The glance

Just one look; a glance was all that was needed to get you out of your chair and waiting on your dog. Do dogs reason? This has been a serious question for years and many have and are researching this very idea. I believe that dogs do reason; to a degree that is. I do not think that dogs consider individual ideas; thinking about the process and the end results. But I do think that they reason in some degree. For instance; Jessie has a bone, Luke wants the bone and knows all too well that he cannot simply take it unless he wishes to risk having his face taken off. So he reasons that running to the front door and barking will result in his acquisition of the prize; he is correct.

Both Tilley and Luke can often be found gazing at a box of cookies on my dresser. They could simply knock the box down and eat the cookies but that is against the rules. This action could simply be considered an association; often I will offer them a cookie when I see that they would like one. So the association has been created authentically. But what if they go a step further and come to find me; communicate to me that they are in need of something? This is the cognitive thought process.

When a dog has the realization that a simple glance can put them into the drivers seat; things can quickly go downhill for you. It is important not to become a servant to your dog as wanting eyes can quickly turn into very demanding and unwanted behaviors. I probably offer up cookies now more often because of Tilley's age and the fact that Luke is as skinny as a rake.

Several nights ago while we were watching T.V. Luke got up and ran upstairs. He quickly returned and stood smack dab in the middle of the room. He stared hard at each person in the room and ran upstairs again. I immediately jumped up to see what the issue was upstairs and upon entering my room found Luke staring under the bed. I thought for a moment that it might be a spider but his ears were held differently; and his face was more in an excited expression rather than his intense spider face. I told him to show me what he wanted; he quickly proceeded to stick his head under the bed. He stayed in that position a few seconds then got up and stared at me again. Ah; something under the bed that you need? It was a ball and it was this particular ball that he wanted to play with. Once he got his ball he ran downstairs and was as happy as a clam.

Yep; he's a thinker. Not all dogs are thinkers; there are many different degrees and types of intelligence in dogs. Your dog is probably alot smarter than you think they are. And not all glances are simple in composition.

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