Rats or Roaches or…?
July 10, 2020 at 4:48 pm #32205
I’d be careful to assume that cat’s selfish “fuck you I’ll do what I want” attitude as some evidence of higher intelligence. Sure, they seem to get a much better bargain in the human animal relationship, that is getting a shelter food and attention (whenever the cat feels like it) but that probably has more to do with a much different co-evolution between humans and cats then per humans with dogs, cats being a convenient pest control and maybe companion vs. dogs extreme malleability as protector, Sheppard, hunter, laborer and undeniable companion. Their loyalty comes from their own wolf-like pack mentality and a close evolution with man kind. I would say that our ability to currently train dogs to be so many different kinds of assistance animals, requiring extreme self control, human emotional sensitivity and extensive training certainly says a lot about a dogs ability to adapt. I see a lot fewer cat assistance animals. Is that because cat’s couldn’t be bothered to do so or lack the social and intellectual skills to be properly trained? In my own personal experience, I didn’t find owning a cat a particularly rewarding experience. It was a very lopsided relationship and the benefits of having her around were outweighed by the responsibilities. When you needed her for companionship she was nowhere to be found or loathed being touched and when it wanted companionship it wouldn’t relent demanding it even if you were busy or it seriously inconvenienced you. When we got a dog the house was transformed. The dog was far more emotionally sensitive to us and was very easily trained. The cat was really nasty to the dog and tended to disappear for longer stretches of time than before (she would already go away for two or three days, leaving us worried, one time ending up with a broken leg from being hit by a car). I found the cat the least adaptive pet and if it were up to me I would have replaced it with two dogs.
Yeah, having a cat is a lo like living with a human roommate whose wants and needs are as important as your own. Owning a dog is a lot like owning a slave ready at almost all times to do your bidding.July 10, 2020 at 5:02 pm #32207
We don’t have body parts or faculties because we’ll need them at some future time.
We have faculties and body parts because genetic mutations were adaptive and therefore selected for. We also inherit them from ancestors.July 10, 2020 at 8:59 pm #32208
We don’t have body parts or faculties because we’ll need them at some future time.
Correct but we do have several vestigial body parts that we no longer need. List here.
We are still evolving.July 10, 2020 at 9:13 pm #32209
Well it’s only a slave if you treat it like a slave. I would say it is despsrate to please and be helpful.July 10, 2020 at 9:33 pm #32210
Well it’s only a slave if you treat it like a slave. I would say it is despsrate to please and be helpful.
Dogs have little choice in the matter. Unless they are the alpha, they are genetically predisposed to either be the leader or serve the leader. In a household, they generally are in the service of a human.July 11, 2020 at 2:54 am #32211
If we count vocalizations as a form of language, cats beat dogs hands down, with about 10 separate vocalizations to every one a dog can make. The experts tell us that dogs have 10 or 11 distinct vocalizations to the cat’s 90 to 100. Cats also express themselves with their tails far more than dogs and there’s no doubt other cats can “read” much about a fellow cat by what the tail is doing. Dogs? The can wag it, hold it still, or tuck it between their legs. That’s about it. Dogs have an advantage over cats in that their faces mimick human expressions far more than a cats, but if you’re looking at your cat’s face to decode its thoughts and feelings, you’re looking at the wrong end of the animal.
Cats are notoriously—no, legendarily—difficult test subjects. Doing others’ bidding has never paid off for them in their evolution from wild to semi-domesticated critters. Still, like dogs, many a cat has figured out what pointing means and some will turn to their owner for help solving a problem. My cat does both. Maybe not as snappily as a pet dog would, but she will follow a gesture in a general way (it’s over there, not where you are looking) and if I toss a treat somewhere she can’t reach it, she will look over her shoulder at me or even start walking toward me while looking at me, which usually gets me off my duff to help her. So, she does what dogs do but in a cat-like not dog-like way.
Dogs take a lot of cues from their owner, which is why a pitbull will live peaceably with a cat and even become buddies in the household yet would tear a different cat apart, if he could, out on the street. I’ll give that one to the dogs, but my cat seems to have taken cues from me when it comes to whether she perceives loud noises as a threat. Unless the sound is very very loud or nearby, I can usually calm her down by calmly telling her it’s okay, nothing to worry about.
The point is, if your measure of animal intelligence is already based on dogs, cats will come out second best, but that’s not a fair comparison.
Cat Sense is a wonderful read by the British anthrozoologist John Bradshaw. I highly recommend it. You’ll come out of it with a new appreciation for our feline friends. And no, he’s not a cat fanatic. He’s also written Dog Sense.July 11, 2020 at 5:18 am #32214
I just mean that hands make it easier to make and manipulate technology.
Yes, in combination with the ability to watch each other (e.g.each other’s hands and faces) and learn.July 11, 2020 at 1:36 pm #32217
Yes of course most dogs are terribly enslaved. I remember with my dogs I used to hook them up to the plow and make them rip open the soil for most of the morning. And then in the afternoon I would force them to sew Prada purses. If they didn’t make at least 10 an hour I would appropriately flog them. Then in the afternoon I’d torture them by taking them for a walk and playing fetch, an activity that truly dehumanised them (or de-canined them?). In the evening, while they were begging for sleep I would feed them the kind of expensive food they loved whenever they were hungry because you have to keep their bellies full so they can toil all day long.July 11, 2020 at 1:39 pm #32218
Notwithstanding your brave confession, Davis, I shall report you to the department of comparative slavery.July 11, 2020 at 1:55 pm #32219
That department is only open for a few hours each day and only if they feel like it.July 11, 2020 at 3:22 pm #32220
That department is manned by cats who only work when they can be bothered to and only if they are fed fancy-feast whenever they meow. If they aren’t impressed by your petition they’ll swat at your face. If they are annoyed by you they will hiss hysterically until you fuck-offJuly 11, 2020 at 5:27 pm #32221
Having had cats and dogs I knew nothing about about rabbits but my partner did. She brought home a Holland Lop 6 years ago and he is a such joy to interact with. Perhaps more logical than my cats and dogs were. He figured out how to operate a switch that turns on a fan when it gets warm outside and walks around on two legs like a penguin when he wants a treat. He has been a joy.July 11, 2020 at 5:37 pm #32222
There is a cat living in my house for the last number of years. It has the same attitude as Fat Freddy’s Cat from the 1970’s (or thinly challenged human feline companion today). We leave each other alone. It is jet black and it appears that many Christians still have phobias about that. I call it “You’re one of them”. It confused the neighbors for a while……late at night they would hear me shouting at the back door……”Come in if you’re one of them”. It even has its own Harry Rollins song.July 11, 2020 at 6:22 pm #32223
Robert that is a rabbit revelation…had no clue.July 11, 2020 at 8:27 pm #32224
Robert that is a rabbit revelation…had no clue.
Animals are amazing. My cousin nursed an injured crow and that thing was stuck to his shoulder just chatting to everyone in context with this huge vocabulary of English words. And he was good at other suburban sounds like bus horns and 737s. I was the same way with a 2 foot long garter snake, my companion for years. Even took him to school a few times.
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