Are dogs intelligent or are they intelligent? I wrote a couple of years ago about a Moscow ethologist (animal behaviourist), Dr Andrei Poiarkov of the Moscow Ecology and Evolution Institute, who found that some dogs in Moscow routinely ride on their own on subway trains and buses.
They are commuting from the suburbs to the city centre because they have learnt that city workers are apt to feed them, whereas in the suburbs there’s nobody around during the day.
Having spent the day scavenging and begging for food – especially at lunch time when people eat sandwiches on the city’s benches – at the end of the day they hop on to a home-bound train.
Poiarkov watched them using cunning tactics to obtain morsels of food from the unsuspecting who are taking |a lunch break in the open. They sneak up behind people eating the kebab-like snack Muscovites love then bark loudly to shock them into dropping it.
But what if dogs learnt to sms their owners at the office? A friend has passed on to me some examples of the sort of messages that would flash back and forth between owner and dog.
They were twittered or tweeted by somebody called “Mikey” and I have sanitised them a bit:
* Fun day! Ran around the house in a cape. I’m BATDOG. LOL.
Where did u get the cape?
I think role-playing helps alleviate my boredom. I feel so alive. X
WHERE DID U GET THE CAPE???
I pulled the curtain down. Dammit. Why can’t u just be happy for me?
* Hey, why are u keeping another dog in the bedroom?
How many times must I tell u? It’s a MIRROR – that dog is YOU.
OK. OK. Why are you keeping another dog in the bedroom?
Just stop going into the bedroom!
* Just ran up and down the stairs 19 times. NEW RECORD.
Oh Wow. This is literally the proudest day of my life.
I know! Success came at a cost though.
I bet. You must be exhausted.
Yeah, I threw up into your shoes.
Just brilliant! I hate u.
* Have u got crisps upstairs?
I thought I heard something rustling.
U were mistaken.
I think I’ll come upstairs and check.
For Pete’s sake! Yes, I have got crisps. But they are MINE.
Yeah. I’ll just come up and watch you eat them.
* I’m watching a documentary on hurricanes.
That’s nice. Are u learning anything?
Has it mentioned Hurricane Katrina?
Were there pants and socks on Hurricane Katrina?
That’s the washing machine you mutt.
* I need a girlfriend.
You can’t have kids. Remember, I had you snipped.
U were snipped.
I read a book that said if you weren’t planning on breeding your dog, you should get them neutered because in later life they get frustrated. I did it because I love u. X
To hell with u, HITLER!
* U got a letter.
From the bank I think.
* Hey genius. You left the handbrake off.
No I didn’t!
Yes u did.
NO I DIDN’T.
OK. U didn’t. I’m rolling down the hill in somebody else’s car.
Hey this is awesome.
A LETTER TO THE STOEPSA Breweries (SAB) delivers beer to over 800 000 shebeens across SA weekly, but the government can’t deliver textbooks to 26 000 schools once a year.
If SAB and the government swop delivery methods, we can have a civilised, sober and educated country!