taking the M.U.T test

You may think you like Chihuahuas dressed up in tiny outfits with matching shoes, but maybe, unconsciously, you really don’t. Maybe you hate all rhinestone-bedecked little dogs without knowing it. Thankfully, a researcher who just happens to be a large, working dog himself has come up with a test that can help reveal such hidden prejudices. Eminent psychologist Cosmo A. Mastiff, Ph.D. (Dog of Philosophy), of the Kennelfornia Institute of Technology at St. Bernardino, has been kind enough to give us his M.U.T.* test for measuring unconscious biases toward pampered, tea-cup-sized canines. To make your results more accurate, Dr. Mastiff suggests you go with your first gut response, without spending too much time on any question.
* Mastiff Unconscious Tendency

1. What word or words best describes your emotion upon seeing this photo? (Choose one.)
a) Pride.
b) Ecstasy.
c) A Desire to Be a Better Dog.
d) Sheer, Unmitigated Awe.
e) OK, I guess, if you prefer brawn over brains — and fashion-sense.

2. What word or words best describes your emotion upon seeing this photo?
a) Deep Embarrassment for All Dogs on the Entire Planet.
b) A Fear that Strikes Directly into One’s Soul.
c) The Horror, The Horror!
d) A Strange, Disturbing Fascination that Must Be Fought with All One’s Might.
Awww, the adorable widdle sweetums!

3. What is happening in this photo?
a) The dog, using his excellent grasp of physics, is analyzing the ball’s trajectory to make the perfect catch.
b) The dog, using his excellent grasp of psychology, is strengthening the canine-human bond by engaging in social activity with the child.
c) The dog, using his excellent grasp of human kinesiology, is helping the child exercise its biceps and triceps muscles.
d) The dog, using his excellent grasp of canine physiology, is making sure to get a good cardiovascular workout to strengthen his heart and lungs.
e) No, no, no — this is completely backwards! The human fetches the toy for his or her tiny canine overlord!

4. What is happening in this photo?
a) I can’t look — a dog in a designer purse is just wrong!
b) Two-Legs Carry Four-Legs? Does Not Compute.
c) A Canine Humiliation of Epic Proportions.
d) Behold! The Eville That Dare Not Yip Its Name.
e) A Doggie Pasha is being carried in his luxurious, royal litter by his fawning human slave.

5. What would be a good name for a devoted animal companion?
a) Cosmo A. Mastiff.
b) Fido.
c) Rover.
d) Lassie.
e) Tricky Woo, Emperor of All That’s Wuvable Island.

6. If you could be any dog breed, what would it be, and what profession?
a) An Eminent Mastiff Psychologist.
b) A Brave St. Bernard Alps Rescue Worker.
c) A Dedicated German Shepherd Guide Dog.
d) A Dutiful Labrador Retriever Bomb-Sniffing Dog.
e) A Spoiled-Rotten Yorkshire Terrier Fashion Accessory.

Now score your answers.
Mostly a’s, b’s, c’s, or d’s: You have no unconscious biases against small, pampered dogs.
Mostly e’s: What’s wrong with you? Are you a normal, healthy dog or what? Take the test again and this time, THINK about your answers instead of your rubber pork chop, you disgrace to working canines everywhere!

This article appeared in the March 2006 issue of the children’s science magazine Muse.
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