Why Talking To Your Dog Is The Best Therapy Ever

If I took a poll, I think it would be pretty safe to assume that every dog owner would admit to talking to his or her pooch. I imagine some people are more comfortable sharing things with their dog than they are, say, a close relative or professional psychiatrist. That’s how deep the human-dog bond can get.

talking to dogs

If you fall into that category of talking to your dog, then don’t worry. You’re not crazy and you’re definitely not alone.

talking to dogs

In a world filled with technology that minimizes our face-to-face communication, our ability to talk directly with other people seems to have been stunted.

This shift has resulted in an endless quest to find a way to talk to people without, you know, actually talking to them. This is where pet-directed speech comes in handy.

talking to dogs

When we talk to our dog in public, often times we are using pet-directed speech as a mask for human-directed speech. A great example is if you have ever heard someone politely ask their barking dog to quiet down. By communicating this message to their dog, what they are really saying is that they acknowledge your presence and are sorry their dog is being so loud right now.

talking to dogs

Through this simple pet-directed sentence, humans are able to perform both locutionary and illocutionary speech acts simultaneously. The locutionary speech acts are those at the surface of their message: “Dog, please stop barking.” The illocutionary speech acts are those that convey what they really mean: “I’m so sorry my dog is disturbing you, I really am trying to quiet him down.”

talking to dogs

By using pet-directed speech, we are able to communicate a message without actually engaging in conversation. It’s the perfect way to save face and avoid the perceived awkwardness of making small talk with a stranger.

talking to dogs

Now just imagine if our dogs could actually talk; we probably wouldn’t have a need to speak to another person ever again!

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