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The 4-1-1 On the Latest Internet Pet Language

Given the nature of the world-wide web, most of us veer between having a strong grip on modern slang and a decidedly weak one. Sure, there are tutorials available that allow you to “speak Tumblr”, but as with anything that’s constantly changing, they might only get you so far. As we spend more time online, our prime influence on language is, undoubtedly, the internet.

The power of internet slang is somewhat contradictory; it can either facilitate or impede communication. Of all the trends found online, internet pet language has the power to baffle, entertain, or even dismay some people. Wondering who has the 4-1-1 on what it all means? Look no further.

But First, a Primer

To understand internet pet language, we turn to the meaning of slang:

  • Can be a combination of existing words
  • An entirely new word
  • An abbreviation
  • Revamps older words and applies new meanings or generalizations
  • Is used by groups and subgroups to label certain unique attributes

While slang is not a catch-phrase, graffiti, or jargon, it can signify differences, highlight affiliations, and cleverly describe objects, actions, or activities. The fun part of slang or an internet meme is that we are not only influenced by others like us (in this case, pet lovers), but we’re also participating in an “event” together.

Mercury Rising

Trends of all kinds come and go, and internet pet language is no exception. While certain phrases outlast others, most sentiments diminish over time. So, the good news is that there will always be something new to replace what you thought you just learned. That is good news, right?


The website LOLCats goes back to 2006. At the forefront of burgeoning internet pet language, this site features pictures of cats with blocky captions written with major grammatical deviations.

A year later, I Can Has Cheezburger was launched and a truly active internet community came together over their collective adoration for animals. From silly cat pictures and funny captions, the sensation behind the success of the website has ballooned into over 50 new sites, all fueled by internet submissions and readers, like Know Your Meme.

Doggo and Bork

Reddit is a wildly popular bulletin board-style website that posts submissions from registered community members. This huge site is divided into various categories and “subreddits”, and continues to be highly influential in the evolution of internet pet language.

Recently a subreddit posted a graphic called The Doggo Kingdom that details new slang names for an assortment of different pets. For instance, a “doggo” refers to, quite simply, a dog. Puppies are “puppers” or sometimes even “pupperinos”. Likewise, “corgos” are corgis, “woofers” are big dogs, “floofs” are fluffy cats, and so on.

To Bork or Not to Bork

DoggoLingo or DoggoSpeak is not only changing the way we perceive dogs, but the ways in which we communicate with them. Who would have ever thought we’d actually type words like bork, let alone say them in context (as in “my doggo likes to bork at the mailman”)? Let’s not forget mlem to describe a dog’s tongue sticking out, or the cat’s version, blep.

If internet pet language has changed the way we do things, that means pets are the center of attention. And that gives all of us at West Park Animal Hospital “all the feels”.

The post The 4-1-1 On the Latest Internet Pet Language appeared first on West Park Animal Hospital Blog.