!
The term, "man's best friend" is fitting for dogs. This study shows they might know you better than you think.