Me too, and not just dogs. I have witnessed lots of animals communicating. I have read those studies about the dogs vs wolves and the dogs look to the humans for help while the wolves just destroy the puzzle.
some of the most impressive things to me are: my female knows the rules and pointedly tattles to me if another dog is being bad. I worked with a GSD barn dog years ago who would assist whoever the manager was. She knew who was in charge. When it was me, she came and got me and led me just like lassie to a teenager who was in big trouble with a horse she couldn't handle. The dog knew it was a problem, and knew I was the person who needed to know, and I was able to get the horse before anyone got hurt
I taught my puppy not to mess with the old girl when she steals his toys. he comes and asks me to get his toy back from her and I do. (she mugs him, takes his, makes a pile and guards them. It's not nice. but she would put a hole in him if he tried to touch her toys so that's where I come in and why I taught him not to mess with her with her things)
Now he recently started asking me to take things from her and give them to him just that he wants. so an antler that she obtained legally, did not steal from him in a nasty way, he wants it and asks me won't I take it from her and give it to him lol. Which of course I wont. But a funny new twist.
I don't know where the limit is for a human and a dog with a deep bond, spend a lot of time together, lots of respect....don't know where the limit is as far as what they can communicate to each other...
Our Schnauzer/Terrier mix Jax can pick out some things in regular conversation. I've tested him by throwing Jax in a sentence in the tone of the rest of the sentence when talking to the wife or the kids, and he'll look up curiously.
He would also start to get really excited and jump around when I'd ask the kids, "Does anyone want to take Jax for a walk?" If everyone said no, sometimes we wouldn't go and I didn't want him to get amped up for nothing, so I started spelling it out. "Does anyone want to take the d-o-g for a w-a-l-k?" Sometimes my 9 year old daughter (who really gets sarcasm already) will spell out N-O. lol
Lol!We spell things out too!Walk,Outside,Bone.They can also string together a couple of concepts.I don't like to wait overly long when out for potty breaks in bad weather.If I tell them "First we're going to hurry,then we'll have treats!"Boy do they hustle to take care of business!The first time I said that I was actually just talking to myself trying to be optimistic on a cold,windy night.Surprisingly it works though
It's often been said that dogs have the intelligence of a 2 or 3 year old human but IMO that's not a good comparison in any respect.
There's been so much research done between wolves and dogs. It appears that wolves are much better at puzzle solving where dogs give up more easily and if a human is in the vicinity they look to them for assistance.
This is the trade off for such a close age old relationship with man. But I think it was an excellent one for them (and so fortunate for us):smile2:
Mine's getting to the point now where the routine stuff no longer needs verbal commands. Often, I can just make the Pssst! noise or snap my fingers and she'll think (what should I be doing) and she'll come or sit or back up, whatever I need her to do at the time. I know it's all based on routine but sometimes I think she has ESP because she seems to read my body language so well.:smile2:
Last week, when we had a mouse in the house it took her one try to learn the name for that little creature that didn't belong in here with us! I trapped one and a 2nd was trap wary. For 3 days Summer parked herself at the entrance to the laundry room and was on "mouse guard duty". She apparently barked it into leaving the way it came. (dryer vent coil):smile2:
I like to look at what the dog can understand from their point of view. What if you were the dog and magically transported to a world populated by beings far more intelligent than you, much larger, slower moving but with a language of sounds that you could not duplicate. Distinctive oders and using devices you had no concept of nor could you ever use.
Their mode of transportation was something very foreign to you but had reasonably comfortable resting places. They made horrible noises and went 4 times as fast as you could on trips. Scary speeds. These things were very big and fatally dangerous.
The new world is extremely dangerous for you to be free roaming so you are required to wear a restraining device very foreign to you.
Various strange sounds followed by hard yanks on the restraining device force you to do various things for no good reason in your mind. But you miraculously gets yummy treats if you give in to these. Associating the beings movements and strange sounds you gradually learn that certain ones can get good treats and loving hugs (that you hate) but that's easier than the yanks. Since you no longer have mom or dad and brothers and sisters are gone, you have no choice but to be around these strange beings. They provide good healthy food, not as good as your natural prey but still tasty. You get your own " home" and many other places you can rest or do things. The main thing is that when you hear, see, or notice your master's presence, you come running. He likes you to come to his front and will give you a reward every time. Usually he will ask you to walk beside him. It's ok as you have become comfortable with him. He won't hurt you but only asks you to do dumb things. Sometimes they are fun because you can do things they can't and get rewards.
Your master has discovered that you are particularly big and very strong. You have a very imposing look about you. He creates a series of noises and motions that direct you to really fight and scare off intruders. You receive very special guidance perfecting your abilities and special athletic training. You now know how to protect your master. and your home. You have perfect manners, you like most other beings and their young, they even have this furry thing with sharp claws that thinks he owns the place but you chase him for fun. There is no need to hurt him but he does bug you sometimes. Your confidence level is extremely high so there is no need to fight without reason.
You occasionally get to see and be around other " dogs". Most are extremely rude, some just want to fight and steal your food and clothes. But your master is very protective and will drive them away or fight them off while keeping you safe. Others are pretty nice and if you are nice, you get along.
Ring, ring ring, it's morning and time get up. " oh, hi, mr. shepherd do you need to go out? " Tail wagging.