Posted by: Idioma Extra | July 24, 2013

Grammar Guru

Idioms with Animals

Idioms are one of the hardest things to understand and learn in a non-native language, but they are also what help speakers sound more natural. Check out just a few of the English idioms that use animals.

A fish out of water:If you feel like a fish out of water, you feel uncomfortable in unfamiliar surroundings.

Example: As a non-golfer, I felt like a fish out of water at the clubhouse.

To take the bulls by the hornsTo take the bull by the horns means that a person decides to act decisively in order to deal with a difficult situation or problem.

Example: When the argument turned into a fight, the bar owner took the bull by the horns and called the police.

Snug as a bug in a rug: a humorous way to say that you are warm and comfortable.

Example: Wrapped up in a blanket on the sofa, Sophie looked as snug as a bug in a rug.

Like a headless chicken: If a person rushes about like a headless chicken, they act in a disorderly way, without thinking or analyzing the situation carefully.

Example: As soon as the store opened, my mother started running around like a headless chicken, eager to find bargains.

Note: You can also say running around like a chicken with its head cut off.

Night owl: Someone who is lively and active at night and goes to bed very late is called night owl.

Example: I work better in the evenings than in the morning.  My friends say I’m a night owl.

Note: The opposite, someone who is active early in the morning is called an early bird.

Check yourself with the Comprehension Quiz.


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