Do dogs have superpowers?
Dogs are extraordinary beings, in part because humans have been breeding them that way for the last 20,000 to 40,000 years. Among their many superpowers, they can sense the presence of actual things that humans cannot, such as impending weather and or the presence of cancer. But can dogs see ghosts?
Lots of people believe they can, including psychic crime solver Kristy Robinett, who shared with Reader’s Digest a tale that may make even non-believers believe. (More on that below). We also posed the question to a number of dog experts, including doctoral-level dog behaviourists and veterinarians. Here’s what we learned.
The question is more about you than your dog
When trauma therapist and spiritual expert Audrey Hope sees her own dog behaving as if he’s seen a ghost, she believes that he has. However, underlying that is Hope’s own belief in the paranormal. Before you get to the question about whether dogs can see ghosts, you first have to address whether you believe that ghosts even exist.
“There is plenty of documentation that could support the notion that dogs can sense paranormal activity,” according to veterinarian Dr Jesus Aramendi, but it’s only meaningful to the extent you actually believe that paranormal activity exists and is capable of being sensed by the living. After all, there aren’t any scientific studies that prove the existence of the paranormal or dogs’ relation to it. That said, while science loves to spoil ghost stories, a good 45 per cent of people believe in ghosts. In other words, almost half of the population, the question “Can dogs see ghosts?” isn’t about whether ghosts exist but simply whether dogs are capable of seeing them.
What can dogs see that humans can’t?
Humans are much better than dogs at sensing colours and clarity. However, dogs can see movement far better than humans can – something that’s especially true in low light conditions, says animal behaviourist Dr Jill Villarreal. So, if you believe in ghosts and subscribe to the notion that ghosts tend to make their appearance under the cover of darkness, then dogs would be in a far better position to see them than humans.
If you believe in ghosts, you’ll enjoy these true ghost stories from the most haunted places in the world.