Let's talk about the weather…animal style!


In France, no matter whether you enjoy them or not, you will always be faced with what we call “weather talks”. It might not be the most interesting topic for a discussion but let’s be honest; it’s a good way of breaking the ice without damaging too many brain cells!

In fact, French people talk about the weather all the time, on the phone, with family, friends and co-workers…that’s probably why they try to make it more interesting by using a whole bunch of proverbs and sayings.

Just like the world famous British proverb “it’s raining cats and dogs”, the most common proverbs and expressions in French involve animal names.

Here are the three “classics” with their literal translations:

  • C’est un temps à ne pas mettre un chien dehors ! (It’s a weather not to leave a dog outside!)
  • Il fait un froid de canard! (It’s duck-like cold!)
  • Il pleut comme vache qui pisse! (It’s raining as if a cow was peeing!)

As a bonus for French language experts, the following sayings:

  • Ce n’est jamais Avril si le coucou ne l’a dit.
  • En Février les agneaux naissent plus beau.
  • Mieux vaut un renard au poulailler Qu’un homme en chemise en février.

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