“Well, I know dogs can do a lot of strange things,” Dale Wolcott, President of TURBINE TRAINING in Manhattan, Kansas, shared, “but so far Lassie hasn’t contacted us for flying lessons.”
He is right about the capabilities of dogs. In fact, in 2012 researchers in Auckland, New Zealand, taught three dogs to drive a mini-van after training them to start the vehicle, put it in gear, drive about seventy-five yards and then stop.
“Boy,” TURBINE TRAINING Vice President Jason Wolcott offered, “we are a top-flight facility when it comes to pilot training, but I’m not sure we would be able to teach Rover how to take over the controls.”
And, probably no one else will be able to, either. Professor Emeritus of Canine Psychology Stanley Coren, of the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, pointed out that the most “intelligently elite” of the dog world (top 20%) will have the intelligence of a human three year-old, and, as Coren says, “as we wouldn’t expect a child of that age to be able to fly a plane, I have to doubt that we would be able to teach a dog to do so, either.”
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(To learn more about this topic, research “BBC Flying Dogs TV Show.”)