Jan 7, 2022

A Study Shows That Dogs Prefer to Poop in Alignment With Earth’s Magnetic Field

It turns out your dog isn’t searching for an arbitrary “best” spot go do their business – they’re actually doing their best to line their behind up with Earth’s magnetic field.

Not only that, but a study, published in Frontiers in Zoology, also found that they prefer a north-south axis for their dumping grounds.


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Researchers found that dogs are sensitive to small variations in the Earth’s magnetic field, and after studying 70 dogs (37 different breeds) over the course of 2 years, they learned that under “calm magnetic field conditions,” dogs preferred to “excrete with the body being aligned along the north-south axis.”

They avoided east-west altogether, actually. Also, the dogs in the study were entirely unconfined and unleashed, leaving them free to do their business exactly where they pleased.

What the study did not learn was why canines prefer to poop in a certain direction.

“It is still enigmatic why the dogs do align at all, whether they do it “consciously” (i.e., whether the magnetic field is sensorial perceived (the dogs “see”, “hear” or “smell” the compass direction or perceive it as a haptic stimulus)) or whether its reception is controlled on the vegetative level (they “feel better/more comfortable or worse/less comfortable” in a certain direction).”

Scientists involved hope their findings will open “new horizons” for further research in organisms’ use of magnetic fields for direction.


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