Flaky Goodness

Leader of the Pack

September 9, 2012

Recently I spent a moment watching a thin, scraggly looking guy walking a group of 6. Large. Dogs. Every once in a while, one of the dogs would try to pull in one direction or another, but, with a little bobbing and weaving the guy was able to unsteadily navigate in one general direction.

Were the dogs to all pull in the opposite direction this poor guy would instantly become cargo. He’d have no chance. And the dogs each demonstrated, from time to time, an individual desire to go in a direction other than the one imposed upon them. But their lack of coordinated action, in fact their lack of awareness that coordinated action was even possible, kept this little guy in charge.


Figure 1: Force equivalence

Putting aside for a moment that these dogs were evidently loyal, well trained animals that were not imminently going feral, it is interesting to look at it from the other side:

The thing that allowed this one small guy to take the 6. Large. Dogs for a walk was that he had a destination, and they, as a group, did not.