Interesting facts about dogs
Today, the dog is the most common pet in the world. There are more than 400 million dogs living on our planet! Let's find out some interesting facts about them! Dogs are social animals so they get used to being with people or other animals since their birth. So when a new member appears in their family, it is not a problem for them to accept it. It is only important that this new member behaves friendly towards them! Dogs can be easily trained so they behave very well in certain circumstances. But you cannot train every dog the same way, because each one has its own personality and character. Their food habits are different too; some like eating vegetables or fruit but others prefer meat or even fish! The smallest breed is called Chihuahua and it is an ancestor of Mexican wolves. The largest breed is called St-Bernard and it measures about thirty-two inches (81 cm) at the shoulders when he stands on all four paws. He walks slowly but with dignity, usually carrying his head high with its characteristic black leather collar which is adorned with a large metal plate and a small bell.
Dogs have a very similar sense of smell to humans. It is even more developed in dogs than in humans, but only in the dog's brain, not in his nose! Dogs can recognize smells ten thousand times better than a man! The capacity for dogs to recognize smells is much greater than that of a human being. If we compare a human and a dog in their ability to identify odors, we would say that the dog recognizes about forty-five million different odors while the average man will only be able to distinguish 2 or 3 million! A lot of people think that dogs' small heads prove that they are stupid animals because they have smaller brains than other animals like cats, horses, or cows. However, do not forget how powerful and effective their noses are!
A dog can see very well in the dark because he has a tapetum lucidum, a special membrane that reflects light. It is this same reflection that causes your pet's eyes to shine at night when you turn on the lights. A pup sees best at around 50 yards (45 meters), just like people do.
Dogs have great memories, much better than human beings! They are able to remember about 200 signs/commands even after months without having seen them. A dog is also able to remember all of his family members and even faces he has seen only once for a short period of time.
A dog can hear sounds that are at four times the distance of those that people can detect. Moreover, dogs experience serious difficulty in making up the difference between similar sounds (for example F and H). If we make an analogy with human beings we would say that a dog hears as we see; they both perceive things worse than animals having better-developed senses (hearing or sight). That's why you must always give your pet some warning if you want him/her to do something!
Dogs as hunters?
Most dogs chase moving objects such as squirrels or balls and will try to catch them. However, there are some breeds that do not like chasing balls and others that do not like moving objects at all!
Dogs' life span
The average lifespan of a dog is 10 years but it can be as short as 5 years or as long as 15 years. In general, small dogs live longer than large dogs. The oldest known dog was an Australian cattle dog named Bluey who lived for 29 years!
If your dog has a temperature of over 39°C, you have to take him/her to the veterinarian because it could be a symptom of a serious illness! A healthy dog's temperature rarely exceeds 38°C. Remember that just 0.5° higher is a sign of a fever.
The skin of a dog is much thicker than the skin found on the human body and, therefore, it contains far fewer nerves. This explains why your pet can sleep in your bed without being hurt by thorns or nails when he runs! In addition, his feet have no sweat glands so they do not perspire like ours do when we wear shoes!
Your pet's ear canal goes from the outer ear to the eardrum and then to the middle ear which has three bony ossicles that transmit sound waves to the inner ear composed of the cochlea and semicircular canals. The cochlea is also called "bone of hearing" and it allows a dog to hear a frequency range going from 20 Hz to 60,000 Hz. It's much better than the human ear which can only hear sounds in a frequency range between 20 Hz and 20,000 Hz!
A dog's nose is amazing! If we could make even a tenth of the noises that he hears, we would need an orchestra of 100 musicians. In addition, dogs can smell about 1/100th of what they taste. That means your pet tastes something when he eats it and then smells it again after swallowing his meal! Finally, thanks to their extremely strong olfactory capabilities, canines can easily distinguish one person from another just by sniffing their clothes or belongings!
A dog's saliva contains pheromones which allow them to mark their territory and they spread through the air so every other animal in its surroundings can smell them. This is why your pet constantly smells all of his surroundings! You will notice that when a strange dog or another person comes into your home, your dog will immediately go and sniff the new arrival!
This is where dogs lose us! The canine mouth has 42 teeth, while we humans have 32 less than four wisdom teeth. On top of this, a human has two more incisors, one more premolar, and three more molars than a dog does - giving him a total of 38 instead of 42. In fact, depending on the breed, some dogs may have as many as 44 teeth!
We all know that dogs pant to release heat from their bodies. This is not the only reason why they do it. Not at all! There are breeds of dogs who can sweat through their skin so they do not need to pant! Some of them use their tongue instead of cooling down. When a dog pants, he puts his tongue out of his mouth and lets the wind evaporate his saliva which has a cooling effect - just like using an ice cube or cold water on your forehead on a hot day does for us humans! The more active a dog is, the more he will need to cool himself down by doing this trick! Now you know why your pet pants so much! Leaving his tongue hanging out also serves to give him a better sense of smell because it moistens the nasal mucosa. Dogs' tongues are very useful when they drink water, too. They use their tongues in the same way that cats do to direct water into their mouths instead of wearing it all over their faces!