Want to talk to your pet? New technology may be able to make that happen

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Channel 2's Fred Blankenship reports. We talk to a woman who says a trial made her dog act years younger, Tuesday on Channel 2 Action News at 5.

Do you ev er wonder what your dog is trying to communicate through his barks? New technology may be able to answer all of your questions, according to a recent report.

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Recent advances in artificial intelligence and machine learning may be able to help humans converse with animals, NBC wrote, because scientists are working to make  animal vocalizations and facial expressions easier to translate.

So far, researchers have been able to create an AI system that describes the dozens of calls marmoset monkeys use to talk to each other. They’ve also been able to determine when a sheep is in pain just by reading its facial expressions.

They're headed in the right direction, too, because an Amazon-sponsored report released last summer predicted that translators for pets will be available in 10 years.

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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.

Learn more here.

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