Thursday, January 3, 2013

What’s the Smartest Thing Your Dog Has Ever Done?

Jo's "Smart Dog" Sadie
By Langley Cornwell

Pet people love to brag about their pets, and we love to read about them. So I asked this simple question: What’s the smartest thing your dog has ever done? I got loads of fun and interesting answers.

A common theme among the answers I received was “dogs trying to outsmart their humans or the other pets in the home.” Laura’s Dalmatian Sparky hated to be cold. If he was outside and wanted in, he rang the doorbell. If she didn't answer right away, he kept ringing. He wore out several doorbells with his big paws! When she looked out, she’d see him standing up, looking back in the window chattering his teeth as if he was freezing to death. The family caught on to his act when one summer day he decided he wanted in and started ringing the doorbell. When they looked out, he was chattering his teeth – but it was 95 degrees outside!

Deborah’s dog is rebelling because he's on a “diet.” The other day, when no one was home, he got into the box of dog treats. He hid them all around the house, in different rooms. He knew he'd get in trouble for spilling the box, so he hid each treat individually and genuinely thought he wouldn't get caught going back to snack on those treats later on. This smart pooch also uses a bell at the door when he needs to go outside.

Jo’s Bichon Sadie will stare at her brother (a rat terrier of limited intellect) to try to get him to move from a spot she wants to occupy. If he ignores her, she runs to the front window and barks. Since terriers must guard and protect, the rat is easily lured to the window, at which time Sadie runs to claim the spot she initially coveted.

Sangay volunteers at a wolf and wolf dog rescue, and there is a pair of low ranking omegas who learned to separate other dogs and people from their treasures. Ex: One will pester the eating alpha male. When the alpha gets up to chase the pest away the other steals the prize and they both meet up (far away) to enjoy it.

There are a lot of Houdini’s in the crowd. Lee’s dog can unlatch complicated baby gates, and Carole’s 97-pound dog easily opens the house door so he can go outside and swim in their pool when it’s hot.

Training dogs to do smart things is always impressive. Lauren trained her dog to pick stuff up off the floor and bring it to whomever she indicates. The dog then automatically goes to get her CANIDAE TidNip treat bag and takes it to someone so they can give her a reward. She also carries in the mail.

Another friend adopted a feral German shepherd mix a year ago who is very smart. People are most impressed that she can tell her dog to “fix your leash” and the shepherd untangles herself. My friend didn't formally train the dog to do this; one time she said it while untangling her pet and the dog made the connection without a treat. It's only one of the seven commands this thinking dog has figured out without training.

Nancy trained her pug to close doors, but it backfired when they went to the vet and the dog closed a door that automatically locked. Of course the key was on the wrong side of the door. The vet was wonderful about it, laughed and laughed, and didn't charge Nancy for the locksmith it took to open the door.

Kolby and Sam
Not surprisingly, many dogs are food snatchers. Suzanne’s Lab Kolby figured out how to open the refrigerator. One time he got in there and stole a pizza. Another time he helped himself to some Chinese food leftovers. He also takes food off the counter when you’re not looking, but Suzanne always knows when it happens because her other Lab Sam “tells on him.” Recentl, Kolby stole a box of crackers and took them out in the back yard to enjoy. Sam followed him outside, barking loudly, to alert Suzanne that his brother was being bad.

There were some amazing answers that cannot be explained. Annie’s dog Blackie saved the neighbor's toddler from getting hit by a car. The kid had a habit of escaping his mother but on this day he left the yard and was running full tilt toward the road, where a car was approaching. Blackie ran out of Annie’s yard, knocked the child down, grabbed him by his shirt collar and dragged him away from the road, all the way to his mother. The woman made Annie promise that if she ever needed to find a good home for Blackie, she had dibs because the dog saved her little boy's life that day.

Wendy’s dog thought her daughter was in trouble when the girl pulled her bed apart and pretended to be stuck. The dog, Shady, got very upset and tried several times to get Wendy’s attention so she would follow her. When Wendy did as the dog wished, Shady ran into the kid’s room and then turned to look at Wendy as if to say, “See? I told you she was in trouble.”

Jennifer has a dog named Mojo that went to sit in their pontoon boat one time when the flood waters were up. The boat was parked against the house and Mojo kept barking and barking, refusing to get out of the boat. When Jennifer went down to see what the dog’s problem was, she discovered that one of the ropes mooring the pontoon to the house had frayed and broken. The boat would have drifted away if the dog hadn’t alerted them.

What about your dog? What’s the smartest thing he or she has ever done?

Read more articles by Langley Cornwell

1 comment:

  1. My Brother ERNIE... FOLDS long stuffies and rope Toys... so that he can RUN without stepping on them. He can fold in HALF and even in THIRDS depending on just how long somethingy is.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...