New research shows that when dogs and their people come together, their heartbeats both reach a collective steady and calm rhythm. Showcased in a video by Pedigree Australia, three devoted owners spent some time apart from their beloved hounds and then were reunited. Throughout their experience, heartbeats were monitored.
“There was a really strong coherence in the heart rate pattern of both the owner and dog,” said canine scientist Mia Cobb to Huffington Post Australia. “Upon being reunited, within the first minute each heart rhythm became almost directly aligned and we saw a reduction straight away.”
The scientists had expected the heartbeats to steady – a dog’s positive effect on anxiety and stress is very well-known. But the mirroring of human and dog heart rates surprised everyone.
“This project is a really good illustration of what most owners experience every night when they come home from work and are reunited with their companion,” Cobb added.