I’m a huge fan of AMC’s Walking Dead series. And being the editor of a pets site, I couldn’t help wondering how pets might survive a zombie invasion.
Here’s the way I figure it: a dog, more so than a cat, could be your ultimate friend during the undead end of times. More than that, a canine companion could help you stay alive longer. Here are a few ways your dog could help you survive a zombie apocalypse.
1. Dogs Have a Super Sense of Hearing
It’s like an early warning system for the walking dead (or “walkers,” as they’re called on my new favorite TV show). At 50,000 Hz, a dog’s hearing abilities give it an acute advantage — a zombie could be heard limping up from a great distance away. That extra set of ears could become your biggest survival tool… that is, if your dog doesn’t bark loudly and give your position away.
2. Dogs Have a Super Sense of Smell
Imagine, for a moment, the small part of your brain devoted to sorting out various smells. Now multiply that brain area times 40, and you have an idea of just how much better a canine’s ability to smell is than yours. Not only, then, would your dog be able to smell (and hear) a zombie approaching — but your dog might also be able to smell who among your other living companions has been infected before they turn into flesh eaters! Yet another advantage: your dog can help you sniff out food and supplies.
3. One Word: Cardio
That’s one of the first “rules” of a zombie apocalypse enumerated in the movie Zombieland. If you’re going to survive an attack by the undead, you’re going to need to run. A lot. And guess who loves to run? Your dog. Plus, your dog will always be there to run ahead of you and motivate you to push harder, sorta like your own personal trainer. That is invaluable at a time when running just a little bit faster can mean the difference between life and… undeath.
4. Your Dog Could Be Trained to Distract a Zombie
This would work particularly well with herding breeds like Border Collies, cattle dogs and corgis. Hey, some people train their dog to fetch them a drink from the fridge and bring it to the living room; think about how much easier it might be to train your pup to herd a walker. These skills come naturally to certain dogs.
5. Dogs Are Incredibly Loyal
Few humans would provide the kind of loyal-to-the-death companionship that a dog would give you, asking nothing in return but a pat on the head.
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So let’s sum up the awesome ways your dog could help you survive a zombie apocalypse. You get an early-warning system, a personal trainer, protection and a fiercely loyal companion. Sign me up for Team Mutt.
Of course, one remaining question would be, Which breed is best suited for a walker invasion? I mentioned herding breeds. But in hands-on combat, you’d be better off with perhaps a pit bull, German Shepherd, Doberman Pinscher or Rottweiler. Then again, all things considered, my bet would be on a smaller breed like a Beagle, which has a keen sense of smell and hearing, and is small enough to evade a flesh eater on the run.
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