In honor of National Dog
Day, which is coming up on August 26th, we’ve put together a list of 10 facts
you may not know about your canine best friends. Some of these facts are funny,
some are surprising, but all will make you appreciate the dog in your life even
more – if that’s possible!

1. There are big benefits of switching your dog to a diet filled with fresh, real ingredients

Our dogs are part of our family. That’s why if we’re eating fresher, less-processed food at home, our best friends should be getting the very best, too. By feeding your dog real, fresh food like Freshpet, you’re helping your pup achieve better digestion, healthier skin and coat, increased energy levels, and so much more. Has your dog tried one of our fresh recipes yet?

2. Lab’s have held the title of the most popular dog breed in the U.S. for the last 29 years

Each year the American Kennel Club shares a list of the most popular breeds in their registry and the Labrador Retriever has held the number one spot for 29 years straight! Experts surmise that this popularity is due to their great temperaments, friendliness, trainability, and of course, the fact that they’re downright adorable.

3. Basenjis aren’t technically “barkless”

The
Basenji is best known for being a “barkless” breed but this isn’t quite
accurate. While they don’t bark like other breeds, they are not unable to
vocalize. The sound they make is called a yodel and sounds similar to the
whining your dog does when they’re excited.

4. Dogs have wet noses to help absorb scent chemicals

If you’ve ever wondered why your dog has a wet nose, you’ll be interested to learn that it plays a vital role in their sense of smell. Dog noses secrete a special mucus that helps absorb scent chemicals, which they then lick off to help them identify the smell. It’s an odd method, but it clearly works well. In fact, a Bloodhound’s sense of smell is so accurate it can be admitted as evidence in court!

5. Dogs dream just like humans

Studies have shown that dogs can dream, but recent studies have concluded that these dreams are similar to those that humans have, in that they replay moments from their day. What’s more, scientists have also found that puppies and senior dogs dream more often than their middle-aged counterparts.

6. The Saluki is the oldest breed of dog

Not
only do these sighthounds have the most beautiful long-haired ears, but they
also hold the record for being the oldest known dog breed. The Saluki dates
back to 329BC where they were kept as pets by royal families in Ancient Egypt.

7. Dogs show unselfish kindness

Researchers have concluded that dogs are one of the few types of animals who will show kindness towards others without the expectation of a reward. In their study, they found that dogs show “prosocial behavior” – voluntary actions that benefit others – without expecting to get anything in return for doing so. What’s even more interesting is that this behavior increases between dogs who know each other.

8. Dogs have a better sense of smell, but humans have a better sense of taste

With 300 million smell receptors in their noses, compared to the 6 million humans have, dogs certainly have us beat when it comes to sense of smell. But when it comes to a sense of taste, humans win. Humans have approximately 9,000 taste buds, whereas dogs have only around 1,700. The taste buds they do have also work differently than ours. In addition to the normal taste buds for sweet, salt, sour, and bitter, dogs have ones for meats, fats, meat-related chemicals, and water!

9. Service dogs can improve the mental health of their owners

We know that service dogs do amazing things for their owners, and a study published this year has confirmed this fact. Researchers found that regardless of demographics, pet dog ownership, and disability variables, individuals with a service dog had higher psychosocial health than those who were on the waiting list for one – this included higher overall emotional, social, and work or school functioning. The area where service dogs offered the biggest improvement in the lives of their pet parents was actually at school or work. Here, they helped improve their pet parent’s engagement, daily interactions with others, and overall functioning.

10. Dogs have extremely expressive ears

You
can tell a lot about what your dog is thinking or feeling by taking a look at
their ears. Dog’s have 12 separate muscles that control their ear movements, so
they can make small movements that result in countless expressions. Dogs with
pointy ears are easier to read, but floppy-eared dogs have these muscles as
well – the trick is to look at the base of their ears rather than the whole
ear.

Have a fun or interesting dog fact of your own? We’d love to hear them in the comments!

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