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Is this phrase correct: "My favorite animal is a dog."?


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Is this phrase correct: "My favorite animal is a dog."? #1 (permalink) Thu Apr 28, 2005 8:48 am   Is this phrase correct: "My favorite animal is a dog."?
 

Would please tell me if any of the following statements are incorrect:

My favorite animal is a dog.
My favorite animal is dogs.
My favorite animal is the dog.
My favorite animals are dogs.

Thanks.
Derek Wang
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Dog etc #2 (permalink) Thu Apr 28, 2005 12:34 pm   Dog etc
 

The second one doesn't make sense: My favourite animal is (SINGULAR) dogs (PLURAL).
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Dog or dogs #3 (permalink) Thu Apr 28, 2005 16:49 pm   Dog or dogs
 

Thank you very much for your immediate reply. But can "My favorite animal is dogs." be taken to mean: "My favorite kind of animal is dogs in general"? Is that absolutely necessary that the subject complement has to be singular when the subject is singular? Is it correct to say: "Dogs are a man's best friend"?
Derek Wang
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Dogs #4 (permalink) Thu Apr 28, 2005 17:05 pm   Dogs
 

Why do you ask the question if you already know the answer?
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Dog or dogs #5 (permalink) Fri Apr 29, 2005 3:57 am   Dog or dogs
 

Dear Alan:

Thank you for your reply. I asked the questions because I am confused and not sure if my thinking is corect. I need to consult with native speakers, especially an expert like you.

Do you mean that both of the following sentences are acceptable?

My favorite animal is dogs.
Dogs is a man's best friend.

I teach Englsih in Taiwan and occasionally have to be confronted with questions like these.
Derek Wang
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Dog or Dogs #6 (permalink) Fri Apr 29, 2005 4:38 am   Dog or Dogs
 

Dear Alan:

Further to my reply posted an hour ago:

I meant if "Dogs are a man's best friend. " is acceptable. I made a mistake in my previous reply. Sorry.

Derek
Derek Wang
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Grammar #7 (permalink) Sat Apr 30, 2005 0:46 am   Grammar
 

"My favorite animal is dog." Better use this way as neither the indefinite nor the definite is suitable.
Avoid use of plural in such expressions.
Narayanan Krishnaswamy
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Article #8 (permalink) Sat Apr 30, 2005 9:24 am   Article
 

The use of articles the and a(n) can be specific or generic. In this sentence: My favourite animal is the /a dog the use is generic because it refers to an example of a class in general. The sentence: My favourite animal is dog is confusing because it suggests that dog is some kind of substance or quantity rather than as an example of an animal.
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Dog #9 (permalink) Mon May 02, 2005 11:58 am   Dog
 

My favorite animal is dog. Here, there is no possibility of mistaking 'dog' to be a substance or any other thing other than a dog, since the word 'animal' is there.
When you just say 'dog', you express your general reference. If you say 'a dog', people may wish to know which one. If it is 'the dog', it may mean that you have a particular dog in mind. Let us change the form:
'Dog is my favorite animal.'
'A dog is my favorite animal'
The dog is my favouritew animal.
Which one will you prefer, if you are referring to dogs in general?
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Article #10 (permalink) Mon May 02, 2005 19:12 pm   Article
 

I 'm intrigued by the dogmatic and dismissive way you have been adopting the last few days when you refer to an answer that I have just given. I have said that the absence of any article in the sentence: My favourite animal is dog sounds confusing to a native speaker and then you add that there is no possibility ....Throughout the last how many hundreds of replies I have given on these forums I have tried to express what I think is acceptable but I certainly haven't dismissed out of hand what someone else has suggested.
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Dog or dogs #11 (permalink) Tue May 03, 2005 1:57 am   Dog or dogs
 

Dear Alan,
I feel very bad. I never intended offence. If I had knowingly or unknowingly offended you, forgive me. There was no offence intended, but only to defend, I might have written a few things. Let us discuss and be friends. Let our discussions run wild , not us.
I also wanted to say more about using articles.
As you pointed out, I accept that the indefinite or definite article can be used to refer to a very general idea, particularly ‘generic.’
The cow gives milk.
A dog is an animal.
But here the sentence in question is ‘My favorite animal is a dog.’
The problem arises because of the use of ‘My favorite animal’. He may be referring to dogs in general, but using ‘My favorite animal’ here creates problems.
If a question is asked on his favorite animal, will he answer ‘a dog’ or just ‘dog’?
Therefore, I prefer, ‘My favorite animal is dog’ to any other. I suggest ‘My favorite animal is dog’ or ‘Dog is my favorite animal.’ Better still ‘Dogs are my favorite animals.’ Always change the construction when in doubt – the golden rule.
Narayanan Krishnaswamy
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Dog or dogs #12 (permalink) Wed May 04, 2005 17:03 pm   Dog or dogs
 

I prefer Alan's answer.
Because dog is a countable noun, "My favorite animal is dog." is not acceptable by grammar.
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Dog dogs #13 (permalink) Sat May 07, 2005 3:05 am   Dog dogs
 

I would like to go deep into it.
A dog ia an animal-acceptable.
Dos are animals-acceptable.
An animal is a dog.*
Animals are dogs.*
My favorite animal is a dog.
A dog is my favorite animal.
Dog is my favorite animal.
Dogs are my favorite animals.
Which do you prefer?
Narayanan Krishnaswamy
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Dogs #14 (permalink) Sat May 07, 2005 9:03 am   Dogs
 

There is an expression in English, which I'm sure you know, that goes flogging a dead horse and means pursuing an idea beyond what is credible. If I may, I'd like to create a new expression and call it flogging a dead dog!
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Dog or dogs #15 (permalink) Sat May 07, 2005 9:08 am   Dog or dogs
 

It is a nice expression.

But , the problem created by, 'My favorite animal was... ' won't get resolved by that.
I think, the best solution is to change the construction.
Narayanan Krishnaswamy
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