Labrador Retriever Famous for Math Skills

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MONTANA – We’ve all heard stories about dogs that have a higher intelligence level than others, who can do crazy tricks, or who are known for one thing or another, but this story about Beau, a dog from Montana, is truly unique!  Having developed a knack for his math skills, Beau has quickly become famous and is even considered a local celebrity.

Beau is a twelve year old black Labrador Retriever who started showing signs of being highly intelligent as a puppy, according to owner, David Madsen.  Since Madsen started recognizing these smarts, he has been able to teach Beau a variety of math skills.  “He counts, he adds and subtracts, he can do some division and has memorized square roots,” Madsen said.  If he tells Beau there are six dogs at the park and three dogs leave, and then asks him how many are left, the dog replies: “Woof, woof, woof.” Being one of the smartest dog breeds, Madsen wasn’t surprised that Beau was able to learn to do math!

It took time and patience to teach Beau his math skills, but not nearly as much as you would think.  Using dog biscuits, Madsen would lay out a handful and reward the dog when the number of his barks corresponded to the number of treats.  “He caught on that rewards were associated with the correct number of barks,” Madsen said.  Even the chief of the Finley Point-Yellow Bay, Montana Fire Department, Chris Ricciardi, vouches for Beau’s math talents.  “This dog is amazing,” Ricciardi said, “Dave will say, ‘What’s two and three?’  Then the dog will go, ‘Bark, bark … bark, bark, bark.'”

Beau even had a chance at national stardom when he auditioned in Savannah, Georgia for the Stupid Pet Tricks segment on the CBS Late Show with David Letterman.  Although he didn’t get picked for the segment, he did become famous in his local area of Montana where he visits the shops, restaurants and cabins performing his “tricks” for the locals and other visitors.

This black lab is truly a math wiz, with talents some people don’t even have!

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