This is part of an exchange between Sheldrake and Wiseman. For the complete picture see: Richard Wiseman's claim to have debunked "the psychic pet phenomenon"
In the January issue of the Journal Richard Wiseman, Matthew Smith & Julie Milton published a reply to my note (Sheldrake, 1999a) about their claim to have refuted the "psychic pet" phenomenon. This claim was made in the British Journal of Psychology (Wiseman, Smith & Milton, 1998) and widely publicized in the media. It was repeated as recently as February 2 this year in a presentation given by the first author at the Royal Institution entitled "Investigating the Paranormal".
At my invitation, Wiseman and Smith carried out 4 videotaped experiments with a dog called Jaytee, with whom I have carried out more than 100 videotaped experiments (Sheldrake, 1999b). My experiments showed that Jaytee usually waited by the window for a far higher proportion of the time when his owner was coming home than when she was not. This occurred even when his owner, Pam Smart, came at non-routine, randomly-selected times and travelled by unfamiliar vehicles such as taxis. This pattern was already clearly apparent months before Wiseman et al. carried out their tests.
In the 3 experiments that Wiseman and Smith carried out at Pam's parents' flat, the pattern of results was very similar to my own. Their data show a large and statistically significant effect: Jaytee spent a far higher proportion of time at the window when Pam was on the way home than when she was not (Sheldrake, 1999a).