Sunday, December 2, 2012

Why is my dog smarter than me?

I recently read an article on 10 Ways to Give Your Pet a Pill.  I read the article!  I mean, really?  How difficult is it to give your pet a pill?  I've been giving Sheba a baby asprin everyday since her arthritis revealed itself 5 years ago.  OK, OK, so sometimes I find the pill on the floor next to the empty dog dish. And there was the time I found the pill in the den, on the carpet, laying there as if to say, "Gotchya!" Surely it was me who obviously did not administer the pill correctly.  Right?  Wrong!

After a few incidences of finding the pill on the floor I decided to watch Sheba and find out how a cleverly hidden pill found its way to a room on the other side of the house.  It didn't take long to see the degree of her intelligence.  The pill was scrunched down into the wet dog food.  Served with the usual, "Come and get it" voice, and received with the usual look of skepticism.  She ate the food, and left the pill in the bowl.  How did she do that?

I pushed the pill deep into a teaspoon of peanut butter, her favorite treat, and proceeded to watch her slowly and carefully lick the peanut butter off the spoon and leave the pill lying there, naked to the world.  What?

OK, she's smart, but not smarter than me! Right?  Out came the cheese and into a rolled up portion, I placed the pill.  Guess what?  She ate the cheese and left the pill!

In her youth, Sheba ate the treat with the hidden pill without hesitation. Now, 5 years later, she is skeptical and scrutinizes her food as if it may be poisoned.  Doesn't she trust me?  Haven't I been loyal?  Wait a minute, wait a minute...isn't the Mistress supposed to feel those things, trust and loyalty, about the dog.  You know, "I love my dog because she is loyal" and "My dog trusts me", that kind of thing?  What's going on here?

Like a four year old (in human years) Sheba does not like to take her medicine, even though I know it is good for her.  I got the comparison when I watched my grandaughter refuse her medications when she had the flu.  She got her medicine but not without a fight. She also got her treat after taking the medicine!  And there in lies the secret!

Sheba may appear smarter than me...but I'm the one who holds the golden ticket.  Who is the smart one now?

1 comment:

Kay said...

It's funny. Sometimes they do seem to be smarter than us. I'm always telling my dog Hiker that she is just too smart for her own good.