On the Brillance of Dogs

As a public service and a continuation of my ongoing campaign to prove exactly how great dogs are, I bring you this story from Moscow.Or, if you will, canis lupus familiaris, the domestic dog. Man’s best friend, indeed. Or as we refer in our family to our departed golden retriever, just “himself”.

The story  from Moscow would surely make him proud, not surprised , but proud. Seems that biologist Andrew Poyarkov has studied  the habits of stray dogs and has discovered an interesting fact. They seem to have taught themselves to use the subway. Dogs who apparently live  outside of town have been catching a  ride  into town where they have an easier time  finding  food. At the end of the day, they catch a ride back home.  Poyarkov has noticed an almost uncanny ability in the dogs knowing which station and which train and at about what time.

I just love stories like this. They seem to come  more from England, but no matter. Oh, the questions that arise. How do they  get their tokens, do they have a multiple  use  pass? And if any of these are true, where do they keep the pass ?

You know, I am assuming this  is true since I have read mentions in more than one credible source. But even if it were a hoax, I  could care less. It is just a neat story. And remember, our President has Bo, the first dog, who often wanders through Air Force One. Wonder who cleans up after Bo if has an accident? I  am guessing Biden. If he isn’t , probably Gibbs or one of the spokespeople. Remember the President used the phrase “wee-weed up” recently. Probably inspired by Bo in action, ya think?

Wonder if they sit or stand, wonder if……… ?


August 28, 2009 Posted by | Animals | , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Cat Or Dog- No Middle Ground?

We  go boldly into the  quagmire of all quagmires; cat vs dog, feline vs canine, paw to paw. As a former owner of both species, although who can  own a cat, (Remember dogs have  masters and cats have staff.) I feel uniquely qualified to tackle this inter species conflict. To assist, I will use Bill Cosby and  the university of Sussex in Great Britain.

As a disclaimer, I will admit to having liked  some of our ( 4)  cats quite a bit. However, none can measure  up to the sainted Rameses, golden retriever extraordinaire.

Ok, first Mr Cosby, who my wife credits for dog ward tilt, He did a monologue many years ago, entitled, “Cats and Dogs”, which I had on 8 track tape. Showing my old geezerness, I know. The year was 1968 and a lot more important stuff obviously happened. But the album 200 M.P.H. had Cosby’s classic take on why dogs were better than cats. Just a few examples.

  • Cats dont do anything
  • They sit on the sofa and shed and make you sneeze
  • If you tell them to catch mice, they will answer, no, because I’m  full or some  of them haven’t bathed yet
  • Cant tell a cat , come here fido, he will likely answer what or you can’t  be talking to me

Dogs on the other hand

  • They are always trying even if unsuccessfully
  • Brings you your slippers, ones chewed up, cant help it  got sharp  teeth

And if 60’s humor doesn’t  help, we have 2009 university research. We already know cats are manipulative so that is sort of the starting point. Yet another British study analyzed their purring to tell us how they manipulate. Of course, why a university wants to  analyze the purring of house cats is beyond me.

Anyway, Karen McComb is our animal -communication researcher recorded these dastardly feline sounds. She learned that a hungry cat alters his/her purring to simulate a baby’s cry. Here is the shocker. These sounds played back are well nigh impossible for people to ignore. Well, duh! Hang on for the rest of her analysis. She suspects this human type vocalization is is rather natural for cats. They learn to exaggerate it to get what they want. I knew it all along. That is why they are called cats!

I resy my case- dogs rule and cats  drool-ta da!!!

July 27, 2009 Posted by | Animals | , , , , , , , | 3 Comments