Toddlers and Dogs: Realistic Strategies for Their Safety and Your Sanity

 Dogs really can understand language…. just like their owners say, according to new research.

They even process the spoken word in a similar way to humans – and in the same area of the brain, say scientists.

Dogs really can understand language…. just like their owners sayCredit: Getty – Contributor

It sheds light on why man’s best friend gets excited when we say ‘walk’ – or responds to an affectionate tone of voice.


The brain of a medium-size dog such as a labrador is thought to be about the size of a lemonCredit: Getty – Contributor

Neuroscientist Professor Gregory Berns, of Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia, said: “Dogs may have varying capacity and motivation for learning and understanding human words.”

“But they appear to have a neural representation for the meaning of words they have been taught, beyond just a low-level Pavlovian response.”


Dogs can tell the difference between words they have heard before and those they have notCredit: Getty – Contributor

First author Ashley Prichard, a PhD candidate in Prof Bern’s psychology lab, said: “Many dog owners think their dogs know what some words mean, but there really isn’t much scientific evidence to support that.

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