Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Do Dogs Think?

Well obviously, in their own sweet, dim way, dogs do think but they do it in that hung ho, let's-run-our-faces - into-a-door kind of way which so often makes them so lovable and indeed dog-like. But yesterday I was fortunate to be able to watch Winnie process the information she was given by a complete stranger then act on that processing. You could see her thinking about it.
It was an interesting thing to watch.

We were out and about when two strangers came into view. Winnie was off the lead so stopped briefly to eye them both carefully. The strangers were a mother and her middle aged son. She was driving a mobility scooter. He was carrying the shopping and paused to pat Winnie on the head whilst chatting . His mother, who looked as though she had a CVA obviously wanted to stroke Winnie too but had pulled too far forward to be able to reach so without really thinking about it her so told Winnie to say hello to her. In actual fact he told Winnie twice and pointed at his mother as he did so, and quite clearly the bulldog understood what he wanted from her, for after a moment of contemplation she gave a snort like a bull and then ambled over to the woman and raised her head up in greeting.
She not only followed a simple instruction but she processed the request in order to follow that instruction.
This is a trait common in bulldogs I have found.

40 comments:

  1. Not just a pretty face.

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  2. More intelligent than many humans, John. And certainly more empathy!

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  3. They definitely think, and they "know" I am sure. It just just "where is my food" or "get that cat out of my way"

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  4. CVA = Cerebrovascular accident
    I had to look it up because I thought it might have been a reference to the model of her mobility scooter. "Send pedestrians flying as you zoom down to the shops in your super new CVA! Now available with go-faster stripes!"

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    1. hee hee hee! thanks for the explanation, YP!

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  5. Well, why so surprised? That's our Winnie you're talking about !

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  6. Of course, Winnie is already to known to be brilliant, so who would expect anything less?

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  7. Dogs are far cleverer than we think. My gorgeous and alas long dead border terrier once saved a chicken wing overnight, despite being highly food orientated, so that she could put it in the back yard the next morning and then lay in wait for a rat. How damn clever is that?!! Blew my socks off.

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  8. A doggie to be proud of.

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  9. Highly intelligent and sweet girl!

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  10. Not just another pretty face!

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  11. That dog has such a fan club! Both in person and online internationally.

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  12. The trait of processing requests may be common, but Winnie is extraordinary!

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  13. I have found that Sophie will do the same......hear a command/request, turn her head from side to side as if to be moving/digesting all those words and listening for key words....then do it......especially if there is something in it for her!!
    Winnie is a 'thinker'....one can see it in her eyes. One smart pup.

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  14. Look what I found. And this one is definitely Thinking !
    https://68.media.tumblr.com/7435816e2216ee7541a487336edbb9f2/tumblr_oehdj753Vk1qf8em3o4_540.jpg

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  15. Our Snickers understands every time she hears the word GO.
    Happy as a lark when she knows the GO refers to her going.
    She actually pouts when she realizes the GO doesn't include her.
    Winnie thought that through perfectly!

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  16. Pretty impressive Winnie....pretty impresive. I'll bet the lady was tickled.

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  17. I believe that anyone who does not think that animals not only think but process information and then follow up on it are deluding themselves.

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  18. On the whole dogs are highly intelligent, and can process a range of commands. Thats why they are used as guide dogs etc.
    Never underestimate animals especially if a treat is in the offing.

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  19. I just wish to knew what Rick was thinking. His expressions seem to range from "I love you so much" to "I'm going to rip your head off."

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  20. Winnie !
    Remember when you were thinking of not taking her but in the end you did ?
    What a treasure she is.

    cheers. parsnip

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  21. They do think. My neighbors pooch thinks he's a Rottweiler.

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  22. Some bulldogs do who have been raised right.

    Our Comic Con badges have arrived. Both last year's badge and this years feature "Walking dead." Walking dead also had a gigantic display right across the street from the con. I presume they also have a huge display inside on the big floor. I will let you know.

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  23. From a farmer and vet nurse,there is definately processing I used to call it cat thinking time and dog thinking time...and the others goats are good, as for working collies sheer brilliance at times.
    Enjoy your retirement.

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    1. Nice to be vindicated by an expert

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  24. Winnie is an agreeable sort; it's maybe not so surprising that she did what she was asked to do.

    Our cats, on the other hand, also think, but what they think is "not bloody likely" ...

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  25. What a clever girl she is. Brains and beauty.

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  26. As I have said before Winnie is a sweetheart.

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  27. A summer of responsibilities has kept me from commenting. Winnie, is a smart girl! 😘

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  28. It is said that Border Collies top the dog intelligence scales because they are so good at problem solving. They observe , identify the problem, process and work out a solution , then put it into action making changes when necessary on the spot. Better than some humans!

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  29. Our Jack Russell, Rosy used to understand a lot of what we wanted her to do, sometimes we swore she understood everything we said.

    When Charley was hit by the car she ran up into the woodland in a state of shock, when we couldn't find her we told Rosy to 'go find Charley', she found her within minutes and brought her back into vision. Unfortunately because of her injuries Charley couldn't wriggle through the tangled brambles and ran back off. Again we sent Rosy after her but this time with the instruction to 'show Charley the way' she did just that. Coming back much slower and using her body to raise the brambles off Charley so she could limp through the gaps.

    Afterwards when we sat and thought about it we were amazed at her cleverness and understanding.

    Now with just Suky and Mavis is we are having to virtually use words of one syllable to teach them to do things, they were so used to watching Rosy react to what we said and just copying her.

    Clever Winnie, she's a lovely dog 😊

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