According to Psychology Today, dogs have about 1,700 taste buds. In contrast, humans have more than five times that number, while cats get by with around 470 taste buds.
Puppies are born with an immature sense of taste that takes several weeks to fully develop. Dogs' sense of taste is somewhat different from that of humans. People have certain taste buds that are tuned into salt because it is a necessary nutrient. For the most part, though, dogs are carnivores, and meat has high levels of sodium. Dogs' ancestors, therefore, did not need to seek out salt, so those taste buds never developed. In addition, they have taste buds that are highly sensitive to meat and meat products, so dogs tend to prefer these types of foods.