A two-year-old Shih Tzu Cooper may be 'smarter than a toddler,' say animal experts because he can recognize shapes, sort colors and even count. The clever dog's skills are equivalent to those of 18 month old human childredn.
Owner Kirsty Forrester, 28, first noticed her pup's aptitude for learning new things after teaching him how to stick his tongue out on command when he was just three months.
Soon after that, she took him to a dog training school where he picked up new tricks. A canine talent agency, Urban Paws, recently signed Cooper to a talent contract. And now he regularly impresses people with his ability to solve simple mathematical problems.
"I took him to puppy training for him to learn the basics. It was teaching him to sit, lie down and stay. I noticed immediately he was special because he was able to do them so quickly. Cooper was so intelligent he was given extra homework," Forrester said, British Telecommunications reported.
"He loves being challenged, so in addition to physical exercise I give him mental exercise. People call him a genius. I take that as a compliment. He can do challenges aimed at a two-year-old. He's very intelligent."
Aside from sorting toys by color and shapes using his mouth, he can also count treats and recognize numbers. He also playsd with shape sorters and is fond of putting treats on Forrester's shoes.
Forrester has taught other people how to train their dogs but she says that success, "really depends on the dog. Cooper is so curious and he just loves being challenged."
On YouTube, Cooper's videos are a hit with more than 350,000 viewers.
Forrester bought Cooper from a Shih Tzu breeder in Blackpool back in August 2013 and immediately began training him.
"I named him Cooper because I lived in the US for several years. It's a common name for dogs there," she said according to Daily Mail.