'it' to refer animal or baby


Senior Member
As far as I know, we should refer animals and babies as it.

But wouldn't be correct if I said:

A. "My dog was so happy when I returned from my journey, that he jumped for joy?"

B. "The baby kept me up all night, she didn't want to drink, eat or have her diaper changed!"
  • Winstanley808

    English - U.S.
    In English, you can use masculine and feminine pronouns for animals and babies (and baby animals) whose biolgoical sex you know. In the absence of this information, cats are often referred to as feminine rather than neuter, but for other animals we usually use the neuter pronouns; ditto for human babies whose sex we don't know.


    Sixties Mod
    English UK Southern Standard English
    In my experience as a BE-speaking dog owner, people in the UK automatically seem to assume that a dog is "he" unless told otherwise. :) You might well refer to the dog as "it" if 'it' had annoyed you for some reason, though.
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