We all know what baby talk is… It’s that high-pitched, slow and exaggerated way we talk to infants and babies. Scientists call this universal way of speaking ‘infant-directed speech’ and discovered a long time ago that it helps babies focus and learn language faster.
It turns out puppies also prefer baby talk.
Researchers from City University of New York (USA), University of Lyon/Saint-Etienne (France) and University of Sussex (UK) researched the effects of ‘baby talk’ on puppies and older dogs. 30 female volunteers were recorded speaking normally to other humans, to pictures of puppies, to pictures of adult dogs, and to pictures of senior dogs. The female participants used phrases like “Hi! Hello cutie!”, “Who’s a good boy?” and “Come here!”. In all cases, the women used 'dog-directed speech', or friendly and slow sing-song voices, when addressing the dog photos. The women’s vocal pitches were 21% higher when addressing puppy pictures. The researchers then played back the recordings to a group of puppies, adult dogs, and senior dogs.
In every case, the puppies were very responsive to higher pitched dog-directed speech; they becoming happy and playful while hearing the recordings. The puppies were much less enthused when listening to recordings of women speaking normally to other adults. As for the adult and senior dogs, they were barely responsive to dog-directed speech even though the female volunteers specifically directed it towards them.
What are the main takeaways? First, only puppies are highly responsive to dog-directed speech, as opposed to adult dogs, and vocal pitch plays a significant role in this language. Trying to train your puppy or get him or her to focus? Use a higher-pitched, sing-song voice to get and hold his or her attention.
Second, humans commonly and ineffectively use dog-directed speech when addressing adult and senior dogs. Truth is, it has very little effect on getting their attention and maintaining focus.The study was published earlier this week by the Proceedings of Royal Society B. Click here to view the original report published by the Proceedings of Royal Society B
New York City can be an intimidating place, especially if you're visiting for the first time with your dog. Not sure where to stay next time you visit? There are thousands of hotels in Manhattan alone, and not all are pet-friendly, in a good location, or even well rated!
To make your life easier, Mike and I (Steph) put together a list of the best dog-friendly hotels throughout Manhattan. Our recommended pet-friendly hotels range from trendy to central to luxurious. And although nothing in NYC is cheap, there are a few hotels below that qualify as 'budget'. If you are focused on a particular Manhattan neighborhood, scroll down for our Google Map guide which highlights the location of each dog-friendly hotel.
How do you choose the best dog food for your pup? The endless selection of dog food products with promising marketing claims make the task of selecting dog food incredibly challenging. Do you go with the dog food brand that claims it only uses all-natural ingredients? Is organic better? And what does "all-natural" even mean!?
We're here to help you understand how to choose what is right for your dog. In the following article we discuss how to identify the highest quality dog foods and what to look for in dog food labels. We also clarify the meaning of organic and natural and address recent rumors about grain-free dog food. As always, leave any questions and thoughts in the comments below! We love hearing from you.
Is there any airline that will allow my large dog to travel with us in the cabin? This is a question we at DJANGO Dog Blog get frequently.
An increasing number of dog owners are traveling with their pups, both domestically and internationally. In this article we explore pet travel options for larger dogs - ones that do not fit under a plane seat in an airline-approved pet carrier.