Can your dog do this?
Have you read about this dog? A friend shared a news clipping on this dog’s unusual behavior in Seattle, Washington. Eclipse, as an independent city dog, seems to know to walk only on the sidewalk, get on the bus, take a seat and look out the window, all without assistance from his person. Eclipse even knows, which bus stop to get off at. She always gets off at the DOG PARK stop. “Bus riders report she hops up on empty seats next to strangers, and watches out the window for her stop. Says commuter Tiona Rainwater, “All the bus drivers know her … she makes everybody happy.”
A Metro Transit spokesman said the agency loves that a dog appreciates public transit. The City of Seattle representative suggested that it would be safer for Eclipse to wear a leash and be with her human when she rides the bus, but with a dog this smart, is it a problem? I don’t know the answer. Black lab rides bus alone to dog park USA Today Network Associated Press 1:01 p.m. EST January 14, 2015.
What do you think, can dogs take the bus without their human families?
No dogs off leash
We know that big dogs differ in temperament and in dog to dog communication from little lap dogs. But what makes a dog mature and experienced enough to take on full independence? We know that the confusion and untranslated rules of human life continually challenge us. And what of homeless dogs living in and around people in Bali, Mexico, and Russia? By clicking this link, you will find my “Smart Thinking Dogs Ride the Metro” written and posted videos on free-roaming dogs that ride trains in organized groups in Russia. Often those who live with dogs, like we do, find dogs understand far more of our human lives than we think possible. After watching dozens of dogs off leash on city streets of Baja California Sur, Mexico. No dog seemed homeless and all but one stayed on the sidewalk.
Do dogs ever become 100% street-smart?
Street smarts or leash required?
What do dogs know? What do dogs remember? We know dogs learn. We know some dogs show exceptional learning abilities, much great than other dogs. Somewhere I read that the average dog has the intelligence of a human toddler. Now, none of us would let a toddler walk city streets, get on and off a bus alone. But what of special cases? History shows exceptions to rules and to the “average.” Clearly, Eclipse breaks the rule, the average and reshapes our expectations of what dogs can and should be able to do.
“The greatness of a nation can be judged by the way its animals
are treated.” Mahatma Gandhi
Have you read Merle’s Door: Lessons from a Freethinking Dog by Ted Kerasote? Of book talks, life and books by Kerasote can be found on his Website his 2014 Pukka’s Promise: The Quest for Longer-Lived Dogs, in paperback, looks to be interesting to those of us who want our dogs to live the longest, healthiest lives possible. Find more about this top creative nonfiction author on his Website Kerasote.com.
True dog story (tearjerker ahead)
A Marin County ethical keeshond breeder shared this true story of their longtime and favorite dog. For years and years, the behavior of their family dog and top champion male looked totally stable. His nature showed pure calm and obedience. They all got into a pattern of allowing this canine patriarch time to lay on the front lawn in their neighborhood circle street. He always remained serene, watching, never chasing, barking or moving.
On afternoon as this keeshond patriarch lay on his grassy lawn-the unthinkable happened-he ran infant of car. Now fortunately, this beloved family keeshond did not die. But he suffered, ever after, from epileptic fits. Makes me wonder if we fool ourselves in imagining that dogs can navigate city streets safely.
Please share, comment and sign up for my blog updates. Thanks, Deborah Taylor-French
This Monday, January 19, Paul at Learning from Dogs reflagged and added his own unique perspective on “Bus riding dog: Photo Friday” in his “A wonderful insight into dogs.” Please visit Learning from Dogs.