Why Do Dogs Shake to Dry Off?

Everyone loves a slow motion video of a dog shaking to dry off, but what is the science behind it?
Host: Hank Green
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[music]. who doesn't love a slow-motion video of . a dog shaking dry skin folds flapping. every which way as it showers everybody. nearby but did you ever wonder about the . science behind the wet dog shake hitting . dry quickly can be a life-or-death . problem because an animal's fur only . works as insulation when it's dry and . able to trap a layer of air next to the . animal's body so being wet and cold . weather can lead to hypothermia it turns . out evolution has honed that wild shake . into the perfect quick dry method for . furry animals for a study published in . 2012 scientists filmed 16 mammal species . at zoo atlanta shaking themselves dry . using a high-speed video camera to get . slow-motion footage the animals they . looked at included mice goats tigers and . bears as well as five dog breeds in all . shapes and sizes analyzing their videos . the researchers counted each species. skin oscillations per second to see how . they compared they also built a robotic . wet dog simulator in a lab to study how . water droplets are thrown off of a . shaking animal in detail i guess it was . more of a wet deer simulator just . picture in your mind a rotating panel . with white-tailed deer fur glued to it. that the scientists could wet down and. then spin at different speeds not as . skewed as the real thing the study found . that each particular species shakes at a . particular frequency to balance out how . dry it gets with how much energy it's . using shaking animals need to generate . enough force to overcome surface tension . a property that's a result of water . molecules sticking together and two . surfaces like fur and force just depends . on how much mass something has as well . as its acceleration if you don't have as . much mass that means you need more . acceleration to generate the same amount . of force so small animals need to shake . the fastest while nice shake as many as . 27 times a second larger animals like . giant pandas can get just as dry with a . slower shake doing the lazy 4 or 5 . oscillations per second and all that . loose flapping skin plays a role to the . way it whips around helps throw the . water off quickly sometimes generating . so much force that the animals . instinctively closed their eyes when . they shake to protect them the. scientists behind this project think . that understanding wet dog shake could . help us figure out how to quickly shed . water from sensitive equipment or even . build better washers and dryers shut . why don't you minh when we get out of . the shower well just think that we never . evolved to use that quick dry technique . because we don't have a layer of fur . that we need to keep dry our skin . doesn't trap nearly as much water as fur . does so it doesn't take as much body . heat to evaporate it other hairless . mammals didn't shake themselves dry . either the researchers filmed hairless. guinea pigs along with all those dogs . and mice but the wet guinea pigs didn't . shake they just shivered luckily for us . what we lack in fur we make up for with . towels thanks to all of our patreon . patrons for asking if you want more . videos explaining cute dog au behavior . check out our video where we explain why . pups tilt their heads . [music]. you . [music]. .
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Category: Education

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