A new book from Clive Wynne (founder of the Canine Science Collaboratory at Arizona State University) claims that dogs are, indeed, capable of “love” as we would define it. Wynne’s research suggests that dogs are not very bright compared to other animals, but are separated due to their “hyper sociability.”
Wynne has observed substantial spikes in Oxytocin (the bonding chemical) when dogs stare into human eyes. It should be noted that in 2009 geneticist Bridgett vonHoldt discovered that dogs have a mutation responsible for Williams syndrome often found in humans. Williams Syndrome is also characterized by intellectual limitations, extreme friendliness, and a desire for interpersonal connection.
Philosophical question: Are animals capable of love?