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Con Slobodchikoff, a biology professor at Northern Arizona University, has been studying the language of prairie dogs for more than 30 years. He’s been able to single out the calls they make when a predator is near and the noises they use to indicate the color of clothing a nearby human is wearing.
He wants to extend his work to other animals now. “I thought, if we can do this with prairie dogs, we can certainly do it with dogs and cats,” Slobodchikoff told NBC.
While his work is still in the early stages, he’s already collected thousands of videos of dogs. The recordings show a variety of barking sounds and body movements. With the help of an AI algorithm, he hopes to be able understand what a tail wag or particular bark means and later translate them into English.
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