Can I Train My Dog to Tell Time?

Good news; you don’t have to because dogs can already tell time. No, they aren’t wearing Rolex watches; dogs tell time strictly by instinct. Watch your dog’s behavior and you’ll see that he knows when it’s time for you to wake up, time for him to go to sleep for the night, and definitely when it’s time for dinner!

Dogs tell time just like people used to do; by the position of the sun and the subtle changes in light. When dawn breaks and the world becomes lighter, it’s time for everybody to wake up whether they want to or not. Once your dog learns your routine and your sleep/wake cycle, he’ll try to make sure you get up to go to work on time — even if it’s Saturday!As the light fades, your dog knows it’s time for dinner.

Growing darkness means it’s time to settle in for a good night’s sleep. These time-telling instincts evolved long ago, before dogs were domesticated; they could interpret even small light changes that humans don’t notice. This tells them when to wake, hunt, feed, and sleep. For dogs, telling time is linked to survival instincts, not when “Animal Cops” is scheduled on TV.Dogs tell time like they can tell when a storm is approaching because they feel the barometric pressure drop and clouds dim the light. Humans lost these instincts in pre-history when we developed the ability to reason. If we had to compete with dogs on “Survivor,” we wouldn’t stand a chance!

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