Written by on 24/09/2015

 It’s even been reported on national TV news as well as social media. Firstly reported on the Dunoon Observers website after it first surfaced on the Church of Scotland face book page the story of Ginger the dog who learned Gaelic commands in three weeks at a Kirk run Gaelic teaching

gaelic understanding Dog

Neil Smith took his four-year-old hearing dog Ginger along to the weekly session at a church near Dunoon.

Mr Smith said he was amazed to see how quickly the English Cocker Spaniel started responding to the words for sit (suidh), stay (fuirich), come here (trobhad) and good dog (cu math).

Class teacher Elma McArthur said Ginger was a very sharp dog.

Mr Smith and Ginger have been attending the Gaelic group at Strone Church of Scotland every week along with 23 other people.

gaelic class pupil

Pictured are Moderator the Right Rev Dr Angus Morrison, tutor Elma McArthur, Neil Smith and Ginger.

The 67-year-old paid tribute to his hearing dog: “He has given me a lot of confidence because I used to be a very shy person and often felt quite isolated in company, even with family and friends.

“Going to the Gaelic class gets me out and about to meet people, and I have always wanted to learn the language because my great-grandmother spoke it but it was not passed down through the family, so Ginger is helping to lead a family revival.

“Ginger has picked it up really quickly, it only took him about three weeks.

“It is great because I can show off that he is a bi-lingual dog – people think it is amazing that he can do that and it is a wee bit of added interest to the class.”

WATCH Neil Smith give his English Cocker Spaniel instructions in Gaelic – skills the pooch took just three weeks to learn at a language class held at Strone Church in Argyll

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