Can four legged animals drink from beneath their feet?

  • Thread starter Brucester
  • Start date
  • Tags
    Animals
  • #1
Brucester
2
1
In this BBC video about the Azores Dr. Felix Rodrigues tells us four legged animals can't drink from beneath their feet. I've never heard of this before and couldn't find anything about it. Does anyone know about this and/or where I can find out more about it? Google didn't help.

 
Biology news on Phys.org
  • #2
Seems wrong since I have seen videos of animals doing this.
It seems common for people to see some animal doing or not doing something and then wrongly extrapolate that to lots of other animals.
 
  • #3
Brucester said:
four legged animals can't drink from beneath their feet.
Is this came from the same mold as the good old 'you can't pee in a handstand'?
 
  • Like
Likes DaveE
  • #4
BillTre said:
Seems wrong since I have seen videos of animals doing this.
It seems common for people to see some animal doing or not doing something and then wrongly extrapolate that to lots of other animals.
Dr. Felix Rodrigues is a faculty member of the Department of Agrarian Sciences and Environment, University of Azores so one expects this to be an informed claim. Post one of those videos.
 
  • Like
  • Skeptical
Likes BillTre and 256bits
  • #5
Unless they are standing in water, it will be below their feet, and from what I have seen, they can stop at the water’s edge and drink.
 
  • Like
Likes BillTre
  • #6
While standing with a 'normal' stance, most animals have much difficulty to stretch their necks down far enough so that the 'lips' of their mouth reach below their feet. A grazing animal such as a cow can easily reach down to crop off grasses; to drink they need to get their snout farther down to suck up the water.
It's not that they can't drink water below their feet - it is that they can do so by either standing in the water ( in which case the water surface is above their feet ), or by assuming an odd looking and difficult front leg spread stance at the water edge so as to lower their shoulder height. The ground has to be accommodating for the grazing animal to assume such a stance. A hard rock surface ( as seen in the video ) is not accommodating as the animal can topple over from the feet ( hooves ) having little grip to keep them from spreading. Painful and dangerous ( break a leg ) for the hoofed animal.
A lion may lie down at the water edge to lap up the water.
Same for a dog.
Still, if the water is much below the ground surface, they too may be out of luck to get a drink.
As would you.
 
Last edited:
  • #7
256bits said:
an odd looking and difficult front leg spread stance
They just kneel, if they have to.
 
  • Like
Likes russ_watters, DaveE and 256bits
  • #8
I was going to add in the kneel, but neglected to do so.
256bits said:
It's not that they can't drink water below their feet
 
  • #9
Screenshot 2024-04-15 at 8.11.24 AM.png
 
  • Like
Likes docnet
  • #10
But, why would they? "Can't" and "hasn't been observed" are two different things. Animals in the wild tend not to do circus tricks, they drink the easiest way.

BTW, my dog will sometimes drink water from a bowl in the back seat of my car by lying down, putting her front feet out on the sides of the bowl and drink. It's both behind and below her front paws. Does that count?
 
  • Like
Likes russ_watters and BillTre
  • #11
Screenshot 2024-04-15 at 2.31.50 PM.png
 
  • Like
Likes BillTre

Similar threads

  • Biology and Medical
Replies
9
Views
3K
Replies
4
Views
1K
  • Introductory Physics Homework Help
Replies
12
Views
356
  • Biology and Medical
Replies
7
Views
2K
  • Biology and Medical
9
Replies
287
Views
19K
Replies
5
Views
993
Replies
1
Views
74
  • General Discussion
Replies
12
Views
1K
  • Biology and Medical
Replies
1
Views
2K
Replies
1
Views
1K
Back
Top