Believe it or not, your baby – even as young as 6 months old – might be brighter than you think. In fact, your little tyke might be able to interpret the emotions of your family pet even before he/she can talk.

A new study published in the July edition of Developmental Psychology ( and reported in ( found that 6-month-olds can associate the sounds of growling, barking, and whining of dogs with pictures of the dogs showing corresponding body language.

"Emotion is one of the first things babies pick up on in their social world," said lead researcher Ross Flom, a psychology professor at Brigham Young University in Utah.

The children involved in the study - all between 6-24 months in age – had little or no exposure to dogs and, the older the children, the more quickly they associated the sounds with the appropriate picture. "The six-month-olds would look in that direction and kept looking in that direction," Flom told LiveScience. "The older kids would glance at it and then kind of look away as if to say, 'Oh yeah, I get it, it goes with that face. The task is ridiculous. I'm going to move on and look somewhere else around the room.'"

Past research has suggested that youngsters lose these perceptive abilities as they grow older, but the new study seems to indicate that they don’t really lose these abilities but, rather, they just show it in different ways.

Now that we know that they have these early abilities of perception, don’t you just wish they could talk when they were little so you could know what they are thinking?

Author's Bio: 

Jim Evans is a 42-year veteran of the health and fitness industry and internationally recognized fitness consultant.