If your dog could talk, would he speak like a preschooler?

Yup, my dog has a blog.

A friend posted on Facebook today: “Who decided that if dogs were able to speak and type they would do so with a speech impediment that makes you feel illterate trying to read it?”

I understand what she means. As part of a community of dog writers, I see a lot of pets with blogs, Twitter and Facebook accounts, and to be honest, sometimes I have no idea what they’re trying to say.  Dat for that, da for the, and a host of grammatical errors (like “i has not” and “U gotted”) sometimes mean I have to read a post two or three or four times before I have a clue what the person – er, animal – is trying to say.

Sometimes I think pet owners think their animals are perpetually two years old. And speak with a lisp.

I say that as the proud owner of a blogging Border collie, so believe me, I’m not criticizing. When I started writing under Bandit’s name, I only did it because it seemed like Bandit and I had this very weird mind meld, as if I could hear him speaking in my head – or at least percieve what he’d say if he could. I’ve never been able to get into a dog’s head the way I can with Bandit. I suppose if Bailey could open her mouth and speak, she’d speak with a complex vocabulary and share the wisdom of the ages; I think Bailey is an old soul, even if she eats poop. But it just doesn’t feel right trying to put words into her mouth.

Bandit? Totally different story. When he says “Mommy, are we going to be have playtime today because you are BORING” I know that’s exactly what’s going through his mind, caps and all. (While Bandit writes in fairly clear English, he does have a trouble with numbers – although he can count to eleventyfour without help.) But there’s no question that what I write as Bandit just wouldn’t be the same attributed to Bailey.

So my friend’s comment today got me thinking: what does the way that we think our pets would speak say about us? Do we treat our pets like small children, hence their toddler-like grasp of the English language? Or do we really know our pets so well that we can put words into their mouths?

If your pet could talk, what would he say – and more importantly how would he say it? I’d love to hear your thoughts – and your pets’!

You can read Bandit’s blog archives at www.MyNameIsBandit.com and be his friend on Facebook. Several of Bandit’s pieces are also included in my upcoming book, “What The Dog Said,” a collection of columns and essays, due out in early December from Wordcrafts Press.

  • http://youtube.com/user/BowmanFarm Brian Bowman

    My dog would complain about how the world is going to hell in a paw basket because these new-fangled automobiles stubbornly refuse to be herded like he wants to do to them.

    Although he does have daily successes with keeping large predators away, for instance, barking at the neighbor’s semi truck as he head out to roll down the Turnpike usually keeps it away for most of the day.

  • Juli

    I did not realize that there was such a large contingency of tweeting and facebooking and blogging animals until my handy sidekick, Boudreaux, insisted his winning personalities take on a larger audience. That’s when I became curious about the baby talking animals, esp dogs. To be fair, Boudreaux does have his own particular dialect, you might say, as did his Auntie Goldstein. His sister Lily Bob also has her own vernacular (I could go on…but you get the picture, maybe too well). So, I suppose there is no room for my personal beliefs or theories on the voices of other pets as heard by their human. We have a new puppy and who knows where that will lead….