Dog Emotion and Cognition

I like staying up to date with the latest canine studies and there’s a growing body of research regarding canine emotion and cognition. A lot of great work is done at the Duke Canine Cognition Center, led by Dr. Brian Hare.

I recently discovered Coursera offers a free online lecture series by Dr. Hare that covers the latest in the field. The course also gives free access to two modules on, modules which provide fun games to test how your pup thinks.


I added Eko and Penny into Dognition profiles and got started


The lectures are broken into short chunks, usually 5-10 minutes long


The lectures use broader scientific principles to help discover the specific personality traits of your pup


Using the lectures and the free games from Dognition, you find which profile fits your pup. Before testing you’re asked to guess where your pup will end up.


I suspect Eko will be a “Charmer”


There’s no “On the run from the law” option, so I think Penny will be a “Maverick.”

In addition to the games, I’ve found the lectures very informative. They cover everything from the evolutionary history of dogs to all the functional tasks dogs have served over the years.

So if you’re interested in learning more about both the history of dogs and the fascinating ways they think, act and problem-solve, I highly recommend you check out the free course. I’ll be sure to report back after I’ve completed the course and tested both Eko and Penny.

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