Names of animals in German for children

Animal names in German for kids You really opened a box of worms the day I decided to start learning German! And sometimes, you probably felt like you were in some kind of wild goose hunt with all those skillfully different sounds and word order for questions.

Knowing some of the names of animals in German is very useful for talking about nature, the whole world and even for all kinds of interactions in everyday life.

While you may have reviewed a basic list of animal names that include "cat", "dog" and some other names in German yet, you haven't seen a list like this!

Get ready to learn more than 60 animals in German and more than 20 acts, animal parts and phrases!

Names of animals in German for children
Names of animals in German for children

Names of animals in German

It's time to get the cat out of the bag! Here are more than 60 names for animals and a lot of extra vocabulary to talk about animals in German.

Bauernhoftiere (farm animals)

Bauernhoftiere (farm animals)

Have you heard of Old MacDonald and its farm?

If you answered yes to this question (and I bet you did it!) , it's likely that you remembered your memories singing them in preschool—or at least thought of yourself at preschool age!

That's because farm animals are one of the first names of animals that children learn at school.

No, I will not make you sing them, but they are the first ones we will learn in German! These animals live in der Bauernhof (farm) and are cared for by der Bauer (farmer).

Let's check out some common farm animals:

  • Das Pferd Horse
  • Die Kuh Cow
  • Das Schwein  Pig
  • Der Hahn Rooster
  • Die Henne Henna
  • Das Schaf Sheep
  • Die Ziege Goat
  • Der Esel Donkey
  • Der Truthahn Turkey

Here are some sentences using the vocabulary of farm animals that I have recently learned:

Ich sehe ein Pferd, einen Hahn und einen Esel auf dem Bauernhof.  I see a horse, a dick and a donkey on the farm.

Keep in mind that the German words Hahn and Esel are in the case of monument because they are direct objects, in this case, so ein became einen.

Der Bauer hat eine Kuh, ein Schwein und ein Schaf.  The farmer has a cow, a pig and a sheep.

Common animals and Haustiere (Pets)

While farm animals are the first thing that is usually learned when you are children, unless you live on a farm, you are more likely to see the next group of animals in your daily life. You may even have one of these animals as a Haustier (pet).

In fact, 45% of German households have at least one pet in 2018! More than 34.4 million dogs and more than 14.8 million cats were registered in Germany in the same year.

With such large numbers, imagine the lengthy conversations in German you can have with native speakers about their beloved furry (or scaled) comrades!

Common pets and other local animals include:

  • Der Hund (dog)
  • Die Gans (goose)
  • Die Katze (cat)
  • Die Ente (duck)
  • Das Kaninchen / Der Hase (rabbit)
  • Der Goldfisch (goldfish)
  • Das Meerschweinchen (Guinean pig)
  • Der Hamster (hamster)
  • Die Schlange (Spot)
  • Der Vogel (Fly)
  • Der Fisch (fish)
  • Die Eidechse (lizard)
  • Der Frosch (frog)
  • Der Fuchs (fox)
  • Der Hirsch (deer)
  • Der Bär (bear)
  • Der Waschbär (raccoon)
  • Die Eule (owl)

If we lived in a world where only cats, dogs and other cute animals inhabit our homes. But we don't! Sometimes we get an unwanted housing companion, known as der Schädling (pest).

Insect names in German

  • Die Maus(Mouse)
  • Die Ratte (mouse)
  • Die Spinne (spider)
  • Das Insekt  (insect)
  • Die Fliege (fly)
  • Die Mücke / Die Stechmücke  / Die Moskito (mosquitoes)
  • Die Biene (The Bee)
  • Der Schmetterling (butterfly)
  • Das Stinktier (skunk)

To use some of these words, you might say:

Der Junge hat einen Hund und einen Goldfisch. (The boy has a dog and a goldfish.)

Das Mädchen hat einen Hamster und eine Eidechse. (The girl has a hamster and a lizard.)

In meinem Haus gibt es eine Ratte und ein Stinktier! (In my house, there is a rat and a skunk!)

Ich hasse Spinnen, Mücken und Bienen!  (I hate spiders, mosquitoes and bees!)

Wassertiere / Meerestiere (Aquatic Animals)

Germany is a land full of lakes and rivers. In the north it is bordered by Nordsee (North Sea) Ostsee (East Sea).

Germany is also home to several Flüsse rivers, most notably the Rhine, Danube and Elbe rivers that pass through many German cities and towns. These magnificent rivers also host many famous river cruises.

As such, Germany is home to many aquatic animals, both in local waterways and in Aquariums (aquariums ) and Tierpark (zoos).

Some common aquatic animals include:

  • Der Otter (otter )
  • Der Oktopus (octopus )
  • Der Delphin (dolphin)
  • Der Wal (Pisces)
  • Der Hai (shark)
  • Die Krabbe (crab)
  • Der Seelöwe (seal)
  • Der Seehund (seal)
  • Die Qualle (jellyfish)
  • Der Aal (eel)
  • Der Pinguin (penguin )
  • Der Seestern (starfish)

When visiting one of the German rivers, you may say:

Wir sehen einen Otter im Fluss. (We see otters in the river.)

Or, perhaps in an aquarium, you may indicate to your friends one of the following things:

Guck mal, ein Aal! (Look, eel!)

Ich liebe diesen Pinguin. (I love this penguin.)

In a textbook, you may read:

Der blaue Wal ist sehr groß. (The blue whale is too big.)

Der Seestern sieht wie ein Stern aus. (A starfish looks like a star.)

Exotische Tiere (exotic animals)

Although many animals in Germany are similar to those in North America, a visit to Tierpark (zoo) will expose you to animals from all over the world.

Germans love to go to the zoo, and there are zoos in many major German cities such as Berlin, Munich and Frankfurt.

Some common exotic animals include:

  • Der Papagei (parrot)
  • Der Löwe (Lion)
  • Der Tiger (Tiger)
  • Der Affe (monkey)
  • Der Menschenaffe (monkey)
  • Der Elefant  (elephant)
  • Die Giraffe (giraffe )
  • Das Nilpferd (hippopotamus)
  • Das Nashorn (rhinoceros)
  • Der Strauß (ostrich)
  • Die Schildkröte (turtle)
  • Der Pfau (Peacock)

During your trip to the zoo, you may hear the following exchange between the baby and the mother:

Mama, werden wir einen Löwe sehen?  (Mom, are we going to see a lion?)

In response, the child's mother may say:

Ja! Wir werden ihn sehen nachdem wir die Giraffe, den Strauß und den Pfau besuchen. (Yes we will see it after we visit the giraffe, ostrich and peacock).

Phrases of congratulations in German and good greeting

Tierbabys (baby animals)

Although animals are cute, they are always nice when they are children! As in Arabic, German has specific words for animals when they are small.

Some vocabulary related to small animals or small animals includes:

  • Das Ei (egg)
  • Der Welpe (puppy)
  • Das Kätzchen (cat)
  • Das Entchen (duck)
  • Das Lamm (pregnancy)
  • Das Kalb Calf
  • Das Küken (chick)

Note that the -chen character can be added to many names to make them small (referring to the smaller version of something).

As in the case of die Katze (cat) die Ente (duck), we get the words das Kitten (kitten) and die Entchen (duck).

This can also be added to other names such as das Hündchen (little dog) and das Mäuschen (little mouse) to describe the smaller version of the animal.

However, keep in mind that by adding the -chen character to animals, they automatically become sex-neutral despite their previous grammatical gender. This means that these names will take the DAS definition article (the) in the nominal state.

Remember that trip to the farm? When remembering the experience of a friend or family member, you may say:

Ich habe ein Kalb und ein Lamm gesehen. Sie waren sehr süß!  (I saw a calf and a lamb. They were so nice!)


You might also say:

Das Küken kommt von einem Ei. (The chick comes out of an egg).

Animal body parts

Animal body parts

Animals – regardless of the language used to speak about them – have different parts of our bodies.

The animal parts are named in German as follows:

  • Die Schnauze Hose
  • Der Schwanz (tail)
  • Die Pfote (claw)
  • Der Pelz (fur)
  • Die Feder (feather)
  • Das Horn (century)

You can describe a dog in the following way:

Er hat eine kleine Schnauze und einen langen Schwanz. Er hat vier Pfoten, und sein Pelz ist weiß. (He has a small nose and a long tail, has four feet, and his fur is white).

Common animal-related verbs and phrases in German

Finally, animals also have different needs than humans, and require these special actions that describe the care of animals and interaction with them. Some of these verbs can extend to humans, but some are intended for animals and will be referred to as such in the list.

Such acts include:

  • Sich um etwas kümmern (to take care of something)
  • Füttern (to feed)
  • Streicheln (for stroke)
  • Spazieren gehen / Gassi gehen / Rausgehen (to go for a walk)
  • Spielen (to play)
  • Sich putzen (for self-care)
  • Striegeln (for the care of an animal)

Fressen (for eating) vs Essen (for eating)

Fressen (for eating) vs Essen (for eating)

In addition to having different parts of the body than humans, animals also eat differently in German than in Arabic.

While we use the verb essen (eats) in German to talk about the human act of eating, the verb fressen (eats) should be used to talk about eating an animal.

While fressen is commonly used to describe the act of eating an animal, it can also be used to mean "devouring" or "devouring" when a human eats.

Despite being a different verb, fressen compares similarly to the verb essen.

Pay special attention to the conjugation of the verb er, sie, es (he, she, he)

  • Ich fresse (I eat)
  • Du frisst (you eat)
  • Er, Sie, Es frisst (he, she, eats)
  • Wir fressen (we eat)
  • Ihr fresst (you all eat)
  • Sie fressen (they eat)

The sources

Let's learn more than 60 animals in German

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