Mel and I watched a show last night at the suggestion of a friend of ours, and we watched it wirelessly from Netflix instant play. The show was called Dogs Decoded. It showed how dogs really make an effort to connect with us by reading our expressions. I thought I was going to have to tie Mel down to keep him watching, but he settled down after a few minutes and got interested in it, and I was able to release him and sit more comfortably.
We watched how wolves were bred to connect better and better with mankind until they "got" us, and were able to read our intentions and emotions in our faces. This does show remarkable intelligence. I had a dog named Laddy who would sit in front of me, stare into my eyes sadly when I was crying, and let me hug him.
However, as I mentioned recently, though my cats don't constantly make eye contact with me to see how I'm feeling or whether I'm going to feed them or let them outside, they read body language. When I walk toward the cabinet, they congregate for food. When I walk to the door, they race each other to get outside if it's nice. When I'm in pain, they will congregate on my lap and chest and purr until I'm feeling better. God made all kinds of creatures for all kinds of reasons.
Horses are also very intelligent. I had a horse when I was a child. His name was...wait for it...Laddy. Yes, I know, I lacked imagination back then, but I named everything, even our trees, so I was running out of names. Anyway, this horse, Laddy, knew what I wanted before I did. When I needed to get the cattle in, that horse could cut cattle without my touching the reins. One day when I was riding bareback with a friend I made the mistake of guiding Laddy up an incline. My friend slid off the back of the horse and dragged me with her. My leg fell directly beneath Laddy's hoof as it was coming down. But he didn't follow through with the step. When he realized my leg was beneath his hoof, he stumbled to keep from stepping down on it. He was one smart horse and I loved him dearly.
Of course, after the show about dogs last night, Mel and I got to talking about why dogs looked at one particular side of the human face in order to read them. This led to the discussion about the fact that someone who is lying will always look to the left. And so we started trying to lie to each other and see if the trick worked. It doesn't. Mel thinks it does, but he has a good imagination, plus he knows me too well. He thought he caught me glancing to the left a time or two, but then I learned to just look into his left eye when I was lying, and I fooled him.