~Unlocking the Genius of the Dog Who Knows a Thousand Words

By John W. Pilley

John Pilley had taught animal behavior for many years, always incorporating his dogs into his curriculum. When he retired he needed that same challenge, and indeed he found it in Chaser.

Intrigued by Chaser’s intelligence, as well as her eagerness, Pilley set out to see how much Chaser could learn. He spent hours every day designing ways to teach Chaser. He also created experiments to test her. Having logged results, Pilley goes into great detail explaining his methods.

By the age of three, Chaser had actually learned 1022 words, reacting and responding correctly to each word. In addition to this she can reason using the process of elimination, by sorting through items to find the unfamiliar one.

While I am sure not every dog can, or is meant to, rise to this level, I keep in mind that not every human being is “a genius”.  However, this book does illustrate the possibilities of animal intelligence, particularly the dog. Border Collies are believed by many authorities to have the highest intelligence of all dogs, and therefore need constant challenges. 

Dog lovers will enjoy the interaction and connection between Pilley & Chaser. This book also offers understanding of the way dogs think and their motivation. In understanding your dog you can change or enhance their behaviours; this is what proper training is all about. Proper training makes for a good foundation and a solid bond between a dog and his or her family. 

24 thoughts on “Chaser

  1. I am not a bit surprised to hear that dogs are capable of learning far more than we typically give them credit for. They are so eager for new challenges and love to please us. I'm certain this would be a fun and interesting read!


  2. I would love to have a smart dog like that. I've seen it on Youtube video and was so impressed. This is a wonderful book for dog owners to understand how dogs learn.
    Thanks for the review.


  3. My Jack when I was a teenager probably had average intelligence for a Woofie as he would get off the couch and be on the floor when I opened the door. I peeked thru the window and them made a noise. He got down instantly.


  4. This sounds like a very interesting read. I know my toy poodle understands things that sometimes surprises me. He knows what B.A.T.H. means, and if I tell him to go look out the window he jumps up in the chair and looks out the window. I really don't know how he learned that. But the neighbor hood children got a kick out of it. Anywho, I may have to get this book and read it.


  5. Border Collies are absolutely brilliant!! I grew up around them since my aunt and uncle had a sheep farm, and we often had big family parties at their huge farm house. Not just at herding the sheep — but when us little kids were playing outside, the dogs were herd us!! Their farm was on a major highway, and if we started down the lane towards the road, the dogs would herd us back to the lawn where we were supposed to stay. Or out of the woods. They even played hide and seek with us – seriously, they would actually hide. or come find us. It was hilarious. I absolutely believe dogs are capable of much more than people think.


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