In our history classes we have learned of animals being the primary source of power for humankind. Horses to ride, oxes to farm and dogs to herd and keep as companions. Never in a lifetime would anyone ever consider a cat for anything other than a mouse catcher. Cats, as many have come to agree on, are small psychopaths, but at least capable of showing some love. They are animals that dabble with their own curiosity and act based on that. Unlike cats, dogs have been trained as scouts in warfare and have been trusted to deliver mail. Back int he 1870’s, some genius in Belgium had the idea to prove that cats are more than just “there” and government money was used to try and 37 train cats to deliver the mail.
Our question is: what on earth enabled the Belgians to think they can contribute to society other than rich chocolate, great soccer players (recently) and fries? The people in charge of this small village in Liège, Belgium took it upon themselves to experiment on the intellectual capacity held by cats. Without a doubt these creatures have been given a thought processing much superior to that of a dog, but to train that intellect to deliver mail? As peculiar as it may be the experiment worked. These lucky 37 cats were taken from the homes and dropped off in a distant location almost 2 hours away from their home. A place where none of the cats have ever been to.
Surprisingly in less than 24 hours all 37 cats made their way back home. This system was a one way trip for these cats. There was no way a cat would go out their way to deliver a message unless they were placed in an unknown area, released with a note, and left free to return home. The note would make it back to the owner safely. This experiment, because it only worked one way, probably didn’t last as a village custom. However props to the village people of Liège who tried to contribute to the world of animal messengers.