Could you tell me all the possibilities of interpretation of this sentence.

I like a dog.

I know we should put "dogs".

But sometimes I find some books say "I like a dog."

Or like A dog is ~~~(general things).

1 Answer 1


I think you are being confused by the word 'like'.

When using it as a verb:

I like chocolate.

My mother likes to travel.

When using it as an adjective:

Just like a dog can be trained to hunt, a pigeon can be trained to race.

Definitions of like (MW):


to feel attraction toward or take pleasure in


the same or nearly the same

As to your specific question, the phrase:

I like a dog

is not clear whether it's grammatical or not. We need more context.

This sentence is not grammatical:

I like a dog.

But this sentence is grammatical:

I like a dog that doesn't bark too much.

And this sentence is grammatical:

I like dogs.

  • How about "I like dogs that don't bark too much"? is it grammatical as well? Dec 2, 2016 at 14:57
  • @Will Yes, that's also grammatical
    – John Feltz
    Dec 2, 2016 at 15:00
  • "I like a dog" is as grammatical as "I like a girl" or "I like a shot of rum" ...
    – Robusto
    Dec 2, 2016 at 15:49
  • @Robusto I thought about that. "I like a dry martini." But it sounds odd to me w.r.t 'dog' for some reason.
    – John Feltz
    Dec 2, 2016 at 15:50
  • 1
    @John: That doesn't make it ungrammatical. Even nonsense can be grammatical.. See Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.
    – Robusto
    Dec 2, 2016 at 15:52

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