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This article was published on December 6, 2012

    Watch: Three dogs set to take driving test in New Zealand (this is no joke)

    Watch: Three dogs set to take driving test in New Zealand (this is no joke)
    Jon Russell
    Story by

    Jon Russell

    Jon Russell was Asia Editor for The Next Web from 2011 to 2014. Originally from the UK, he lives in Bangkok, Thailand. You can find him on T Jon Russell was Asia Editor for The Next Web from 2011 to 2014. Originally from the UK, he lives in Bangkok, Thailand. You can find him on Twitter, Angel List, LinkedIn.

    Three dogs in New Zealand are set to take a driving test (yes, car driving test) live on national TV in New Zealand this weekend. Yes, this is neither a joke nor a prank.

    The BBC reports that Auckland-based charity SPCA is behind the initiative. The organization takes in unwanted dogs and it hopes that the campaign to raise awareness of how clever the animals can be will help find its dogs new homes.

    The dogs drive the cars themselves (although it isn’t clear how and if they reach and use the foot pedals). It’s not a trick and it requires them to learn 10 or so behaviours, which are then put into a sequence. After seven weeks of learning simple gestures — like gear changing and steering — they are ready to bust out of the classroom and take the wheel of a car.

    Perhaps this is the real secret behind Google’s self-driving cars?

    Check out the BBC video report below for full details and some crazy footage of canines at the wheel.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NZmAs9yvunw

    Top image via Christie Spear / Shutterstock