A question on training and intelligence in general.... regardless of the specific training method.
I've read several studies, the most recent placing the adult (more intelligent) breeds equivalent "human" intelligence comparison at being around 3 years old.....
It seems, sometimes - while training, that it really consists of linking a "series" of commands together on short initial training..... that watching a dog execute a seemingly complex command, is really a short series of commands that the dog is able to put together, and would fall apart if the sequence is changed in any way.
In other words - the same as a regular family dog can be taught "tricks" such as speak, shake hands and sit up and beg can be done. But not in combined sequence -or not in a chain of sequences with constant variation.
I hope my question is clear, I've been thinking about it for a few days before I decided to post this dumb question
I would think that watching structured training for a specific work or sport, that this is simply what I'm seeing.... But, I have had occasion with my past GSD/wolf cross that yes, used basic commands but in a very abnormal situation. This sounds really stupid but I still think about it - specifically to their "reasoning" ability.
He was trained to retrieve a ball from the ocean or lake. We were fishing one afternoon and when I cast out - my stupid cheap rod separated at the metal joiner where the top and bottom half of the rod connected. There was a sinker on the bait so the top half of the rod went sailing down the line - the sinker got lodged in rocks so I was about to loose the top half of my rod to the lake.
I sent him out once to "get it" it was floating about 40 feet offshore, he want half way and turned around (no ball there), I sent him out again and he circled the rod half and when I picked the line a little it caught his tail and he swam back. I sent him out the 3rd time and he grabbed the rod half, I lowered the line to just above surface level and he followed the line and ran the rod half right back to me
To me - that is reasoning and learning- not a bunch of short training clips put together to get an awesome looking result.
Which is it? It's like the dogs that lead LE to a burning house that their owner is trapped in - or a dog going for help or barking like crazy if their owner is hurt......can they reason????