i think languages logo

Can animals learn human language?

can animals learn human language

We’ve been talking about how to learn languages and the process of natural language acquisition.

But can animals do the same? Can animals learn human language?

There are many scientific and theoretical explanations for each angle, so let’s examine two premises for this idea.

Premise 1: Animals can learn human language

Can animals learn human language just by hearing the words?

If you have seen videos of birds (African grey parrot, cockatoo), beluga whale, horses, apes (gorillas, chimpanzees), dogs, cats, or any other animal speaking to their owner, then you may think they can understand human language.

Animals respond to human speech by training them in that environment.

Many farm animals like horses, ducks or geese, and cows respond to either their owner’s call or a farm dog.

You can even train your pets to talk to you about their needs with a tool called “recordable training buttons”.

Humans are sometimes portrayed as the only primate species capable of vocal learning, a capacity shared by many groups of mammals (bats, pinnipeds, cetaceans, and elephants) and numerous orders of birds (songbirds, parrots, and hummingbirds).

However, experts continue to raise concerns about how other species’ voice learning compares to that of humans, the level of vocal learning in other primates, and how vocal learning evolved in humans.

According to research, they discovered that when the dogs heard nonsensical words, areas of their brains involved in auditory processing became more engaged.

They believe their findings indicate that dogs can distinguish between human words they’ve already heard and words they haven’t.

What we can learn from this theory of language development in the animal kingdom is that animals are capable to be trained under the right circumstances since they can process languages through different means.

Premise 2: Animals cannot learn the human language

Language and communication are two different aspects. Many people don’t know the distinction between communication and language.

Another argument that animals are unable to acquire human language is their inability to learn a human civilization. Human language is culturally and conventionally constrained.

That is not to say that a person cannot learn a second language that is related to his mother tongue.

When a person learns a second language, he realizes that language is culturally conventionalized based on his mother tongue experience.

Animals, on the other hand, do not have this culture to which they may refer, as people do.

Because human and animal language is formed from two unique environments, they not only appear different but also cannot be accessible by each other.

Humans’ capacity to sense time and items they cannot see has also resulted in cultural variations between the two languages.

As a result, an animal will never be able to learn human language or vice versa.

Our Thoughts

Whether animals can learn the human language or not is still in talks today.

What we can share with you is a natural way of learning languages through daily practice.

Speaking and thinking in your target language is one of the best practices when you have zero knowledge about a language you want to learn.

There are many tricks to learn languages faster since humans have a complex ability to memorize certain words and phrases.

Sometimes, the grammatical structure is not a high priority when you can understand the vocal communication of a native speaker through gestures.

Related Posts

How to learn languages on your own?

This blog will cover tips and strategies to help you effectively learn a language on your own and make the most of your language-learning journey.

How to memorize vocabulary in another language

This article will explore various techniques and strategies that can help you memorize vocabulary in another language more efficiently and effectively. Memorize vocabulary in another

How to learn a new language fast

Are you stuck on your language-learning journey? Follow these tips and learn a new language fast. Learn a new language fast How do you learn

Speech shadowing – Languages

Find out how speech shadowing language learning techniques can help you improve your language proficiency. What is the shadowing technique? Speech shadowing is a fun

5 easy ways to learn languages free

Do you find yourself having a hard time learning new languages because of a lack of resources? Here are 5 easy ways to learn languages

Practice speaking a new language

In this blog post, we will show you the effective tips to practice speaking a new language. Tips to practice speaking a new language Another

Rocket Language review

Learning languages is difficult for the majority of English speakers. Here’s the Rocket Language review that might help you in your learning. Read now. Rocket

Best nootropics for verbal fluency

Looking for a new way to learn languages fast? Here are the best nootropics for verbal fluency and what you need to know. Best nootropics

How to teach on Italki

Italki is one of the most popular language-learning platforms on the market. It provides learners access to native speakers worldwide who want to practice their

The fastest way to learn a language

Are you planning or currently learning a language? Here’s the fastest way to learn a language. Fastest way to learn a language Learning a new

How to learn languages

If you want to speak a foreign language, you might be wondering where you can get the best tips on how to learn languages. Read

Hearing vs listening: what are the differences?

Listening is an underrated skill. It’s essential, yet often overlooked. But what’s the difference? Hearing vs Listening. Hearing vs Listening Listening is an underrated skill.

Tips to focus on studying

Studying for an exam is difficult because it can be overwhelming. It’s important to remember that you will have good and bad days when it

Do language apps work?

If you are currently learning a foreign language, you might want to try to use language apps. Here’s what you need to know… Language apps

Learning a language with podcasts

Are you looking for an alternate way to learn a language? Learning a language with podcasts is your best option! Learning a language with podcasts

LanguaTalk review

Doesn’t it seem ideal to learn a language in the comfort of your own home? Here’s the LanguTalk review that you must know for your

Fluent Forever review

Are you using the Fluent Forever app to learn different kinds of languages? Here is the Fluent Forever review that might help you. Learn more.

Best Apps to Learn Languages

You’ve found the right place if you’re looking for the top language learning apps. You will also need to find other ways to learn if

Babble language review

Are you learning a new language? Are you considering using online apps and programs to make your study successful? Here is the Babbel language review

Babbel vs Duolingo: differences

In today’s post, we’ll talk about the differences between Babbel and Duolingo. These are unquestionably the two most well-known language learning programs out there. Let’s

Is learning a new language easy?

It is probably no news to you that the world is becoming more connected by the second. As a result, there has been an explosion

The best way to think in another language

You may think that bilinguals are the only people with the innate skill of memorizing two languages simultaneously. But with enough practice and familiarity with

Best ways to learn languages online

There are many types of language learners. Visual learners, audio learners, interactive learners, you name them. Quick lessons are one of the best ways to

Top 5 easy to learn languages

Learning a language has its pros and cons. It can be overwhelming to start without any prior knowledge of language learning. From romance languages to

Learn languages with native speakers

Have you tried making friends with someone from your target language? If you haven’t thought of using a language exchange app to find language experts,

Can animals learn human language?

We’ve been talking about how to learn languages and the process of natural language acquisition. But can animals do the same? Can animals learn human

Tips to learn languages at home

So you’ve started working on yourself and eventually enrolled in an online language class. We’ve given language learning tips on which apps to use or