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that I can remember when dogs didn’t watch TV.

 
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  1. D. K. says:

    OT:

    • Replies: @Twinkie
  2. Kylie says:

    Dogs always watched TV. They probably watch more TV now because flat screen TVs have bigger, better pictures.

  3. Rob McX says:

    Funny how the left goes hysterical about KH crossing state lines, but not a word about this alien illegally crossing the US border.

  4. Is it because dogs’ eyes couldn’t process CRT images, but now they can see LCD images just fine?

  5. Franz says:

    It never works for cats. Too stupid, or they don’t react to anything they can’t smell?

  6. @The Last Real Calvinist

    Yes it is due to the fundamental change to screen technology. Cats too. Back in the day, while we saw normal moving images on tv, cats and dogs just saw indistinguishable white noise.

    • Thanks: BB753
  7. @The Last Real Calvinist

    It’s the higher frame-rate I think.

    • Replies: @res
    , @Right_On
  8. Shorter I’m so old: Democrats and MSNBC

  9. Anonymous[950] • Disclaimer says:

    The refresh rate increase of flatscreen tv’s allow our mongrel friends to see the images.

    Prior to flatscreens, it appeared as a chaotic strobe effect to them.

    Before, they would just sleep on the couch while you watched tv.

    Now there’s no stopping these binge-watching bitches:

    https://youtu.be/2FNHkblBEa0

    Btw, now you can subscribe to dog tv channels, with content specifically created for dog viewers:

    • Replies: @Mr. Anon
  10. Twinkie says:
    @D. K.

    the jury remained “hopelessly deadlocked” 11-to-1

    What is the race of that one juror?

    • Replies: @Johann Ricke
  11. In my day, the dogs, just like the kids, were sent outside for free-range play. We all stayed outside until literally being called with a loud yell to come in for dinner.

    • Agree: Achmed E. Newman
    • Replies: @Twinkie
    , @JohnnyWalker123
  12. Twinkie says:
    @The Last Real Calvinist

    I’ve had dogs for decades, and I have had dogs that ignore TVs completely (most of them), those that only respond when there is barking noise from them (a handful), and those that intently watch the action on them constantly (a few).

    I currently have one dog in the pack that is obsessed with TV. As soon as I grab a drink or some snack, he knows that I am heading down to the basement to the TV room and starts wagging his tail wildly. And once I start heading to the door to the staircase, he runs down there and stands right in front of the TV. Then he’ll watch that TV as long as I do. And if there is an animal on the TV, he goes absolutely bonkers and I have to tell him “Off – back to your spot” because he WILL jump on the TV. He then goes back to his spot, shakes, looks at the animal on the TV, looks at me (he wants the command to go after the creature), looks at the TV, looks me, and shakes until the animal disappears.

    This is the same dog that has to sleep in the bedroom with me. If he is left outside the room, he will open the door and let himself in. If the door is locked, he will cry all night in front of the door. My wife gets a bit peeved and says, “You are so tough on all the other dogs – why does he get a special treatment?”

    • Thanks: Johann Ricke
    • Replies: @kaganovitch
  13. Haha, #E.T. Too?! You know what the video editor “forgot” to do? Show a reaction video (if this is what a reaction video is) of a German Shepherd watching World-Star Hip-Hop on the modern TV screen …

    … and, you’re never too old to learn something, Steve. I would have told you until a couple of years ago that there are no cats that will eat pasta, peanuts, broccoli, bell peppers, and red twizzlers. Yes, he’s doing fine.

    Finally, you must be old, indeed, to not know that what really attracts people to one’s website are cat videos, not dog videos. That’s been known since the roll-out of broadband, at the workplace, in 1998.

  14. @Franz

    On behalf of the cats, this aggression will not stand, man. To the contrary, cats are smart enough to know that, if something is not 3 dimensional, it’s not freaking real.

    (Also, my boy tells me that dogs have a better sense of smell and cats better hearing. That rings true, from my observation.)

  15. @Achmed E. Newman

    Cats have anger and dogs have shame. That’s the major difference I’ve noticed between the 2.

    • Replies: @Buzz Mohawk
  16. Clyde says:

    Dogs were never that interested in black and white TV on those small TV sets. It was when color came along that they started watching. Will cats react to a color display of goldfish swimming around? I would think yes. But only if it is 1080p.

  17. @Kylie

    You are wrong, but on the bright side, you are probably young! In the 1970s and before, there was no possible way to get a dog to pay any attention to a tv screen. It was just meaningless white noise to its eye-brain.

  18. Ralph L says:
    @Franz

    The cats I had in the 90’s ignored the television until something with 4 legs appeared, then they were transfixed. I couldn’t figure out how they knew there was an animal when they weren’t watching.

    • Replies: @Franz
  19. Mr. Anon says:
    @Anonymous

    Btw, now you can subscribe to dog tv channels, with content specifically created for dog viewers:

    Much more wholesome than anything offered by Netflix.

    • Agree: Achmed E. Newman
  20. We did have one pointer mix who liked the weekly Gilbert & Sullivan and House of Hair radio shows.

    I’ve never had a dog pay much attention to TV but they do notice immediately when you click it off — as walkie time may be in the offing. We don’t use the TV anymore but our internet-era dogs all jump up at once when I close my laptop.

  21. @Kylie

    The dog’s natural instinct to comfort the distressed. Pitbulls are surprisingly good for that when they aren’t pit fighting.

    If it comprehends death though…

  22. @Achmed E. Newman

    Hmm, I actually recall a couple of our cats reacting before. Most don’t, though.

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
  23. res says:
    @Emblematic

    That seems to be it. This paper gives critical flicker fusion rates for a variety of species.
    Metabolic rate and body size are linked with perception of temporal information
    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0003347213003060

    I found this interesting.

    The ability to integrate information over fine timescales, that is, at high temporal resolution, is thus fundamental to many aspects of an organism’s ecology and behaviour. Furthermore, temporal resolution is also directly linked to the perception of the passage of time itself for humans, in particular when tracking fast moving stimuli (Hagura et al. 2012). From an evolutionary perspective, a trade-off exists between the demand for information at high temporal resolution and the costs of its acquisition given the energetic demands associated with increased rates of neural processing in the visual system (Laughlin 2001). This trade-off is likely to be shaped by various ecological (e.g. mode of predation) and environmental factors (e.g. light levels) as well as intrinsic factors (e.g. morphology) that will ultimately shape an organism’s optimal temporal resolution for sensory perception. For example, predators of slow-moving prey may require less temporal resolution than predators that engage in active pursuit of fast-moving prey, such as raptors catching prey during flight.

    • Thanks: Twinkie
  24. @Twinkie

    the jury remained “hopelessly deadlocked” 11-to-1

    What is the race of that one juror?

    In my reflexive cynicism, I read that as dreadlocked. I’m a bad, bad person.

  25. SafeNow says:

    I had a Sheltie whose herding instincts drove him to go to the hallway in back of the tv, to prevent the animals in the tv from escaping to the hallway. But after a while he learned that they were not escaping to the hallway, so he just remained in the den and barked at the TV. But he was very smart, so maybe he never really thought they were in the hallway, it was just a game to him and he got tired of the hallway game. Hug your dog. Right now.

  26. Alex-CA says:

    I have one dog who is obsessed with television and will watch for hours, waiting for any 4-legged animal to appear so he can bark at it. Even barks at cartoon animals. It seems like he’s even learned the commercials that have animals on and perks up when they begin, before the animal appears.

    It got so I couldn’t even watch a Western movie late at night in the living room after the others in the house went to sleep, because he’d bark any time he saw a horse. When my wife and I sit in bed in the evenings, he jumps up and takes his spot, the one closest to the bedroom TV, waiting for us to turn it on.

    The other dog — and the first dog we had — couldn’t care less about animals on TV. I don’t know what’s different about this one. All Shih Tzus. The TV watcher is male, the other ones female.

  27. @Achmed E. Newman

    On behalf of the cats, this aggression will not stand, man. To the contrary, cats are smart enough to know that, if something is not 3 dimensional, it’s not freaking real.

    Half-Asleep Chris is the master of the Thinking Man’s cat video. From his feline IQ test; he finds a smaller screen works better:

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
  28. Thirdtwin says:

    Must have been the raster.

  29. Thank you, Steve, for the funny dog stuff.

    I once did this experiment with my dog:

    I took a big mirror off the wall and leaned it against a chair in the living room. Then I brought in my dog to look at it. At first, he saw himself in the mirror and looked. He looked and tried to sniff that other dog.

    Then he walked around to the other side of the mirror.

    When he discovered that there was no other dog there, he ignored the whole arrangement from then on.

    When I tried the same thing later, he ignored the whole thing. He could not have cared less. I don’t know what he thought about it, but it was not worth his time at that point.

  30. @Kylie

    My dogs think TV is a cultural wasteland and they aren’t interested. But they still always jump up and run to the door whenever a doorbell rings on a show.

    • LOL: Achmed E. Newman
  31. @Boomthorkell

    This thread just reminded me that I heard something bang on the window last week when I was inside. I’d forgotten about it, but then that afternoon that poor bird was laying dead on the porch swing. It must have been the reflection in a certain light, but what the hell, man?

    OTOH, this squirrel fell out of a tree from at least 25 ft up onto the road (about 10 ft. behind some woman jogger). About 30 seconds later, it woke from the dead, shook itself off, and went on its merry way. There’s no justice in this world.

  32. @Reg Cæsar

    I liked this one when I was a kid. As I recall, he saved a VW bug, abandoned after a snowstorm.

  33. @Achmed E. Newman

    Funny thing about birds and windows.
    I used to work in construction as an electrician. Birds fly in and out of the half finished buildings all the time. Almost without fail, after the windows start going in, a bird will fly full speed and slam into one. Also, almost without fail, the bird will lay on the ground for some minutes, and eventually get up and fly away.
    Tough little creatures.

    And as to your comment with the high IQ cat book, how does one save an abandoned VW Bug?

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
  34. Twinkie says:
    @The Alarmist

    In my day, the dogs, just like the kids, were sent outside for free-range play. We all stayed outside until literally being called with a loud yell to come in for dinner.

    Back in those days, there were a lot more dog bitings of children (and other dogs), and kids learned to avoid certain houses/streets with mean dogs.

    • Disagree: The Alarmist
    • Replies: @JohnnyWalker123
  35. Right_On says:
    @Emblematic

    Isn’t it the introduction of color? The first-generation TVs – black-and-white, cathode-ray tubes – were ignored by dogs.
    In the UK, the woke have introduced rainbow-colored pedestrian crossings to signal their support for the LGBT “community”. Unfortunately, police horses and guide dogs for the blind freak out at the sight of the vivid colors and refuse to cross them!

    • Replies: @JohnnyWalker123
  36. Charlotte says:
    @Franz

    Depends on the cat. I have one that’s interested in critters running on the screen. Of course, she doesn’t understand scale, so horses entertain her as well as smaller animals.

    • Replies: @Franz
  37. @Achmed E. Newman

    Hmm, the latter makes sense actually. I figure the falling velocity of a squirrel at 25 ft. must be pretty low, compared to the force impact of a bird on a window.

  38. @Twinkie

    I know I did.

    There was this Black lab that used to chase me whenever I walked to my best friend’s house.

    • Replies: @Twinkie
  39. @The Alarmist

    Up through the mid/late 90s, this was pretty standard in most suburban neighborhoods. By the early/mid 200s, it had become quite rare.

    At this point, I NEVER see kids playing with their friends/neighbors outside anymore. Occasionally, I might see a kid playing with his parents, but even that’s rare.

    • Replies: @Almost Missouri
  40. @Right_On

    Smart horses.

    We’d be better off if we let them run the country.

  41. @Twinkie

    My wife gets a bit peeved and says, “You are so tough on all the other dogs – why does he get a special treatment?”

    Nu, why indeed?

    • Replies: @Twinkie
  42. Franz says:
    @Achmed E. Newman

    On behalf of the cats, this aggression will not stand, man.

    Chill, Dude.

    She has a Maine Coon that looks a lot like the black cat in the Cat Genius video. From what I can tell, Goober is not a genius. He keeps wanting to eat plastic bags, which amazes me.

    Cats are more entertaining to watch than dogs, admittedly.

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
  43. Franz says:
    @Ralph L

    I’m guessing the screen size matters. We have a small set because we don’t watch much, and that might make a difference. Or the cats we have are unusually lazy.

  44. Twinkie says:
    @JohnnyWalker123

    There was this Black lab that used to chase me whenever I walked to my best friend’s house.

    That was a pretty common occurrence back in the day when dogs were allowed to roam off property and leash laws were nonexistent. There’d be occasional bitings of children and some scuffles among dogs (along with the odd poisonings of dogs by irate neighbors), but, in the end, people and dogs worked things out. Neighborhood dogs would establish territories and pecking orders and usually avoid conflict. Kids figured out which streets (“mean dogs”) to avoid.

    Can you imagine that today in this hyper-litigious environment?

    • Agree: JohnnyWalker123
  45. Franz says:
    @Charlotte

    It takes something alive to get the attention of the cats we’ve had. A hamster got loose a few years back and I though they’d have strokes. Otherwise they won’t even bother looking out the windows.

  46. Twinkie says:
    @kaganovitch

    Nu, why indeed?

    Because he is a special, special boy.

    Whenever he disappears into the woods on my property to chase some prey, my wife hollers, screams, and stomps her feet and he doesn’t come back. My wife gets all miffed and says, “He is such a bad dog. He doesn’t recall at all.”

    Then as soon as I step onto the back porch and whistle, he runs back at warp speed and sits right in front of me with a goofy smile. And I look at my wife nonchalantly and say, “He recalls just fine.” She gets very cross and stomps back into the house.

    Like I wrote earlier, he is a special, special boy. 😉

    My family and I adopted him from a dog rescue down south when he was a six month old pup. He was in a bad shape (several scars, missing a chunk of his ear, badly emaciated, coat all dirty and messed up, and full of parasites) and was about to be put down. I took one look at him and wanted him home with me. What can I say, I have a soft spot for broken dogs. Dogs rock, people suck.

    • Thanks: JohnnyWalker123
    • Replies: @kaganovitch
  47. @JMcG

    Those are the big soaring birds too, not the measly Robins and Thrushes.

  48. @Dr. Krieger

    The book could be at the library, Doctor, so you can take it out “for your nephew”, haha.

    OK, well this is from long ago – he got let outside (I think by accident). He noticed the poor Beetle covered with snow and ____ (missing from my memory) got someone to take a look and get the car before it was to be towed off so that the city could do plowing … Sorry, that’s all I recall. I don’t have it on me.

  49. @Franz

    OK, after yesterday, I will now add Cheese Doodles and pieces of avocado to the list of what certain cats eat. (He must have been eating out of garbage cans his 3rd and 4th months. We got him from the shelter at about 4 months old.

  50. @JohnnyWalker123

    I still see the kids of certain home-schooling families and alternative/free-range education types play outside. But the public school kids, not so much. Indoor screen time or programmed activities up the wazoo. Even when they go outside, they’re often still looking at their smartphones. Just seeing them walk home from school is dismaying. They look like the Virgin half of the “Virgin vs. Chad” meme but burdened with enormous bookbags, double masks, and heavy “enrichment toys” (musical instruments, art portfolios, etc.) Poor bastards. They’re getting soul-slaughtered before they ever had a chance.

    • Replies: @Twinkie
  51. Twinkie says:
    @Almost Missouri

    I still see the kids of certain home-schooling families and alternative/free-range education types play outside. But the public school kids, not so much.

    Yup, my kids (and dogs) play outside. Meanwhile my immediate neighbor’s kids never do and are obese. The oldest plays on his tablet nonstop. Once, years ago, I heard his mother yelling at him to go play outside with my kids. He came out with his tablet and played on it while following my kids around. I told him to put that back in his garage and interact with my kids – he went back inside his house and never came back out. His mother told me once that she’s okay with him not amounting to anything. It’s really a shame, because the parents are really nice people and wonderful neighbors, but they seem checked out from their kids (totally do not fit the stereotype of the extreme parents of this super zip). Over the years, they have bought him an immense amount of toys and “stuff.”

    • Replies: @Almost Missouri
  52. I’m so old I remember when you didn’t have to wear a seat belt, when gas was fifty cents a gallon, when cigarettes were thirty five cents a pack. I remember when men would give their seat on crowded public transit when the car was full.

    • Replies: @Buzz Mohawk
    , @nebulafox
  53. @Twinkie

    and are obese.

    Oh yeah, the obesity. I forgot to mention that. Epidemic among the indoor screen slaves/HFCS dependents.

    I told him to put that back in his garage and interact with my kids

    I probably would have done the same, but in retrospect, maybe he needed time to wean. Most people can’t quit cold turkey.

    • Replies: @Twinkie
    , @nebulafox
  54. @Tony massey

    I don’t know about that, but I can tell you that women are cats and men are dogs.

  55. @Enemy of Earth

    … gas was fifty cents a gallon…

    Try 32 9/10. I can still see the big sign in front of one of the hometown gas stations:

    REGULAR
    32 9/10

    The 10ths actually sort of mattered then.

    We’re getting into the old man stories now here at Steve’s Barber Shop.

    I used to ride my bike 3 miles to a country store where the Cokes and candy bars were 10 cents each. That’s when I began learning how to structure transactions to minimize taxes. Purchases of 20 cents hit a threshold at which the storekeeper had to charge a penny in tax. He explained this to me, so I bought my candy bar for a dime, walked outside, set the candy bar down by my bicycle, turned around, walked back in and bought my Coke for another dime. Tax avoided, penny saved.

    I haven’t changed much.

    • Replies: @Twinkie
    , @Enemy of Earth
  56. Twinkie says:
    @Buzz Mohawk

    We’re getting into the old man stories now here at Steve’s Barber Shop.

    I remember when a slice of pizza and a soda were \$1.25 in Manhattan. I also remember the hookers, pimps, drug dealers, and peep shows. The last time I was there, it all felt very sanitized.

  57. Twinkie says:
    @Almost Missouri

    maybe he needed time to wean. Most people can’t quit cold turkey.

    Wean or not, I thought it was in poor form.

    One year, one of my girls came back from that house and said, “They have so many toys there. Can we get some more toys?”

    I gave her a pocket knife (a Spyderco Dragonfly) and said, “Here you go. Why don’t you make some toys with that?”

    And, by golly, she did. She whittled a tree branch, turned it into a spear, and stuck one of her brothers with it. OK, lesson learned on my part.

    That one is my favorite – she’s been carrying that knife since. She even sleeps with it (and a flashlight and her puppy doll). Best ballerina of the bunch too.

    • Thanks: Johann Ricke
  58. nebulafox says:
    @Almost Missouri

    >Most people can’t quit cold turkey.

    Impossible with my job. And even without it, I do have my own coding projects that require Internet access, to say nothing of potential collaboration for (re)-learning math and physics. (Right-brained stuff like history or languages is much easier to do independently, at least if you can find people to talk to for the latter.)

    So, what I’ve done is:

    1) I’ve tried to strictly segregate out “electronic free” times in the day: in which that time is inviolate.

    2) When I have to use them, I have the purpose in mind, preferably written down on paper. If I don’t have any on me, I’ll say it out loud. I allocate a certain amount of time, and a backup task in case I finish early or need something to keep me occupied during build times: usually a book of some kind. I set an automatic sudo shutdown to ensure that it does, and because I struggled traditionally with transitioning in between tasks, I alarm myself 5 minutes before it does.

    3) Set a transition ritual. Calisthenics and drinking water are usually what I prefer.

    This is fairly obvious stuff, but you wouldn’t believe how hard it was at first. This stuff really does warp your brain if you’ve been exposed to it all your life. Doesn’t help if that’s not the only addiction or compulsion you are dealing with, or you have a natural tendency to want to seek out information and learn new stuff all day long.

  59. nebulafox says:
    @Enemy of Earth

    I’m so old I remember a time where people denied that inflation existed rather than arguing it was a good thing.

  60. @Buzz Mohawk

    More old man stories: I remember when a six-pack of tall Buds was \$2.50

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