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Scientists explain ‘puppy dog eyes’
Dogs and wolves were exposed to humans for two minutes, during which the dogs raised their inner eyebrow more and at higher intensities than wolves.
Rapid evolution results in extra muscles around eyes 

Dogs have evolved to have new muscles around their eyes to help them communicate better with humans, new research shows.

Led by the University of Portsmouth, a team of UK and US experts compared the anatomy and behaviour of dogs and wolves.

Findings published in PNAS suggest that the facial musculature of both species are similar, except for above the eyes.

A small muscle, which is absent in the wolf, allows dogs to intensely raise their inner eyebrow. This inner eyebrow raising - dubbed the AU101 movement - triggers a nurturing response in humans. It makes the dog’s eyes appear larger, giving them a more ‘baby-like’ look, and is also similar to a human facial expression that indicates sadness.

During the study, dogs and wolves were exposed to humans for two minutes, during which the dogs raised their inner eyebrow more and at higher intensities than wolves. Previous research also found that dogs moved their eyebrows significantly more when humans were looking at them.

Lead anatomist Professor Anne Burrows, from Duquesne University, remarked that the evolution of these new muscles happened “remarkably fast”.  

It is thought this can be directly linked to dogs’ enhanced social interaction with humans. Researchers believe the muscles could be the result of humans’ unconscious preferences influencing selection during domestication.

The AU101 movement elicits a caring response from humans, giving dogs that move their eyebrows more a selective advantage over others, which would reinforce the trait for the future. 

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Webinar to share tips on impactful consultations

News Story 1
 A webinar to help veterinary professionals communicate more effectively with their clients is set to be hosted by the World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA).

Taking place on Thursday 30 September, 'Top Tips for Impactful Consultations' will be led by Suzanne Rogers, co-director of Human Behaviour Change for Animals and Dr Natasha Lee, chair of the WSAVA's Animal Wellness and Welfare Committee.

For more information about the webinar, click here

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News Shorts
New online CPD otitis podcast created

A new 15 minute podcast on treating animals with otitis has been created by Dechra Veterinary Products. Featuring general practice vet Carolyn Kyte and veterinary dermatology specialist Natalie Barnard, the two vets will discuss their experiences treating otitis, and why owners are significant in successful treatment.

Dechra Brand Manager Carol Morgan commented: "What Carolyn and Natalie bring to the table with their new podcast for the Dechra Academy is a light and insightful discussion about communication and education being the keystone for better otitis outcomes and how vets can improve on their consultation skills to handle cases better."`

The podcast, called 'Think Differently about Otitis', is available to access for free on the Dechra Academy on-demand learning platform here.