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KID NEWS: Can Dog Brains Distinguish Between Languages? Yes.

Dog Brains Can Distinguish Between Languages

Dog brains” are smarter than you might think.

Researchers in Hungary have scanned the brains of 17 dogs; and found the animals could actually differentiate between two different languages.

However, the dogs did not show a preference for speech over non-speech.  For instance, if you patted your leg twice, to say, “get over here,” the dog will understand that non-verbal communication, with no spoken language.

Study co-author Raúl Hernández-Pérez says the findings show that, while human brains are specially tuned to speech, dog brains may simply “detect the naturalness of the sound.”  So, if you say a word, rather urgently, while you move or gesture toward a certain direction, the dog is likely to learn you want it to “come here,” or “move,” or such.

The scientists note that, while the finding is exciting, they still don’t know whether other animals have the same ability.

Bark up this tree, for more:  (EurekAlert!)


  • A study finds that dogs can differentiate between two different languages – and they understand gestures

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