Not many cats get to have a career as a dog trainer, but one Missouri feline is doing just that.
The Associated Press reported Thursday on D-O-G (pronounced “dee-OH-jee”), a fluffy black and white cat who plays an important role at Support Dogs, Inc. in St. Louis. The group trains dogs for a variety of purposes, including assisting people with mobility-related issues and people with hearing loss.
Dogs aiding people with disabilities need to be comfortable around other types of animals and remain calm in the face of distraction. D-O-G is apparently the perfect candidate for testing their patience and can be seen in the video below batting at a dog’s tail and playing with a dog’s leash.
“He rules the roost,” CEO Anne Klein told ABC News last month. “He is the boss.”
Now a certified internet star, D-O-G has come a long way from his former life as a barn kitten. Nadine Wenig, director of canine services at Support Dogs, Inc., met the friendly kitten over the summer at a bed and breakfast and was “instantly smitten,” according to This Dog’s Life. The owners of the business ended up giving her the kitten, and she brought him back to the nonprofit’s center, where staff cautiously introduced him to the resident dogs.
“We saw that he was completely fearless despite his size and had no issue being around and close to the dogs,” volunteer manager Stephanie McCreary told This Dog’s Life.
Support Dogs, Inc. CEO Anne Klein told People Pets back in September that the office is pretty cushy for D-O-G, who has a multi-level cat condo to himself and is doted on by staff.
“There are a few staff members who like to pretend they’re exclusively dog lovers, but everyone secretly adores D-O-G,” she said. “He’s spoiled rotten.”