Monday, January 31, 2005

The Dog Knows it All

I love dogs, but I am not one to believe in every amazing tale that over-enthused dog owner recount to prove how smart their dogs are (maybe it’s for the selfish reason that Libby ain't the smartest cookie?). For instance, dog keeps sniffing at owner's mole on leg, owner has it checked out, it's cancerous. Reason: dogs love to sniff at black speckles against light background. Libby sniffs at black lint on our beige carpet all the time. The carpet has got cancer?! Another one, my dog is so smart he/she can tell it's the weekend. Reason? Your weekend routine is different from your weekday routine, and your pets pick up on that.

This morning, however, Libby's behavior led me to think maybe, just maybe, dogs do know more than I give them credit for. As you know, today is the first of my many non-working days to come. In order not to waste my days away by sleeping in late everyday, I have long decided that I'd drive Jason to work every morning and then go to the gym afterwards. We got up as usual, I fed Libby and let her out into the yard to do her business. Normally, when she comes back in, she goes to the study and curls up in her usual spot to continue her beauty sleep while we prepare to leave. She doesn't even see us out but will present her tummy when we go to say goodbye to her before leaving (for the brief period I was using Bowlingual to interpret her doggie language, this is when she goes," Please don't leave me. I hate to be alone." Is it any wonder that I stopped using that damned Bowlingual? It is utterly depressing. But I digress). Today, however, she kept on coming into the bathroom to check on us, and when I finally got dressed, she ran towards the door, as if expecting me to take her for a walk.

How did she know? How could she tell that today is different from other days? We did exactly the same thing we do every morning. Ok, maybe not exactly the same.
a) We got up half an hour later than usual now that I don’t have that 8:30 bell to meet. (This means Libby has a biological clock so accurate it can actually tell exact time).
b) I wore jeans instead of the usual dress pants or skirts. (This implies Libby can tell what I’m wearing and associate that with whether it’s a workday or not. Hmm, I wonder if she passes judgments on my outfits)
c) Without having to be work at 8:30 sharp, I am much more relaxed and did not snap at Jason when he asked me if his pants go with his shirt. (This is the most believable reason since we all know dogs are acutely tuned into their humans’ moods and body language)

Regardless of what the reason is, Libby’s intelligence level just went up a notch in my book. So don’t roll your eyes the next time I tell you my dog’s a genius!


Hsin said...

Isn't that a proud mommy talking? I think dogs do know more than you give them credit for and I tend to agree that it's probably your mood that gave it away, vs all the other reasons listed.

Lynn said...

Proud mommy, who? Me? Oh, maybe just a little, heehee

My dog is so smart she knows her mommy had quit her job!