Sunday, August 22, 2010

My Dog is Too Smart for the IQ Test

So I've read my way through Hyperbole and a Half, and I was exceptionally entertained by a particular entry about her dog. I've always felt that my dog, Sophie, is an exceptionally intelligent dog. So when I looked up a dog IQ test, I believed that my dog would pass with flying colors. This was not exactly the case....

The dog IQ test consists of six different tests. They each are supposed to measure your dog's abilities. These six tests can be performed in any order.

I started with the basics. Does your dog know her name? I called her using words like "refrigerator" and "movie." Nothing. I called her name, and she responded. BUT, she did not move towards me. She did not show any inclination to get up and move towards me. She raised her head, perked up her ears and looked at me. She technically responded to her name....but she did not show any inclination to come, which is a criteria of the scoring system. Clearly she is simply waiting for a follow-up command. My dog comes when I TELL her to. She looks at me when I CALL her. If it were up to me, she would receive full credit (5 points) for this test. But according to their criteria, she would receive only 1 point. My dog did not come.

Next I attempted to test her social learning. In this test, you try to determine if your pet understands and responds to a smile. After looking at my dog for a few moments with her eyes on me, I smiled. She raised her head...and then decided to ignore me. This wins her 3 points. But, as before, my dog has been taught to come on command. A smile is not a command to come, so she stayed where she was. Again, I would award 5 points.

After that, I showed her a treat, and showed her as I placed in under a plastic cup. I encouraged her to get the treat. She sniffed the cup. She prodded it a bit with her nose. She decided that it did indeed have the treat under it. And so she attempted to be "a good girl," sitting, raising her paw to shake, rolling over.... but she did not attempt to retrieve the treat herself. This awards her 1 point. I say, so what? She didn't push over the cup. That's because she's a well trained dog. She sat, and waited patiently for me to pick up the cup and give it to her.

My dog is too smart for the IQ test. She is trained too well to respond when commands are not given, and to take things that she has not earned. So the dog IQ test can suck it!

1 comment:

  1. Too well TRAINED? I'm not sure I would go that far!