- We talk to our dogs differently than we do babies.
Similarities: high-pitched voice, repetitive use of grammatically acceptable words, present-tense verbs.
Differences: Dog-talk involved shorter sentences and more orders while baby-talk included more questions.
“Which all raises the question of whether we’re treating our babies like dogs or our dogs like babies. Either way, the authors point out the main problem in talking to both babies and dogs is it “involve[s] communicating with a limited and inattentive addressee.”
I haven’t been around any babies for an extended length of time where I fall into that goofy coochie coochie coo mode. I think two year olds are much more fun. But when I’m around babies, they are usually surrounded by females who are taking care of that – to extremes!
But I live with four dogs, and our conversations do consist more of commands.
- “Stop licking my head.”
- “Woof, grrrr, Woof.” (But your sweat is yummy)
- “Ouch, stop eating my toes.”
- “Arf.” (OK)
- “grrrrrr.” (You little punk, get out of my face.)
- Bark, Arf, Woof, aroooooooo, Arf, Arf, Grrrrrrr, Bark Bark Bark Bark Bark Bark, arooooooooooo, yelp, Bark Bark Bark (shadow outside)
- Stop. Stop. Stop it. Now. Quiet. Quiet. Stop. Now.
Show water bottle squirter. Peace.
There is also the depth. Ask any dog lover, and they will tell you that these animals who share our lives are not property. They are all members of an extended family. Visit your local dog park on a Saturday morning, and listen to conversation strikingly similar to a play-date – with parents discussing the best day care while keeping a close eye on the bullies.
- Is it wrong to eat your dog?
“A family’s dog was killed by a car in front of their house. They had heard that dog meat was delicious, so they cut up the dog’s body and cooked it and ate it for dinner.”
Yeah, but the preparation would be nasty. All that hair! And our dogs eat more grass and tree limbs and twigs than they do dog food.