Father’s Day: Best Animal Dads

Father’s Day is a wonderful time to celebrate and honor devoted dads of every species.  Just like their human counterparts males in the animal world play a vital role in raising and teaching their offspring.  Here is a list of some of the best animal dads.



The males of this species make it to the top of the list every Father’s Day and they deserve the kudos.  The seahorse is a monogamous animal that actually carries the eggs of his mate in his belly.  He woos his love with an integral dance until she sends the eggs through a tube into his body.  These dads can carry as many as 1,000 eggs. The male seahorses proudly display their growing stomachs to each other until they give birth.



Adorable male marmosets are the primary caregivers for their newborn offspring while their tiny female mates recuperate for several weeks after giving birth.  These primate babies are can weigh up to 25 percent of their mother’s body weight, making the birthing process difficult and taxing.  So it’s up to dad to feed, clean and care for the needs of the babies.


Quail and Grouse

These wonderful birds mate for life and are dedicated dads who take an active role in child-rearing.  As their fuzzy kids start to wander away from the nest, these fathers are great at playing follow the leader.  Their offspring line up in long rows and waddle behind dad as they get know their home turf.  Mom helps by staying at the back of the line, keeping any strays from getting lost.


Red Fox

While mother red foxes stay with the kids in the den, it is up to these dads to bring back food every 4-6 hours for their demanding families.  Male red foxes are also fun-filled fathers as their young get older.  They are known to call the pups away from their mothers just to rough-house and play with them.  And as the pups get bigger, it is the fathers that teach them how to hunt and sniff out food.



While these big dads are known for being a bit lazy, they are also tolerant fathers.  One male lion can have as many as 7 female lionesses in his pride (household) and that can mean up to 20 lion cubs running around the place.



Like the lions, these large birds can have anywhere from 2-12 females in a family with one male.  But unlike the lions, these fathers are completely hands-on kind of guys.  They incubate 10-60 eggs over a forty day period and once the kids are born it is up to dad to raise them on his own.


Emperor Penguin

This magnificent father makes the list every year as king of — Animal Father’s Day.  Although the females lay the eggs, it is up to the fathers to keep them warm for a full two months.  These dads don’t even wander off for food.  They huddle together in temperatures that can reach 70 degrees below zero and keep their eggs warm by resting them on top of their feet.  When the chicks are hatched it’s dad who feeds them their first meal of a milky substance made from his body.  Then mom returns from hunting for fish and brings everyone in the family a real meal. 


Happy Father’s Day to all of the great dads who have inspired and enriched the children in their lives. 



Creative Commons - Mikebaird


Rhonnda REA
Rhonnda REA4 years ago

---I still haven't figured out how to connect with people on this site or even how to figure out who is who, but I do, very much appreciate any and all communictions, especially like this one about the animal fathers,...thank you for sharing it!

Elisa F.
Elisa F4 years ago

Thanks for sharing. Happy Father's Day to all the Dads! June 16, 2013.

Jewels S.
Jewels S7 years ago

I loved learning about the sea horses. Reading about the penguins made me sad though because I saw the movie about them. The mothers don't always come back and then the baby dies. It is a tough existence. I wish they didn't have it so hard.

Alamzeb Akhund
Alamzeb Khan7 years ago

noted thanks.

Andrea M.
Andrea M7 years ago

Wonderful article! Thanks for highlighting these amazing animal "dads"!!

Jane H.
Jane H7 years ago

I am very proud of both my sons (one gay and one straight) be-cause they are wonderful Dads to my 5 granchildren!!

Tammy Smith
T Zabel7 years ago

Humans should learn from our animals

Rosalinda Rayne
Rosalinda Rayne7 years ago

You left off Emu dads; they do all the child-rearing. And wood-ducks; the Dad will 'draw fire' so ducklings & mate can get away.

sara b.
sara b7 years ago

very cute

Mervi R.
Mervi R7 years ago

Lovely, thanks for making me smile!