20+ Of The Most Unbelievably Smart Things Pets Have Done That Surprised Their Owners
Our pets are so precious to us, they are far more than just animals that we look after and have around for company. They become our best friends, and part of the family. Although it’s very easy to bond emotionally with our pets, sharing a cuddle or playing games together will do that, being on the same wavelength intellectually is less common.
Sure, you can train your dog, hamster or rat to be obedient, (cats too, but that may prove to be a little more difficult!) but what we have here are true geniuses, unique personalities that go far beyond what we would imagine from an animal!
This list, compiled by Bored Panda, is about those times when animals have surprised us with their intelligence. When people were able to understand just what their pets were thinking, and communicate with them on a higher level! Scroll down to check them out for yourself, and feel free to share your own articulate animals stories in the comments below!
This is a completely true story. Weird, but true, and shows a really impressive level of intelligence in my cat. It happened when I was a teenager.
I’m sitting on the couch, and my cat walks into the room and starts meowing loudly, but not coming to me. So I stand up and go toward him, and he starts walking away, so I follow. He leads me, meowing the whole way and looking back to make sure I’m following, to the bathroom. Weird, right? Just wait.
So we’re in the bathroom, and he hops up on the toilet and, get this, he PEES IN IT. I was floored. One, he peed in the toilet. Like a person. He’d never done that before. It’s impressive that he knew what a toilet was for. But two, he brought me there to show me. Why? This is where the real intelligence comes into it.
Well, he stops peeing and turns to look into the toilet and then looks at me. So I look in the toilet. It’s full of blood. He had a terrible kidney infection (as the vet later confirmed), and this is how he told me.
Think of all the things he had to understand to do this!! He had to know he was sick and in which part of his body the infection was. He had to know that the bathroom was the place where I deal with the part of my body that matches up with his sick part. He had to know what a toilet was for and how to use it. And he knew that if I understood the problem, I’d be able to fix it.
Seriously, that cat was incredible.
We used to have a cockatoo, as well as some cats and dogs.
We were teaching the dogs some tricks, and the cockatoo was just doing his bird thing. Every day, the same routine: get some treats, call the dogs, sit, stay, lay down, roll over, get a treat, etc.
One night we were watching TV and hear the cockatoo call the dog by name. “Sit. Stay. Lay down. Roll over. Good Boy”. We heard something hit the floor, and then he called out the next dog’s name.
Walked into the kitchen to find the cockatoo in the spot we always stand, giving orders to the dogs (who were obeying!), and then pulling treats out of the cup and dropping them on the floor. This went on for some time.
Dogs now liked the cockatoo, and would let him ride on their backs. Cockatoo would call them, tell them to lay down, would climb on, and ride around like a king.
The dogs knew what’s up, would walk to the kitchen, and stand by the counter. Cockatoo would hop up and drop them a treat, say “good boy”, and hop back on.
Funniest thing I’ve ever seen in my life.
My cat yawned, so I stuck a finger in his mouth. He sort of stared at my curiously as he shut his mouth, but didn’t bite down hard. A few minutes later, he’s sitting on my chest and I yawn. He proceeds to put his whole paw in my mouth.
I am diabetic and one night I fell on my carpet from weakness and disorientation. My beloved dog, who now rests in Heaven, brought my emergency kit from my bathroom counter so I could take my medication.
Just writing this post brought tears to my eyes.
I will always remember you Bumper.
When was I was young my family moved a long distance with two pets, a cat and a dog. My mom said that cats can try to run off to find home after a move so we had a cat collar with a long leash to hold her while we were unloading the trailers. I heard my Australian Shepherd bark twice on the back porch. Abby NEVER barked unless something was serious. I ran back there and my cat had run around a chair many times and then jumped off the chair with not enough room on leash to be on ground and was hanging there choking. When I rounded the corner Abby was trying to chew through the leash. Best dog ever. Both cat and dog lived long happy lives.
I witnessed this with my uncle’s dog. My uncle was lying on the couch and she was lying on his feet and legs. He let out a huge fart which was aimed directly at her face. She lifted her head and glared at him and he started laughing. She got up and walked away in disgust. A few minutes later she came back, jumped up on his chest, stuck her butt in his face and farted on him and walked away. I laughed so hard I cried and gave her so many treats.
I had the best dog ever. One night I was fast asleep and he was gently “biting” my hand just enough to wake me up. Once I woke up he started tugging on it as if to say, follow me. It was so weird. SO I follow him and he leads me to the side door or my house, sits facing the door and barks ever so silently. I then realize someone is outside picking the lock. I called 911. It was a drunk guy, no idea what his intentions were once he got in, but my dog for some reason managed to get him arrested. He probably would have been scared away had my dog just barked, but for some reason the old boy wanted to alert me quietly.
First Christmas we had our cat she saw us handing out presents and opening them and abruptly ran off. About twenty minutes later she comes back with a dead bird and dropped it in the present pile. It’s uh definitely the thought that counts?
When I was an infant, I was in my crib next to my parents bed. I somehow got twisted up and started suffocating in my blanket. This cat jumped on my mom’s face until she woke up, then jumped into my crib. Had it not been for her, I would have died.
When I was a kid, we had two dogs: a Pyrenean Shepherd, and a Labrador Retriever. The Retriever was a goofy idiot, but the Shepherd was smart.
One day, the Retriever gets loose (we had to tie him up in the yard because he kept chasing things and running away), and the Shepherd runs after him. We never even realized what had happened until we saw the Shepherd coming back with the Retriever, holding the would-be runaway’s leash in his mouth, and leading him back to the house.
Must have been a weird sight for the neighbors.
If all of the spots on the couch were taken, my dog would scratch the door to go out and when someone gets up he would take their spot.
My golden retriever leaves a shoe on the bed, without fail, for my wife or I to find if we are both gone at the same time. My theory is that she did it once, and we came home, so now she does it every time we leave to ensure that we come back. Like a doggy superstition.
After doing this for years, my wife had to leave the state for a week. My first day back from work, there was a shoe on the bed. Normal. After my second day back (wife is still gone), there were three shoes on the bed. After my third day returning from work alone, every shoe and boot in the house was laid out on the bed and couches, and all of my wife’s dirty socks were in a bowl.
It may not be the smartest thing she’s ever done, but it really made me think about how she thinks.
My cat (about 4 months old at the time) hadn’t come back for at least 2 days and I looked for her everywhere. I was getting worried since she never really left for more then a couple of hours. I guess my Labrador sensed how worried I was and realized it was because of the cat. So he decided to run out the door, while I wasn’t playing attention. (He also knows how to open doors.) I didn’t realize till later and I thought I had lost both of them. When around 8pm I heard meowing coming from outside. When I looked outside I saw my lab holding my kitten by the head.
My dog is super sneaky. He’s not allowed on the furniture, and never ever tries to get up on the couch or bed unless we invite him. One day I was taking a shower and had forgotten a body wash I had just purchased, so I left the shower running and ran out to my room to grab it really fast. I found him on the couch happily rolling around on his back. As soon as he realized I was there he froze for a moment, jumped off the couch and ran to his bed. That’s when I realized the little jerk waits for me to get in the shower to get on the furniture and knows to listen for me to turn the shower off so he knows when to stop!
My chickens held a funeral.
In our flock of maybe ten bantams, there was one elderly, respected hen. Even the brash rooster, who would spend most of his time chasing other chickens away from ‘his’ feed, meekly made space for Grey Girl when she slowly made her way over to the chicken feed. She was mother and grandmother to many of them, and you could tell how much they esteemed her.
One morning, I open the chicken coop as usual, but not a chook was to be seen. Normally they’d be all running out to find the night’s bounty of bugs, but not this morning. I walk inside the pen to see what’s up.
There is a circle of chickens. An actual circle, with Grey Girl’s body right in the middle. All the chooks are making this weird wailing sound, which I had never heard before. I am in no doubt they were mourning the passing of their elder mother.
What’s more, the body was lying outside the shed where she would have been roosting. There is a good chance that she was actually pulled out of the claustrophobic, poo-filled shed and placed in the open space by the chickens, so they could pay their respects.
After about half an hour the chooks all wandered off and I buried the body. And I never saw that behaviour again.
We had a dog that liked to roam the neighborhood too much so we installed one of those wireless fences that give a shock from a collar when you cross it. The law requires it to beep and give a warning before the shock to train the dog to stop, which is good. But she figured out that if she got near it then it would start beeping. So she went to where the beeping started and laid down. Then just lay there until the beeping stopped and she knew the battery was drained and too weak to shock her so she would just walk across.
My neighbor is a zoo-keeper and he loves working with the chimpanzees and the otters.
Story about the chimp: he was closing up this one male chimps sleeping cage for the night, and then realised he’d lost his keychain. He saw the chimp holding them, and asked to get them back. Chimp refused. He then said “here, I will give you a banana for the keys!” Chimp then proceeded to unhook ONE key from the key chain and hand it back to him. 18 bananas later, and the keys were returned. This chimp is quite famous in Scandinavia – he was rejected from his mom as a newborn and was raised with the zoo-keepers family until he was re-introduced to the flock around a year later. There’s books and TV-series (from the 70s) about him.
I snuck downstairs and watched my small dog delicately push the chairs and a couple cardboard boxes around into an specific orientation, then wildly parkour across the objects in order to get to my dinner sitting on the table. He also carefully moved the fork out of the way using his claws so that it wouldn’t make any noise. I notified him of my presence right before he started eating and he just froze and then looked really guilty. In addition, when I have a panic attack, my dog will sometimes bring me his favorite stuffed animal because I assume he thinks it will comfort me like it comforts him.
My old pit bull just knew when I was suicidal and came for cuddles. Just would sit there whilst I cried into her fur and patiently wait it out then lick me and stay longer.
One of my cats learned how to turn the internet off. I mean, he realized everbody goes crazy when he goes behind the TV stand and messes up with the wires.
So when we’re not paying enough attention to him (usually if we’re on our phones or the computer), he just unplugs the router. I don’t think he knows how much power he has.
We had pot belly pigs when we were little because my brother and I were allergic to cats and dogs. Smart little f*ckers. My brother and I would always yell “MOM! MOM!”, so one day my mom left for a couple days and the pigs got upset. One of them started squealing and then opening it’s mouth so it sounded like “MMMMMAMAMA”. Then the other one started doing it. So we had two pigs in the house screaming for mama. It was creepy as f*ck.
I had a pair of gold fish that grew to be quite large. Their names were nemo and toad. When nemo was dying toad did everything in his power to “revive” him. Including swimming alongside him and under him to boost him up and giving up larger potions of the food. After the nemo passed away toad got super depressed. He wouldn’t eat at all and spent all day moving the little pebbles at the bottom of the fish tank from one side of the tank to the next. he died not long after
My chocolate lab woke me up one night barking in my face. I was really mad because he does that. When i got up to see what was up I soon realized I was having a massive Heart Attack. He saved my life. Thanks Luke.
Not current pet but a dog I had as a teenager.
Dog jumps up on the couch
“No, you’re not allowed on the couch, go lie in your bed”
Dog leaves the room. A moment later he returns with his bed and throws it on the couch. Gets back up on the couch in his bed and stares at me.
“… Fair enough…”
On the few days I get to sleep in, if my cat decides his breakfast is too late he has learned to wake me up for it.
early on, I apparently learned to sleep through his MRROOOOOOOWs by the bedside; as time went by, I learned to roll over & ignore him when heâ€™d bat at me with his pawsâ€¦
â€¦so heâ€™s learned to get me up the one way I canâ€™t sleep through: heâ€™ll take a single claw & drag it very gently over my eyelid. it doesnâ€™t hurt at all, but Iâ€™m hard-pressed to think of a more peculiar feeling.
Every morning for breakfast I always eat fruit and that weekend there was a farmers market selling fruit for cheap so I bought a TON. I couldn’t fit them in the fridge so I left a few bags on the side in the dining room (reachable distance)
I shit you not, I woke up and was surprised to see an apple next to me. Over the next few days, my dog would get up in the morning, go in the bag, and get a fruit to put next to me on the bed. He proceeded to do this for the next two weeks until we ran out.
My dog Bailey (Lab/Husky) and her BFF Tess (Boxer) were in our backyard playing around. Tess, being a total idiot as usual, decided to go exploring in the back (all forest, hills, creeks and such) and takes off. Not wanting to lose both dogs, my daughters called Bailey to stay.
They tried calling Tess for 10 minutes before they found me to come help. I came and tried the same for a few minutes. Once I realized that there were no sights or sounds of Tess, I turned to Bailey, and said, “Bailz, where’s Tess?”
We played this game with Bailey regularly. She would find anyone in our family if you asked her to. So I sent her off into the forest looking for Tess. No hesitation on Bailey’s part.
Another 10 minutes go by. Sun is going down. Forest is quiet. We start calling for Bailey to return. Sure as shit, not 2 minutes later, they both come back. It was from some distance too as we could hear them crashing through the bush a ways off.
Bailey knew she done good. Acted like she just cured cancer. Many cookies were had.
My cat has figured out how to turn on my heated mattress pad. Its just a little foot pedal near the headboard. With out fail I come home everyday to it cranked and her cuddled down near the foot of my bed, where the coils double.
In the winter I sometimes wake up hot as hell and realize she’s turned it on while I was sleeping.
While I was out, my dog pulled a piece of paper out of the trash and pooped on it so that he wouldn’t poop on the floor.
When I was in high school, my cat P.C. (short for personal computer which was my Dadâ€™s idea) woke my Dad up in the middle of the night by knocking herself into my parentsâ€™ door and meowing very loudly. My Dad began to follow her downstairs not knowing why and she stopped at the air vent in the kitchen. My Dad immediately turned off the air. Turns out something caught on fire in the vent and the smoke detector hadnâ€™t picked it up yet.
I’ve had dogs all my life but the 3 I have now are all very special to me. They’re seriously smart. They’ll turn on the outside hose when they get thirsty on a hot day(even though they have ice water inside) but they’ll also get the bathroom door open when you’re taking a shower and turn the shower off when they think you’ve been showering for too long.
They’re very smart but very scary. When my SO and I were walking around after we got done setting the tent up at a family camping trip(my SOs family) I went to go take a leak. So I took two of our German Shepherds to the bathroom with me and left her with one. She can handle them all of course but with deer and squirrels and stuff you just don’t know. I trust them to listen to her but why take a chance.
So while I’m in the bathroom and my two dogs are hanging around outside I hear a distant but very angry and aggressive bark. Now, my dogs are very well trained and don’t bark for no reason unless told to. I hear one of my two let out a “wtf?” bark and another distant bark from my SOs dog.
At that point my dogs start going crazy so I’m like what the f**k might as well let them go. I let them go and they just barrel over to where I left my SO, I’m talking full run and barking. Of course I pick my pace up and I get a look at the situation. It’s three guys cornering in on my lady. Only thing holding them off was the dog she had.
I have to tell my SO to let her dog go right as my two get to her. All the dogs pounced at what seemed like exactly the same time and they all end up on the ground.
But after that my dogs just take a seat right on top of the three guys. They don’t even try to fight the dogs off at that point. Ten seconds later after I called the dogs off I figure out why. All three dogs have bitten almost through one of each guys arms.
It’s smart not to f**k with someone with a dog, or worse multiple dogs.
One of my cats back when I was a kid, Thomas, got a urinary tract infection somehow. We would’ve never known because he’s both an indoor and outdoor cat and usually went outside to relieve himself.
One day he jumped up into the bathroom sink, pushed the plunger down to stop the water leaving the basin, and pissed in it. Afterward he stood over it crying until someone came and saw the bloody urine in the bowl.
He found a way to directly tell us “Yo, something’s wrong with me.”
He could also open doors on his own.
I had a German shepherd when I was little that would run around our backyard and frantically (but very gently) remove any toads he found from the yard when he saw us getting ready to mow the lawn. He was the sweetest guy.
I had a cat, a good friend, a long long time ago whom I still miss. He was a big tabby with awesome tan/orange stripes. I would climb up to the roof sometimes to avoid my housemates and relax and stare at the moon. One night I climbed up there, and he was up there. He saw me and seemed to get very happily excited to see me. He ran to one edge of the roof, looked down, then looked at me. Then, he ran to another edge, looked down, looked at me. He did that at every edge. I figured out what he was doing. At the last one, I said, “ok. Thank you for showing me. Don’t worry. I won’t go too far and fall off.” He looked very satisfied, walked to me, and laid on my chest, and we watched the moon together.
She saved my life. I was sleeping, and started going into a diabetic seizure. My SO at the time was a very heavy sleeper (her dog). She jumped on the bed, whining and barking until my SO woke up. Ambulance was called, life was saved.
I have pet rats. One of them broke a tooth, and the infection spread to her brain (the teeth go all the way up above the brain). I had her on antibiotics, but she was a bit “tilted” to one side. When they were out on a table, I noticed her falling over near the edge of the table, and was afraid that she would fall.
However, before I have time to react and move, another of my rats walk up to her, takes a firm but careful grip around the base of her tail and pulls her away from the edge of the table.
Now, I know one should be careful in placing human thoughts in animal heads, but usually, a rat “biting” another rat’s tail is a surefire way to start a fight, and I can’t see any other reason to do it except that she saw ahead, noticed the potential problem, figured out what to do to solve it and implemented that solution.
I had a cat that learned how to open the fridge, and then my dog started begging my cat for food. And then the cat started getting into the fridge just to feed the dog.
I patiently await the day where my pets decide to overthrow me and have me fixed. I’m not fighting it, that’ll only make it worse in the long run.
My gentle giant of a newfoundland did that growl once.
We were on a road trip and I had to pee. Accidently picked a gas station in a bad part of town but I had to go. Left the dog in the car and while I went in i got asked for money to which I responded I don’t have any on me. Had the following conversation on the way out.
Him: “I’ll walk you to your car so you can find your money”
Him (while following me): “it’s no big deal I can wait for you to find it”
I’m freaking out now trying to figure out of I can get into the car and lock the door fast enough. Come back to see my newfoundland – the gentlest dog ever baring get big ass teeth and doing the once in a lifetime growl through a cracked window.
The guy SPRINTED away. Then We drove through a McDonald’s and got her a whole cheese burger (which she never gets)
When I was a stupid kid, I was eating warhead hard candies. Instead of eating them like a normal person, I was squeezing one end and shooting it into my mouth. Well, I squeezed too hard and it got lodged in my throat. I made it to the back door (my dad was in the garage) before I collapsed. My cat ran out, and started swatting at my dad and got him to follow her. That was scary.
I was at the park with my dog and started talking to another dog owner. He got bored and decided to leave without me. As soon as I realised I ran out of the park to find him walking down the street toward my house, the road was pretty busy so I nearly shat myself and started sprinting down the street after him.
I saw him look both ways, wait for the traffic to stop for him and then cross the road.
By the time I caught up to him he had already crossed and was just having a casual stroll home.
About two weeks ago, just before we had to have him put down, I went to pick him up from the vets. They said he had improved overnight, the moment they said he could go home he jumped off my lap and went straight to the door. He kept looking back at me as if to tell me to hurry up.
He was a brilliant dog.
We lived in an apartment complex that didn’t allow pets. Unfortunately the people who frequently drove into the complex and dumped unwanted cats & dogs weren’t aware that residents weren’t allowed to have pets. One evening, there was an orange tabby crying piteously in the yard behind our building just 25 yards from one of the busiest roads in our city. The neighbor across the breezeway said that she saw him tossed out of a car that morning. I was worried that he would get creamed on the road and spent two hours sitting in the grass next to him with a bowl of ground hamburger to earn his trust. I had no idea what I was going to do with him after that, I just didn’t want to see him starve or get run over.
After a few weeks we worked out a living arrangement – he stayed in the apartment during the day with food and water and a bed and then went outside at night. We had to keep his presence hidden so that the apartment management wouldn’t fine us or evict us. We couldn’t keep cat food bowls outside or a litter box inside (the staff collected garbage, so they’d know if I was dumping used cat litter). Due to his effervescent personality we started calling him Jonsey, the Shithead (Aliens reference). We were working on a solution house him permanently, but it was going to be a few more months before we could either get him into a rescue or move to a new residence that allowed pets.
One night, during a round of terrible thunderstorms and heavy rain Jonsey was less than thrilled to head outside and we weren’t hot on the idea either. So he curled up in the corner of the couch and we headed to bed. The following morning I woke up and stumbled for the coffee maker. My husband asked me if the reason I was so tired was because I was up late cleaning up after the cat. I had no idea what he was talking about. He told me to look in the kitchen sink. There was a dishrag lying in the bottom of the sink and when I moved it there was cat poop in the drain. It took me few seconds to figure out what I was looking at and what it meant. To my husband it looked as if I had cleaned up cat poop and, in disgust had just thrown it in the sink to deal with it in the morning. What had actually happened was that Jonsey needed to use the bathroom and, instead of using any of my many houseplants, the corner, or just about anywhere else, he had chosen the absolute best alternative to a litter box available to him – the empty kitchen sink. He’d done his business and courteously covered it over with the dishtowel I always kept draped over the neck of the faucet. He earned a forever home with us and we moved to a house a few months after that.
I have a three month old pup who got dirt in her eye one day. Th eye kept tearing up and she held it partilly shut for a few hours. During that time I felt really bad for her and handed out a lot of treats. Since then, when I am eating, she begs by winking that eye with a tiny whimper. Her wink is nonstop. If she’s called by someone else in the home she looks at them with perfect eyes. I get the “broken eye” Once she gets the goods -fully working eyes.
I had a yabbie in my freshwater tank that is a genius. I one day watched him gather some food pellets into his cave, wait for the fish today eat the rest then a few minutes later place them in front of the cave entrance, then attacked and ate a fish that came to eat the pellets.
He stockpiled his meal to later bait an even better meal. That f*cker is in his own tank now.
I work at a pet store, and a big part of the job is listening to people talk about how great their average-ass pets are. But man, every now and then you get a good one. We have a family that owns a couple of African Grey parrots. When the kids were teenagers, the parents went out of town for the weekend, specifying there should be no parties whatsoever in their absence. Naturally the kids throw the party, and manage to clean up brilliantly. They almost got away with it until at dinner the night the parents returned, the Greys started making this whole new range of sounds including the sound of a beer pop tab opening, and the sounds of ping pong balls hitting plastic cups and the floor. Busted by birds.
Dogs are awesome. I had a gentle giant growing up and once a guy drove up the road at double the legal speed in a narrow, twisted medieval street near a school, almost hitting both my dad and my dog.
My dad loudly yelled “asshole” and gestured at the car, and the guy, proving he was even more an asshole than previously thought, stopped his car, got out and did a few steps to threaten my dad.
My dog gently sat down, managed to make his fur double in size, and did the kind of growl you only hear dogs do once or twice in their lifetime, the kind that says “You better not make one more step”. My dad did not even have the time to think of an answer before the guy did a full U turn and got back in his car to drive away.
My dad had a hard time telling us the story because he was laughing so much at the face the guy made.
Also, seeing it’s about being intelligent, my old dog understood how to open silently the doors where the treats where and close them back, but never did it when someone was around. We had to film him.
He also figured out once that every now and then, some old ladies would gather up in the house next door which was owned by the municipality to host club events. He knew when they would come somehow and would climb the garden wall to get some biscuits from them. I miss him.
I once tried to put my roommate’s dog in his kennel. Sweet dog–he obeyed me and went inside without a fuss, then looked at me like, “okay, now what?” I closed the door, put the latch down, and told him to stay in there like a good boy. He gave me this look that said “are you serious with this?” Without missing a beat, he calmly lifted the latch with his nose and walked out of the kennel.
I have two horses, Red, and Mickey.
They are yarded next to each other, and there is enough of a gap in the fence that a clever horse may work out that they can just manage to pinch the others hay through it.
Red took it a step further and realised that if he could steal Mickey’s hay, Mickey could steal his…
So he waits until Mickey is distracted by his bucket feed, and then Red takes his own hay from his own feeder and deposits it across the yard, where it’s safe.
He then goes back and takes Mickey’s hay and deposits it where it is safe.
Then Red eats his hard feed and two lots of hay.
We had to move all the hay feeders.
I have a parrot. We have a black cat called shadow and he comes when we say his name. One day I hear Oliver (my parrot) saying “Shadow! Shadow!” while he’s in the kitchen on the stool. I look outside and shadow is at the door begging to be let in.
Also once I accidentally woke Oliver up and he started grumbling, “sh*t sh*t sh*t!”
Husband used to have a large cat who, if his breakfast was “late”, would live the toilet seat up a few inches with his head then let go . BAM-bam-bam-m-m-m
My step dad was a serious alcoholic (still is) however before he met myself and my mother he has this beautiful Staffie.
Multiple people confirmed that if he was in the bar and the dog was worried. It could get out of the house. Onto a bus and to the main strip. It would then go in every bar one by one looking for him. If he didn’t find him, he would go back to one specific bar and sit on a chair and wait for him.
I had taken my german shepherd out for a hike in an abandoned conservation area. It was a hot day, there was a creek with a deep pool, so I decided to strip nekkid and go for a swim. The dog and I splashed around a bit, then we got out, I pulled on my clothes, and carried on down the trail.
My dog, however, wouldn’t follow. She was starting at something in the grass. I called, she looked up at me and then looked back at the grass. I went over to see what was so enthralling… turns out my car keys had fallen out of my pocket and she wasn’t budging until I picked them up.
Not my current dog, but the family dog we got when I was a teenager. I came home and went to my room and she’s just barking for no reason. Not furiously, but an unfamiliar cadence and enough to be annoying. I finally come out of my room to see what she wants. I look out the window and see my car trunk lid hadn’t latched all the way and was wide open. Not that I had much of value in there, but as a broke college student in a neighborhood where anything not nailed down gets stolen, I thought it was pretty awesome of her. She got extra treats and pets that day.
Carries his bone to you and pushes it into your hand. Then he starts chewing the other end of it while you hold it. When you try to pull on the bone to maybe start a tug-of-war game with him, he stops chewing and gives you a look like, “What the heck? Just hold it. You’re the one with opposable thumbs.”
When I was raising my chicks and they were about adolescent age, my one hen died suddenly. I got home and her brother was having a fit in the coop, then when I pulled her out to go bury her he just sat and watched completely silent. I picked him up to return him to the coop, and he just closed his eyes, settled down, and sat completely silent in my arms for about an hour. It broke my heart. I never knew chickens could mourn until then.
We had one remarkably intelligent pet rat. There was a number of intelligent things he did, but here are some highlights.
His much larger older brother was keeping him away from one of the food dishes on the first level. He chews a hole in the bottom of a box on the top level and moves it down to the first level. He manages to move the box, with him inside it, and the hole he chewed perfectly aligned with the food dish. He camped his box right over the bowl, with him in it, blocking his brother out, where he could eat in peace.
He was the master of manipulating his environment. Inside their cage was a number of levels and boxes. He would push them around, nest them, or chew them to get wherever he wanted to go. It was like watching someone playing a video game where they had to arrange boxes to get where they wanted. It was all the more impressive given he had limited mobility from his rear legs, and more than compensated in this way.
We would put puzzles filled with treats in their cage to give them something to solve. Without fail he was always the one to solve them, no matter how many layers we would put on them.
He had a few tumors removed over the course of his life. Without fail he always seemed to remove his stitches a day or so before he was scheduled to go back in for removal. Provided he could reach them. Everyone else would either leave them be or immediately try to remove them.
No matter where you would put food blocks, he would carefully pick them up and place them in designated food bowls.
He was extremely vocal in the way some dogs, like huskies are. Unlike others he would modulate his squeaks to try and communicate.
RIP Felix, you brilliant little rat.
There was a fire in my building once. My old kitty yelled at me until I followed her into a low corner of the bedroom. The air there was much clearer and I hid there with her until I was rescued by the firemen. She saved me that day. She’s gone now, but she was my best friend for 18 years.
My cat figured out how to fill up my bathtub. He learned how to close the drain and would turn the water handle and would just sit there and watch the tub slowly fill up. It took me weeks to figure out what was going on.
I had a genius ferret. All of my ferrets were smarter than you might expect, but Mia was ridiculous. I have tons of stories, but hereâ€™s my favourite.
My roommates and I used to hangout in a TV room that had door way with no door (entranceway?). Since I wanted the ferret to be able to run around while we were there, I put a baby gate across the exit. Took her ten seconds to climb it, of course.
I then wrapped the gate in carpet runner, so she couldnâ€™t scale it. She tried for a long time, but could find anything to get a grip on. Three of us are all kind of marveling at her commitment.
She stops trying to climb, and just freezes for a minute, her eyes panning around the room like sheâ€™s concocting a scheme, and then she starts eyeballing a shoebox on the other side of the room. Eyes up on the gate, back to the box, back to the gate. My buddy says â€œNo f*cking way. You think sheâ€™s figured it out?â€
She walks over to the box and starts sliding it across the floor, stopping every foot or so and checking her progress. Finally gets to the gate, hops on the box and jumps up and grabs the top of the gate. Whoop sheâ€™s up and over and dancing down the hallway.
I had a hamster that we kept in a fishtank, with a mesh wire ceiling.
He reorganized his cage so that the wheel was close to one of the walls, and he’d squeeze himself between the wall and the wheel and run up the wall. We thought it was hilarious.
Well, apparently it was practice. One night he finally succeeded in his plan, which was to propel himaelf over the top of the wheel, catch his claws in the wire mesh, and chew a hole through the top, and escape.
My former boss had a parking lot clean-up and lawn maintenance business. He would send his two collies out around the parking lots collecting trash, and they’d bring it back to his truck. They loved it. It was amazing to see.
My youngest son, a two time cancer winner, was recovering from a particularly ugly round of methotrexate. He was home recovering and my Pomeranian, who was always at my heel,wouldnâ€™t leave his side. I was curious but not concerned and continued my morning chores. I was in the next room when Ping came in like Lassie and barked until I came to see. He returns to my sons side and began to shiver. My son was playing xbox, and seemed ok. I turned to go back to my chores and Ping let out a howl I didnâ€™t think he was capable of and as I turned my son was seizing, full grand mal seizures that I recall clearly 11 years later. I was just in time to keep him from hitting head first on the hardwood floors. We just put my little Ping down last month. He was my best friend for 17 years, and my sons hero forever. We miss you Ping.
Our cat hears the mailman delivering the mail through the letter slot in the door. He races to it, grabs each piece in his teeth, and then drags them – one by one – to the chair where I’m sitting.
If a piece of mail is too heavy for him to move, he just sits at my feet, MEOWING, looking back and forth between the letter slot and me.
I watched a chicken teach another chicken how to get out of the coop.
My parents have chickens and my dad built their coop himself. For the first six months or so they found new ways to escape into the yard until my dad sealed up all the escape routes.
Tipsy, the boss chicken, was hanging out in the corner of the coop, and once she saw that two of the three other chickens were in the house, she rustled her feathers to get the third chicken, Digsy, to look at her. Then she hopped up onto a branch and wiggled through s gap in the wire.
Then, she got back INTO the coop and looked at Digsy with that little side eye thing chickens do until Digsy tried it herself, then followed her out into the yard. I let them have that one, and until dad patched the hole a week later I only saw Tipsy and Digsy out in the yard, not the other two.
We’ve got two dogs. One of the dogs has frequent seizures, the medicine only helps so much.
The other dog can sense them before they’ll happen. She’ll warn us like 10-30 sec before we’ll even notice. I know there are dogs trained to do this with humans but the other dog isn’t trained whatsoever.
I used to have this 5-6 foot iguana and let it roam the house because it was badass.
It would chill in the bay window and catch sunlight all day. One day he climbed the back door and clawed his way out of the screen.
I found him perched ontop of our garage, he changed his skin to almost pure black and was flared up as big as he could get trying to gather all the sun he could.
I guess he saw that garage everytime he was basking in the sun and decided one day he wanted to be on top of it.
I had a very smart and wonderful golden retriever, Emma.
She would sometimes try trading one of her gross rawhide chews for something we were holding if she wanted it–she once dropped her toy in my dad’s lap, nudged it towards him, and started “speaking” (not like a bark, more like dog complaining) while nodding at the apple he held.
She would also distract our book smart but not street smart other golden if she wanted the toy the other dog had. She’d take a random toy, go up to one of us and make a big deal, jumping and barking and playing with us with the toy. Then when book smart dog dropped her toy and ran to see what all the fuss was about, Emma would immediately leave us and grab book smart’s toy and run off with it.
One time she found a hurt dove and brought it to us in her mouth, holding it so gently.
When I was going through a really bad spell with depression my dog used to come in to bedroom and check I was okay. He would lay his head down on the bed just standing watching me. He could also open every door in the house save for the front door, and one night he was out a walk with my dad off the lead in a field when my dad lost sight of him. He somehow made his was to my grandparents house. We think someone may have tried to steal him as he had managed to wriggle out of his collar.
My roommate’s dog. We were taking care of another dog for a few days and he was staying at our house. They got along well enough, but visitor dog kept trying to play and resident dog never wanted to. One evening, resident dog walks in to the living room to find visitor dog is in her favorite spot on the couch. She immediately barks, drops into a play bow, and starts jumping around to play with him. Visitor dog gets super excited that she finally wants to play and abandons the couch. Resident dog drops the playacting and reclaims her rightful throne.
My cat knows that old grocery bags are what I scoop his crap into, so when I slip up and forget to clean his litter box he drags one in there to let me know.
When my son was a baby, he was teething really bad. Constantly running a fever and cranky. we gave him lots of the tylenol suspension drops. One morning I had the baby wedged in the recliner while I was looking for something. Of course he was crying. Our dog, looked at the baby, ran upstairs, came back down a few seconds later with the tylenol, dropped it in the recliner where it rolled to the baby. Then the dog turned to me and barked until I picked it up.
I put a pot of water on the stove and while waiting for it to boil I went and got involved in something else and forgot about it.
After a while my siamese kitten came in and started meowing at me, in a very insistent way. I figured she just wanted attention so I gave her a few pets and just kept doing my thing.
She kept meowing and started poking her claws into my ankles, not drawing blood but definitely enough to get my attention. She ran to the door and looked back meowing, so I followed her. She led me to the kitchen where the pot was starting to smoke because all of the water had boiled off.
You know she got her favorite wet food and so many snuggles.
My bunnies have recently learnt the ” fake illness” trick. But they do it for treats. Essentially bunnies should eat constantly and If they stop eating it’s a really bad sign. Death can follow shortly. . So whenever they don’t immediately start on their breakfast i get concerned and usually spend some time watching them constantly from a distance . If after an hour or two I haven’t seen them eat I try to ply them with treats. They turn their nose up till in desperation I plonk a few handfuls of treats in their bowls. I retreat to see what happens, both of them attack the bowl with gusto. Twice this month already they’ve pulled this stunt. Of course after they’ve eaten the treats they then return to normal food as if nothing happened.
Never put bunnies on a diet. It brings out their devious side.
We had a dog called Suki, probably the smartest dog we’ve ever had. I had a kitten at the time, Sam, who was trying to cli