8 Dog Myths You Thought Were Facts

Dog Myths

There are several things that people have said for decades and have been believed to be true about dogs.

It is safe to call these assumptions old wives tales but never call them facts because most of them are far from true.

Most of these myths have led to several bad advice that people have taken and in this article we are going to separate the truth from the false stories.

Table of Contents

1. A warm and get noise is a sign that your canine is ill

this right here has to be the most hilarious and common dog health myths out there. Somehow, someone probably just thought that whenever a dog has a wet and cool nose, the dog is healthy this a warm and dry nose should mean that the dog is ill and a lot of people bought into the idea.

How did this myth begin?

like almost every other meat it is difficult to pinpoint the origin of this one however there is some speculation that it could be embedded in an iota of fact. One deadly virus that was quite prevalent at some time in history is canine distemper.

One of the symptoms of an advanced canine distemper is hyperkeratosis, that is a thickening of the footpad and nose. what happens basically is that the nose and pads of the dog’s feet become dry and hard.

At the time when canine distemper was rampant whenever a dog had a cold wet nose the owner was certain that his pet was healthy. However, the good news is that canine distemper is less common these days because of the advisability of vaccination though a few dogs still get it.

What is the fact?

The truth of the matter is, the temperature or wetness of a dog’s nose is no miracle measurement of how healthy the dog is.

Take for example, when a dog just wakes up, it is very normal for the dog to have a warm and dry nose because it has been sleeping and was unable to lick it’s nose while asleep.

The only time you are permitted to get worried is when the dog’s nose is persistently dry and becomes flaky.

Also you have to look out for other symptoms like lethargy, vomiting, and diarrhoea that may accompany the warmness and dryness of your dog’s nose before you run to the vet.

2. Your dog’s mouth is cleaner than your mouth

Almost everyone has heard this myth one time or another while growing up. Especially when a dog licks you or maybe samples the food you’re eating, your mum could just go “oh don’t worry about it, a dog’s mouth is a lot cleaner than the human mouth.” That’s the most hilarious and gross dog myth I’ve heard.

How did this myth begin?

It is suspected that the origin of this myth is rooted in the fact that dogs are known to lick their wounds and most of the time when they do, the wounds heal faster.

The reality of the situation is that if a dog’s wound heals faster because the dog had licked it, it’s probably because the roughness of the dog’s tongue has removed dead tissues from the wound and stimulated circulation.

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Just the same way a surgeon would debride a wound. It is just funny how the people who came up with this theory forgot to consider the dog bones that might not a properly healed.

What is the fact?

Your dogs, mouth is home to lots and lots of germs. I mean think about all those icky disgusting things that your dog eats off the ground.

And also consider how much it leaks itself and carries a lot of germs with it tongue. Trust me you do not want to have any of that in your food or on your body.

Also remember that many dogs do not get their teeth brushed as frequently as we humans do so there is bacteria and dental tatars to think about.

But even though the mouth of a dog contains a lot of germs, in fact so much germs that it scares me, the good thing is that most of these germs are dogs specific so humans do not have to bother much about getting infected by them.

If you keep your dog up to date with vaccines and always the ones you have little or nothing to worry about. if you want to enjoy dog kisses, make sure you take care of your dog’s oral health.

But remember, never share from the same drinking bowl or allow your dog eat from your plate, or even lick your wound.

3. Canines see in monochrome

Did you know that at some point people believed that dogs only saw things in black and white? and even at present some people still believe this myth.

How this myth began?

We are uncertain how and where this myth began, but I suspect that it can be traced back to old science. It is possible that scientist at some point, thought that the canine eyes could only see things in black and white.

That must be long before they ever studied carefully the eyes of canines and even the human eye and got to understand the function of cones.

What are the facts?

Dogs are actually capable of seeing colours but not the same way we see colors. because of the kind of cone in the retina of a dog’s eye it is believed that canine see colours better mostly on the blue side of the spectrum.

The canine view of colors can be compared to the red-green kind of colour blindness in humans but it’s not exactly the same. Canines are believed to see mostly yellow, greenish yellow, blue, and various shades of grey.

4. Did eat grass to make themselves vomit

Well it is true that when dogs eat too much of grass, they end up vomiting but it is not true that they deliberately eat this grass to cause themselves to vomit, or it is a sign of an illness.

How this myth began?

It is very possible that this myth started as a result of an incorrect judgement by dog owners. Many dog owners have watched their dogs vomit after consuming grass.

Thus they assume that whenever a dog feels sick to the stomach, it decides to eat grass so that it can puke out whatever is disturbing the stomach. Well if you look at the facts, you would realise that this assumption is far from the truth.

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What is the truth?

You may be wondering why a dog would eat grass in the first place. It is because some dogs probably just like it. There are dogs that like to graze and there are many others that don’t. When a dog ingests too much grass it could end up vomiting.

Since experts have claimed that a dog’s craving from grass goes as fast back as the days when a wild canid would catch a prey and end up eating both the stomach content that usually consists of leaves and grass.

What ever the reason may be, we know that grass is harmless to dogs provided it has not be treated with any form of chemical. However, if you notice that your dog has been vomiting too much from eating grass, you should probably visit a vet immediately and also keep your dog away from grass.

5. A dog ages seven dog years for every human year

If you say that a one year old dog is a 7 year old dog when calculated in dog years, you might not be making a lot of sense considering the fact that dogs can reproduce well before they turn one year old.

What you would be insinuating then, is that a 15 year old dog is already 105 years old when it’s age is calculated in dog years when that is far from the case.

Many dogs that live up to 15 years of age still turning out to be very active seniors and that is far from what is obtainable from a human that has lived past 100 years.

How did this myth begin?

No one can actually tell where this idea came from, but it probably just an over simplified way of measuring the lifespan of a dog considering that dogs live a shorter life than humans.

Someone probably thought that saying 7 years in dog years is one year in human year is an easier way to explain how short the lifespan of a canine is.

The fact

It is very obvious that dogs age quite faster than human beings. For instance, a one year old dog is almost like a human teenager because the fast aging of a dog is more of yours in the earliest years of their life. You can compare an eight-year-old dog to a middle-aged human which means that the earlier description is closer to the 7 years myth.

Also the bride and the size of a dog can also be responsible for the rate at which it ages and its life span for instance a lot of smaller dog breeds can live as long as 15 to 20 years why some giant breeds do not live past 7 to 10 years.

More interesting is the fact that the young of some giant breed dogs do not eat as fast as other breeds during their early years even though their life span is shorter.

6. You can’t teach an old dog new tricks

This myth is one that has become a popular saying. Not only is it said about dogs but also about people. Of course you know that human can learn at any age, so whenever this term is used to refer to people it means the person is very stubborn. For dogs, learning at any age is also very possible.

How this myth began?

Many dog owners probably noticed that when their dogs begin to age they become very uninterested in learning new things so they decide to assume that all dogs are incapable of learning new tricks. The saying is also used in reference to adults who are obviously set in their ways.

Also Read:  COVID-19: Caring for Your Pets and Frequently Asked Questions

The fact

It is quite true that it would be difficult to teach an old dog new tricks, however it is not impossible. The reason why most people assume it is something they cannot do is because when dogs begin to age the experience sensory changes. An older dog may not be able to see as much as it used to or hear as clearly as it used to when he was younger.

Also, bear in mind that older dogs do not have as much energy as younger dogs do. If you want to train an older dog, make sure that you are able to capture its attention and also make sure that the activity you’re teaching the dog is not to physically straining.

Another factor that must be considered is that when some dogs begin to age, they experience salinity which makes it difficult for them to be trained.

7. A wagging tail means your dog is happy

If you believe so much in this dog myth, you just may land yourself a very serious dog bite. It is quite true that dogs wash their tails when they are excited or happy, however there are several other reasons why a dog might be wag their tail.

How it began?

Almost every dog owner wants a dog that is happy, jumping with bright eyes, and wagging it’s tail. At Least that’s the mental picture we have most of the time. Fir this reason it is difficult to say how long this myth has been in existence, but however it is that it started, it is embedded in some truth.

What is the fact?

The body language of canines is very complex, that’s one of the ways that dogs communicate with their owners is through tail wagging. Yes, dogs wag their tail when they are happy.

However tail wagging can also be a sign of anxiety, fear, and several other precursors of aggression. It is advisable that before you approach a dog with its wagging tail, you pay attention to other body languages it might be exhibiting.

8. Allowing your dog play tug of war can cause aggression

There have been several debates about playing the tug of war games with dogs. Some people have assumed that when you play tug of war with your dog, you would be making it more aggressive and it may begin to exhibit some dominant behaviour. Actually, this assumption is the direct opposite of the real situation.

How the myth began?

A lot of people have probably watched how dogs behaved when they played this game. Most of the time, our canine friends get very serious about the game and you find them growling. It would not be abnormal for a human to think that the game has brought back those aggressive canine instincts.

The truth?

Contrary to the assumption that the tug of war game makes dogs aggressive and exhibit domineering characters, many dog trainers have discovered that the reverse is the case. Dogs basically just enjoy playing this game and there is no harm in that.

However, if after reading this you are in doubt of whether it is safe to pay the game with your pet or not, you can easily talk to a dog trainer and listen to what advice they have to offer.

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