Dog taught English before being re-homed... because he only understands Polish

When Cent the Border Coillie was handed into to an animal shelter in Oldham, Lancashire, staff faced an unusual problem - teaching him English.

The staff were puzzled why Cent did not respond to commands. The dog had been owned by a Polish family who only spoke to it in Polish, so it turns out the dog could not understand English commands.

So workers at the RSPCA centre had to teach him English, which Cent picked up in only a month.

Hundreds of thousands of Poles have emigrated to Britain since Poland joined the EU in 2004. Britain's Polish population is 2 million.

Border Collie taught English before being re-homed... because he only understands Polish commands

By Daily Mail Reporter
13th January 2010
Daily Mail

When Cent the Border Collie was handed in at a rescue centre, staff faced an unusual problem - he only understood Polish.

The dog had belonged to family of Poles who were expecting a baby and could no longer look after him.

Workers at the RSPCA centre in Oldham were puzzled when Cent failed to respond to any of their commands.

Animal care assistant Roxanne Greenwood said: 'It turned out that Cent had only ever been spoken to in Polish.

Ruff guide: Cent had to be taught English by staff at the rescue centre

'I've been here four-and-a-half years and we've never had a bilingual dog here

'We went on the internet to look up some words but weren't really sure how to pronounce them as the language is quite different to English.

'In the end we just trained him as we would any other dog, by giving him treats, hand signals and lots of encouragement.


Sit - Siad
Heel - Noga
Stay - Zostan
Down - Waruj
Fetch - Aport
Good - Dobry pies/dobry chlopiec
Jump - Przeszkoda
Go outside - Na dwor/na miejsce
Go inside - Do srodka
Come here - Do mnie
No - Fe/Nie wolno
Leave it - Zostaw

'He picked up his new language in a month, which just goes to show how bright he is.'

After four months in kennels staff are hoping the New Year will be a new start for Cent.

Roxanne said: 'It's a long time for a dog to be in kennels.

'It's a stressful environment for him and he is now desperate to find a good home where he will be given lots of exercise.

'He can do all of the basic commands now including sit, come here and recognising his name.

'Whoever adopts Cent will need to have a bit more time to keep training him and bring him on.

'He loves to run around so if there is anyone with a garden or field nearby he would love it.

'He will make someone a fantastic pet.' The kennel staff say Cent is ideally suited to families with children over the age of 10 as he can be quite energetic and bouncy.

They also stress he would be better suited to a home where there are no other pets - but he does get on with other dogs if they get on with him.

To find out more about adopting Cent or one of the charity's many other animals, contact them on 0161 624 4725.

Choose me? Max is another dog at the Oldham Centre looking for a new home
Should have taught him reverse polish notation instead.

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