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
We welcomed our long-haired dachshund Django into our lives in late 2015. Since then, we've acquired a lot of dachshund-themed goods. Some of these wiener-decorated items have been gifts from family and friends. Others I've bought myself because... well... a dachshund lover can never have enough sausage dog goods right?
With the holiday season now upon us, we've compiled our all-time favorite dachshund-themed goods. Some of these items are super high quality finds for your home. Others are lower cost but equally adorable sausage dog accessories that would make a fantastic gift for any wiener dog lover.
When we first got 10 week old Django, Mike and I (Steph) would take him outside every 2-3 hours for bathroom breaks. Most of these trips consisted of Django sitting in the middle of a busy NYC sidewalk and staring down strangers until they came over to pet him. We met so many wonderful owners and fans of dachshunds. Surprisingly, so many of these New Yorkers had an unsolicited story to tell us about their dog and intervertebral disc disease (IVDD).
What exactly is IVDD? We did a LOT of research to better understand the unfortunate and often painful condition that affects 20% of dachshunds. Here is everything you need to know: causes and symptoms of the IVDD, prevention, and treatment options.
We're approaching our third year in New York City with Django (and our 10th year living here overall!). We've lived in five different apartments throughout Manhattan and Brooklyn, so we've gotten to know the city and everything it has to offer really really well.
New York City can be an intimidating place, especially if you're visiting for the first time with your dog. Not sure where to eat and hang out with your pup next time you visit? We put together a list of our favorite dog-friendly restaurants, coffee shops, bars, parks and beaches (yes, beaches!) in Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens.