Inside Scoop: Keep your eyes on the road and paws on the wheel
-Hi everyone and welcome to the Inside Scope.
I'm CNET's Kara Tsuboi joined by senior editor Wayne Cunningham who covers car technology for the site.
Thanks for joining us Wayne.
-Today, we're talking about a really sweet wonderful little video at New Zealand that has started to go viral and it defects a dog driving a car.
Give us the background of the back story of this video.
-Well, this was done as kind of publicity stunt, just a way to get people to recognize that there are dogs and shelters out there
that can be adopted, and so this has actually came out of the at Wellington Zealand SPCA.
-a world right organization taking in dogs craze and things like that or dogs that are just given up to them.
And what they have done is they have taken 3 dogs and actually trained them to drive a car.
-That's amazing and basically they proved that these dogs are smart.
Just because they're mutts, it doesn't mean they are stupid.
They are worthwhile.
They have value and it's a way to show that, you know, they can also be trained later, you know, in later years too.
-There you go.
-These are older dogs [unk] at SPCA, but you know, they are still smart, probably trainable,
and happy to work with these trainers that the SPCA provided train them to drive a car.
They've actually got a new countryman and they show a number of videos of them picking the dogs, fixing up the cars so the dogs can drive it.
And then of course the big one is one of the dogs named Porter actually driving the car around little bit of this truck.
-So, when I first watch that video, I thought, wow the dog really is-- you know, accelerating, steering, braking, but as a car expert, you're saying that it might not be that complicated.
-No, really what they're doing
is they have a trainer walking alongside the car as they go, and trainer is gonna yell out command to the dogs.
So, the dog doesn't necessarily know he's in the breaks or know he's putting the steering wheels.
He is following commands as he goes along, and the car is, you know, it's an automatic, so creeps along.
I think what they have done is-- You know, they have an accelerator pedal for the dog in the car, but the dog is not really using it.
-So, the car just sort of creeps along and, you know, it's 2 miles an hour or something so the trainer can walk alongside and, you know, yell the commands through the window, and then dog is very eager to perform these commands,
and dog actually turns the wheel to go around, abandon the truck, and hits the breaks actually at the end to stop the car, which is, you know, really delightful to see.
-You cover cars.
You rethink, read cars.
Have you ever seen a dog driving a car before?
That's one of the great things I saw a photo that they posted on one of the dogs, sitting in the driver seat, ready to go, and you know, you see photos like this all the time.
Somebody post a joke photo like, oh, my dog is driving a car, but these dogs are actually driving the car.
-Actually, really doing it.
So, it's very unique in that sense.
I think what's also unique is how fast
this video has spread.
I mean it came in New Zealand, but it hit America pretty quickly, and it's all over social media.
That's how you found out of that, right?
-Oh, yeah, it's on Facebook.
And I think it's taken off right there and it's brining a lot of attention to the whole play of dogs, you know, by the SPCA and apparently these dogs, the three that they trained for driving, 2 of them have been adopted already, and the second one is still waiting the adoption, but you know, I suppose that's gonna happen pretty soon.
-Oh, that's a nice happy ending to the story already.
Thank you so much Wayne Cunningham, senior editor.
I'm Kara Tsuboi, thanks for watching the Inside Scoop.