Did You Know | Nature

10 Animal Myths That We've All Believed For Too Long That Aren't Actually True

cocoparisienne / pixabay

The fact that we can't verbally communicate with animals is a sign that we don't know everything there is to know about them. Animals can't explain the way they view and live in the world, and neither can you to them.  

-gerry- / pixabay

Thanks to science, we've discovered that there are many misconceptions. We've been fed false information that we've shared to friends and family members, and now it's time to forget these common myths and spread the truth to the people around us.

10. Dogs and cats are colorblind.

Our furry little friends are not living in a black and white world. Although their vision is not the same as us, it doesn't mean they don't see color at all. In fact, cats and dogs can see better in low-lighting. Colors appear differently in the eyes of both animals. For example, red and pink look more like green to cats.

cocoparisienne / pixabay

9. Beaver butt secretions can be found in vanilla ice cream.

Let's set it straight. The friend or family member who tried to convince you that there's anal goo in your food probably did a good job because they believed in this myth as well. The secretion known as castoreum, which is taken from a beaver's anal gland, is not used in flavorings or perfumes. Isolating these secretions are too expensive anyway.  

peter-loeschloesch / pixabay

8. Bulls hate the color red.

It's not the red they hate, it's the annoying human trying to get their attention. Bulls are trained by humans to charge at moving objects, but this isn't in their nature. Of course, any animal that feels threatened will not stand there passively.

MondejarFoto / pixabay

7. Elephants stomp loudly.

Take it as a compliment if someone says you stomp like an elephant. Despite their large body mass, elephants walk very quietly. They walk using the tips of their toes, and their feet are also designed like a soft pillow.

6. Touching a frog or a toad can give you warts.

Just because frogs and toads are slimy and have bumps on their body doesn't mean they're the reason for why we get these nasty lumps. The HPV (human papillomavirus) is the cause of this ailment. So feel free to touch the amphibian, but be wary of touching someone's hand that looks like it's been infected by the virus.

Gellinger / pixabay

5. Humans evolved directly from chimpanzees.

Humans and chimpanzees share more than 98% of the same DNA, but that doesn't mean we evolved directly from them. However, we did share a common ancestor more than 6 million years ago, but we followed a different evolutionary path.

by: stefaanroelofs/pixabay

4. Humans got HIV because one person in West Africa had sex with a monkey.

We've all heard the rumor about someone committing bestiality, getting HIV, which then gradually spread around the world. It's more likely that hunters became exposed to the infected blood, but not through sexual intercourse!

Schwoaze / pixabay

3. Animals hibernate mostly because they are cold.

You've noticed many animals scurrying around all spring, summer, and fall, but you never see them in the winter. Don't be jealous that they get to sleep for months, be grateful that you don't. The reason animals hibernate is because there's not enough food in the cold season.

2. Chameleons change color to blend in with their environment.

What's the point of an ability like that if it won't be able to aid in a reptile's survival? That being said, that's not the only reason why they camouflage with their surroundings. They change color as a response to temperature, health, mood, light, and communication.

Krahulic / pixabay

1. Bats are blind.

It may be hard to tell if these creatures have any eyes at all! These cave dwellers use echolocation to navigate, but they can still see. So next time you say to someone "you're blind as a bat," you may not be hurting their feelings too much.

alobenda / pixabay

Did you believe in any of these myths? Share this story with your friends and let us know!

Moojan has been a writer at Shared for a year. When she's not on the lookout for viral content, she's looking at cute animal photos. Reach her at moojan@shared.com.