Do our dogs really have the ability to tell the time?
Why are there dogs that wake up their owners at the same time every day? How can they know exactly when it is time to eat or go for a walk? Can they really sense when a family member is coming home? The answer is yes.
Not only is it that man’s best friends are creatures of habit, but they also have the ability to know when they have to do certain things.
One of the references that dogs have to know what time it is are the day and night cycles, which are reflected in the changes in light intensity and temperature. However, their bodies have other mechanisms to quantify the passage of time, as National Geographic explains, and one of them is in their nose – which actually behaves like a real clock.
Dogs’ sense of smell is 10,000 to 100,000 times more powerful than humans, allowing them to detect changes in the environment that people are not even remotely aware of. With this highly developed sense, they can capture the unique smell of each individual, thanks to the particles that come off the skin and remain in the air.
Although this aroma fades over time, dogs can capture these particles by through their nose – which is capable of calculating the concentration of the particles. This allows them, for example, to understand when someone left home and, in the event that household members follow regular hours, when they will return.
In addition, it must be taken into account that the odours in a room move throughout the day due to the currents and movements of hot and cold air. This allows dogs to ‘smell the weather.’ These cycles allow them to know how many hours have elapsed since a certain activity and anticipate when it is time to repeat it or perform another.
In addition, dogs are great observers and, although this is not strictly related to the passing of hours, it allows them to anticipate what event is going to occur. Thus, the expressions or the gestures of the face allow man’s best friend to know what is going to happen next, such as a bath, a walk or a meal.