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Student column: Know your animal facts

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high school Farmington, 55024

Farmington Minnesota P.O. Box 192 / 312 Oak St. 55024

Animals are a big part of most people's lives. Dogs, cats and fish are common household pets.

Most owners know a lot of facts about their type of animals. Dog owners would most likely know that dogs should eat only dog food. Cat owners most likely know that cats take a lot of naps during the day. These are pretty basic facts about these common animals. But have you ever thought about some of the weird facts about some of the more unusual animals? Here are a few animal facts I found on the Internet that were interesting:

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1. Sharks seemingly are the only animals that never fall sick and are immune to every known disease including cancer. How cool would it be to be a shark and know that you would never get any disease known to man? Or to know you would never get sick. What would you do if you knew you would never get sick? You could probably do a lot more things than you can now.

2. The eyes of donkeys are placed in such a way that they can see all four feet at the same time. Does this mean that the donkey can look only at its feet and nothing else? At least this way the donkey can be sure it won't trip over its own feet.

3. Slugs have four noses, but none of them are visible. I wonder if each of the noses does something different? Or maybe do they all perform the same task? Slugs must have a really good sense of smell.

4. Butterflies, surprisingly, use their feet to taste.That's like their tongues being on their feet. I wonder what it would be like if humans tasted with their feet. That puts an interesting picture in your mind.

5. Father catfish keep eggs in their mouth until they are ready to hatch and don't eat until then, which may take several weeks. What if he accidently swallowed one?

6. The sloth normally travels an average of 15 feet a day. I feel like doing this on days when I'm super lazy.

7. Mosquitoes have 47 teeth. What do they need 47 teeth for? Humans only have 32 teeth.

8. Yaks produce pink milk. I wonder, if you were to drink this milk, would taste different than white milk? I wonder if it's even drinkable.

9. Leeches have 32 brains. What in the world do they need 32 brains for? Humans only have one and we do just fine

10. When first born, a shrimp is a male and gradually evolves to a female. Whoa! If that's not weird I don't know what is. How is that even possible?

I found all these facts to be very interesting. Some of them I never would have thought to be true. Frankly, some of them are just plain weird. But, believe it or not, they are all true. By reading these facts, I began to wonder about the facts about our pets that we don't know about. Seems like our common household animals have more secrets than we thought.

Becca Opp is a student at Farmington High School.

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