10 Myths About Dogs
Do you truly know much about dogs, our faithful companions? Numerous misconceptions and myths have circulated regarding their eating habits, nutritional needs, and behavior over the years. To enhance your understanding of your furry pal, we have debunked 10 prevalent dog myths that hold no truth.
#1 Warm and dry nose
Veterinarian Suzanne Hunter, DVM, states that your dog’s health is not determined by the temperature and moistness of their nose. The only accurate method to check for fever is by taking their temperature, typically using a rectal thermometer, which should read between 100-102.5 degrees. A decreased appetite and activity level are better indicators of illness in dogs. Other signs to watch for include vomiting, diarrhea, excessive or reduced urination, coughing, sneezing, and discharge from the eyes, ears, or nose.
#2 You can tell a dog’s mood by its wagging tail
The wag of a tail is not always an indicator of friendliness. It’s crucial to be cautious, as misinterpretation can lead to being bitten. Tail wagging can signify happiness, excitement, or alertness, but it can also signal fear, and anxiety, or be a precursor to aggression. Canine body language is intricate and subject to misinterpretation. Always assess the dog’s overall body language. Even better, obtain permission from the owner before approaching or petting an unfamiliar dog. This is especially important for children who have the urge to pet every dog they encounter.
#3 A dog’s mouth is cleaner than a human’s
The origin of this myth likely stems from the observation that dogs appear to heal faster when they lick their wounds. However, their faster healing is not due to having a clean mouth; rather, the act of licking removes damaged tissue and enhances blood flow, promoting quicker recovery. If your dog is anything like mine, litter box treats are their preferred snack. Keep in mind that dogs do not brush their teeth twice a day, and around 80 to 90% of dogs over three years old have some form of periodontal disease. Hence, it’s unlikely that your dog’s mouth is cleaner than yours.
#4 All dogs are good swimmers
Many people have a misconception that all dogs are instinctive swimmers. While dogs enjoy being in the water, not all of them possess strong swimming abilities. According to TeamDogs, certain breeds with robust chests and heavy skulls, such as bulldogs, mastiffs, dachshunds, and boxers, are not proficient swimmers. Additionally, extra caution should be taken when introducing small dogs to water due to their increased susceptibility to hyperthermia.
#5 Dogs are treated with grass
Some dogs may consume grass when feeling unwell or nauseous. However, numerous other reasons can prompt dogs to eat grass, such as boredom, displacement behaviors, or simple enjoyment. As long as the grass hasn’t been treated, this behavior is harmless. Therefore, if your dog indulges in small amounts of grass without experiencing any health issues, there’s no need to discourage this behavior.
#6 Dogs age seven years for every human year
Determining the age of breeds isn’t as straightforward due to various factors influencing a dog’s lifespan. Vital aspects beyond breed include appropriate living conditions, proper care, a hygiene routine, a healthy diet, and sufficient exercise for a long, fulfilling life. Notably, smaller breeds like Beagles and dachshunds boast lengthier life spans compared to larger breeds.
Many kids and adults adore watching movies about dogs’ lives. Examples include ‘Marley & Me,’ ‘Hachi: A Dog’s Tale,’ and ‘Old Yeller,’ which you can watch on different streaming services, such as Netflix. These movies are the best way to learn more about dog behavior and loyalty. If you face an access issue, you can use VeePN for Netflix to enjoy your favorite dog movies.
#7 Dogs can’t digest grains
Hunter attests that dogs indeed possess robust digestive systems despite common misconceptions. Corn, rice, and beets, when pre-cooked, serve not only as mere fillers but also enrich a dog’s diet by providing essential nutrients and protein. Grains, being a healthy component, are included in a dog’s diet as dogs are omnivores. Wismer emphasizes this fact.
#8 Dogs feel guilt
Dogs communicate various emotions to us, but the absence of evidence supports that they experience secondary emotions such as shame or guilt. Cute online videos of dogs appearing guilty are believed to be a learned response to human reactions.
#9 You can’t teach an old dog new tricks
Older dogs can indeed learn new tricks, but they may not always be eager to do so. As dogs age, their interest in acquiring new skills diminishes, and their responsiveness to training decreases. It’s important to keep in mind that some older dogs face challenges such as reduced vision, hearing, or joint issues that can make training more challenging. However, with patience and perseverance, older dogs can learn tricks within their physical limitations that are comparable to those learned by younger dogs.
#10 Female dogs should have one litter before being spayed
Don’t worry about your dog feeling empty if she never becomes a mother. According to Kraemer, this is a human emotion. It’s healthier for your pet to be spayed before waiting. Spaying female dogs before their first heat cycle greatly reduces their chances of developing breast cancer and life-threatening uterine infections, as stated by Hunter.
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