Weird & Wacky

100 Weird Facts About Dogs

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Did you know that most Basset Hounds cannot swim?

Did you know dogs aren’t actually color blind? How about that the Newfoundland has webbed feet to help it swim? Or, that a third of all pet owners have admitted to speaking to their dog over the answering machine when they weren’t at home? Read these and other weird facts about dogs – and some about dog owners in this list from

100 Weird Facts About Dogs

1. It is a myth that dogs are color blind. They can actually see in color, just not as vividly as humans. It is akin to our vision at dusk.
2. Dogs DO have better low-light vision than humans because of a special light-reflecting layer behind their retinas
3. A German Shepherd guide dog led her blind companion the entire 2100 mile Appalachian Trail
4. If never spayed or neutered, a female dog, her mate, and their puppies could produce over 66,000 dogs in 6 years!
5. Dogs’ only sweat glands are between their paw pads
6. Like human babies, Chihuahuas are born with a soft spot in their skull which closes with age
7. The breed Lundehune has 6 toes and can close its ears
8. Teddy Roosevelt’s dog, Pete, ripped a French ambassador’s pants off at the White House
9. President Lyndon Johnson had two beagles named Him and Her
10. Franklin Roosevelt spent $15,000 for a destroyer to pick up his Scottie in the Aleutian Islands
11. In Roman times, mastiffs donned light armor and were sent after mounted knights
12. The Russians trained dogs during WWII to run suicide missions with mines strapped to their backs
13. A dog’s mouth exerts 150-200 pounds of pressure per square inch
14. … with some dogs exerting up to 450 pounds per square inch.
15. A one year old dog is as mature, physically, as a 15 year old human
16. The U.S. has the highest dog population in the world
17. France has the 2nd highest
18. The average city dog lives 3 years longer than a country dog
19. 87% of dog owners say their dog curls up beside them or at their feet while they watch T.V.
20. Dogs can be trained to detect epileptic seizures
21. 15 people die in the U.S. every year from dog bites
22. In 2002 alone, more people in the U.S. were killed by dogs than by sharks in the past 100 years
23. Gidget is the name of the Taco Bell dog
24. Newfoundlands are great swimmers because of their webbed feet
25. Basset Hounds cannot swim
26. Greyhounds are the fastest dogs on earth, with speeds of up to 45 miles per hour
27. Bingo is the name of the dog on the side of the Cracker Jack box
28. The bible mentions dogs 14 times
29. Three dogs survived the sinking of the Titanic – a Newfoundland, a Pomeranian, and a Pekingese
30. The Labrador Retriever is the #1 favorite breed in the U.S., Canada, and the U.K.
31. Obesity is the #1 health problem among dogs
32. An estimated 1,000,000 dogs in the U.S. have been named as the primary beneficiaries in their owner’s will
33. An American Animal Hospital Assoc. poll found that 33% of dog owners admit to talking to their dogs on the phone and leaving answering machine messages for them while away
34. Dog’s nose prints are as unique as a human’s finger prints and can be used to accurately identify them
35. At the end of the Beatles’ song “A Day in the Life”, a high-pitched dog whistle was recorded by Paul McCartney for his sheepdog
36. 70% of people sign their pet’s name on greeting and holiday cards
37. 58% put pets in family and holiday portraits
38. There are only 350 Cisky Terriers in the world – perhaps the rarest breed
39. The phrase “raining cats and dogs” originated in 17th century England when it is believed that many cats and dogs drowned during heavy periods of rain.
40. Dogs have no sense of “time”
41. Humans have kept dogs as pets for over 12,000 years
42. The largest breed of dog is the Irish Wolfhound
43. The world’s smallest dog breed is the Chihuahua
44. The St. Bernard is the heaviest
45. Only dogs and humans have prostates
46. But dogs do not have an appendix
47. Every dog on earth likely descended from a species knows as the Tomarctus – a creature that roamed the earth over 15 million years ago
48. The oldest known breed is likely the Saluki – originally trained by Egyptians to help them track game.
49. In 1957, Laika became the first living being in space via an earth satellite
50. … while JFK’s terrier, Charlie, father 4 puppies with Laika’s daughter
51. An African wolf dog known as the basenji is the only dog in the world that cannot bark
52. There are 703 breeds of purebred dogs
53. Dachshunds were originally bred for fighting badgers
54. The world’s smartest dogs are thought to be (1) the border collie, (2) the poodle, and (3) the golden retriever
55. … while the dumbest dog is believed to be the Afghan hound
56. A dog’s smell is more than 100,000 times stronger than that of a human’s
57. … which they need because their eyesight is not as keen as a human’s.
58. Dogs judge objects first by their movement, then by their brightness, and lastly by their shape
59. Chocolate contains a substance known as theobromine (similar to caffeine) which can kill dogs or at the very least make them violently ill
60. George Washington had thirty six dogs – all foxhounds – with one named Sweetlips
61. All dogs are identical in anatomy – 321 bones and 42 permanent teeth
62. Smaller breeds mature faster than larger breeds
63. Female dogs are only ready to mate – “in heat” – twice a year for a total of roughly 20 days
64. Puppies sleep ninety percent of the day for their first few weeks
65. Rin Tin Tin was the first Hollywood dog star
66. … and he really signed his movie contracts – all 22 of them – with a pawprint
67. The Wizard of Oz’s Toto was played by a female Cairn Terrier named Terry
68. Their vision is not fully developed until after the 1st month
69. Dogs have two times as many muscles to move their ears as people
70. The longer a dog’s nose, the more effective it’s internal cooling system
71. An elderly woman was saved by her 12 pound Yorkshire Terrier who fought off an 80 pound Akita and survived with only 9 stitches
72. U.S. Customs dogs “Rocky” and “Barco” were so good at patrolling the border that Mexican drug lords put a $300,000 bounty on their heads
73. Dogs are all direct descendants of wolves
74. Wolves and dogs can mate to produce fertile offspring
75. Female wolves have been known to travel great distances to regurgitate full meals for their hungry pups
76. Cerberus was the tri-headed dog that guarded the underworld in Greek mythology
77. Female dogs bear their young for 60 days before they’re born
78. Dogs’ sense of hearing is more than ten times more acute than a human’s
79. Humans can detect sounds at 20,000 times per second, while dogs can sense frequencies of 30,000 times per second.
80. The earliest dog fossil dates back to nearly 10,000 B.C.
81. Bloodhounds are prized their ability to single out and identify a number of scents simultaneously
82. Dalmatian puppies are born completely white.
83. The Ancient Chinese carried Pekingese puppies in the sleeves of their robes
84. Boxers are so named because of their manner of playing with their front paws
85. All breeds of dog have been found to attack livestock – from 3 month old puppies, all the way up to thirteen year old poodles
86. A dog’s heart beats up to 120 times per minute, or 50% faster than the average human heartbeat of 80 times per minute
87. The oldest dog on record – a Queensland “Heeler” named Bluey – was 29 years, 5 months old
88. Davy Crockett had a dog named Sport
89. Dogs were first domesticated by cavemen
90. Dogs live 15 years on average
91. Many foot disorders inn dogs are simply an issue of long toenails
92. More than 5,000,000 puppies are born in the U.S. every year
93. More than 1 in 3 American families own a dog
94. Average body temperature for a dog is 101.2 degrees
95. The Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts both offer merit badges in dog care
96. Dogs are natural pack animals
97. They are naturally submissive to any creature with higher pack status – human or canine
98. After birth, puppies’ eyes do not fully open until they’re about 12 days old
99. Dogs with little human contact in the first three months typically don’t make good pets
100. The Chihuahua was named after the state in Mexico where they were discovered

See Rich’s original post here. Do you know any other weird facts about dogs that weren’t included in this list? Tell us about it below!

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  1. Avatar Of Owen Powell

    Owen Powell


    What was the first dog ever seen on earth.

  2. Avatar Of Colin Kierans

    Colin Kierans


    I saw a video of a Basset Hound swimming.

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    decided to browse your blog on mmy iphone during lunch break.
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    a look when I get home. I’m amazed aat how quick your blog oaded onn my cell
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  4. Avatar Of Dog Training dog training says:

    If you’re thinking about getting a dog, but aren’t
    sure you want to make the commitment, try become a foster home for one.
    Many homeless and abused animals are waiting in shelters for someone to adopt them
    and with over-crowding, resources are slim.
    You can foster one to help out the cause and find out
    if you want to keep one!

  5. Avatar Of Tamara Thorne

    Tamara Thorne


    All male mammals have prostrate glands.

  6. Avatar Of Jessi- Licensed Veterinary Technician

    Jessi- Licensed Veterinary Technician


    Some of these are a little off… Gestation of a dog is 63 days not 60, the smallest dog is a Yorkie according to the Guinness Book of World Records, the heaviest breed of dog is actually the Bull Mastiff, the average lifespan varies on its size, small dogs are about 15-16 yrs were as giant breeds like Great Danes only live 8-10 yrs on average and the Scouts offer merit badges in “Pet Care” not just dog care.

    • Avatar Of Bb



      The heaviest dog breed is the mastiff, sometimes called the English mastiff. A Bullmastiff is a different breed, which is part bulldog and part mastiff.

  7. Avatar Of Lisa Toth

    Lisa Toth


    The saying: “It’s a three dog night” either originated in the Australian outback or from a remote tribe in Siberia (who were the original breeders of the Siberian Husky), meaning it was so cold that one would need the body heat of three dogs in bed with you to keep you warm.

  8. Avatar Of Magi



    #25. We have a Basset Hound that swims quit well.
    #40. I beg to differ. All my dogs have been able to tell time. Time to eat, time to walk, time for mom to go to work and time for mom to come home etc.

    • Avatar Of Kat



      I don’t think that fact #40 has anything to do with a dog being able to “tell” time. Of course, they can’t. I think it means that dogs have no perception of time passing in increments (they can’t tell the difference between you being gone for one hour or four; to them, you’re just gone). Dogs do get used to routines, like eating at the same time every day, taking a walk, playing, etc. My dog will start getting excited and pull out her toys when it is play time in the afternoon, but the time varies according to my schedule, and she picks up on certain cues (me putting on my coat, grabbing some treats and her leash) which lets her know it’s time to go out and play.

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