There are so many myths going these days its hard to keep a count of, but more than half of them are completely opposite. To build a healthier relationship with animals and your pets it is important to know how they tick. You need to know the difference between fact and fiction. Let’s start of with debunking these commonly believed animal myths that are completely untrue.
Myth 1. Cats should be fed milk
Anything other than their mother’s milk, can be a problem for most cats, because despite what shows like Tom & Jerry has portrayed through the years, cats are actually lactose intolerant, so you can’t really give them regular cow’s milk or goat’s milk. Generally the second best thing to feed newborn kittens after mother’s milk is the formula milk that is found in pet stores.
Myth 2. Camels store water in their humps
A camel can survive seven days without water, but not because they are carrying large reserves inside their humps. They’re able to avoid dehydration that would kill most other animals because of their oval-shaped red blood cells, plus the water retentive nature of their kidneys and intestines. As far as that hump goes, it’s nothing more than a big mound of fat, though a useful one at that — the lump provides camels with the same amount of energy as three weeks of food.
Myth 3. Owls are the wisest among birds
With their overly large eyes and the constant serious, almost thoughtful look on their faces, owls give off the impression of wisdom, of being a cut above the rest. From legends, folklore, children’s tales to Hollywood, owls have always been the night watchmen – sometimes sinister, always smart. Unfortunately owls are actually placed on the lower-end of intelligent birds, with the common crow considered the wisest among birds.
Myth 4. You can’t teach an old dog new tricksThis is a saying which has propagated the completely baseless myth that old dogs cannot be trained, which is absolutely wrong and prevents people from adopting senior dogs, who need homes. In fact, with approximately 15 minutes of training every day for two weeks straight, even the most stubborn dog can usually learn how to sit, stay, fetch, roll over or whatever your heart desires, regardless of age. The saying is meant to be taken less literally about dogs and more about people
Myth 5. Bats are completely blind
Although people often think bats are blind due to their only hunting at night, the fact is that all species of bats can see, although their vision is poorly developed. To compensate they have excellent senses of smell and hearing, and are able to use echo-location and sonar abilities to navigate and hunt at night. Their sonar abilities are so exceptional, that it gives them an almost accurate vision, much better than us humans with working eyes.
Myth 6. Earwigs live inside your ears
When people think of earwigs, they just assume that they tend to nest inside our ears, probably because of their names. They were actually named earwigs because if you stretch one out, it resembles a human ear. But before shuddering, hear us out – while earwigs are predisposed to hiding in warm, humid crevices, they’re not likely to choose your ear as their new home. Even if one did, it wouldn’t get very far — there’s a thick bone in your ear canal to block it from burrowing into your ear and laying eggs.
Myth 7. Dogs are colourblind
Dogs can see color, but not as wide a spectrum as humans can. In addition to black, white and shades of grey they can also distinguish between blue-voilet and yellow-green colors. In would probably be more correct to say that dogs are green-blind. Your pup may very well confuse red, orange and green, as well as green-blue, gray, and shades of purple, but the world is definitely not all black and white for them.
Myth 8. Goldfish has a 3 second memory
The actual memory span of goldfish is at least three months, and some researchers have managed to prove that goldfish can remember what they have been taught up to a year later. In addition to a very good memory, goldfish also have good vision, being able to distinguish between shapes and colors. So the next time someone ignorantly compares your memory to that of a goldfish, don’t forget to thank them!
Myth 9. Ostriches bury their heads in the sand when scared or threatened
The truth is that ostriches, or any other bird or mammal, would not be able to breathe if its head were buried in the sand. And the myth that they keep their heads buried in the sand when they are threatened in the hope that it will simply go away, is just that – a myth. The simple explanation for this myth is that ostriches bury their eggs in holes in the ground and often turn the eggs (with their beaks) and tend to the eggs several times a day. From a distance it often seems like the ostrich has its head buried in the sand.
Myth 10. A healthy dog’s nose is cold and wet
An old wives’ tale that has caused many a panic-stricken call to the vet. The temperature of your dog’s nose typically fluctuates during the day, ranging from dry and hot (often when waking up in the morning) to cold and wet later during the day. The moistness of your dog’s nose is also no indicator of their health, as it could be moist due to a nasal cold, for example.