Dogs and their gifts

19:57, Oct 24 2012

I've just come back from a week in Tonga as part of my role as chairman of South Pacific Animal Welfare. During the trip I was lucky to be able to work with some people and make their dogs safer, such as not escaping their property or not chasing people.

While I was there, I met LauLau, a beautiful dog who had the look of a Doberman but was a typical Tongan dog. LauLau greeted me at the gate with a lot of hooha but as usual stopped once the owner came to the gate. It patrolled the grounds like a security guard and did not let anyone in, heaven forbid anyone dare jump the fence!

The great thing about this dog, however, was that as they lived on the main road not far from the hospital it howled everytime the ambulance passed. It was one of the funniest things I've seen for a long time. LauLau did not howl in a dog manner, but in such a way it was difficult to tell the difference between the dog and the ambulance, and waited until it had gone down the road. As far as a genetic trait is concerned I have no idea - but it was entertaining. It was not disruptive, the dog was not becoming aggressive or behave badly because of it - I just think it was something it enjoyed doing - and far be it from me to stop it!

So it made me think, what other special talents do people's dogs hold that are in the odd and unusal category, bordering on bizarre but also gifted? I wondered what talents my own dogs had, but alas I can't think of anything they can do that would be considered a talent that they have not been taught. Yes, they can do stuff like bark on cue, walk backwards and in circles - but not gifted!

What do your dogs do that you think is gifted and your dog is well known for?

Simon Goodall is CEO of Dog Guru Ltd. See them on Facebook and Twitter

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Picture: Ruy Jobim Neto