On the quest to find out anything we can about animals, all sorts of weird questions can come up. Animals are super interesting, and we want to know all we can about them, right? That means anything goes, no matter how gross, weird, or downright scary — and there are plenty of opportunities for all of these in the animal kingdom!
Animals don’t have reservations about how they behave the way humans do. They know that bodily functions are a natural part of life, which means they’ll happily do whatever they need to without a second thought! This can sometimes be disgusting to us, but other times it can be quite hilarious.
One of the questions you may have as an animal lover is which animals fart the most. This post is my gift to you, budding scientist! Read on for the top 14 animals that fart the most, some of which will definitely surprise you!
It’s no secret that cows fart a lot — in fact, it’s been a hot subject of debate for years. It’s weird to think that people argue over cow farts, after all, farts are a natural part of life!
But the reason for the argument isn’t about the farting itself: it’s the amount of methane released into earth’s atmosphere that’s cause for concern.
It’s actually what they’re being fed that causes cows to emit so much gas. Grain-based feed is largely the culprit, which many farmers are starting to realize and move away from (thank goodness).
While their four separate stomach compartments (each having their own chemical process) do contribute, cows can’t really be blamed for this particular problem. However, the amount of gas they expel is what got them the top spot on this list!
Termites? Seriously? Yes, actually. You’re not wrong for thinking I’m pulling your leg, but termites are in fact quite the gassy bunch. While these tiny members of the insect world might not seem like the farting type, their digestion is somewhat similar to that of cows: they’re both ruminant species, meaning the plant matter they consume breaks down into methane.
And what plant matter do termites consume a whole lot of? That’s right, wood. Termites are said to be responsible for one percent of the world’s methane production every year, which makes them the second gassiest animal on this list.
However, the methane that termites emit is actually filtered by their mounds before it hits the open air, so it’s not actually causing much damage to our atmosphere. Phew!
While this next one might be more obvious, the reason they’re on this list might be different than what you’re expecting. There’s a lot of hype online about how hippos have the loudest farts in the world, but apparently, this isn’t true. They do, however, hold the title for the longest fart — with their flatulence reaching record times of 10 seconds a pop (no pun intended)!
Hippos are massive creatures, and with their size comes a comparable need for food consumption. Since they’re herbivores, this means they typically eat about 80lbs of vegetation on a regular day, or up to 1.5% of their body weight!
The fact that they’re strictly vegetarian doesn’t mean they’re a gentle species, however. They’ll be quick to charge you if you happen to get too close, and even though their teeth are designed for grinding up plants, their bite is powerful enough to crush a human thigh bone!
Ferrets are tons of fun and keeping them as pets has become more commonplace over the last couple of decades. Their silly antics and constant need for entertainment create an abundance of laughter for their families on a daily basis — they’re just so full of energy and love to express it in the funniest of ways!
However, along with all the good that comes with owning ferrets, their owners might also notice that these guys can get quite gassy at times.
Ferrets are obligate carnivores, which means their digestive systems are designed to break down meat and proteins only. Giving them fruits, vegetables, or carbohydrates is totally unnecessary, and will likely lead to an extra gassy ferret.
They also swallow quite a bit of air while they’re eating, which can cause excessive farting even when their diet is species appropriate. Ferrets are also prone to bloat, which is dangerous and needs to be dealt with by a veterinarian. All that energy in a cute little package can sometimes just be too much, even for fun-loving ferrets!
5. Bolson Pupfish
Fart or die. What? That sounds ridiculous, but in the case of the Bolson Pupfish, it’s their reality. These little freshwater fish not only fart a lot, they have to do it daily in order to survive. If you’re scratching your head right now, let me explain. The bolson pupfish eats a diet of algae, which is surrounded by natural gas bubbles. In order to access their food, these bubbles are then ingested by the bolson pupfish while it’s consuming its algae diet. This creates an extra gassy environment in the little fish’s digestive tract.
Their ability to swim is affected by them being full of this gas, which throws them off balance and makes them float to the surface where they can easily become a bird’s next meal.
Not only that, but they can also explode if they hold this gas in for too long! The term fart or die makes sense if you think about it from the perspective of the bolson pupfish, but thankfully they’ve figured this out for themselves. I don’t think they care about being polite, especially when it’s a matter of life or death!
While this animal’s farts are less life or death than the former contender, they’re important, nonetheless. We humans see flatulence as rude or gross, but in many parts of the animal kingdom, it serves a purpose.
That’s the case with manatees, or the beloved sea cow. These gentle creatures are a popular tourist attraction in many of the places they inhabit, as watching them swim is such an amazing experience. But did you know that they rely on farting to make their movements so graceful? I’m not kidding!
Manatees release stored up farts in order to swim down below the surface of the water, which is why it’s so common to see little bubbles around them as they swim.
They also hold the gas in when they want to float to the surface, and actually need this assistance from their flatulence in order to remain balanced under water. If they hold it in too long, they can become constipated, and even lose their ability to navigate properly! We wouldn’t want that, would we? I didn’t think so. Fart on, sea cow. We adore you anyway!
Thanks to the sheer size of this next animal, their farts are known to be humongous. Though not many people will ever have the chance to experience one, the amount of food and water they take in means that the resulting gas has to go somewhere — and thankfully, it’s not into the atmosphere!
Whale farts are largely silenced by the ocean they swim in, though scientists have determined that they’re extraordinarily stinky. This only makes sense considering their natural diet, but I’d still rather not have to experience that for myself!
Considering their size, it’s only fair that whales have to eat large amounts of food to sustain themselves. In fact, they can visit feeding areas between 200-500 times daily depending on species!
This, along with the fact that they consume huge amounts of water every time they eat, will obviously lead to quite a bit of flatulence. We can’t judge, though — if we consumed 10-20 tons of food every day, we’d be passing a lot more gas, too. At least whales keep theirs to the confines of the ocean!
Any dog lover knows that along with the unconditional love our dogs give us, there are certain attributes we must put up with. One of the less desirable aspects of being a dog person is being all too familiar with the smell of dog farts — they can literally clear a room!
While excessive gas isn’t usually normal in dogs, the sheer potency of the dog fart is what landed them their honorable spot on this list. Yes, non-dog people, it’s really that bad: my 20lb dog has brought tears to my eyes on several occasions, and not the happy, proud kind!
While all dogs fart at times, certain breeds are naturally gassier than others —bulldogs, pugs, and boxers among them. Of course, there are other reasons for doggy flatulence, too. Eating too fast means swallowing air, which can be a cause of more doggy farts than usual.
Also, things like sharing too many table scraps, feeding your pup foods like dairy or beans, and food intolerances can all lead to unusually gassy pups, so try to be mindful of these. Even though they can stink to high heaven, dog farts are just something we deal with — that’s how much we love them!
This next contender also farts as a means of survival, but in a slightly different way. Anyone who’s ever held a snake that wasn’t in the mood to be handled knows the messiness of “musking,” or a snake’s way of defending itself from predators.
This is what happens when a snake farts, though it will also produce a poop-like liquid that stinks to high heaven, encouraging whatever animal has just picked it up to drop it and run far, far away!
Another way snakes fart is called cloacal popping, and only two species are known to do it: the Sonoran Coral snake and the Western Hook-Nose snake.
These little “pops” occur in place of hissing as a defense mechanism and are the result of the two species relaxing their cloacal sphincter, then expelling the collected air by contracting it again. Apparently, these sound a lot like human farts, just at a higher pitch. I’m not sure how well they work as a defense, but nature seems to know what it’s doing!
Every zoo-goer has to stop by the orangutan enclosure: they’re the most adorable, yet strange-looking creatures in the ape kingdom! Though they can get quite huge (and aggressive when prompted), their droopy faces and slow, relaxed movements draw crowds from all over to come and see them.
Though they’re not known for their friendliness, it doesn’t make them any less adorable. However, they are known to fart without shame, and due to the sheer size of them, I’m willing to bet it’s quite loud when it happens!
Orangutans are omnivores, meaning they eat both plants and meat, though plants are their preferred diet. As with any animal that consumes plant matter, their digestive process often results in gas production, and not the pleasant-smelling kind!
As you may have guessed that gas has to go somewhere, and while orangutans are renowned for their superb belching abilities, the other end is also a popular option!
This gentle giant is best known for its memory, but there are plenty of other elephant traits that set them apart from other animals. One of these happens to be the amount of gas they produce every day, which is said to be enough for a car to run up to 20 miles on!
Elephants are huge, so it’s understandable that they’d produce a powerful fart. With the amount of vegetation they consume — upwards of 300lbs a day — it only makes sense that they’d have the gas levels to match!
Elephants do a lot of work to find their daily food and water intake, however. They don’t just graze on whatever they find — they walk miles and miles to ensure there’s enough for the whole herd, making them super family-oriented animals.
They’ll feast on fruits, twigs, leaves, and tree bark, making sure to use their sharp tusks to scrape the tree clean. With all that effort put into their daily meal, I think they can be forgiven for their flatulence, don’t you?
Though they eat less than animals of a similar size, camels earned their spot on this list due to the frequency and potency of their flatulence.
They’re said to fart aimlessly throughout the day, and their gas is apparently stinky enough to make people cry! This only makes sense when you think about it: camels are notoriously rude in terms of interactions with humans and other animals, so why not in the gas department, too?
Camels are known as a pseudo-ruminant species, which means their digestion process breaks down the vegetation they eat into carbon monoxide and methane.
They have stomachs that are divided into three chambers, similar to a cow, though they produce less than half the methane that cattle do. Nonetheless, farts that are powerful enough to make you cry definitely count for something!
This animal is known for its speed, beauty, and elegance. But did you also know that horse are prolific farters? They are, in fact!
Despite how pretty and graceful they can be, these animals have a digestion process that includes fermentation. This includes the production of gases, and of course, these gases have to escape somehow.
In the stomach of a horse, the fermentation process happens in the furthest part of their gut from the mouth, which means the gas has only one place to go.
Horses are apparently quite comedic in their flatulence, shamelessly passing gas while they jump, eat, cough, and the like. Their farts are said to be of the very stinky sort as well, which kind of makes sense when you think about how bad their poop smells. Who knew this elegant creature could be so crude? It makes me wonder what else these beautiful beasts have been hiding!
There’s a certain smell that accompanies flocks of sheep, and it’s not just their poop. Apparently, sheep are one of the gassiest species in the farm animal kingdom, and there are so many of them that it’s becoming a real problem!
Along with cows, sheep are responsible for producing the most methane of all livestock. This is all because they fart so often — so much so that scientists are developing all sorts of experiments to make them fart less!
There are now special foods that limit gas production in sheep, breeding practices to limit the gassiness in their genes, and all sorts of other actions being taken to get control over sheep farts. This is how far the livestock community is going to try and preserve the atmosphere, all because sheep are the gassiest farm animal of them all!