Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Why Dogs Stick Their Head Out

"We'll let the dog ride up front and stick his head out
I'll ride in back and you can chauffeur me around."
- song lyric

It's that time of year when I start seeing dog heads sticking out of car windows again. It was probably last year when I first understood (or thought I understood) why dogs love to stick their head out the car window as it zooms down the road, or why a dog riding in the back of a pickup will race back and forth, sticking his nose around the edge of the cab on each side, and standing up on the back of the edge of the truck bed to get his face into the air.

Humans tend to anthropomorphosize (that's a big $ word - I've thrown in the extra syllable for free!) so putting myself in the place of a dog I was just imagining how unpleasant it is for me to stick my head out the car window. I can't see a thing - too much wind. Eye's dry out fast. I can't hear anything either due to the turbulence. Overall it's rather unpleasant. (Try it - I bet you'll agree)

(Artwork: My wife Trish drew the dog. I claim the rest ;-) )

But then I got to thinking that a dog probably doesn't experience the world like me. A dog could care less that I enjoy the world by looking at the scenery and and being able to hear the radio in the car. A dog experiences the world through his nose, and for him to ride down the road without sticking his nose out is probably like me riding down the road with my eyes blindfolded. In short, I think a dog is probably seeing the world by sticking his nose into the wind, and for him to not be able to do so takes all the fun out of the trip.

Anyhow, that's my hypothesis and I'm sticking to it.


Trish Milburn said...

I think you're right. Plus, they're cute when they do it.

Natalie Damschroder said...

I don't think the slobber my dog leaves all over the window is cute. :)

But yes, I agree 100% that they do it for the smells.

Tori Lennox said...

Trish pointed me your way. Welcome to the blogosphere!

As for the dogs, I think you're on to something here!

frugalmom said...

um, and would that be my sister with her head hanging out the window? hee hee hee