David Letterman Guest’s Beagle Told to ‘Play Dead’ Goes Viral – Again

Dogs are so smart. Besides being man’s best friend, they’re super intelligent and eager to please. A long time ago, I had an Australian Shepherd who I spent a lot of time training. Besides the usual commands like sit, lay down, heel, etc…I was able to teach Fred to put his toys in his toybox and even open the refrigerator and get a beer. That last part, no one believes me when I tell the story. Since these were the days before iPhone videos, I didn’t document it, but it’s legit true. Australian Shepherds are famously smart dogs, but they’re not alone in the dog kingdom when it comes to intelligence. Equally intelligent are Beagles.

According to the American Kennel Club, Beagles are not only excellent hunting dogs, but they’re also loyal companions and have great personalities. It’s rare to see an aggressive Beagle. Additionally, they have a natural curiosity and cleverness. For these reasons, Beagles are one of the most popular hound dogs for American dog owners. Back when the David Letterman Show was the hottest late-night talk show, Letterman had a guest who brought in his beloved Beagle, Baily. Baily is so amazing that his video keeps going viral, years after the original clip aired on live TV. Baily’s talent? Playing dead. And he does it like a total boss.

Mike Bower and Baily visited Letterman’s show to demonstrate Baily’s unique talent. Mike says that Baily has a mind of his own, but he’s a great dog. Letterman asks Mike what Baily is going to do, and Mike explains that Baily is going to play dead. In the video below, Mike tells Baily to “play dead,” and Baily goes completely limp in Mike’s arms. No matter how much laughter and shouting is going on around him, Baily plays dead and “comes alive” on command. Every time Baily plays dead and “comes back to life,” he gets a treat, and he seems happy to perform over and over as long as the treats keep coming.


Watch the video of this remarkable pooch below. Since dogs have a shorter lifespan than we do, Baily’s probably no longer with us. Rest in peace, beautiful one.