Letter: 'Canine compasses

January 14, 2014 

In regard to the Jan. 12 article on Page D7 of the Tri-City Herald, reprinted from the Los Angeles Times, "Dogs align with magnetic fields while pooping, researchers find." This research helped me have an "aha moment."

My observations of our pet prior to eliminating include his turning around in circles, seemingly to find the right spot. In actuality, this is probably the process of calibrating his internal compass, like I must do with my hand-held GPS, or my iPhone compass app.

Perhaps this could also explain why some dogs eat Christmas jingle bells. They are seeking iron-containing objects to aid this biological need. Then there is the attraction of our front yard to the neighborhood dogs. I must assume that there are electric cables or iron pipes beneath the soil to confuse them. This knowledge will make me more tolerant in the future.

It is only a matter of time until we can make the leap to humans. We have two bathrooms. One has the commode facing east-west, the other north-south. Thinking back, I have always felt more comfortable, normal, and natural using the one facing north-south. Housing contractors take note!

DONN SCHELL, Kennewick

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