Odd: TV and Dogs

I’ve had pet dogs, on and off, since junior high school and one thing that I thought I was seeing more of these days than before was dogs watching TV.

I can remember as a kid trying to get the dog to notice a cat or dog on the screen with zero success. Today, without saying a thing, Yuki will become mesmerized by the TV. Of course he’s still a dog and his attention will eventually wander elsewhere, but for a dog to sit himself down in front of the TV and “watch” it for 5, 10 even 15 minutes is amazing.

This is what Yuki does.

Yuki sits and watches Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer on TV

Yuki was utterly captivated when we watched Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer last Dec. He watched it for a good 15 minutes before falling asleep.

In reading some articles about dogs and TV I found it interesting that possibly some of the reason dogs are found to notice TV more often these days is that, with HDTV, the refresh rates are catching up with the way their eyes work.

To them, and old tube tv would look like a series of pictures interrupted by a black frame, but now with HTDV’s having refresh rates like 240Hz, the TV picture is starting to catch up with their visual acuity, and it looks like a fluid moving picture.

The one “TV” that does hold Yuki’s attention, however, is the real world. TV or not, Yuki is just a very “visual” dog. His sense of smell has never been the greatest when it comes to finding something by scent, but he can spend HOURS watching, watching and watching life outside.

Yuki rests his head on the window sill and sleeps after watching the outdoors for hours

Yuki will watch out “his window” for hours. We’ve come to call it “Yuki’s TV”. Here, he’s caught sound asleep on the window ledge.

Pecos, in comparison, never notices the TV and when he’s relaxing outdoors or borrowing Yuki “TV”, he’ll use that big schnoz of his to sniff and sniff and sniff.

Pecos sleeps on the window ledge after sniffing the evening air.

Pecos, unlike Yuki relies more on his sense of smell and hearing than watching the world. With that nose and those ears, who could blame him?

Guess the next question is what makes a dog choose to lean more on one sense over another?