Altitude Physical Therapy December 2018

‘WHAT THE FLUFF?’

How to Make Your Dog Think You’re a Magician

Dog owners across the world are confounding their sweet pups with the latest internet craze, aptly known as the “What the Fluff?” challenge. For this puppy prank, the rules are quite simple. The owner stands in front of their dog and lifts up a blanket in front of them. As their pet looks on, the owner runs away and lets the blanket fall to the ground. From the unsuspecting pup’s point of view, it seems as if their beloved owner has disappeared into thin air! Some of the dogs stare ahead befuddled, some spin in circles, and others run around the room trying to find where their owner is hiding. It’s all fun and games for humans, but a lot of dog lovers can’t help but wonder what is going on in the minds of their pets. Zazie Todd, a professional dog trainer who holds a Ph.D. in psychology, explains that the “What the Fluff?” challenge demonstrates that dogs exhibit object permanence: the understanding that objects exist even when you can’t see them. Scientists have long known that dogs, unlike newborn babies, understand

object permanence. In 2013, a team of animal cognition scientists at the University of Kentucky conducted an experiment reminiscent of “What the Fluff?” They showed a dog a bone, hid it behind a screen, and swapped it with a bone of a different color. When they revealed the new bone, the dogs spent more time inspecting the swapped-out bone than they did when the scientists revealed the same bone as before. Because the dogs were perplexed by the incongruity, the team concluded that dogs exhibit object permanence. So how does a dog feel when their owner disappears suddenly? It’s hard to say. Most animal cognition scientists are hesitant to hypothesize about something so subjective as emotions, but after watching the pups’ reactions on Instagram and YouTube, most experts deem the prank harmless. “What the Fluff?” is akin to playing peekaboo with a baby. Does it cause some confusion? Definitely. Is it destructive? Not likely.

Physical therapy can be effective in alleviating pain without the need for costly surgeries that require a lot of down time. At Altitude PT, our caring team is devoted to personalized, one-on-one treatment that addresses pain or mobility issues our patients have. That’s what we’re here for. SEE WHAT OUR PATIENTS ARE SAYING

See what our patients have to say about their experiences at Altitude PT.

“My experience with PT has been fantastic. I have learned new ways and stretches to relieve the pressure in my back. I had trouble sitting for long periods of time and numerous muscle spasms, but now with the tools I have gained, my spasms have lessened significantly.” –Kayla “Sean is a great physical therapist. He explained what he was doing and why. I was shown simple exercises, and in just a few weeks, I am on the mend. Sean and his staff made me feel like family; he has a great sense of humor! I would rate my experience with Altitude Physical Therapy with five stars.” –Randall

“I came to Altitude after my surgery on a recommendation of a close friend who is a physical therapist. I was not sure how my experience was going to be. I can testify that it was hard work, but Sean never let me give up. With the positive and friendly attitude of the staff and Sean, I was able to reach the goals that were set for me. I will be forever grateful to Altitude Physical Therapy for their help to make me an active person again. It has been a wonderful experience. If I ever need physical therapy again, I will be back!” –Jeryl Thank you Kayla, Randall, and Jeryl, for your kind words. We appreciate hearing from you. Readers, if you’re thankful for the experience you had with your physical therapist, let them know on our Facebook page!

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