I have this thought that animals have always had abilities that humans took no notice of, instead thinking they were totally without awareness of who and what they are or what they are capable of. It's only in past several decades that humans have decided to make their pets possible partners instead of things kept in the yard, on a chain, or sitting in our lap for our amusement. I think the change (in our thinking) occurred with the British woman's TV show where she supposedly read the minds of people's pets, followed by several dog whisperers, and of course the entire horse world literally lived and breathed the natural horsemanship training.
In about 1987 I quit my job (because I could, I guess) went home to our new little farm and lived and breathed animals for about 7 years. We always had at least two horses and a pony, 3 dogs, lots of cats, but eventually kept a goat (funniest thing), a duck, and whatever else showed up. I always talked with those animals, watched them, listened to them, just loved them.
I think animals grow from a human's love, become attached to us, and begin to "sense" us in different ways. They become more intelligent, as would anybody who is loved, respected and given a chance to prove it. Now, you see, we are being rewarded! They are not only our eyes today, but our ears as well, and "know" when their owners are about to have seizures, strokes, or even die, to say nothing of the fun games we play with them.
If nothing else, humanity has redeemed itself in raising the consciousness of animals. Maybe some would think this, but, I say that animals have also raised our consciousness so we understand how they can teach us as well.