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Scientists developing ‘pet translator’ to help us understand animals

American scientists are working on a tool which will translate animal’s vocalisations and facial expressions into English with the use of AI.

Professor Con Slobodchikoff, animal behavioural expert from Northern Arizona University is hoping that the technology will be fully functioning ‘in less than 10 years’.

He has spent over 30 years studying the sophisticated communication of prairie dogs, a type of rodent native to North America.

Slobodchikoff and his colleague developed an algorithm which turned the vocalisations of prairie dogs into English, before starting up a company called Zoolingua with the aim to make more technology to help humans understand animals.

Slobodchikoff told NBC News: “I thought, if we can do this with prairie dogs, we can certainly do it with dogs and cats.

“This kind of technology could help humans better understand dogs and their behaviour. You could use that information and instead of backing the dog into a corner, give the dog more space.”

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