1. Ever wonder why Fido buries his treats and even toys? This instinctual behavior stems from your pup’s instincts in the wild, where burying a surplus of food acted kind of as a fridge. In the case with food that takes a long time to eat, such as bones, burying the loot kept it safe from other animals who may try to steal it.
2. Chows are known for their distinctive black tongues, but they are actually born with pink tongues that turn black when they’re 8-10 weeks old.
3. There are more than a dozen separate muscles that control a dog’s ear movement. No wonder their ears are so expressive!
4. Speaking of ears, dogs have great hearing! Dogs can hear sounds at four times the distance that humans can.
5. Dogs have about 1,700 taste buds. Humans have about 9000 taste buds, and cats only have about 470. No wonder they love the trash!
6. Based on a life span of 11 years, the average cost of owning a dog is $13,550.
7. The earliest European images of dogs are found in cave paintings dating back 12,000 years ago in Spain.
8. Dogs’ eyes contain a special membrane, called the tapetum lucidum, which allows them to see in the dark. No night vision goggles needed!
9. Bloodhounds have been used to track criminals since the Middle Ages? These original detectives had a solid track record.
10. We’ve got a lot of puppy patriots. The U.S. has the highest dog population in the world. France has the second highest.
12. Obesity is the number one ailment facing dogs in the US. Make sure to keep your pooch on a balanced diet and get plenty of exercise together!
13. But these dogs probably don’t have an obesity problem. Greyhounds can run as fast as 45 miles per hour – that’s a fast dog!
14. Contrary to popular belief, dogs aren’t color blind. They can see shades of blue, yellow, green, and gray.
15. Flea infestations peak right around the fall season and they are on the rise. Keep the bugs at bay by treating your pet with flea & tick prevention and treatment medication on a monthly basis.
16. At the end of the Beatles song, “A Day in the Life,” Paul McCartney recorded an ultrasonic whistle, audible only to dogs, just for his pet Shetland sheepdog.
17. 62% of U.S. households own a pet, which equates to about 72.9 million homes.
18. Dogs curl up in a ball when they sleep due to an age-old instinct to keep themselves warm and protect their abdomen and vital organs from predators.
19. Plato once said that “a dog has the soul of a philosopher.”
20. The first dogs were self-domesticated wolves which, at least 12,000 years ago, became attracted to the first sites of permanent human habitation and for some reason, domesticated themselves.
21. Laika, a Russian stray dog, was the first living mammal to orbit the Earth, in the Soviet spacecraft Sputnik back in 1957. Even though she died in space, her baby Pushnika had four puppies with President John F. Kennedy’s terrier, Charlie.
22. The term “dog days of summer” was coined by the ancient Greeks and Romans to describe the hottest days of summer that coincided with the rising of the Dog Star, Sirius.
23. The most popular male dog names are Max and Jake. The most popular female dog names are Maggie and Molly.
24. The most dogs ever owned by one person were 5,000 Mastiffs owned by Kubla Khan.
26. Ever wonder why your pup turns around about three times before lying down? Dogs do this instinctually to tamp out predators (like snakes in the grass) before lying down.
27. The french poodle does not actually come from France. Rather, this loveable pet hails from Germany.
28. The Newfoundland dog has webbed feet, which help make them such good swimmers and water rescue dogs.
29. Hyenas are not actually dogs. They are more closely related to cats.
30. The shape of a dog’s face may determine how long it will live. Dogs with sharp, pointed faces that look more like wolves typically live longer. Dogs with very flat faces, such as bulldogs, often have shorter lives.
31. The ancient religion Zoroastrianism includes in its religious text titled the Zend Avesta, a section devoted to the care and breeding of dogs.
32. Zorba, an English mastiff, is the biggest dog ever recorded. He weighed 343 pounds and measured 8′ 3″ from his nose to his tail. The smallest dog on record was a matchbox-size Yorkshire Terrier. It was 2.5″ tall at the shoulder, 3.5″ from nose tip to tail, and weighed only 4 ounces.
33. Dogs are, on average, as intelligent as a two-year-old child. They are capable of understanding up to 250 words and gestures and can count up to five.
34. A dog’s normal temperature is between 101 and 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit.
35. Unlike humans who sweat everywhere, dogs only sweat through the pads of their feet.
36. Dogs have lived with humans for over 14,000 years. Cats have lived with people for only 7,000 years.
37. A dog’s shoulder blades are unattached to the rest of the skeleton to allow greater flexibility for running.
38. A puppy is born blind, deaf, and toothless.
39. Three dogs (from First Class cabins of course) survived the sinking of the Titanic. Two of them were Pomeranians and one was a Pekingese.
41. This may be obvious to some but the most common training command taught to dogs is “sit.”
42. Sound frequency is measured in Hertz (Hz). The higher the Hertz, the higher-pitched the sound. Dogs hear best at 8,000 Hz, while humans hear best at around 2,000 Hz. This is why dogs can hear pitches that human ears will never pick up.
43. In addition to sweating through their paw pads, dogs pant to cool themselves off. A panting dog can take 300-400 breaths (compared to his regular 30-40) with very little effort on their part.
44. Dogs and humans have the same type of slow wave sleep (SWS) and rapid eye movement (REM) during slumber. During the REM stage dogs also dream just as humans do. The cute twitching and paw movements that occur during their sleep are signs that your pet is dreaming.
45. Service dogs are trained to know when they are on duty. When their harness is on, they know it’s business time. When you take it off, the pups immediately become playful and energetic.
46. It costs approximately $10,000 to train a federally certified search and rescue dog. These dogs are used both during domestic federal programs and foreign military activities.
47. Dogs’ noses secrete a thin layer of mucus that helps them absorb scent. They often lick their noses to sample the scent through their mouth.
48. Spiked dog collars were invented in ancient Greece and were originally designed to protect dogs throats from wolf attacks.
49. Dalmatian puppies are pure white when they are born and develop their spots as they grow older.
50. A dog can locate the source of a sound in 1/600 of a second and can hear sounds four times further than a human can hear.