Do you love the way your dog smells? Probably not all of the time, but at least most of the time? Some of the time? Well, if you do, science assures you that you’re not crazy. As articles and forums have begun to pop up talking about that corn chip smell of your dog’s feet, your fascination with your dog’s smell might actually be more scientific than that.
While a dirty dog is hardly a fun time in the olfactory sense (get it?) a clean and healthy dog’s smell is likely something that, if you’re familiar with, will give you a sense of comfort. In the same way that the “newborn baby” smell is attributed to many emotions and feelings, the smell of a dog can be equally comforting.
For those that don’t know, science shows that the sense of smell is often one of the strongest senses attributed to memory. Perhaps if you have fond memories of dogs in general, or even just your dog, this likely helps you appreciate their smell more. But that’s not all! It seems like there are plenty of places on the internet where people are having this very discussion.
While some places of the internet have only joked about sniffing dogs paws, the fact of the matter is that your dog has a very specific odor. Because dogs don’t sweat like we do, it’s usually their paws that bare the brunt of that stink because that’s one of the few places they perspire. These are known as the merocrine sweat glands. The other glands your dog has, the apocrine sweat glands, are all over your dog’s body. They aren’t responsible for cooling, though. Instead they’re responsible for producing pheromones
While we aren’t picking up on those pheromones, the oils that your dogs coat produces will produce a smell, and that’s what our sniffers pick up on while sniffing our pooches. And because smell is a sense that is so heavily tied to memory, don’t be afraid to take a big ole whiff of your pup the next time he comes lumbering over to say hello.