Anna Taylor, a London graduate student is recording dog vocalizations in an effort to decode the meanings behind them. She’s using 300 noisy canines to help produce her “data.” In an article in South Africa’s IOL Taylor explained that dog sounds are made up of “formants,” sounds that convey a variety of information to the listener.
The information collected should allow her to discover whether there is a link between the formant produced and the size and type of each dog, and whether this information is available to human and canine listeners.
Her basic theory is that dogs vocally communicate more for human benefit than their own. She hopes to test the theory within her research.
Owners like to think they know what their dog is saying when it barks. Hopefully, this research will help to reveal scientifically what man’s best friend is really communicating.
Personally, I’m not so sure I want to know EVERYTHING my furkids are trying to say. It’s hard enough now staying in control of the house. As long as I can pretend I don’t understand they all want dog cookies, I can pretend ignorance for a while. What do I do when THEY know I can understand what they’re saying?