The intelligence of dogs

March 19, 2012

This video of a golden retriever getting a B+ in solfege and pitch matching, along with many experiences with our dogs have caused me to completely re-evaluate my opinion about dog intelligence. This dog is doing what music teachers teach their students to do at the very beginning of their musical training. If you can’t match a pitch, you should NOT be a musician. Here, this very interested pair of dogs match first, solfege syllables on a doggie piano, then match pitches when the trainer plays a pitch on a wooden flute. This is a skill that many people cannot do.

When I speak to our dogs, using words they know, and even stringing those words together to create different meanings, they seem to understand. Just now, Andy came up, wanting food or a treat. I said: Andy, no food, no treat; you have to wait. His ears fell and immediately walked away. He understood.

All dog owners can confirm that dogs understand a wide range of human communication, ranging from physical clues: suitcases coming out; exciting word clues: treat, squirrel, walk, hike; terrifying word cues: VET, brush your teeth. take a bath; to actually speaking complete sentences.

I encourage dog owners to imagine their dogs to be even smarter than you think they are, and challenge them in knew ways, teach them new words, introduce them to your friends [Andy, this is DAVID], talk to them as you may a 2 year old.

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