"The Hidden Lives of Pets"- Interesting documentary on Netflix!

How does a chatty dog use 90 different buttons to “talk” with her human and a rat learn to race a miniature car? These are just some of the fascinating stories that are featured in the two episodes that I’ve watched thus far of “The Hidden Lives of Pets”*. This interesting documentary on Netflix is divided into four episodes: Intelligence; Communication; Super Senses; and Athletes.

Coincidentally, the second episode on “Communication” reminded me of @toml’s thread on “Animal Languages”. It shows that cats may copy the accents of their humans, including a cat whose meow sounds remarkably like the “well, hi” of her human from the Southern part of the United States. The meow of the cat from Northern Ireland sounded completely different. It also appeared to mimic the sounds that his human made.

During a recent sit, I noticed that one of the cats perked up when I turned on an audiobook with an English narrator. It made me wonder if the cat thought his human had returned because he reacted to the sound in a different way than he had been responding to my American accent.

Rather than post this in @toml’s thread, I decided to start a new thread because this series will surely be of interest to many members.

“The Hidden Lives Of Pets” shouldn’t be confused with the animated movie series “The Secret Life Of Pets”.

Stream It Or Skip It: ‘The Hidden Lives Of Pets’ On Netflix, A Docuseries That Shows Pets That Are Doing Things That Are Almost Human


Hi @Mary-Kay,

I’m glad you created a new topic as this is such great show and the science in animal behavior has drastically increased in the past decade and we are all the beneficiaries!

It’s also been making me consider if I should get talking buttons for our dog and see if he takes to it at all. I do think that dogs can pick up on accents and can even be multi-lingual my grandparents dog growing up was bilingual and would respond to both Spanish and English commands.

If you think The Hidden Lives of Pets was interesting you might also find this TED talk of particular interest as well. I always love to learn more about the animal/human connection.

Kelly & the Forum Team


Thank you for sharing @Mary-Kay I’m looking forward to watching this series. I love learning more about the amazing animals in this world. Do you have any other animal related shows/documentary recommendations? Thanks for sharing that TED Talk link @Kelly-Moderator ill check that one out too.

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Here’s the instagram account for Bunny the talking dog, and her human. Login • Instagram
It is astounding to watch this smart dog communicate with her humans.

And here is a cat who also uses speech buttons: Login • Instagram

I get so much joy from watching videos of these animals communicating in English with their humans.


i saw once a BBC documentary showing how far away cats were going when their owners were pretty sure they did not go far, only in their garden ! With a GPS on their collar, owners discovered the reality and began to be frightened as their cats dare cross roads at night … when they were sure they were kept safely
What was fascinating was the ability of cats to avoid agressive cats and choosing to hunt when the “bad” ones were not in their way !


Hi @Candide it was a fascinating documentary … unfortunately some of the documentary is unavailable but there is still some interesting content to view.


Been following whataboutbunny for a while…so fascinating!


@Kelly-Moderator Thanks for sharing the TED Talk link. I look forward to watching it! If you do get talking buttons for your dog, I hope you’ll share your experience with the forum.

@luckycat I’m now following Bunny (along with 1.1 million other people!) and billispeaks on Instagram. Thanks for recommending those accounts!

@Candide & @Angela-HeadOfCommunity Unfortunately, the link for the BBC documentary no longer works, perhaps because of my location settings. I was able to find it on dailymotion. It looks very interesting!

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There’s also a new podcast called Off Leash about dogs. It’s hosted by a dog cognition expert and looks at all kinds of interesting things about dogs, some truly surprising. I love listening to it while walking “my” current dog.


I’m going to have to do the same on my walkies with Zorro.