Do you have full-on conversations with your pets? Don't worry! You're not insane. A study shows that talking to your dog or cat is actually a sign of intelligence. Whether you baby talk as soon as you see them or give them a play-by-play of your day, it's totally acceptable.
Dr Nicholas Epley, a professor of behavioral science at the University of Chicago, explains, "Historically, anthropomorphizing (giving human characteristics or behavior to objects or animals) has been treated as a sign of childishness or stupidity, but it's actually a natural byproduct of the tendency that makes humans uniquely smart on this planet. No other species has this tendency."
Next time someone makes fun of you for treating your pets like they're members of your family, you can explain to them that you're actually just displaying your sharp intellect.
Lauren Levine is a freelance writer who has contributed to publications and websites including The Huffington Post, Hello Giggles, Bustle, Thought Catalog, The Charlotte Observer, U.S. News & World Report, and others. She’s also the co-host of The Margarita Confessionals podcast. Say hi on Twitter, @lifewithlauren1.