From Cordwainer Smith’s “The Ballad of Lost C’Mell” to the Pern series to Alan Dean Foster’s Taken trilogy, animals gifted with genetically-enhanced intelligence have been, and still are, a popular science fiction trope. But aside from getting Timmy out of the well a whole heck of a lot faster, what are the real-world implications of teaching Lassie to talk? Would cats’ natural curiosity lead to all our embarrassing secrets being exposed on Fluffy’s Twitter feed? Would Seaworld still be so popular if we had to jump through burning hoops for Flipper’s amusement?
Hmmm, maybe we ought to save some of that intelligence enhancement technology for our own species. I think we’re gonna need it.
TOP TEN REASONS WHY UPLIFTED ANIMALS DON’T MAKE GOOD PETS
10. Your budgie demands repeated viewings of Howard the Duck.
9. Your tabby is arrested for selling catnip blunts.
8. Your poodle snidely comments, “Bitch, please,” during episodes of It’s Me or The Dog.
7. Your salamander wants a quiet word with you about your alligator shoes.
6. Pet Court
5. Polly wants a cracker. And a Ferrari.
4. No matter how much you pound on the bathroom door, your ferret still won’t curtail her grooming regimen.
3. You have to teach the bunnies family planning.
2. The dog has seen you naked. And he doesn’t like what he sees.
1. The dog has seen you naked. And he likes what he sees.