As if you needed any more evidence that your four-legged friend was too good to be true, a new study has found they remember all the little things you do - even if they aren't directly involved.
New research has revealed "dogs have episodic-like memory and are able to observe and record the actions you do".
Claudia Fugazza, an animal behaviour researcher attempted to train dogs to do strange tasks like looking inside a bucket or tapping an umbrella by demonstrating doing them in front of dogs. These meaningless unconnected tasks were mimicked by the dogs one minute and also one hour later, despite not having any reward like food or a walk.
"From a broad evolutionary perspective, this implies that episodic-like memory is not unique and did not evolve only in primates but is a more widespread skill in the animal kingdom," Fugazza explained. "We suggest that dogs may provide a good model to study the complexity of episodic-like memory in a natural setting, especially because this species has the evolutionary and developmental advantage to live in human social groups."
"The results of our study can be considered as a further step to break down artificially erected barriers between non-human animals and humans," she added. "Dogs are among the few species that people consider 'clever,' and yet we are still surprised whenever a study reveals that dogs and their owners may share some mental abilities despite our distant evolutionary relationship."
Could dogs be any better?