There are people who are flippant about having a dog as a pet.

These are the people who say frequently ''it's only a dog''.


Hurrah for the BBC documentary (Prime) The Secret Life of Dogs narrated by the warm and kind hearted Martin Clunes.


First on screen were doggy noses and how the little snouts hold the dog's DNA like our finger prints.

Seeing the range of whorls, tiny pitted trenches and colours making up the canine snouts was a complete wonder for me.

But then were the stories and if you weren't really a dog lover these clips would have endeared you to the trusting, clever minds of our dogs.

As Clunes said, they've been man's best friend for thousands of years. They're the most diverse species of mammal on the planet with over 400 breeds worldwide. But how much do we really know about our dogs and where they came from?, he asked.

Then came the stories celebrating the unique qualities of each dog group.

For research has shown, he said, their remarkable physiology, their emotional bond with humans and their extraordinary super senses.

I am still smiling at the stories, especially the one about a great dane helping a little girl walk for the first time in nine years.

She was suffering from a debilitating syndrome which means this small girl will probably die young.

She explained how the dog as a pup chose her when she was taken to see the litter.

"He put his nose on me and I knew he was the one and he knew I was the one.''

Then there was the terrier of many breeds rescued by a paraglider whose life he said was paragliding so small shaggy mutt had to love flying or return to dog prison.

She of course loved it and him wholesale.

The footage of them flying with ease, she in her made-to-measure doggy backpack, nose in the air, ears back - I swear she had a beatific smile on her small hairy chops.

And now we're told that scientists have just started to uncover our dog's emotional and intellectual genius.

Through their extraordinary powers to read our emotions, take our perspective, and exceed our physical ability, our closest companions have been able to join us in all walks of life - truly earning the name man's best friend, scientists have concluded.

A border collie owned by a psychologist was mesmerising.

She had memorised 1000 different toys simply by her owner enunciating the name of each toy clearly ensuring she learned them all.

And she did.

One name from her owner and she plucked the toy from the pile and delivered.

There's no doubt dogs adore their owners. It's unconditional love on a massive scale.