While most of us are familiar with puns based on the terrible dad jokes we hear, puns actually have a rich history that dates back to Roman philosophers. Since the first words ever written (and spoken) for entertainment, puns have been an incredible asset to dramatists, philosophers, and satirists. In recent years, however, puns have been used more with comedic delivery, as they are often seen as gimmicky in the writing world. Most puns delivered on screen and on stage are done so in a very self-aware way in order to show the audience that the writers are aware of the silliness involved. However, the sheer wit that is involved in being able to write a pun or think one up on the spot is impressive in and of itself. Oftentimes, people find themselves struggling to come up with puns if they are asked to deliver one quickly.
Even if you think you're good with puns, you may find that there are a lot of elements that you could be missing. Remember that puns are playful ways to use language, and they are most often represented by homonyms (words that sound the same but have different meanings). We've put together 40 animal puns to see if you can guess the animal we're trying to exploit. Let's see if you can figure them out. It'll be the most pun you've ever had.
The toucan has a distinctively large beak. That's why the cereal character always followed his nose (even though he technically didn't have one). A toucan's beak is used to peel fruit and catch smaller animals for food.
A boar is a breed of pig that is usually found in Europe, Africa, and Asia. These little guys are easy to spot, because they have tusks coming out of their mouths.
Mussels are the equate substitute of clams. These bivalves are decent food for birds and humans alike. You can spot them by their purple-black shells.
The cheetah can run up to 75 miles per hour, but it can't sustain that speed. They run so fast, their internal temperatures spike, and if they continue running, they can die.
Shih Tzus are an incredibly popular dog breed that was first seen in China. They are pretty high maintenance, but they are very loyal dogs.
A little known fact about Huskies is that they were selectively bred using the fastest breeds of dogs available at the time. That is what makes them so great for pulling sleds.
These African predators are known for their ambitious hunting styles. They hunt in packs, and take down animals two and even three times their size.
Pandas come from southern China. They can grow to be more than 200 pounds, but they have a mostly plant-based diet that consists of a lot of bamboo shoots.
The Ibex is a species of goat with incredibly large horns. They generally live in the European Alps and can weigh up to 150 pounds.
While alpacas are often confused with llamas, they are much smaller. Though they are closely related to llamas, they cannot breed with each other.
The koala is a marsupial, but that doesn't really fit with the pun. Koalas live in trees and have a specific herbivorous diet. They sleep for up to 22 hours a day.
While a toad is technically a frog, it is characterized by its incredibly bumpy skin. Additionally, a toad's skin is dryer than that of a frog.
Seals are an interesting animal. They have flippers, but no gills. They live on the land, but rely on the oceans for food.
This was a toughy, but the image is clearly a gopher, not an otter. While gophers live underground, otters generally nest near or in water.
Generally used for fishing bate, this small fresh-water fish generally swims in large shoals. They can be found around the world.
Horses are beloved animals throughout the world. While they were first domesticated for the purposes of transportation, they have become high-class pets in society.
A gerenuk is basically an antelope with a long neck. Its name means "giraffe-necked." These smaller herbivores can weigh up to around 85 pounds.
Hogs are domesticated pigs. Their primary purpose is to be turned into bacon... and ham, pork chops, sausage, etc.
A large group of crows is called a murder. Therefore, a group of crows you might hear about would be considered a murder... whether or not they were pecking at that guy.
While hares are in the same family as rabbits, they have longer ears and live in much smaller groups (if not alone). They are very fast, thanks to their long hind legs.
You can spot a pug from a mile away by their dark muzzle and compressed nose. Their curled tail also tends to give them away. They're adorable and loyal, but their small snouts can cause breathing problems.
The quokka is a small nocturnal macropod. They're generally pretty small, only reaching about 6 to 7 pounds when they are fully mature.
Owls are nocturnal, carnivorous birds with about 200 different species. While they are gorgeous and majestic creatures, they generally live and hunt alone.
Wildebeests are basically alive to feed predators. They are technically antelopes and related to cattle, sheep, and goats.
Believe it or not, otters are related to weasels, honey badgers, and polecats. Their diets consist mostly of fish and small invertebrates.
While commonly referred to as a litter, a group of young kittens is also known as an intrigue. They can also be called a kindle.
A group of ladybugs is actually referred to as a loveliness. Fun fact about ladybugs: their larva stage can last up to four weeks.
This game bird has feathers on its legs. A grouse will mainly eat insects and leaves, and their diets usually change with the seasons.
The giraffe is the tallest living mammal, and can grow up to 20 feet high. The Northern giraffe has a gestation period of 15 months. That's a long time to be pregnant.
A group of herrings is called an army. No wonder they're always found in large groups. We'd love to have an army covering our backs.
A group of salamanders is known as a congress. These amphibians look a lot like lizards, and generally live in moist areas.
A group of goldfish is called a troubling or a glint. These freshwater fish are very common aquarium pets, and they're actually related to carp.
When raccoons congregate to eat your garbage, they are known as a gaze. These North American natives are commonly found scavenging in your trash, making a big mess and being a nuisance.
The blue whale is the largest living mammal. It is still somewhat of a mystery to marine biologists, as we have yet to find their breeding grounds and mating patterns.
Squids have eight arms, but they also have two tentacles. Their appendages help them measure ares to hide, attract food, and fight off enemies.
Goats are closely related to sheep and antelope. Many people breed goats (there are more than 300 breeds) for fun. They also make excellent lawn mowers.
Only slightly smaller than an ostrich, the emu is the second-largest bird on the planet. Weighing nearly 90 pounds, they can still run up to 30 miles per hour.
Related to moose, chital, and elk, deer are often found in the wooded areas of North America. They can live anywhere from 15 to 25 years.
Manatees are big, loveable sea creatures. These gentle giants often find themselves at risk of getting cut up by boat motors, because they are so curious and social.