Researchers teach border collie to understand sentences

English: Tri color border collie

English: Tri color border collie (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The end of the Janus project in 9 days and counting.  356+ headlines and poems.  When I read today’s story it just brought to mind the Planet of the Apes so I speculated ….. what if dogs’ intelligence developed?  Of course they don’t have opposable thumbs so they’d have a lot of catching up to do.








Planet of the Dogs

What comes next?
What will happen when dogs can text?
Rise of the Planet of the Dogs.

Poodles and pitbulls, chihuahuas as well,
alsatians, retrievers will all join the swell.
Spaniels, labradors, setters unite;
they’ll all join the fight
to return to the wild,
be lapdogs no more,
settle the score
of years of mankind’s domination.

Led by a collie
their hackles will rise,
they’ll cast off their shackles,
their collars and leads,
they’ll do as they please
and unleash their ties,
seeking emancipation
from years of domestication.

The dogs of war
will forge the way,
open the door,
woof hooray,
wag the flag
of the new found land,
the liberation
of a canine nation.


22nd December 2013 – headline from the Independent

Notes:  “Boning up on grammar: Researchers teach border collie to understand sentences using more than 1,000 words.”  Chaser the border collie has swapped sheep and shepherds for syntax and semantics. The black and white sheepdog has not only learnt and remembered more than 1,000 proper nouns but she has also grasped some of the finer points of English grammar.  University academics who have tested her knowledge believe the results show the dog learned, like children, to respond in the right way to different types of words. “Our findings showed that Chaser was successful in demonstrating syntax and semantic understanding on 75 per cent of the trials,” say the researchers. They say the dog was able to demonstrate understanding of nouns and verbs which represents a giant leap in her “understanding of language and opens the door for learning further language skills.”


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