I often hear people say, “My dog seems  just so intelligent…it is really incredible.”

I am always amazed at how many people try and ‘humanise’ a dogs thought process. I do understand why, as they are so loved, as is my wonderful ‘Lucy the Labrador’…but do they really think like humans?

I’m not convinced.

To my thinking and experience, dogs have mainly one thing on their minds, for nearly most of their lives…food!! It  is  ‘built in’ to their DNA, it is their route to survival.

Nearly all dogs will do just about anything for food, hence the reason that nearly all the ‘training’ that people do with dogs is with ’food rewards’…it’s not rocket science for dogs!

In closing, I have a wonderful example of a certain dogs’ intelligence…..we used to look after two black Labradors with Pets, Homes and Gardens and every time we went to their house, Frank, the supposed clever one, would rush out and everytime go straight to a pipe which fed spring water into a stream in their garden…Frank would be barking wildly all the time…and generally rather enjoying himself.

I had to ask the owner what was this all about.  He then explained that Frank had ‘once’ caught a water  rat from this culvert.  ”When did that happen,” I enquired. ”Oh, about five years ago.”…..Incredible!

Peter Maxted

Pets, Homes and Gardens- Horsham