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Dogs that bark towards nothing: a sixth sense?

Dogs that bark towards nothing: a sixth sense?

June 23, 2024

A few years ago, I used to visit a friend of the faculty who, for a scholarship, had moved for a few months to a flat near my apartment, next to his hound. It was nice to be able to converse with him about the old days, and yet, from the second week on, it became clear that something was not right. My friend's face became increasingly marked by dark circles, he was easily irritable and began to complain about his work despite the fact that the first few days he said he loved it.

The answer to this was told to me just when he announced that he was going back to his city, several months before his scholarship and his internship ended. It was due to something that happened frequently in his apartment: the dog began to growl, staying motionless and going to the only room inside the place, as if he saw something there. The final blow came upon learning that about twenty years ago, a tenant had died there, electrocuted during some renovations.


Stories similar to this are frequent. The belief that animals can perceive paranormal phenomena It is as old as it is popular. Even today, there are many people who live experiences in which a dog stares at a corner or corridor where there is nothing, with ears raised, and starts barking or growling with obvious signs of stress. What is true about this belief? Is it really true that dogs are able to see aspects of reality that escape our senses?

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Dogs barking at nothing: between the paranormal and the mysterious

The scope of the belief in a sixth sense canine is, impressive, and more taking into account that every time there are less reasons to believe in spirits and in paranormal phenomena.


A survey conducted in the United States in 2011 showed that about 47% of people who live with dogs have been alerted by these animals just before something bad happened. That is to say, that the experience was convincing enough so that, when interpreting the facts, many people they believed that the dog had a kind of sixth sense .

On the other hand, it is also common to believe that when dogs are left barking at nothing, in reality there are wind ghosts and supernatural entities. The ambiguity that is generated in these situations feeds the beliefs in the paranormal, and there is a phenomenon that, on a small scale and intensity, reminds the Folie à Deux, in which delusions or hallucinations of a person make this behave in such a convincing way that the other ends up believing in his explanations.


But ... are the dogs that do this having visions? As far as is known, nothing indicates that these animals experience psychotic symptoms of this type more frequently than human beings. But that does not mean that they see ghosts, spirits or echoes of the future or the past: there are other explanations that are much more complete and simple.

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Domestic explanations about the sixth sense of can

It seems undeniable that dogs have certain sensorial capacities much more developed than the representatives of our species. But that does not mean that they enjoy a sixth sense, in the most mystical conception of the concept. Actually, these strange behaviors, like get nervous in situations where there is no clear danger in sight , can be explained based on what is known about their smell and their hearing.

It is a fact that these animals can hear sounds at a volume that is well below the threshold of our hearing sensitivity. This means that the same stimulus, such as the meow of a cat in the distance, can be picked up by a dog and not by us, despite being right next to it.

But this better hearing has one drawback: In a very wide range of sounds, it is easy to find one that is ambiguous , that leads to confusion, either because it is mixed with others or because it is cushioned by materials that the dog has not become accustomed to, such as certain metals with which a wall can be lined.

On the other hand, much of the mystery of why this always happens in one place, and more or less constantly, has a very simple explanation: the noises of pipes. These components cover a good part of the walls and occasionally generate noises, but we do not perceive them when they are cushioned by many layers of construction material.

Dogs in the face of natural disasters

Another fact that is usually linked to the supposed sixth sense of dogs is that they are able to foresee some natural disasters.

How do you explain that hours or days before a hurricane passes through the area, dogs already realize that something is happening? It is believed that this happens because They are very sensitive to changes in atmospheric pressure , something that always happens when a phenomenon of these characteristics is brewing.


5 Creepy Times Pets Were Seeing Things Their Owners Couldn’t! (June 2024).


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