A Dog Named Louie, Research Paper Example
Words: 861Research Paper
Louie is a dog that has no eyes. A dog’s operate with the same basic senses that human’s do. However the perceptual abilities of humans and dogs are comparable on partial parameters. They depend on their taste, sight, hearing, and smell for their ability to function. Take away one of these senses, and they have to depend on the others to pick up the slack. Whereas the depth of knowledge perceptual abilities in dogs may be minimal, it is still important to see how they adapt to their environment. The early perceptual knowledge of dogs could have a positive effect, and they will continue to rely on their olfactory skills for environmental adaptation and involvement.
The physiological role of Louie has changed based on his inability to see. His physical stimuli and the information they convey changed as a result of his physical condition.
He is dependent on the other senses to facilitate his needs to function. Environmental stimuli aid in Louie’s perception.“Detection means that the perceptual apparatus is able to transform the environmental stimulus into a meaningful neural signal which is capable (at least in principle) of exerting an effect on behaviour.”(Miklósi, 2011) Therefore Louie turns to his smell and sound to sense what his is formally missing in sight. Putting him into a learning procedure allowed him to change his association between the change of events and his perception. These learning abilities are not independent without adaptive behavior. If the performance is to be expected the learning tasks should be ecologically meaningful.
The brain changes to learn to counter act the dog’s inability to see. Louie’s sensory system evolved, from transduction to understanding. The heightened other senses to compensate for the lack of the other perceptions.“Recall that the dog’s evolution as a social predator who often hunted in limited light led to the development of senses that complimented this lifestyle. These senses included vision that’s more sensitive to motion than detail or color, better hearing, and a much more developed sense of smell than ours.” (Milani, 2012) The sensory loss of vision does not hinder the dog, simply enhances the needs to change how the brain uses the perceptional functions. Ethologists believe that stimuli are not equal in controlling behavior patterns. Louie had to depend on his neurodevelopmental and evolutionary issues. Meaning that he had to evolve to create a better environment for himself, he had to train his brain to thinking and see differently. This created a means to adapt to his inability to see through his eyes, making his vision through his other sensory options.
The psychophysics role of Louie affects his sensory performance. There are different methods for assessing sensory perceptions in animals. “Fechner developed them so that he could evaluate the change in mental energy (or-sensation) that accompanied a change in physical energy (the stimulus). Fechner was concerned primarily with psychophysics as a means of measuring the perceptions of the mind, but the psychophysical methods have been used most commonly in the determination of sensory thresholds.” (What is Psychophysics?) The acuity of various sense modalities in evolutionary context is important as well. The relative importance of particular sensory modalities varies from one species to another, and it is often possible to learn a great deal about the ecology and evolution of a species by examining the different sensory modalities it possesses (Dangles,2009).The relationship between sensory performance and behavior is clear as well. For example, vibration is sensed through feeling the vibration and hearing it as well. Physical contact is directly attributed to touch. The ability to see allows the animal to rely heavily on that sensory perception as opposed to reverting to the others.
The philosophy of Louie is important as well. The role of sensory integration organizes the dogs bodily sensation to its environment. Outside of the obvious vision and hearing dogs have other senses that link them to their environment. “Apart sensing most odours by receptors in the olfactory cavity, dogs have a vomeronasal organ which also opens into the nasal cavity, has its own layer of receptor cells, and is specialized for the detection of species-specific chemical signals”(Miklósi, 2011) The dogs to integrate into their environment through the phenomenology of perception. This includes things like how the dogs can sense if one is in heat, and know when there is potential harm.
The early perceptual knowledge of dogs could have a positive effect, and they will continue to rely on their olfactory skills for environmental adaptation and involvement. The study of dogs has limited scope, but it still shows the physiology, psychophysics, and philosophy aspects. Louie is a perfect example of adaptation due to a loss of his sight. Utilizing other aspects to evolve and participate in his surroundings shows that the body has a tremendous opportunity to compensate for sensory ailments. As studies continue, they may find out more regarding animals and their physiology, psychophysics, and philosophy attributes.
Milani, Myrna. (2012) Canine Sensory Perceptions and the Car-Riding Dog. Retrieved from http://www.mmilani.com/canine-sensory-perception.html
Miklósi, Ádám. (2011) The Perceptual World of the dog. Copyright Oxford University Press.
What is Psychophysics? (2012) Priceless Reports. Retrieved from http://pricelessreport.com/what-is-psychophysics/
Dangles, O. (2009).Variability in sensory ecology: Expanding the bridge between physiology and evolutionary biology. Quarterly Review of Biology.
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