Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Dog Protects Pony?

I think that Peaches the Pony saw me coming but Harry the Dog didn't --- and he's suspicous of something unusual having entered his territory. At a year-old, he's still not too sure of himself; the livestock guardians we had with sheep didn't really come into there own as guard dogs until they were about two-years old.


Bitzi said...

You did it have me completely baffled. Your own dog doesn't recognize you?! I thought Dog was man's best friend?!!

LTD said...

Dog IS man's best friend but sometimes man plays trick on dog.

When I approached, the dog was sleeping, but the pony's head was up. I presume pony's are like cows and sheep and have 'near' 360 degrees vision. She would have seen me walk out of the house and over to the fenceline.

One:Harry the Dog on the other hand just woke from sleep --- so we can give him a little slack for that.

Two: A dog's eyesight is not quite like ours. Most, maybe all, don't discern stationary objects very well. So if you stand very still they may not even see you. However, they pick up on movement very quickly. It may be partly poor eyesight, but I think it's more in how their brain interprets the world. For instance, they have no apparent ability to discern anything from a picture, and the movement in a (2 dimensional) video holds their attention for a very short time.

Three: They depend heavily on smell and in this situation the wind was not in his favor. And sound, and I was being very still and quiet.

Four: Dogs, and I suppose most animals, treat anything new with an abundance of suspician. I suppose it's a survival thing. I think we humans have this same quality but it is working more in the background and perhaps we tend to suppress it --- ever get that uneasy feeling? Dogs wear it on their sleeve.

Five: Harry's had this trick played on him before, and I think that it becomes evident in the video that as he approaches this becomes more of a game than real alarm. Also keep in mind that I am using a telephoto lens so he is not as close as it may appear.