Have you ever overheard somebody talk to their dog in baby talk? Do you find it annoying? But, it may be an effective communication technique. It comes naturally. Do You Talk To Your Dog In Baby Talk? Read on.
Does it make a difference?
Does it make a difference in how we talk to our dogs? Some think so. Dogs don’t speak like humans, so talking to them in an exaggerated high-pitched voice may make communication easier.
Every culture speaks baby talk to their babies no matter what language. Studies have shown that this kind of talk helps create a bond between parents and a newborn baby. So if people worldwide are speaking like babies, maybe it’s not such a bad thing.
Speaking in dog talk
Speaking in dog talk is slightly different from the baby talk we use. We might not use as high of a pitch, but the words are exaggerated. For example, “You’re such a gooooood boooooy or girrrrrrrrrll.”
A series of experiments were conducted on this subject. First, the researchers spoke common phrases to dogs like “Let go for a walk” and “You’re a good dog.” First, they expressed these phrases in a high-pitched voice and then in an average adult voice.
The dog’s reaction measured
The dog’s reaction was measured using the two different kinds of speech with the exact words. Then, they let the dogs choose which person to interact with, speaking normally or speaking baby talk. Most dogs gravitated toward the dog/Babytalk.
Are Dogs sensitive to pitch changes or words?
To determine if the dogs respond to the high-pitched emotional dog/baby talk or the normal adult voice. The researchers used phrases that you probably wouldn’t speak to your dog, like, “We need bread and milk from the store.” Or “Can you pick up a pizza.”
We think dogs are more sensitive to the tone of your voice and possibly the gender and the size of the person speaking.
They found that the dogs tended to interact more with the people speaking in the dog/baby talk and phased what you would say to your dog. They didn’t react as much to normal adult voices or the phrases you wouldn’t speak to your dog.
Mixed up the phases
Then they mixed up the phases. Using a high-pitched voice with non-dog phrases and speaking dog phrases in a normal voice. The reaction wasn’t as strong, suggesting dogs need to hear the dog/baby talk and the familiar phases together.
Something about the combination of the phrases in a normal voice and a high-pitched voice and words that dogs seem to put together and understand. Dogs listen to the combination and relate the tone and the phrases as directed to them.
If you got your dog as a puppy, you probably spoke a baby talk from the first day and kept it up as the puppy grew. So the dog is more used to the tone and phrases you have used since puppyhood and knows when you are talking to them.
Loving your dog is truly what matters.
I don’t blame you for using baby talk when talking to your dog. It is a natural way to communicate with our young and form bonds between babies and parents.
Loving your dog is truly what matters, so how you communicate is up to you. Using whatever voice tone and phases work for you and your dog, keep it up, and let the bond grow. A dog is a friend for life, and communication is key to a strong friendship.
Another article by Thenoahsbark: Why You Should Rescue A Dog
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