It’s or Its: Which Is a Pronoun?

With nouns, an apostrophe indicates possession (ex: Mireya’s book, the doctor’s stethoscope.) When substituting for nouns, we use personal pronouns (he, she it, we, they, etc.). However, here possession is expressed with possessive pronouns, not apostrophes.

Each personal pronoun comes with a matching possessive pronoun: his, her, and its. Most people struggle with its because they confuse it with the contraction for it is or it has, it’s. Let’s take a look:

Example: The dog was biting its paw. [The paw belongs to the dog so its is possessive.]

It’s always is the contraction for it is or it has.

Example: It’s been a particularly warm summer. [It’s is the contraction for It has.]

There is no word its’.

Choose the correct pronoun in the sentences below.

  1. The manager doesn’t think its/it’s a good idea to hire more employees during an economic downturn.
  2. The flashdrive appeared to have lost its/it’s content.
  3. Hao misplaced his phone, but he thinks its/it’s on his desk.
  4. It/It’s always fun to watch a cat chase its/it’s tail.
  5. Although Esteban enjoyed the film, he wasn’t impressed by its/it’s CGI.
  6. At its/it’s last meeting, the Board of Directors voted to allow employees to work remotely.
  7. Its/It’s not surprising to see the cost of employee benefits rising.
  8. In TechWave’s offices, its/it’s always acceptable to work on one of the many sofas placed around the open space.
  9. The marketing department lost its/it’s budget to hire freelancers.
  10. Because its/it’s been raining for a week, the Expo had to be moved indoors.

Its or It’s Exercise

AnswerKey_Its or It’s

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