If you were an animal at the zoo, which animal would you be and why?

  | James Innes

If you were an animal at the zoo, which animal would you be and why?

Alternative and related questions:

If you were a dog, what breed of dog would you be?
If you were a biscuit, what type of biscuit would you be?
If you were a make of car, what make would you be?
If you were a fruit, what fruit would you be?

The meaning behind the question:

Clearly the interviewer fancies themselves as a bit of an amateur psychiatrist. Superficially, it’s a fairly silly question really. However, the answers candidates give can be very revealing. The interviewer is obviously testing your ability to think on your feet – but they are also looking for some further insight into how you perceive yourself.

Your answer:

This is definitely one of the most difficult questions to answer. You’ve got to quickly think of all the different possible animals (or dog breeds or cars, etc.) and then pick one which has certain – positive – characteristics which you feel match your own. You’ve then got to explain your choice to the interviewer. This isn’t easy – but don’t panic; stall for time if necessary. And remember that there is no ‘correct’ answer to the question – it’s all about how you reach your answer and how you express yourself.


I can’t say anyone has ever asked me that before! If I could just have a second to think about it… Right, I think the chimpanzee springs to my mind. They’re a lot like humans really. They work together as a team, co-operate with each other for the benefit of the whole group, are sensitive to each other socially – and they always seem to have a good sense of fun and humour!

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