Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"

Recently, we brought you videos featuring vocabulary for describing animals, and also Speaking sample answers for that topic.

While preparing those, I also thought of numerous idioms we use that include specific animals in them, and many of them highlight specific personality traits found in humans.

As you may be aware, there is ample opportunity on the IELTS Speaking Exam for describing people’s personalities.

In Part 1, you may be asked to talk about friends and family members, and, in Part 2, there are often cards that ask you describe various kinds of people, such as a person in the news, or a celebrity.

So, without further ado, here are 5 animal idioms to use on your next exam!




Eye of the tiger– very determined, very driven toward a specific goal, to the extent that they almost think of nothing else

Pig-headed– extremely stubborn

Kind of a weasel– sneaky, underhanded


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Watch like a hawk– to pay very careful attention to something or someone, and try to catch every detail

Wouldn’t hurt a fly– very gentle, kind, and harmless

Please choose 2 of today’s phrases, and practice using them to describe yourself and/or people you know.

Provide specific examples that prove these idioms and the character traits implied.

How would you use today’s idioms to describe yourself, or someone you know?

Share your sentences in the comments section below!

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