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December 2022

Can your dog or cat predict weather events? If your dog is acting funny, don’t run for his dog leash too quickly!

Sunday, January 10, 2010
posted by Jim Murphy

dog-howlingIt was early on a Saturday morning in the late eighties.I was living in Hoboken, NJ at the time. Normally,since it was only about 5:00am, my Chihuahua was fast asleep at the foot of my bed. Today was different.  He began running around the room barking and barking. He then jumped on me in the bed and insisted that I get up. I was baffled by this change in behavior and thought that he may be sick. Just at that moment, there was a loud noise, the bed shook and everything was calm again including my dog. It sounded like an explosion. I got up went in the hallway to see what had happened but found nothing. I later found out that at that time, there was a small earthquake in Westchester County, NY about 25 miles to the north. I felt the effects of this small quake and my dog knew it was going to happen before it did. How did he know?

Many people believe that dogs and even cats have a special sense and can feel or predict earthquakes.  A German scientist, Helmut Tributsch once published an article about animal behavior and earthquakes. It theorized that the flow of icons – electrically charged air – created by the friction of the earth’s underground plates rubbing together just prior to earthquakes might be detectable to animals.  The reason he gives is that animals have drier body surfaces than humans. Tributsch believes that animals are more sensitive to the electrostatic charges that precede earthquakes.

There are lots of examples of animals acting strangely before earthquakes. No has proven without a doubt that dogs and cats can predict earthquakes. If you live in an earthquake prone zone, write down the next time your dog or cat acts funny. You may be able to see for yourself whether your pet has this ability. Think of the help this could be to geophysicists and seismologists!

The next time your dog is running around barking,  don’t run for the dog leash too quickly.

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