in

Woman’s Instagram Chronicles Teaching Her Dog To Speak & It Kinda Seems Like It’s Working

I can remember being a kid sitting in my room with the family dog. I’d look into his eyes and say, “If you can talk I won’t tell anyone. Just say something.” I was a very lonely child.

If only that little kid could see Stella, an 18-month-old Catahoula/Blue Heeler mix, who thanks to her owner Christina Hunger, has already learned 29 words and even some five-word phrases.

Christina Hunger works as a speech-language pathologist, but her side hustle is teaching Stella how to communicate. She does this with a system featuring several buttons that Stella can press, which then say that word out loud. Since training her on this system since she was eight weeks old, Stella now has the ability to communicate at the same level as a two-year-old child.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Christina Hunger, MA, CCC-SLP (@hunger4words) on

Hunger explains it this way: “People have two language abilities: receptive language which is language understanding, and expressive language which is what we say.”

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Christina Hunger, MA, CCC-SLP (@hunger4words) on

Even though dogs can’t really express themselves as thoroughly as humans can, they can still express themselves in several other ways.

It all started with Hunger teaching Stella the word for “outside.” Christina would press the button for outside, then open the door. Eventually, Stella picked up on the relationship between the button and door. From there Stella’s vocabulary began to grow and the buttons multiplied.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Christina Hunger, MA, CCC-SLP (@hunger4words) on

Imagine how great it would be to communicate with dogs? Sure, they’ve been doing this with apes for decades but who wants to chat with something that could tear off your arms and beat you to death with them? And even tell you they plan on doing it. Not me. I want to talk to dogs. If my dog could even once tell me she loves me I could die happy.

More wholesome posts: