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19 August 2010 / Liz Johns

If Humans Could Adopt Any Animal Trait #3 Fur

Somehow and somewhere along the evolutional route, humans lost their fur. Left only with a few tufts of strategically placed hair on our bodies, we humans are the hairless animals, the skinned variety. No sleek fur, curly wool or fine feathers for us and I personally think it’s a great shame. Why?

Having Fur Would Make it Easier to Get Ready in the Morning

What a drag, every morning, showering, putting on make up  (for the ladies), shaving (for the gentlemen), selecting clothes to wear, putting them on . . . it’s all too much and too time-consuming. If we were furry all over, we could get up, shower, blow dry and be done. Granted it may take a little longer to blow dry a body of fur, but I still believe it would be quicker and easier to get ready for the day.

Having Fur Would Keep us Warm in the Winter, Cool in the Summer

Fur keeps you warm. We all know that. It stands up on end and traps the air between, mmmm, instant warmth. Much more effective than putting another fleece on. And in the summer, we could just shed a little.

Having Fur Would Hide Our Aging Wrinkly and Saggy Skin

Possibly this is the number one advantage. You can never tell how old a furry animal is until it’s really old, whereas our hairless state exposes all our wrinkles, bumps and saggy bags that increase over the years. Most of us earnestly spend so much of our time trying to cover our aged imperfections, wouldn’t it be so much better if they were all hidden by fur?

Why did humans lose their fur?

No-one knows. Speculations abound, but there seems to be a counter argument for each of them:

1. Humans adapting to life in the hot savannah lost their fur to keep cool. [But didn’t they get cold at night?]

2. Losing fur meant getting rid of the parasites that lived in it. [But fur protects animals against many types of biting insects.]

3. Sexual selection with a preference for furless skin caused us to lose our fur. [Darwin suggested this. But he also suggested the complete opposite.]

4. Some suggest our human ancestors may have had a semi-aquatic lifestyle where fur was a hinderance. [This aquatic theory doesn’t hold much water hahaha]

5. When humans learnt how to make clothes out of animal skins, they lost the necessity to have their own fur. [Clutching at straws here.]

When did humans lose their fur?

It’s anyone’s guess. One suggestion is to take the date when body lice evolved from head lice (as body lice live only in clothing.) If that’s the case, it would be around 70,000 years ago.

Remember, all is fur in love and war.


Leave a Comment
  1. lifewith4cats / Dec 17 2010 8:34 am

    What an excellent blog. Im glad I found it. I too think fur would be an improvement all around.


    • Liz Johns / Dec 17 2010 11:12 am

      Thank you very much. Now there’s two of us who think fur is a better option. 🙂


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