In Chinese, Pets (宠物) Means “A Spoiled Thing”

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What do all of these animals have in common? Look at images below and guess the meaning of this phrase.

They all don’t do anything but still get a roof over their heads, a bed to sleep on, and plenty of food. All while sleeping through the whole day. Then when you come back home, they make a mess.

Pets are spoiled beings and in the words for “pet” in chinese mean exactly that. 宠物 (chǒng wù) is the word for “pet”. “宠” (chǒng) has the connotation of pamper or spoil. “物” (wù) translates to “thing” in English.  So it literally is a spoiled thing.

They got it early on that pets are treated well and in turn don’t do anything.

Akin to English, the usage of the phrase “pet” in Chinese can be metaphorical as well. A someone who is overly subservient can be called a pet of whoever he/she serves. A pet can also be someone who is indulged and spoilt by someone.

宠物 (chǒng wù) translates to “pet” in English. “宠” (chǒng) has the connotation of pamper or spoil. “物” (wù) translates to “thing” in English. So it literally is a spoiled thing. A spoilt thing? That is a pet.

The Chinese language has got this spot on because pets don’t do anything and still get food and shelter. They get to sleep all day and have no responsibilities.

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