Gigglebit: Dogs, magnetism, research and poop

9 Jan 2015

Gigglebit is Siliconrepublic’s daily dose of the funny and fantastic in science and tech, to help start your day on a lighter note.

This morning we look at the magnetisation of man’s best friend, and how it affects their choice of toilet locations.

A 2013 study has surfaced whereby researchers – who clearly struck the big time – studied 1,893 instances of dog defecation and urination.

Published in the Frontiers in Zoology journal, Vlastimil Hart and a team of researchers showed how dedication and good note keeping can alter how we view our buddies.

Through monitoring 70 dogs (37 breeds), the scientists collected buckets of juicy data and established that “dogs preferred to excrete with the body being aligned along the North–South axis”.

“Our findings open new horizons in magnetoreception research,” reads the report, entitled Dogs are sensitive to small variations of the Earth’s magnetic field.

“It forces biologists and physicians to seriously reconsider effects magnetic storms might pose on organisms.”

Fair play to the team. To celebrate, here’s a video of a bunch of boxer puppies (days old) yet to decide which direction to poop in, because science.

Hat tip to

Dog on the toilet image, via Shutterstock

Gordon Hunt was a journalist with Silicon Republic