Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Animal Intelligence?

Having a deaf cat (Moonie) and a scaredy cat (Hugo) in the same household can be illuminating. This morning I think I learned something. Maybe not, but the occurrence gave me something to think about.

Hugo is, and always has been, alarmed by everything; an awkward movement, a step in his general direction, an unexpected noise. Just about anything will make him run for the stairs. Moonie, on the other hand, is not.

This morning, in the kitchen, I cracked an egg on the counter. Hugo panicked and shot from the room. Moonie, in the same room obliviously enjoying her surroundings, saw her brother flee, stood up in alarm, and headed for the door at a creaky clip. But then she did something smart, she stopped and checked to see if Ray was still sleeping in his chair. He was.
Moonie, only being afraid of Ray because he trips over her every-now-and-again (blind dog+deaf cat = occasional collision), looked over her shoulder to make sure that there were no other bogeymen around, then went back into the kitchen to her little dish of milk.

You are in my power. heh, heh, heh
I have to admit I was a bit surprised at Moonie's show of intelligence. Gregg doesn't like me saying it, he thinks it's mean, but I only recently concluded that Moonie is not the brightest bulb on the tree* or the sharpest tool in the shed. I always thought she looked like she was thinking deep thoughts until I realized there's little in her brainbox but moths.
So this show of smarts was an eye opener for me. Moonie is not as dumb as she makes out, maybe, just maybe, the joke is on me. Maybe she's the genius in the house and we're all just pawns in her game, feeding her whenever she howls, moving a litterbox into her bedroom so she doesn't have to walk down the stairs, and buying her a heated bed so that her old bones are comfortable.
I think I'll test her out on one of those genius dog toys. See what she can do with it.

*for some really hilarious descriptions of intelligence (or lack thereof) check out this page . I can't wait to use "Has a mind like a steel trap: rusty and illegal in 37 states". 


  1. I'm thinking that you're on to something with thinking that Moonie is a whole lot smarter than she lets on. All part of her plan! (and it appears to be working quite well)

  2. Moon-Pie is a quiet, sneaky master planner. See how well she has you trained?! and you didn't even know she was quietly training you ! Impressive. I like how she used Ray as her hearing ear dog, and that she trusts him enough to follow his reactions.