Which Animals Are the Cleanest?

There is much to admire about animals. They are adorable, and they frequently become vital family members. We’ve all heard of pigs rolling in mud and raccoons guarding garbage cans like they’re treasure chests. In reality, there are numerous animals in the world whose cleanliness surprises us.

Some of the tidiest animals are endowed with special qualities that keep them clean by nature. Others put forth effort to maintain their vitality. So, which animals are the cleanest in the world? You may be able to guess some, but a few will likely be unexpected.

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Pigs Are the Cleanest Species.

Would you believe that pigs may be the cleanest animals on the planet? As it turns out, these intelligent creatures do not live up to their soiled reputations.

We’ve all heard pig metaphors, such as “this place looks like a pigsty” and “you’re perspiring like a pig,” but they have little basis in reality. Pigs cannot actually sweat at all, so the last phrase is particularly inaccurate. These animals lack sweat glands, which is why they wallow in the mud so much and why they have a reputation for being untidy.

They stay cool by rolling in the mud, which also serves as a sort of homemade sunscreen to prevent sunburn. However, swine in the wild are quite clean and will not defecate near where they eat or sleep. They have demonstrated levels of cognition comparable to those of 3-year-old human children, demonstrating their intelligence in a variety of other ways.

Cats Have Perfected Grooming to a Science

It remains debatable whether cats or pigs are the cleanest animals in the world. Even if cats finish second, they are very close to tying with their farm animal friends. It is no secret that cats have a well-deserved reputation for cleanliness; the average cat spends up to half of its awake time licking and grooming.

Most kittens are able to bathe themselves by the time they are weaned because their mothers teach them this behaviour so early on. Cats have tiny barbs on their tongues that function similarly to combs, as you may be aware. When they lick their fur, these barbs stimulate the production of sebaceous glands in their skin, which lubricates and maintains the cleanliness and lustre of the fur.

In addition, cats are incredibly simple to litter-box train, with the majority of kittens learning to use their litter boxes by the time they reach adulthood. Similar to pigs, cats do not like to defecate close to their eating and sleeping areas. If an adult cat is refusing to use the litter box, ensure that it is not too close to the animal’s food bowl. Consult your veterinarian if this does not resolve the issue; this behaviour can sometimes indicate illness.

Tigers Arrange Their Fridges

There are significant differences between domesticated house cats and their wild, big-cat relatives, but there are also some interesting similarities. Even though tigers are among the largest carnivores on the planet, they like to maintain a clean appearance and groom themselves similarly to domestic cats.

However, unlike domesticated cats, tigers enjoy a refreshing swim. This is done less to maintain cleanliness and more to cool off, but cleanliness is a pleasant byproduct. Tigers choose latrine areas away from where they eat, drink, and sleep, so you’ll rarely find them using their drinking water as a toilet. However, they do mark their territories with urine.

Another behaviour demonstrating the cleanliness of tigers? They avoid bringing food into their dens and frequently use leaves and branches to conceal their leftovers from other animals. This behaviour occasionally extends to domestic cats. If your cat attempts to hide its leftover food with a toy or a blanket, you’ll see that it hasn’t completely evolved away from its wild ancestors’ behaviours.

Polar Bears Take Snow Baths

Polar bears are another of the world’s cleanest animals, but it’s not for vanity’s sake alone. When living in the Arctic, it is essential to maintain a healthy, functional fur coat at all times. As it turns out, when the fur of a polar bear becomes matted or dirty, this reduces the fur’s ability to insulate the animal.

Polar bears bathe themselves, particularly after eating, by taking a dip in the water or rolling in the snow. Both actions help them maintain the ideal balance between hot and cold body temperatures, which is more important than you might think. Despite inhabiting some of the coldest environments on Earth, polar bears are susceptible to overheating when summer arrives. Self-regulating their notoriously erratic body temperatures affords the average polar bear the benefit of cleanliness, which is a nice perk given their notoriously unstable body temperatures.

Rabbits Do Not Require Water for Hygiene

Not only are rabbits adorably cuddly, but they are also renowned for being exceptionally clean. If they have been spayed or neutered, they become extremely selective about where they defecate, much like cats. It is possible to litter-train a rabbit, which is a good idea if you have one as a pet unless you intend to clean the animal’s cage every day. As with cats, you should ensure that the litter box is not too close to where they eat or sleep, as they do not want to eat or sleep next to their toilet.

In addition to being meticulous groomers, rabbits do not require bathing because it can be extremely stressful for them. These animals frequently panic when their owners attempt to bathe them, which can result in injury. In addition, their thick fur takes a long time to dry, a process that can be uncomfortable and lead to fungal infections. A bit of “spot cleaning” on dirty areas such as the rabbit’s feet, along with weekly brushing, should be sufficient to keep these clean animals looking and feeling their best.

Dolphins Collect Garbage

This may seem obvious; after all, if you live in the water, you cannot help but be clean. It is important to remember, however, that the ocean is not always the cleanest environment, so it is somewhat remarkable that these aquatic mammals have developed their own specialised cleanliness routines.

Some scientists believe that when dolphins breach, or leap out of the water, they are not simply admiring the scenery. Breaching may also be a way for them to rid themselves of any bacteria or parasites they may have picked up in the ocean. This may be one of the reasons why dolphins are remarkably resistant to infections.

In addition to their superior intelligence, they are also highly trainable in regards to cleanliness. The Institute for Marine Mammal Studies in Mississippi was able to train a group of dolphins to collect trash that fell into their pools and hand it to their human partners. The dolphins’ good deeds may have been contingent on the fish they were rewarded with, but their efforts nonetheless merit recognition.


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