Are Animals Multilingual?

Nicholas C. Rossis

I am multilingual and consider myself a native Greek and English speaker. People like Ziad Fazah, born in Liberia, famously speak a total of 59 world languages. Can other creatures share that ability, though? Specifically, can dogs understand more than one language?

Well, wonder no more! As the NPR reports, new research published this week in the journalNeuroImage confirms that yes, they do.

When Laura Cuaya moved from Mexico to Hungary to work as a brain researcher at the Neuroethology of Communication Lab at Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest, she encountered a new language. In her words,

When I moved from Mexico to Hungary to start my post-doc research, all was new for me. Obviously, here, people in Budapest speak Hungarian. So you’ve had a different language, completely different for me.

The language was also new to her two dogs: Kun Kun and Odín.

dog in MRI machine | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books
Kun Kun gets ready for…

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