Can dogs learn multiple languages too?
Dogs are our best friends.Except for their love language and body language, did you know that dogs can learn and understand multiple human languages too?
Dogs do not have languages like humans do but in some way they can learn and recognize commands in other languages.
“Dogs can learn words that are relevant to them. Invariably those which are often used by their owners and directed at them. Words to praise them are one example”, says Anna Gábor, a researcher involved with the Eötvös Loránd University study in Hungary.
The study started by selecting 13 dogs and keeping them still while conducting a MRI.By doing so they saw each dog’s brain activity while listening to their masters’ neutral words or praises. The dog owners changed the intonation each time.
In the study the researchers realized the dogs were using the left hemisphere of the brain (this hemisphere takes charge of processing the meaning of words, unlike the right).
They noticed the brain’s reward system was activated when the dogs received a praise.
This means a dog will react to stimuli like petting or food whenever the they hear words which relate to the situation.
This study won’t just strengthen the bond and communication between humans and dogs. The scientists who conducted the study believe this could be a step to understanding the origin of words.
According to the main Hungarian study author: “What makes words unique to humans is not our neural capacity, but our ingenuity of inventing and using them.”
How many languages can dogs understand, really?
The mind-blowing answer here is that dogs can learn pretty much any language you throw at them. English, Spanish, French, Mandarin, German, Serbian, etc, so dogs can be blilingual and multilingual.
Some dogs move with their ownes to a different country and overtime and with a little bit of practice they undestood commands on that language.
Some dogs grew up with owners who spoke two or three languages so they can certainly teach their dog to obey their commands in those languages with the aid of hand signals, tone, praise, and body language.
So how do you teach your dog a different language?
1. Patience - you need to be patient with your dog like with everything else you taught them from begining of their lives.
2. Practice - if you repeat a command on language that they are familiar with and then repeat it on other language, over time your dog will understand the command on other language too.
3. Rewards - every dog likes treats and rewards, so they are even more motivated for the challenge.
Did you know that therapy dogs are often trained in other languages so they can provide comfort to people of different needs: hospitals, shelters, rest homes, etc. Cool, right?