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» Thursday, June 10, 2004Well, This Doesn't Surprise Me
Study Finds Dogs Understand Language
Willow has many words she knows, and not just obedience commands like "Sit, Stay, Down, Sit Up" and "Up" (and, of course, "No!") Her favorite word is "cookie," which sends her dashing to the shelf over her crate, staring at the dog biscuit jar. She also knows "food" (she'll look around for it) and "hungry." When we get home from eating out on weekends we always bring her a bit of something, fat from the meat, an oatmeal cookie, a bit of cornbread. We put it up on something in the den and tell her to "find the hunting." If we don't bring anything home we say "No hunting" and she's disappointed.
If you say "Daddy's home," she runs to the door to check for James. "Where's the cat?" sends her barreling for the door. (If you meow or hiss she runs to the door, too.) If she needs food she dances near the container with her dog food in it. If she needs water she shoves her water dish around and then jumps up and down in front of the sink when you come to see what the noise is (she knows the water comes from the faucet).
If you say, "Do you want to go for a ride in the truck?" she gets hysterical and starts jumping and whining. When you take her out she runs right for the door of the cab and jumps at it.
And if she's done something naughty you say "Go to your box," and she slinks into her crate for a time out. "Bad dog!" and she will roll over on her back. "Bedtime" means she also goes into her crate.
And if you run the water in the bathtub and say "Come on, Willow"--she tries to hide. :-)