An article on The Laughing Squid shows a German shepherd seemingly following written commands.

An impressively intelligent German shepherd named Rambo, who’s learning how to read with the help of his human Lily, deftly demonstrated his comprehension by correctly following written commands like “sit” and “bow” on signs held up for him to see.

The article is mainly just a wrapper around a video on YouTube showing the same. Rambo's owner holds up a card with a written command such as "bow" or "sit", which Rambo then obeys.

Is Rambo following these written commands, without any additional clues?

Has this been tested independently? Or is he just the latest Kluger Hans?

The claim in both the article and (the title of) the video is that the dog is learning how to read.

I would be satisfied with evidence that the dog is able to recognise (the words on) the cards in any way. For instance a blind test (which could even be conducted by the owner, as long as she doesn't know which card she's holding up) with one or more added control words (commands the dog hasn't learned to recognise, so he should do nothing).

  • 4
    Note that even if true this doesn't prove he can read, any more than responding to a spoken "sit" means he understands English. – Loren Pechtel Mar 3 '18 at 3:36
  • How does one know if the video hasn't been selectively edited? – Graham Chiu Mar 6 '18 at 18:46

You must log in to answer this question.

Browse other questions tagged .