Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Dog Trivia: Completely Useless Facts About Dogs That's Fun To Know

When I look at my Olde English Bulldog curled up on the couch and sawing logs (bulldogs snore a lot) the craziest questions go through my mind. Having searched out the answers, here I share the Useless Facts About Dogs I've learned.

  1. How many hours does the average dog sleep per day? The average dog sleeps about 13 hours a day. This is almost as long as a newborn baby. (Newborns average 14-18 hours of sleep a day.) But the sleep pattern is different between a dog and a human. Dogs don't necessarily sleep hours at a time. Sometimes it's just a quick 15 minute nap.  
  2. What are dew claws and why do dogs have them?The dew claw is that appendage further up their front leg on the inside that has a pad similar to their paw pad. Some argue that the dew claw has no purpose and should be removed. Others say that some dogs' dew claws make contact with the ground when they run so the dew claw helps in running. My bulldog uses her dew claws to help hold her bone when she's chewing. suggests that it's called a dew claw because it touches the dew rather than the ground.  
  3. Can you get cosmetic surgery for dogs? When a friend suggested I get braces for my bulldog I thought she was joking. But she wasn't. There are actually Veterinary Dentists who charge between $1200 - $2,000 to straighten your dog's teeth. And if braces aren't enough, would you believe you can get Fido fitted with testicular implants for about $400. Does Missy need a "boob job" after nursing her pups? That's available too. So is a facelift or a nose job. The nose job is encouraged to stop storing. Bulldog owners take note. (Unless you're like me and actually think you're bulldog's snoring is cute.)  
  4. Why does my dog like to lick my nose? There are disagreements among the experts as to why a dog licks a human's nose. Some say it is to show affection for their owner while others say that dogs greet each other by licking each others' faces so this is just how your dog is saying "hello" to you. The third message communicated by licking a person's face is the respect the dog feels for the person because this is how dogs show respect to each other; by licking the face of another dog. So does that mean that a dog respects every dog they say "hello" to? Something to ponder.  
  5. What's the average number of puppies in a litter? It's pretty obvious that the answer to this varies significantly by breed so let's look at the extremes. On the low end, Pomeranians average two pups per litter and on the high side, Pekinese average 10 pups per litter. The world record for the most pups in one little goes to a Nap Mastiff who had 24 puppies in one litter in 2005!  
  6. What percent of dog owners allow their dogs to sleep in bed with them? Would you believe that two out of every three dog owners allow their dog to sleep in bed with them? A whopping 67% invite Fido into their bed.  
  7. How many people in the U.S. own a dog? There are about 111 million households in the U.S. Of those, 44.8 million U.S. households own a dog. That means just about 4 out of 10 households have a dog. The average number of dogs per household is 1.7. By comparison, 37.5 million households have a cat.  
  8. Why do writers use the name "Fido" as a common dog name? Fido is derived from the Latin word for "faithful" and it's widely believed that's how the dog name "Fido" originated. Ironically, Fido isn't even in the Top 10 list of common dog names, as kept by  
  9. What is the most common dog name in the U.S.? Buddy. A quick survey of my personal friends uncovered I have four friends with a dog named Buddy.  
  10. Who has the highest pet dog population in the world? No surprise. The U.S. does. Who comes in #2? Brazil.  

If you ever find yourself in a game of dog trivia, knowing these useless facts about dogs might just help you win the game! 

But if you're looking for more serious information on dogs, consider Edward Ash's book,
"Dogs And How To Know Them....", available on