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I have a tiny rubber toy chick like the above picture.

When I squeeze it, it makes some hissing sound.

When I shake it, it flashes or blinks

Is it natural to say "squeeze the toy chick to make it hiss" and "shake the toy chick to make it flash"?

  • I imagine you know that's a bath toy, and when used as such it squirts water. But sure, when used dry, it might make a hissing sound. Similar toys for pets are called squeaky toys.
    – TypeIA
    Oct 26, 2020 at 8:43
  • @TypeIA, so we say "squeeze it to make it squeaky"?
    – Tom
    Oct 26, 2020 at 8:52
  • No, squeaky is an adjective. The verb and noun are both squeak, and it's a different sound than a hiss. Squeaky toys squeak; your bath toy may squeak or hiss when used dry, or squirt when used with water.
    – TypeIA
    Oct 26, 2020 at 9:24
  • @TypeIA, I might have understood the sound of the above toy wrongly. I would say the toy makes both squeak and hissing sound all together. If it made only hissing sound, people wouldn't buy it.
    – Tom
    Oct 26, 2020 at 9:29
  • @Tom sounds to me like it has a defect - not surprising in what is clearly a very cheap item. But back to the question - both examples are fine to my eyes.
    – MikeB
    Oct 26, 2020 at 9:37

1 Answer 1


Yes, both are correct.

In general, "X the Y to make it Z", where X is a verb, Y is a noun, and Z is another verb, is correct6 and natural. This is in the imperitive mood, and is instructional. The speaker is telling someone what to do (X) to achieve a result (Z).

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