A British man has shared an awkward experience after moving to Australia four years ago.
Ryan Rose Evans, who is originally from London, took to his TikTok on Tuesday to explain to his followers why he refuses to use the word “stroke” when petting a dog.
The life coach said he was surprised to learn the word stroke had “sexual and creepy” connotations.
“I’ve got a funny story about the Australian language and when I first moved over to Australia this happened to me,” he began the clip.
For context, Ryan explained than in the UK, when someone wants to pet a dog, they ask to “stroke” it.
“You just would say ‘can I stroke your dog’. [But] in Australia ‘stroking’ does not mean that. “They call stroking a dog patting a dog.”
He then explained an awkward encounter when he asked an Aussie dog owner if he could “stroke” their dog.
“I walked up to someone with a cute dog and asked ‘Can I stroke your dog’. You can imagine the look.”
He said the dog owner gave him “a look” before correcting him and saying: ‘Yea mate, you can pat my dog’.”
“If you’re a pom and you have moved over to Australia – it’s ‘pat your dog’, not ‘stroke your dog’,” he warned fellow Brits.
“No one wants their dog felt up or touched up in an inappropriate way at all.”
Ryan’s clip has been viewed more than 250,000 times and has attracted over 1000 comments from Aussies weighing in on his experience.
“3 seconds in and I knew you were in trouble,” one TikTok user wrote.
“*Tightens grip on leash when you walk past me and my dog*,” another woman joked.
“Started laughing as soon as you said stroke,” said another.
Others pointed out that not every country uses the word “pat”.
“They say pat in Scotland. Or clap,” one user wrote.
“Usually ‘clap’ for me,” another said.
“Bro, if someone asked me if they can clap my dog, I’m going straight to the police,” a third person joked.
And it isn’t the only English word that can get lost in translation.
“When I moved to England from Aus I told someone I was buggered…. Tired in my language, apparently not the same meaning,” one woman laughed.
“I have to say, the word ‘route’ has a whole new meaning over here too,” a Brit added.