Dog Uses Soundboard To Ask Big Existential Questions Just Like Humans

 

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A post shared by I Am Bunny (@whataboutbunny)

If you ever wished that your dog could talk to you (aside from barking) then you’ll want to meet Bunny the Sheepadoodle. The TikTok star has been using augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) buttons in order to use human words to communicate with her paw-rent, Alexis Devine. To talk to Devine, Bunny presses buttons with her paws, and each button represents a word like “I” or “human” or “walk.” These can be very helpful when Bunny needs to go outside or sees a bird. But recently, it appears that the pup has forgone the straightforward talk for the more existential questions that tend to consume human existence.

Devine posted a recent video of Bunny seemingly questioning her sense of self. In the video, she pressed the button for “dog,” then “what,” a third button for “dog,” and finally “is.” Devine spelled it out for the viewer. “Dog what dog is?” She said,  the question sounding like it'd be at home in a philosophy class. And this isn't the first time Bunny has ventured into this question category. “This is happening so frequently,” Devine wrote in the caption, “that I'm going to add the buttons ‘animal' ‘same' and ‘different.'”

Since that first query, the curious canine has continued to ruminate on the big questions that many of us struggle to answer ourselves. She asked “Dog why?” and even looked into the mirror and was seemingly able to identify herself as Bunny—something that human babies learn to do.

The series of videos are a fascinating look into the project called They Can Talk, which is a community attempting to understand if animals can communicate with us through AAC systems. Bunny is one of nearly 2,600 dogs and 300 cats enrolled in it.

If you’re curious to learn more about AAC, make sure you read about Christina Hunger and her pup Stella. In 2019, the pair went viral for Hunger’s soundboard that allowed Stella to communicate in a meaningful way.

Bunny the Sheepdoodle has learned how to communicate with her human Alexis Devine by pressing buttons on the ground, in which each button corresponds to a different word.

 

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A post shared by I Am Bunny (@whataboutbunny)

 

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A post shared by I Am Bunny (@whataboutbunny)

 

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A post shared by I Am Bunny (@whataboutbunny)

Lately, Bunny has been asking existential questions that tend to consume human existence.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by I Am Bunny (@whataboutbunny)

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by I Am Bunny (@whataboutbunny)

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by I Am Bunny (@whataboutbunny)

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by I Am Bunny (@whataboutbunny)

I Am Bunny: Website | Instagram | TikTok
h/t: [Salon]

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Sara Barnes

Sara Barnes is a Staff Editor at My Modern Met and Manager of My Modern Met Store. As an illustrator and writer living in Seattle, she chronicles illustration, embroidery, and beyond through her blog Brown Paper Bag and Instagram @brwnpaperbag. She wrote a book about embroidery artist Sarah K. Benning titled 'Embroidered Life' that was published by Chronicle Books in 2019. Sara is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art. She earned her BFA in Illustration in 2008 and MFA in Illustration Practice in 2013.
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