Dogs are your constant companions. You know where they like to be scratched, what treats they love to gobble and just how far they want you to throw that stick. But as much as you know about your best canine pal, there are a few things you might not be aware of – 41 of them, in fact.
Below are 41 things you (probably) didn’t know about your dog.
- Dogs are more aggressive when being walked by a man than by a woman.
- Not all tail wagging is good: According to WebMD, a dog’s wag alters based on three moods – when he’s happy, when he’s agitated and when he’s scared. He’s happy when the tail is wagging in its natural position, agitated when it’s high and scared when it’s low.
- Smaller breeds mature faster than bigger breeds.
- Male dogs prefer to hang with female dogs, but females play with both genders.
- Puppies play with each other twice as much as older dogs.
- Fido better not commit any nosy crimes. According to dogasaur.com, “A dog’s nose print is as unique as a human’s finger print and can be used for identification purposes.”
- City dogs, on average, live longer than country dogs.
- Humans have been known to transfer H1N1 to their dogs.
- According to facts.randomhistory.com, a “dog’s shoulder blades are unattached to the rest of the skeleton to allow greater flexibility for running.”
- Your dog may be able to dance.
- Rin Tin Tin signed his Hollywood contracts with a paw print.
- Dogs may be able to fall in love. According to The Social Lives of Dogs by anthropologist Elizabeth Marshall Thomas, a dog named “Sundog” and another named “Bean” were agonized star-crossed lovers.
- According to researcher Stanley Coren, the smartest, best-trained breeds are comparable to a 2-year-old child in their ability to understand human speech. The smartest breeds (with good training) can understand up to 250 words, while the average dog can process 150. Top marks go to Border Collies, Poodles, German Shepherds, Golden Retrievers and Doberman Pinschers.
- Also according to Coren, all dogs dream – small dogs have more dreams than big dogs, but big dogs’ dreams last longer.
- Dogs on a leash are twice as likely to threaten other dogs.
- Apple seeds may be dangerous (and even fatal) for our four-legged friends. They contain arsenic.
- Dogs sweat between their paws.
- Secondhand smoke can cause dogs to develop nasal tumors or even lung cancer.
- For a couple of weird dog-related legal statutes, check out the following: Police officers in Palding, Ohio are permitted to bite a dog to quiet it. And even wilder? Ventura County, Calif. prohibits cats and dogs from having sex without a permit. We wonder what the penalty is…
- Puppies are born blind. And deaf. And toothless. But they are born with CUTENESS.
- Watch out if you’re smiling at an unknown dog – it may be interpreted as a sign of aggression.
- A dog can hear sounds four times farther away than you can.
- Your puppy is in good company: There are an estimated 400 million dogs worldwide.
- According to Planet Dog: A Doglopedia, “One kind of Pekingese is referred to as a ‘sleeve’ because it was bred to fit into a Chinese empress’ sleeves, which was how it was often carried around.”
- Also according to Planet Dog, the best dog to attract a date is (shocker) a Golden Retriever. The worst? A Pit Bull.
- An Australian man charged with narcotics possession claimed his rights were violated when a drug-sniffing canine nosed around his genital region. The case was thrown out of court.
- Regardless of how it appears, your dog does not feel guilt. According to Barnard College researcher Alexandra Horowitz, the “guilty look” your dog gives you has more to do with your perception than his intention. Says LiveScience, “Dogs looked most ‘guilty’ if they were admonished by their owners for eating the treat.”
- According to a study done by the American Animal Hospital Association, 70 percent of pet owners sign their pet’s name on greeting cards.
- One dog really scored the royal treatment: Gunther III, the pet dog of German Countess Carlotta Liebenstein, inherited roughly 140 million German Marks (about $100 million) upon the Countess’ death in 1991.
- The Bible mentions dogs 14 times. Cats aren’t mentioned. (Sad.)
- According to Gwen Bailey, author of What Is My Dog Thinking?, dogs can identify a great deal of information by sniffing another dog’s urine. For example, the gender, health and age of the stranger, as well as the other dog’s mood at the time.
- Pet a dog – you may feel better. According to Bailey, scruffing your friend has been proven to lower blood pressure.
- Dogs can be incredibly prolific: one female dog and her female offspring can produce over 4,000 puppies in a seven-year span.
- According to The Pet Collective, a dog’s lifespan is correlated to their face shape. Dogs with flat faces (ex. bulldogs) tend to have shorter lives than their sharp-faced comrades.
- Three dogs survived the sinking of the Titanic, but sadly, nine did not.
- According to a 2008 study, dogs become jealous when they see another canine being rewarded.
- The Guinness Book of World Records lists the oldest dog at 29 – an Australian Cattle Dog named Bluey.
- “Fido” is Latin for fidelity.
- Weirdfacts.com asserts that 21 percent of dogs snore.
- Two U.S. Customs dogs named Rocky and Barco had a $300,000 bounty on their heads, courtesy of some very angry Mexican drug lords.
- Dogs are right or left handed. Just like us.
What are some other interesting dog facts you can think of? Share them in the comments below!
Many thanks to these sources: