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Computer training for dogs could help stop old canines' decline

"Based on these findings — and the success this research has had in training dogs to use touchscreen computers — it seems like brain training with touchscreens has the potential to help preserve old dogs' cognitive skills," said Angie Johnston, a doctoral student in psychology at Yale University and a researcher at the university's Canine Cognition Center.

Their experiments show that canines of all ages respond positively to touchscreen games — and they think that something akin to "dog Sudoku" might help keep pets mentally sharp even as their physical abilities decline. "The positive feeling created by solving a mental challenge is comparable to the feeling that older people have when they learn something new, doing something they enjoy," Dr. Ludwig Huber, a cognitive biologist at the University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna and the senior author of a paper about the research, said in a written statement.


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