The Function of Play Bows in Dog and Wolf Puppies

New research casts doubt on an old explanation for the play bow – and suggests it’s all about more play.The play bow is a glorious signal in dogs. The bum goes up and the elbows go down, leaving the rear end sticking up, usually accompanied by a lovely happy face (as pictured above). Not just reserved for other dogs, our canine friends will play bow to us too.Traditionally, it was believed that the play bow…

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To Retain Information Better, Wait a Few Hours, Then Go for a Run!

The study that I want to tell you about today was done by Eelco V. van Dongen and his colleagues and is entitled “Physical Exercise Performed Four Hours after Learning Improves Memory Retention and Increases Hippocampal Pattern Similarity during Retrieval.” This study’s findings can be summed up as follows: if you have just made a new mental association and want to remember it better, wait a couple of hours, and then go do some exercise!…

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If your body isn’t healing, your partner’s genes might be to blame

You can almost feel aggression seeping out of these mice. Could menacing looks stress them out enough to damage health? Drawing by Karsushika Hokusai between 1830 and 1949. Choosing the right partner in life can help overcome its many pitfalls and challenges. But what if that partner could also influence your health in totally unexpected ways—what if their genes, and not only yours, are at play? This, at least, seems to be the case in…

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7 myths about physical activity

Myth 1: A child’s time is better spent focusing on the three R’s than on performing physical activity People sometimes worry that time devoted to physical activity comes at the expense of academic achievement.  Luckily, that’s not the case. Here is a summary of some of the evidence showing that physical activity actually improves academic performance, taken from the 2009 Active Healthy Kids Canada Report Card on the Physical Activity of Canadian Children and Youth: …a comprehensive…

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We now join a series of experiments already in progress

In the previous post I described the RNA-seq data that indicates that our antitoxin knockout is unlikely to express functional toxin during log-phase growth, because the promoter it would otherwise repress appears to begin transcription well downstream of the toxin start codon.  The graphic I showed was not exactly the right one, but the evidence is good.)This would explain why the antitoxin knockout grows normally in rich medium, and suggests we should look for a…

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Sept films d’Hélène Trocme-Fabre comme autant de trésors à redécouvrir

Je voudrais aujourd’hui vous parler d’une série de sept documentaires, une œuvre magistrale qui était encore difficilement accessible il y a quelques années, mais qu’on peut maintenant visionner sur Internet gratuitement. Il s’agit de la série « Né pour apprendre » d’Hélène Trocme-Fabre réalisée par Daniel Garabédian au début des années 1990. Avant de vous parler de la valeur inestimable de ces sept films d’environ une demi-heure chacun, un mot sur son auteure, Hélène Trocme-Fabre…

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Companion Animal Psychology News February 2017

The latest news on cats and dogs from Companion Animal Psychology.Some of my favourite posts from around the web this month"Cats, on the other hand get a raw deal. Especially stray ones." Our cat in Havana by Will Grant.Memory wins when dogs sleep. Julie Hecht on how sleep helps learning in dogs."I will never forget the first time a patient died at the clinic." Compassion fatigue, secondary trauma and burnout in the animal care profession by Dr.…

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