Smart things your pet does

When we are walking, my dog never takes a dump where someone would step in it. Always picks a place out of the way. A wall, curb, etc.

I don’t know how he knows that.

That’s pretty damn smart, right there. Tell him I, for one appreciate that.

I bought and installed an outdoor security camera on our front door. When it senses motion it sends an alert to my iphone which has a distinct tone.
Didn’t take our Bo-Chi more than a week to figure out the tone means someones in the front yard.

My sister had a dog that figured out that the girls came home from school a few minutes after the theme music of one of the soap operas. The dog would wait for them at the door.

I once stayed there a few days and slept on the sofa. One morning I couldn’t find my socks, so I jokingly asked the dog “where’s my socks”. The dog immediately ran to the back door and whined to be let out. Sis complained You’ve already been out this morning, but led her out again. The dog went and got my socks, which she had taken outdoors on her first potty-break.

This one is on a friend’s dog, Shadow, since I have no pets myself:

Shadow was a bit of an escape artist, so my friend put in a radio fence. Shadow spent a few minutes testing the fence, then apparently accepted it. In reality, he just got sneaky about testing its parameters, periodically checking on the sly to see if his collar made the warning noise. It took him about a month to establish the correlation between electric power and the fence; it was a stormy summer, and the power flickered and failed pretty often at my friend’s place. He also determined that lights weren’t a reliable indicator, since they could be turned off.

Instead, when he was bored, he’d sit and watch the clock on the VCR. When that went dark, it meant the power was out, and the fence was down. If the door was opened, he’d bolt out for a little jog around the neighborhood. (Or just turn around right past he fence zone and look back at his master as if he were laughing at him.)

I had to get rid of my electric can opener because cat figured out how to turn it on.

So annoying, I’m in the living room trying to watch TV, and then suddenly emanating from the kitchen I hear: “rwrwrwrwrw, rwrwrwrw,”.

Open a can of cat food, you feed the cat for a day.
Teach the cat to use the can opener, you never have to feed the cat again. :smiley:

Our cairn terrier may be the most slow-witted dog of her breed, but mysteriously, when she turned six or so, she realized that she could use ‘directional barking’ to get what she wants. So now she runs to her water and food bowl to bark, or she gives a distinct ‘throw the ball’ bark while grinning at our feet, or she barks a couple of times and goes to the outside door and scratches it to get walked.

We didn’t teach her this (at least not intentionally), and for the first five years it never happened. Completely perplexing, but we like the recent development.

ETA: I should add, there’s also a ‘give me a Greenie!’ bark that’s hard to separate from the ‘throw the ball!’ bark. So we throw the ball, and if that’s not what she wanted, we ignore her, because that’s not one we intend to reward. :slight_smile:

I’ve mentioned that Noir Kitty was originally a street kitty that the Big Crow took in about eight years before I came into the picture. His life outside must have been traumatic because he still remains terribly afraid of people. When I moved in, it took him five months to get used to me enough that he’d stay on the same floor as me. If I was downstairs, he’d stay on the small landing upstairs. When I went up to bed, he’d come tearing past me, a galumphing black streak.

I felt terrible about frightening him so badly every time this happened so when I started getting ready for bed I began calling up, “Noir Kitty, I’m about to come up. This is your warrrrning.” Then I’d go into our only bathroom, next to the stairs and hope he’d come down. He not only caught on, but began to recognize my nighttime routine and come down on his own when I wasn’t looking.

After a while, there was no need to warn him and there were no more terrible moments on the stairway. Noir Kitty eventually decided it was OK for him to be on the same floor as me, if not in the same room, and rarely spends time upstairs anymore.

Giving him treats has really gotten him out of his shell. He still won’t let me touch him (he rarely lets the Big Crow touch him either) but he comes much closer and occasionally will sniff my fingers. I don’t think he’d ever had treats before but he lurves them with a passion and pesters me several times a day for more. He seemed such a sad cat before that I can’t resist a chance to make him happy.

I toss them here and there and he runs after them at full speed like a dog would. It amazed me the first time I saw him tracking the motion of my hand and turning in anticipation of where I was going to throw the treat. I’ve never seen a cat do that! Dogs, yes, but not cats.

I’m convinced that Noir Kitty is smarter than the average cat. I hope to discover more proof of this as we continue living together.

I like to think my cats are pretty smart. Dot can “say” ice cream. She used to get a teaspoon of ice cream every night when she lived here. I’d ask her “What do you want?” and she’d reply “Eh eh” (very non-meow like). She used to have the habit of starting to eat her dinner, then run and use the box, then come up and finish. We started telling her “Go potty” as we were getting dinner ready. It took a few times for her to “get” what we were saying, but it became routine. She’d dance around us while getting her food out, but telling her “go potty” and she’d run, do her business, and be ready for her noms. When she first moved in with my mom, every night at 7pm Dot would sit in the kitchen, staring at the fridge, saying “Eh eh”. Unfortunately, my mom decided Dot shouldn’t have ice cream, simply because my mom can’t NOT have ice cream too, and she’s on a diet.

When Mayme wants treats, she’ll sit by her treat box, one paw on it, meowing to high heaven. She will also bring me her baby, her mouse, or her bird on command. When I come home from dialysis, she’s always on the kitchen table to greet me. I asked my daughter if Mayme just hangs out there until I get home or what. No, she’s usually no where to be found until 945. That’s when she comes out from wherever she has been hiding, runs downstairs to use the cat box, then waits on the table for me. At the same time, she can’t figure out how to open a partially open door. When I’m in the bathroom, I tend to leave the door cracked. Every other cat I have ever had knew how to push the door open. Not Mayme. She’ll sit in the hallway, howling and scratching the door frame.

My heeler mix has a huge vocabulary. He knows his toys by name, so if you tell him to “get hedgehog” or “get Santa” he will pick the correct stuffed toy every time. If you tell him to “get the ball” he will get a tennis ball. He knows “throw it” so you can have a game of catch with him. You toss him the toy, and he will toss it back to you with amazing accuracy.

He’s also the most emotionally attuned dog I’ve ever known. If I cry, even a silent tear during a movie, he will immediately jump in my lap (all 65lbs of him) and snuggle me until I tell him I’m okay. Oh, and he also knows “hug,” and will sit down with his back to you so you can lean down and wrap your arms around him. He, contrary to the recent-ish article that made the rounds of Facebook, loves hugs. They’re like a human Thundershirt for him. :slight_smile:

Oh my dumb little Yorkie does know a trick, you can say “play baby” and she will lay in your arms like a baby.
Well, it seems like a trick, to me.

I don’t know if you’d call this “smart” but to me, it’s a dog that has things figured out in his mind.

I take my dogs with me in the car everywhere as long as it’s not too warm outside. They love to people watch in the parked car. One day about a year ago I was loading up the dogs into the car and Luca (French mastiff/boxer mix) jumped into the back seat and let out a yelp. He seemed fine after whatever happened. I thought maybe he caught his nail on something or bumped something (he’s kind of a big baby). Now we also walk every morning at 6am. We drive to the trail. Since the “incident” Luca will not get in the car UNLESS it’s to go for our morning walk. He seems to think that getting into the car at any other time will result is some great injury to him. When I go anywhere (other than our walk) I’ll say “who wants to go for a ride?” Romeo immediately runs to the door. Luca stays on the couch. I’ll say “come on Luca, let’s go for a ride”. He won’t budge. He won’t even look at me, he turns his head and stares at the wall! In the morning he’s right by the door waiting to get into the car.

My dog knows within 10 minutes of when my wife is due home from work and looks out the window and waits for her. She also knows she gets walked after the news, whether it’s on live or DVR delay, so that when Lester Holt is winding it up, she’s in my face expecting me to get up and walk her.

I had a dog who liked to watch TV. He was particularly fond of Teletubbies. Lil’wrekker liked to watch them when she about 3, her and the dog watched every morning. Man was I happy when they grew outta that!

Leet the Wonder Dog[sup]TM[/sup] can read the UPS symbol. Even if it is not a standard UPS truck, he knows that those are the folks who try to break into the house and kill everyone. So he bravely barks at them. It is working - those package bombs were in Austin, and never even made it to our state.

He also knows directions. I put him in the car, pull out to the main road. If I turn right and head for the freeway, we are going to the kennel. Yay!

If I turn left, and then left again at the next intersection, we are going to the dog park. Yay!

If I turn right, we are going to the vet. Then he hides under the blanket in the back seat.


My dogs can tell time. It’s so weird. Not time-based-on-events, just time.

They know when it’s 9, and time to wake up. They know when it’s noon, which is an hour to lunchtime (aka begging time), and then they know when it’s 1, actual lunch time. They know when it’s 5, quitting time for work, which means walking time. They know when it’s 5:30, which is snack time.

They know the time consistently, regardless of time changes or changes in the position of the sun or whatever. They just KNOW.

They don’t seem to be nearly as smart as everyone elses’ pets here (well, at least these cats. Wow!) but they know the TIME!!!

My mom had a Pembroke Welsh Corgi named Corky who was intelligent even by Corgi standards, and Corgis are intelligent dogs.

She not only recognized words, she knew the names of quite a few of her toys, and she could say “Go!” as a strange gulping bark when she wanted to go outside. She also knew how to slip her leash, but she was smart enough to not simply run away: She’d dance just beyond your reach, making you chase her and generally turning your leash from how you controlled her into how she controlled you. That’s just Corgi all over, really: Playful, bull-headed, and determined to not simply be lead around.

She also had a way to halve how long she had to walk outside when she went out in cold weather: She’d go out just as far as normal, but then she’d lift her left front paw and whichever member of her two-legged staff was on duty with her would carry her inside, so she could be warm on a soft couch. She certainly knew how to train us.

I had a cat that could work a doorknob. When I was growing up, Simon (yes, there was a Garfunkel),a 16+ lb Maine Coon mix, would reach up to a side screen door that had a handle knob and pull it down to get out.

I also had a Grace but a cat, not a dog - we got Gracie and her brother Will at the local shelter (they came with those names). When I would get home from work, I would change out of my clothes in one room, and grab the next day’s underwear to bring into the bathroom so it was there for me the next morning. When I came into the bathroom, there would be Gracie, an all black cat with dense otter fur and copper eyes, perched on the sink, serenely waiting for me because she know I would go there after changing my clothes. She always made me smile.

Our late dog Candy knew when it was ten pm, and that that was our bedtime. If we had company,
at exactly ten o’clock Candy would sit right in front of the guest and stare at them rudely until they went home!