How to Say ‘Dog’ in Korean

Last Updated on March 30, 2021 by 90 Day Korean
A woman carrying a dog outdoor

For all the dog owners and dog lovers residing in Korea, it’s really good to know how to say ‘dog’ in Korean.

You might want to use it to describe your current or previous pets, or to exclaim your love for the furry little friends of ours.

In this lesson, we will show you how to say ‘dog’ in Korean, as well as give you some example uses.

Let’s get to it!

A woman carrying a dog outdoor

‘Dog’ in Korean

The Korean word for ‘dog’ is very simple: You can just say 개 (gae)!

Often it appears that people confuse this word to be an alternative and the more common word for dog to be 강아지 (gangaji) but that is actually not true. 개 (gae) is the word to use when wanting to express the meaning of ‘dog’.

Later in this post we’ll cover more about the Korean word 강아지 (gangaji) and what it specifically means.

A great way to memorize the word for ‘dog’ is by using it in real sentences. Go ahead and try for yourself!

Sample Sentences

Dog in Korean

이 개를 우리 식구로 생각해요 (i gaereul uri sikguro saenggakaeyo)

I consider this dog as a member of our family.

저도 개를 기르고 있어요 (jeodo gaereul gireugo isseoyo)

I am also raising a dog.

그 개가 우리 집까지 따라왔어 (geu gaega uri jipkkaji ttarawasseo)

That dog followed me all the way home.

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Before ending this lesson on how to say ‘dog’ in Korean, it might be handy for you to learn some words similar to it.

강아지 (gangaji) = puppy

멍멍 (meongmeong) = woof woof (aka how dogs in Korea ‘bark’)

멍멍이 (meongmeongi) = not really a word, but this is the cutest way you can refer to a pup or a dog when you see one, and especially kids in Korea love using it.

Oftentimes, 개 (gae) is also the word used to count units and pieces, so don’t get confused if you see this word being used in a context other than ‘dog’.

A Word of Caution About Romanization in Korean

While we often give the romanization for the words and phrases we talk about, it’s best to actually learn the Korean alphabet, Hangul. This is because romanization is only an approximation of the sounds in Korean. It can often be confusing because the pronunciation isn’t exact, so it’s easy to be misunderstood. Romanization is perhaps best left to assist in learning the pronunciation of the words.

The good news is that the Korean alphabet is extremely scientific, so you can learn to read in about 1 hour!

Now as long as you can remember this lesson you should be ready to tell people about your never dying love of dogs, describe the pups you are raising, or simply point at every dog you see on the streets while jumping up and down chanting 멍멍이(meongmeongi)!

Want more Korean phrases? Go to our Korean Phrases Page for a complete list!

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