How Dogs Love Us

How Dogs Love Us

A Neuroscientist and His Adopted Dog Decode the Canine Brain

Book - 2013
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The powerful bond between humans and dogs is one that’s uniquely cherished. Loyal, obedient, and affectionate, they are truly “man’s best friend.” But do dogs love us the way we love them? Emory University neuroscientist Gregory Berns had spent decades using MRI imaging technology to study how the human brain works, but a different question still nagged at him: What is my dog thinking?
After his family adopted Callie, a shy, skinny terrier mix, Berns decided that there was only one way to answer that question—use an MRI machine to scan the dog’s brain. His colleagues dismissed the idea. Everyone knew that dogs needed to be restrained or sedated for MRI scans. But if the military could train dogs to operate calmly in some of the most challenging environments, surely there must be a way to train dogs to sit in an MRI scanner.
With this radical conviction, Berns and his dog would embark on a remarkable journey and be the first to glimpse the inner workings of the canine brain. Painstakingly, the two worked together to overcome the many technical, legal, and behavioral hurdles. Berns’s research offers surprising results on how dogs empathize with human emotions, how they love us, and why dogs and humans share one of the most remarkable friendships in the animal kingdom.
How Dogs Love Us answers the age-old question of dog lovers everywhere and offers profound new evidence that dogs should be treated as we would treat our best human friends: with love, respect, and appreciation for their social and emotional intelligence.
A neuroscientist finally and definitively answers the age-old question: What is my dog thinking?

Baker & Taylor
A neuroscientist recounts his efforts to overcome administrative and behavioral hurdles to train his dogs to sit still during an MRI scan, an effort that produced evidence about canine empathy and the human-dog bond.

& Taylor

A media-cited Emory University neuroscientist recounts his painstaking efforts to overcome administrative and behavioral hurdles to train his dogs to sit still during an MRI scan and gain insights into the active canine brain, an effort that produced compelling evidence about canine empathy and the human-dog bond.

Publisher: Boston :, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt,, 2013
ISBN: 9780544114517
Characteristics: xviii, 248 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm


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Jun 24, 2018

I would recommend watching this authors TED talk that shares the same name as this book. If the information piques your interest start around page 130. The first half of the book contains just antecdotes about old dogs and the logistics of setting up this experiment.

Sep 06, 2015

Fantastic book. Easy to read, fascinating content. A large portion of the book (maybe a tad too much) is dedicated to telling the story of the lead-up to the actual experiments, however, it is interesting to read about hurdles, preconceptions, funding issues and the like.

Gabi_Dubh Oct 13, 2014

Fascinating book that debunks the idea of the dog owner establishing pack leadership as successful dog-human relationship. A must read for dog owners and dog lovers.


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Sep 03, 2015

A research study to scan dogs brains in MRI. Very interesting on how to train the dogs to sit in the scanner


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