Everyone loves to talk about their favorite animals, especially their pets (goodness knows I do!). Today we’re going to learn the words for common pet animals (but know that I can’t include them all!):

Le chat (singulier), les chats (pluriel)
Le chien (singulier), les chiens (pluriel)
L’araignée (singulier), les araignées (pluriel)
Le serpent (singulier), les serpents (pluriel)
L’oiseau (singulier), les oiseaux (pluriel)
Le hamster (singulier), les hamsters (pluriel)
Le lapin (singulier), les lapins (pluriel)

And now for some barnyard friends, along with the word for the meat of that animal:

La poule (singulier), les poules (pluriel), le poulet (la viande)
La vache (singulier), les vaches (pluriel), le boeuf (la viande)
Le cochon (singulier), les cochons (pluriel), le porc (la viande)
Le cheval (singulier), les chevaux (pluriel), la viande de cheval (la viande)*
Le mouton (singulier), les moutons (pluriel), le mouton / l’agneau (la viande)


La chèvre (singulier), les chèvres (pluriel), la viande de chèvre (la viande)


* Though it is not served as commonly as other meats like chicken, beef, and pork, horse meat is consumed in France. It dates back to the French Revolution and continues to this day. See this article for more on the subject if you’re interested.


Using our newfound knowledge on animals, we can begin talking about pets!

The way to say “I have” in French is very short and consists of only three letters:




This is a contraction of je, the personal pronoun I in French, and the verb ai


Je ai


But because French can’t have two vowels next to each other, the “e” is dropped and it becomes:




This is called a contraction. We have these in English:


Don’t = do + not

Won’t = will + not

Isn’t = is + not

Aren’t = are + not


Using that one contraction j’ai in French, we can begin talking about personal possessions.


J’ai trois chiens = I have three dogs

J’ai quatre chevaux = I have four horses.

J’ai douze chats et trois chiens = I have twelve cats and three dogs.

J’ai cinq oiseaux = I have five birds.


We can also use animals to talk about things we like. Everyone likes to talk about their favorite things, right?


In French, the words (or rather, word) for “I like” are as follows:




Just like j’ai (I have), j’aime is a contraction, this time of these two words:


Je aime


Je is the personal pronoun I in French, and aime is the verb.


J’aime les chevaux = I like horses

J’aime la viande de chèvre = I like goat meat

J’aime les chats = I like cats

J’aime les chiens = I like dogs


Now to add one more thing to the mix:


What if you’re talking about things you don’t  like? To say that you don’t like something, you have to add two little words:


ne (or n’ before a vowel) and pas


These words are placed around the verb, like so:


Je n’aime pas les chevaux = I don’t like horses

Je n’aime pas les araignées = I don’t like spiders


In English, when negating something, we just use one word: notAnd like ne, it goes before the verb:

I do not like spiders

I do not like doing homework.



Test your knowledge of today’s lesson with a quiz

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