All sections
04/06/2016, 17:00

Believe it or not. Dogs can fly a plane

Chocks away! Watch Shadow the dog fly a PLANE in a sneak peek clip from the finale of this weekend's Dog's Might Fly

Dogs may be man's best friend, but you may not trust them to pilot a plane. However, a video clip proves they are capable of this incredible feat.

Three rescue dogs, Shadow, Reggie and Alfie finished flight school and viewers of Sky 1’s series, Dogs Might Fly will see them attempt to take sole charge of a plane this coming weekend.

Sky has now shared a clip with MailOnline that shows Shadow, a Staffordshire Bull Terrier-Collie cross, piloting a plane. Dogs may be man's best friend, but you may not trust them to pilot a plane. However, a video clip (screenshot shown) proves they are capable of this incredible feat. The barking mad aviation experiment is the climax of the show in which the courageous canines will tackle a figure-of-eight manoeuvre at 3,000ft (919 metres)

The barking mad aviation experiment is the climax of the show in which the courageous canines will tackle a figure-of-eight manoeuvre at 3,000ft (919 metres).

The plane's controls were specially modified to make it possible for the pets to press buttons and steer.

Shadow was scouted from 120,000 unwanted and abandoned dogs rescued annually by centres around the UK and had been 22 hours away from being put down by a pound, before he was picked up by the rescue centre.

Animal expert Charlotte Wilde, who joined Shadow in the plane during his attempt said: ‘We set out to show that dogs have extraordinary abilities and flight was the ultimate test. 

'Each year 5,000 dogs just like Shadow are put down, but through this show we wanted to demonstrate just what remarkable and intelligent animals they are.’ 

Sky has shared a clip with MailOnline that shows Shadow, a Staffordshire Bull Terrier-Collie cross, piloting a plane (screenshot shown). Viewers can see the full clip of Shadow flying this Sunday at 7pm on Sky 1

Shadow was scouted from 120,000 unwanted dogs rescued annually by centres around the UK and had been 22 hours away from being put down by a pound, before he was picked up by the rescue centre

After being put through a series of problem-solving tasks, a flying squad of 12 dogs were given 10 weeks intensive training under the direction of Driving Dogs trainer Mark Vette.

Over the weeks, they were whittled down to three, who viewers can see flying this Sunday at 7pm on Sky 1.

The original 12 finalists included a 23-month-old collie-lurcher cross called Alfie, a two-and-a half-year-old Staffordshire bull terrier-collie cross named Shadow and 'boisterous puppy' Tess, an 18-month-old, Belgian shepherd.

Chilli the Pyrenean shepherd cross and Spain and 22-month-old Labrador cross Blondie live in Spain.

A total of 12 dogs, including Spot (pictured), were chosen to take part in Sky 1's Dogs Might Fly show in which the cognitive abilities of man's best friend are put to the ultimate test to see if they can pilot a plane

The dogs were put through their paces at a mansion in Sussex, and the experiment was filmed by Oxford Scientific Films for Sky's show. During the test, the experts studied how the dogs responded to various stimulation tasks (example set-up with finalist Wilf is pictured)

Three previous strays, including a lurcher cross called Honey, an 18-month-old German shepherd Labrador cross called Reggie and Spot the terrier-beagle cross were also on the squad.

Parson-Jack Russell cross Spike was described as 'inquisitive', Wilf a collie cross with 'bundles of personality' and Sox, an 18-month-old boxer-Labrador cross, was said to be a 'comedian’. 

The final member of the flying quad was 'bright' Poppy, a two-and-a-half-year-old Australian kelpie-collie cross.

The dogs were being put through their paces at a mansion in Sussex, and the experiment was filmed by Oxford Scientific Films for Sky's show.

During the test, the experts studied how the dogs respond to various stimulation tasks.

They were also taken to the top of London landmarks, and on a speedboat on the Thames to test how they reacted to heights and speed. 

Sky's show is presented by Jamie Theakston (pictured left). The dogs were trained by experts led by clinical animal behaviourist Mat Ward (pictured right) and dog trainers Cath Philips and Charlotte Wilde. Finalist Honey is pictured centre

The dogs were taken to the top of London landmarks, and taken on a speedboat on the Thames (Spot, Shadow and Honey are pictured left to right) to test how they react to heights and speed. All of these experiments were designed to show how the dogs react to the tests, as well as acclimatise them to being in a plane

Oxford Scientific Films explained before the series aired: 'We will make even the most devoted dog lovers see their pets in a whole new light; proving that dogs have distinct personalities and incredible levels of intelligence. 

'A nationwide search for dogs from rescue centres finds twelve of Britain's most extraordinary canine characters bursting with potential.

'A team of experts and trainers examine their skills in communication, empathy, memory and reasoning before tasking them with some breathtaking challenges.

'The top three go forward to Flight School where under the stewardship of New Zealand Driving Dogs Star Mark Vette they train for a world first - could one of them really fly an aeroplane?'

Stanley Coren, professor of canine psychology at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver has criticised the show.

He told The Independent: 'Given that we would not expect a human three-year-old to be able to fly a plane, I would not expect that a dog could do so either.'

The plane's controls were specially modified to make it possible for the pets (Spot pictured) to press buttons and steer, and the best performers were subjected to 10 weeks of intensive training in how to use this dog-friendly control panel before taking to the sky

 

http://www.dailymail.co.uk

All news
Hang five:

We saving your very
important information!