Dogs are amazing creatures and our best companions, not to mention how incredibly smart at communicating, even though they can’t talk directly with us. When we own dogs, we have photos, videos, and all the best memories of time spent with them, but when we think the other way around, one question remains: do dogs remember people?
Dogs do remember people. Dogs have short and long-term memory and can remember someone through their voice or smell. They can also associate gestures and movements with specific people.
Today, in this article, we will be giving a deeper insight into the knowledge of dogs, how their mind works and how their memory works when it comes to humans, either their owners or other people they interacted with. With this, we will be answering some questions regarding this topic and hopefully give you the information you are looking for. Let’s get into it.
Signs That A Dog Remembers People
Dogs are complex beings, and there’s plenty of ways to learn why or what it means. Dogs can’t tell how much they miss someone or that they are glad to see them, but they can show it through their actions. Here are five signs that you might recognize from your pet that dogs remember people.
Their Body Language
Any dog owner needs to know how to communicate with their pet since they can speak directly; it’s all about their body language. You can learn that a dog knows a person by the way they use their body.
When they see someone they like, they start to wag their tail; the same way goes for when they see someone they are afraid of or hurt them by whining or barking. Dogs use this to let the owners know they remember and almost give intel on the person.
Dogs are incredible creatures, life would not be the same without them, and a sign that shows they recognize someone is by the way they act. When dogs feel comfortable and trust someone, they show it and give different permissions; for example, showing their belly it’s a significant sign of trust.
Submissive behavior is one of those signs; they will only do it with someone they know, someone they trust, besides their owner.
Growling And Whining
This type of behavior is very common when a dog recognizes someone. However, it can be signs of someone who hurt them or they are afraid of.
Dogs are very expressive and, just like humans, their crying has a meaning, and it’s a way of telling you what they are feeling and keeping that person away from them.
Following You And Dancing
There’s no better feeling than getting home and be welcomed with all the happiness in the world from our little furry friends; this happens because they love us, and they miss us all day.
A sign that dogs recognize people is how much sentiment they end up showing; you can learn that from their movements, like always following the person around or jumping in excitement and doing their little dance.
If they don’t see that person for a long time, and they do this, it’s a sign that they recognize that same person and are truly happy to see them.
Looking For Affection
As for us, humans, when we see someone we haven’t seen in a long time, the first instinct is to hug them or show how happy we feel, for dogs is the same, one sign that they recognize someone is by the happy reaction and looking for their affection.
Dogs are creatures that need constant affection, mostly when they ask for, but when it comes to people they know and love, the need is different and more intense; they will always be around asking for belly rubs or cuddles.
How Long Can A Dog Remember A Person
Dogs can remember people for months and years. In most cases, a dog will never forget a person.
We have all seen cute videos of owners reuniting with their pets after a long time and how excited they get. The signs show that they know that person and are relieved they will see that same person again.
Either is the smell, the voice, or the idea they have associated with you, they will always have something to remember you by, and those are always related to how they feel about you.
Dogs have a short-term memory between 25 – 27 seconds long. This means that they can still recall people they’ve recently interacted with. They can also remember people over a span of time and associate different scenarios with them to help aid in their memory.
While dogs do have excellent long-term memory, more studies have to be done to determine how effective it is. For example, there are some studies that show dogs can forget things as soon as two minutes later!
There is also still skepticism about dogs and their ability to retain episodic levels of memory. Some studies such as the one published in Current Biology suggest that dogs’ episodic memory is short-lived.
Do Dogs Have Memories Of Previous Owners
Yes, dogs do remember their previous owners. Dogs have the so-called “associative memory”; they remember people and places by associating them with happy things to good emotions.
It isn’t easy to know precisely what they are thinking, but their reaction can also say a lot about what they remember or not.
Regarding people, dogs usually use emotions; if someone treats them poorly, they will remember them for that, and the same goes for positive treating. Their body language will express that feeling.
Can Dogs Remember You After A Long Time
Dogs can remember you after a long time.
Dogs have many developed senses; it will always be possible for them to recognize through smell and even physical recognition.
It doesn’t matter if it’s weeks, months, or years apart; dogs will remember you, and the longer the time apart is, the happier they will be to be reunited with you once more.
Do Dogs Remember People’s Faces
Yes, dogs do remember peoples faces.
It’s probably something that crossed every pet owner’s subconscious, and even though it might be hard to believe, some studies revealed that yes, dogs remember people’s faces.
Dogs end up establishing a solid connection with their owner, and it’s possible to tell, by their body language, that they indeed recognize a face.
Some dogs even end up learning facial expressions from their owner; either they are scared, happy, or afraid, dogs will know how to react. That’s why many service dogs; can recognize the different emotions that their human is showing.
How Long Do Dogs Remember Faces
Like mentioned before, dogs remember people’s faces, and this is something that can always happen. Dogs can’t possibly forget someone; it doesn’t matter how much time has passed, dogs will recognize their owner’s face immediately and then use their other senses to confirm that.
Some dogs will behave through facial expression; differently, they can sense the sentiment behind it, associate it, and recognize it.
How Long Do Dogs Remember Your Scent
There’s only one answer: Forever. Dogs will never forget a scent, either from someone they like or someone they are not friendly with. The scent is one of the most significant ways dogs remember people. However, they will always use it as an association with specific people.
The scent is a way for them to connect a face if you see when a dog comes close, the first thing they do is smelling the person, even if they don’t see that same person for years, the moment they see them again, the scent will be the trigger point in their memory.
Will My Dog Remember Me After 5 Years
It is very likely that your dog will remember you after 5 years if you have an established relationship. This depends on many factors such as how involved you were with them while you had them.
If you simply lived in the home and had little to no interaction, your dog will likely have a hard time remembering you. However, if you were their source of food, shelter, and entertainment, they will definitely warm up to you quickly.
Either three weeks, six months, or five years, dogs will never forget you.
Some dogs wait a lifetime for owners who abandoned them because they never forgot them. Dogs are unique beings and highly loyal, they suffer from separation anxiety, and that’s visible when they start crying when you leave and how happy they react when you arrive. They could never forget you.
Dogs are fascinating creatures, and every day we learn more and more about them when it comes to their memory; there are always new studies being made to make this information more accurate and to help us learn new things about our four-legged friends.
Even though we shared a lot of important information about the topic, there are always some things to consider when it comes to this subject.
Be Aware Of The Signs
It’s often for a dog to recognize someone, as we mentioned before, by the smell or face; however, they show more signs than excitement. Just like a person, we show different emotions regarding other people, dogs are just like that, and we should always be aware of the emotion they show.
When they show a sadder emotion or start barking or whining, this could be regarding someone they remember for something terrible; either they were hurt or poorly treated by that person, they might get anxious and misbehave, or that person might try to do the same again.
Dog’s emotions must constantly be considered; they don’t act out for no reason; there’s always a reason behind that behavior.
Training Could Be Beneficial
Even though dogs don’t need the training to remember people, it could be a good thing for both parties. All dogs are different, and some have more difficulty being around people, which can trigger their trust capacity.
Training techniques include:
- letting your dog smell your clothing regularly
- setting up feeding, walking, and bathroom routines
- Allowing your dog to stay with others periodically
- teaching your dog tricks and commands
- Interacting more with your dog virtually
The last point is a unique one. Dogs are big on association with in-person interactions, but in today’s age, virtual interactions are neat too.
If a dog can recognize your face through a webcam, then the chances they recognize it in the future is much greater. It’s just another opportunity to help build their memory in a variety of ways if there ever comes a point where you separate.
Dogs need to know their owner, and treating them as equals and using an eye to eye approach in the training, will help the dog trust you better and others.
It might sound that it doesn’t have any relation to remember people, but it helps the dog know who they could trust or not and how to act around them.
Dogs are our best friends; they are loyal and will always be there; the best we can do is learn about them and know how to communicate best.