You really do love your dog like it’s a baby

“There was a common network of brain regions involved in emotion, reward, affiliation, visual processing and social cognition when mothers viewed images of both their child and dog,” the study states. But unfamiliar photos didn’t have the same effect…

But brain response to children and dogs wasn’t entirely the same: An area of the brain vital to processing faces was activated more by a dog picture than a child’s face, while parts of the midbrain were more active in response to children. It may be that facial cues are more important in human-to-dog communication, given our lack of common language. And the midbrain areas could be vital in forming human-to-human pair b0nds, National Geographic reports.