Slovak: Inanimate plural of animals


New Member
Looking at the conjugation tables for certain masculine animals in Slovak, it looks to me as if the singular forms were on the pattern of animate masculine (the genitive being used for accusative, for example), but the plural on the pattern of inanimate plural.

Is this indeed the case, or am I getting my inflections wrong?
  • You are right, however there are some exceptions.

    slon - slony (elephants)
    zajac - zajace (hares)

    pes - psi, psy (dogs)
    vták - vtáci, vtáky (birds)
    Slovak declension patterns for nouns of the masculine gender:

    Masculine animal nouns are declined like chlap in the singular, but in plural:
    1. like chlap if: a) they end in -o or in -ek (e. g. maco - pl: macovia); in most cases however the declension like dub is also possible (samček - samčekovia / samčeky)
      b) they are the given name of the animal (Buran - pl: Burani)
      c) they are strongly personified, esp. in poems and as insults (e. g. orol - pl: orli, somár - pl: somári), unless (1) they are the nouns kôň and vôl , or (2) are used after the word ako (like)
    2. like hrdina, if they belong to the paradigm pony (e.g. pony, grizly)
    3. otherwise like dub if they end in a hard or neutral consonant (e. g. slon, kamzík); in the nouns pes, vlk, vták however the declension like chlap is also possible (pes - pl: psy / psi)
    4. otherwise like stroj (e. g. mravec, tuleň).
    Sources in Slovak:
    Nie sú psy ako psi
    Kedy píšeme psy a kedy psi
    Ako sa skloňujú zvieracie podstatné mená