I’ve often wondered if dogs can think about the future.
Some stories of dogs “predicting” earthquakes or storms seem to suggest they can even “see” the future. But apparently, these are just cases of super-sensitivity to ultrasound or smell according to this article.
Dogs of course show excitement when reuniting with owners, and who can forget the loyalty of Hachiko, who waited for his owner for years at Shibuya station. But although these suggest that dogs can remember and associate, their perception of time is limited according to studies. Only humans have the ability to use episodic memory, which allows us to “travel through time, recalling past events and looking forward to future ones.”
I guess that ability is what allows us, humans (I’m assuming no dog is reading this post!), to plan the future. But it’s a blessing and a curse, because that probably is also what makes us worry about the future.
Worrying causes stress, specially worrying about the future.
“Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, it only saps today of its joy.”
― Leo Buscaglia
But dogs have it all figured out – they rely on humans to solve almost any of their problems.
Don’t you just want to be a dog sometimes?
(Note: This is not a scientific or scholarly article, simply a string of thoughts brought about by the Future challenge.)