Pioneering study reveals 5 distinct dog personalities: Which one fits your furry friend?

Feb 21, 2024
The findings aim to assist individuals in finding the perfect fit when it comes to welcoming a dog into their homes. Source: Getty Images.

In a paw-sitively groundbreaking study, researchers have unleashed the power of artificial intelligence to demystify the personalities of our four-legged friends.

The study, published in the journal Scientific Reports, offers a greater understanding of a dog’s temperament which is crucial for pet owners especially when it comes to choosing a breed.

While previous studies have utilised questionnaires and analysis to determine what type of personality a dog has, the latest research from the University of East London took advantage of the wonders of artifical intelligence.

Over two years, Dr Mohammad Hossein Amirhosseini, of the University of East London, Professor James Serpell of the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Veterinary Medicine, and the US dog training company Dogvatar applied machine learning techniques to behavioural data from the University of Pennsylvania’s C-BARQ database which contains over 70,000 behavioural records.

The outcome was five distinct categories, each corresponding to a different personality type:

  • Excitable/Hyperattached.
  • Anxious/Fearful.
  • Aloof/Predatory/.
  • Reactive/Assertive.
  • Calm/Agreeable.

Dr. Amirhosseini said, “This innovative AI-based methodology holds promise for revolutionising the selection and training of dogs for specific roles, both working and non-working.”

Moreover, by delving into the intricacies of canine personalities, this research not only aims to improve understanding but also to assist individuals in finding the perfect fit when it comes to welcoming a dog into their homes.

“These findings could provide a framework to explore personality matching between companion dogs and their owners and how this might contribute to the quality and durability of their relationships,” the report said.

“The results of such studies could potentially generate insights regarding why dog-human partnerships succeed or fail, thereby reducing future rates of shelter relinquishment and euthanasia, and may also help to guide animal shelter and rescue groups towards more successful and mutually rewarding dog adoptions.”

When selecting your next furry companion, it’s essential to consider not only finding a personality match but also choosing a breed that aligns with your lifestyle.

This becomes particularly crucial when adapting to a retirement lifestyle.

From factors like size and energy levels to grooming needs and temperament, each aspect contributes significantly to fostering a harmonious and fulfilling connection with your canine companion.

Some crucial factors to consider include:

Size: You may prefer dogs that are small or medium-sized to accommodate your living arrangements. Smaller breeds are often easier to handle and require less physical exertion.

Energy Level: While some may be active and enjoy regular exercise, others may prefer dogs with lower energy levels. A breed with moderate exercise requirements may be more suitable, avoiding the need for intense daily workouts.

Temperament: You should look for breeds known for their calm, friendly, and easygoing temperaments. Dogs with a gentle disposition are more likely to adapt well to a retiree’s lifestyle and be comfortable in various social settings.

Trainability: Breeds that are intelligent and responsive to training can make life your life easier. Dogs that are easy to train can quickly adapt to household routines, making them more manageable companions.

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