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I Am Not Weasel

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Mulan: My ancestors sent a little lizard to help me?
Mushu: Hey, dragon, dragon! Not lizard. I don't do that tongue thing. [Does that tongue thing.]

A Talking Animal (or at least someone who looks like one) is constantly mistaken for another species as a Running Gag. Often, it can be their Berserk Button, particularly if they consider it a Fantastic Slur. This trope often leads to Insistent Terminology or Have I Mentioned I Am a Dwarf Today?.

The Trope Namer is Cow and Chicken spinoff I Am Weasel. Not to be confused with I Am Not Shazam. Compare with Son of an Ape, a variant by which comparing humans to other primates is considered insulting. Contrast with the inversion, Ass in a Lion Skin, for when an animal wants to be taken for another species.

See Mistaken Ethnicity and Mistaken Nationality when it is happening with humans for ethnicities or nationalities respectively, or Accidental Misnaming when dealing with proper names, or I Am Not Spock when dealing with actors and their characters. See also A Dog Named "Cat", where an animal is named after a species it's clearly not. If it's the viewers that are confusing a character's species, then that's Viewer Species Confusion.


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  • One Australian Compare the Meerkat spot has a pest control man hunt down Aleksandr and Sergei because he thinks they're possums. The meerkats get chased out of their home, and Aleksandr spends the entire time ranting about how offensive it is to be mistaken for a possum.

    Anime & Manga 
  • Ayakashi Triangle: Shirogane is a white cat ayakashi, but he's so plump that Reo thought he was some kind of pig, and he angrily correct her ("I'm a noble white cat!"). Much later, Yayo starts to gain the ability to see ayakashi, and identifies Shirogane's faint silhouette as "something that resembles a white piglet".
  • A quite literal example in BNA: Brand New Animal: Marie Itami insists that she is not a weasel, she is a mink!
    • Inverted with main character Michiru Kagemori, who insists that she's a raccoon, not a tanuki. Everyone else is quick to point out, even before she starts delving into magical shapeshifting ala mythical tanuki, that she's obviously in denial. She's adamant about this due to hating tanukis when she used to be human.
  • In Digimon Data Squad, Masaru's little sister calls Gaomon a dog, prompting him to point out "Would a dog wear boxing gloves?"
  • A running gag in Doraemon: when someone first meets Doraemon, they think he's a tanuki. This makes Doraemon really mad since he's a robotic cat without ears, and on those occasions he literally spells out this trope by name. To the point that when he, Nobita, and Shizuka gets held captive by bird soldiers in the movie Nobita and the Winged Braves, Doraemon cries in joy because the soldier correctly identified him as a cat.
  • In Dragon Ball Z, Goku mistakes the cricket sprite Gregory for a grasshopper, much to the latter's annoyance.
  • Fritz the Bitter Goblin in the Duel Masters dub gets very upset when he's called a squirrel.
  • Val of Fairy Musketeers would like to remind us that he's a wolf, not a dog. (Even if the domestic dog is still genetically a clear canis lupus, that is, a wolf.)
  • In the Fairy Tail X Rave crossover, Elie calls the talking cat Happy a bug, much to his annoyance.
  • In Fresh Pretty Cure!, Tarte, a ferret, rages at Inori for calling him a ghost.
  • In Fullmetal Alchemist, Xiao May is thought to be a cat by everyone in Amestris, but she's really a tiny panda bear. Note that the Chinese word for panda literally means "bear-cat".
  • Gatchaman Crowds, Pai really doesn't like it pointed out that he resembles an adorable baby panda.
  • Inuyasha:
    • In the episode "The Mysterious, Lecherous Monk" , Inuyasha and Miroku persist in referring to a weasel demon as a "raccoon dog" (tanuki) even when he tries to remind them that "I'm a weasel, dang it!" This despite the fact that one of Miroku's oldest friends (and frequent accomplices) is a tanuki, so you'd think he'd know the difference.
    • It's also a Running Gag that Shippo is constantly mistaken for a tanuki or a squirrel, leading to him saying "I'm a kitsune!" (i.e. a fox).
    • From a different episode:
      Villagers: Are you in league with that cat demon? (Meaning Kirara.)
      Inuyasha: Who're you calling a cat demon?!
    • In another episode, the gang have to fight a tribe of panther demons. Much to them, and their more human like leaders' anger, the main characters often call them cat demons.
      Shippo: It's the cat demons from the west!
      Tora: Huh? cat demons? My friend and I are panther demons. Don't lump us with ordinary cats or you'll make us angry.
    • In one of the episodes with the Thunder Brothers, Shippo transforms into a bow. Kagome thinks he turned into a snail...
  • In Jewelpet (2009), it's a Running Gag that Aqua, a clownfish Jewelpet, keeps getting mistaken for a goldfish. He does not take kindly to this. (Ironically, his Verbal Tic of saying "-gyo" at the end of every sentence derives from "kingyo", which is Japanese for "goldfish".)
    • This trait still applies to him in Jewelpet Twinkle☆. But in addition to it, whenever Labra (A polar bear Jewelpet) is in the human world, she is sometimes mistaken for a dog, or is called one by Akari to cover up the fact that she's a bear cub.
  • Jōjū Senjin!! Mushibugyō, this trope is deconstructed with Kikyou during the Anthill Invasion arc: despite being a moth type insect woman with all that comes with it, she's adamant in referring to herself as a butterfly and becomes angry and vulgar should someone point out that she isn't. However, she's so deluded with being a butterfly that during the final clash against Isshin she blissfully believe she can dodge all his gun shots by fluttering in a confusing, graceful pattern like butterflies do... while in truth, she really can't, leading to her demise.
  • Lyrical Nanoha:
    • Zafira is a wolf man mistaken for a dog every so often, even from his long-time allies. Technically, he takes the form of a small dog while on Earth, having been convinced by Arf that it's less intimidating than his wolf form. He also prefers to be called a "guardian beast" rather than a "familiar"—an even finer distinction, which Fate's wolf familiar Arf claims to be different only in terminology.
    Vita: I'm jealous of Zafira, it's so convenient being a dog...
    Zafira: ...I'm a wolf.
    • Yuuno often appears in ferret form, and is occasionally taken for a familiar. In reality, he's a shapeshifting mage.
  • Negima! Magister Negi Magi:
    • Half-Dog Demon Kotarô usually prefers to call himself a lone wolf.
    • Chamo, from the same series, is an ermine. Negima!? combines this trope with Running Gag and Insistent Terminology when the girls of class 3-A refer to him as a rat. note 
  • Happens in The Noozles when an elderly (and nearly blind) woman sees Blinky and freaks out, thinking he's a giant mole, which she's apparently afraid of. Blinky tries to explain to her that he's actually a koala, which just freaks her out even more, exclaiming "And it talks too!" And with that, she faints. It becomes a Running Gag for the remainder of the episode every time she encounters him.
  • Horus from Oh, Suddenly Egyptian God gets visibly upset whenever he's compared to a penguin (thanks to the chibi character designs).
  • In Ojarumaru, Kisuke is an oni, but looks enough like a chick that others tend to mistake him for that species, much to his dismay.
    Kisuke: Kii-kun is not a chick, ppii!
  • Onegai My Melody, Baku the tapir is constantly mistaken for an eggplant, since he's purple.
  • One Piece's Tony Tony Chopper is frequently mistaken for a tanuki/raccoon-dog in his hybrid form and a yeti (at least once) in human form. His real form is that of a small anthropomorphic reindeer. Franky has also referred to him as a "Gorilla" and even "Gorilla-Deer" when he realizes he's a Devil Fruit user. In Baron Omatsuri and the Secret Island, the Tearoom Pirates and the Baron mistake him for an otter. Constantly having to correct people has really started to piss him off.
  • Happens to Misty in the dub of Pokémon: The Original Series, when a kid raised by Kangaskhan mistakes her for a Pokémon, much to her chagrin (in the Japanese version, he asked about drinking from her breasts).
  • Seton Academy: Join the Pack!: Jin calls Ranka a dog, which offends her because she is a wolf. Due to his hatred of animals, Jin says he doesn't care and keeps calling her a dog.
  • Shadows of Spawn — a manga adaptation of Todd McFarlen's Spawn. Ken Kurosawa (who is the series' Spawn) encounters an intelligent wolf spawn named Mangler, whom he often mistakes for a dog.
  • In one episode of Smile PreCure!, Wolfrun becomes irate when Miyuki's grandmother mistakes him for a fox.
  • Space☆Dandy's Meow is very insistent on being called a Betelgeusian, and not a space cat. His catlike mannerisms don't exactly help his case.
  • Belbel in There, Beyond the Beyond is a magician who looks suspiciously like a rabbit, and gets mad when compared to one.
  • In Yu-Gi-Oh! GX, Neo-Spacian Aqua Dolphin is called a fish by Judai, and replies that he is a mammal.

    Comic Books 
  • B'dg in the Green Lantern comics is often called a talking squirrel. To be fair, that is exactly what he looks like.
  • Guardians of the Galaxy: Even though it's in his name, do not refer to Rocket Raccoon as a raccoon — doing so will make him show you his gun collection... the bad way.

    Fan Works 
  • All Assorted Animorphs AUs: At the end of "What if Jake was stuck in morph?", Tom teases Jake about being a cat for three years, asking if he had mouse-shaped toys or coughed up any hairballs. Jake corrects him; he was a tiger, not a housecat.
  • In the Avengers of the Ring sequel Methteilien, various parties who have visited Middle-Earth mistake Groot for an Entling when they first meet him, and even Groot speculates that there may be some past connection between his species and the Ents.
  • In Fallen Angel. though she never tells it to his face, Amy thinks that Knuckles the echidna is an anteater.
  • In the Fairy Tail fanfic Fairy Tail: An Alternate Tail, Pantherlily often corrects other that he is not a cat but rather an Exceed.
  • In My Little Mages: The Nightmare's Return, Spike is still a baby dragon but looks more like an iguana except for his coloring. He protests vehemently being called an iguana, though, despite the fact he can only do so through his Psychic Link with Twilight since he's too young to talk.
  • Turnabout Storm:
    • Phoenix calls Twilight a "talking horse" shortly after first seeing her. She is quick to correct him (doubling as a small Comically Missing the Point moment from Phoenix's perspective).
      Twilight Sparkle: Excuse me! I am not a horse, I happen to be a pony.
      Phoenix Wright: OH! Okay! A talking PONY, that explains everything!
    • Another instance, this time directed at Phoenix. Fluttershy, as her name implies, does not speak to anyone she doesn't know personally (preferring the company of animals), but immediately opens up to him upon learning his first name and assuming that that was his species.
    • He also mistook Rainbow Dash with an earth pony in another opportunity; she didn't take that one lightly.
      Rainbow Dash: What the hay are you talking about!? I'm not an earth pony; I'm a pegasus!
  • In a Kung Fu Panda fanfic The Vow, Jade is a dhole, but she can be easily mistaken for a fox or a jackal. Upon first meeting her, Zhan the Wolf Boss confuses her for a jackal and nearly starts beating her due to the deep animosity between wolves and jackals before she corrects him.

    Films — Animation 
  • Ratigan from The Great Mouse Detective is (as his name implies) a rat, but call him a rat and you're dead meat. Presumably he hates being called that due to the connotations. Instead, he wants to be referred to as a "big mouse".
  • Call Pumbaa from The Lion King (1994) a pig only if you're in a real hurry to die. Simba and Timon can get away with it, though.
    • Apparently he's okay with "Mr. Pig", though.
  • Mulan:
    • There is some confusion when Mulan meets Mushu for the first time, hence the page quote. He's just not the size you'd expect for a dragon.
    • Mushu himself calls Mulan's horse Khan a cow until the Darkest Hour, where he accuses him of really being a sheep.
  • In My Little Pony: The Movie (2017), one of the thugs in Klugetown refers to Spike as a "gecko," which he takes offense to.
  • Over the Hedge features a turtle who corrects anyone who call him an amphibian. It also features pest exterminator Dwayne LaFontant (AKA: The Verminator) with a freakishly strong sense of smell:
    Dwayne: (sniffing) Possum, porcupine, skunk, squirrel, raccoon... amphibian...
    Vern: (under his breath) Reptile.
    Dwayne: No... (sniffs again) ...reptile.
  • Lampwick from Pinocchio refers to Jiminy Cricket as a beetle just right before he turns into a donkey.
    "You mean to tell me you take orders from a grasshopper?"
  • In Rise of the Guardians, Jack Frost insults Bunnymund the Easter Bunny by calling him "the Easter kangaroo". A bit of Lampshade Hanging here, since Bunnymund is played by Hugh Jackman, who amps up the Awesome Aussie accent. Also note that Aussies would consider it an insult to kangaroos, rabbits being invasive pests down under.
  • At one point in Scooby-Doo and the Cyber Chase, Fred attempts to bullfight a lion. At first he shouts, "Toro, toro!" which causes the lion to look around in confusion, as if to say "Bull? Where?". Fred thinks for a moment, then shouts, "Leo, leo!"note 
  • Jeremy the Crow suffers from this In The Secret of NIMH: Aunt Shrew calls him "Black Buzzard", before she leaves and Cynthia innocently calls him "Turkey" and He clarifies that he is not a turkey and when he meets Miss Right, Cynthia thinks that "Miss Right" is another turkey.
  • Tangled: Flynn keeps referring to Rapunzel's chameleon sidekick Pascal as a frog. Probably deliberately to annoy/insult Pascal, since Flynn really doesn't like him at first and is trying to get rid of Rapunzel and Pascal.
    • In the series, when they first met, Rapunzel calls Pascal a frog, not out of meanness, but youthful naivete.
  • In Tarzan: When Tantor first meets Tarzan, he thinks it's a piranha. Later, he says that Tarzan could be some subspecies of elephant, on the basis that both enjoy a peanut.
  • In Toy Story of Terror, on the manager's board of toys to sell, Mr. Pricklepants, a hedgehog, is labeled as a "German beaver." Trixie, a Triceratops, is labeled as a "Stegosaurus."
  • In Turning Red, Mei's giant red panda form is mistaken for a bear form by one of her classmates.
  • Elsa the Pterodactyl from We're Back! A Dinosaur's Story apparently hates being referred to as a bat but she's okay with being referred to as a dinosaur.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • A minor Running Gag in The Big Lebowski is that the Dude and Walter will often misidentify animals (Walter's ex-wife's dog is not a Pomeranian, and a pet ferret is not a marmot), though this being a relatively realistic movie with no talking animals, the creatures in question do not take offense.
  • Obviously played for laughs in Caddyshack when the gopher steals Rodney Dangerfield's golfball as he's trying to sink a putt.
    Al: That kangaroo stole my ball!
  • The Eddie Murphy Dr. Dolittle has a Running Gag with Dolittle referring to his daughter Maya's pet guinea pig, Rodney, as a "rat" or a "guinea rat."
    Dr. Dolittle: Whatever; they're both rodents. I'll find your rodent; I'll put down some of that sticky paper for him.
    Maya: No, not that!
    Dr. Dolittle: It'll be fine; you peel him right off it, and he'll live.
  • The Lord of the Rings: Never call an Ent a "tree". Mocked by the Rifftrax of The Two Towers movie.
    "TreeBeard some call me."
    "Well then, why did you get so upset when we called you by half your name?!"
Though this is only the case in the movie; it never comes up in the book. Still, it probably makes sense — most shepherds wouldn't like being called "sheep", even if their name is Mr. Sheep-Herd.
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe:
    • Guardians of the Galaxy (2014): Rocket seems at first to be an alien that happens to look like a raccoon. Gamora repeatedly calls him a rodentnote , much to his annoyance. What's notable about Rocket is that in the comics, "Raccoon" is his surname, but he's only known by the name "Rocket" in the MCU. And because he's not from Earth, he doesn't know what a raccoon is and dislikes being called one.
    • People calling him various animals becomes a bit of a Running Gag in the sequel. Peter calls him a trash panda, Ego calls him a triangle-faced monkey, Nebula calls him a fox, Yondu calls him a rat, and Mantis calls him a crabby puppy.
    • The gag continues in Avengers: Infinity War, with Thor calling him a rabbit throughout the film. Initially confused, Rocket doesn't seem to mind that shortly after.
    • Continued further as Avengers: Endgame reveals that all Asgardians apparently think raccoons are rabbits.
    • Continued even further and finally resolved in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, with events such as Gamora dismissively calling him a badger. Then, towards the end, Rocket finds the cage he was taken from before the High Evolutionary uplifted him...with a little panel identifying the species within as Earth raccoons, prompting him to finally get over it and start going by "Rocket Raccoon".
  • Planet of the Apes:
    • Escape from the Planet of the Apes. Cornelius tells the commission not to call him and Zira monkeys because it's offensive to them. Zira, ever the Politically Incorrect Hero, is also extremely insistent that chimpanzees and gorillas (whom she has something against) are not the same thing. When an orderly refers to Zira's unborn son as a "little monkey", it hits the Berserk Button of an already-very-stressed-out Cornelius, who accidentally kills the guy in a violent outburst.
    • Krull from Tim Burton's version of Planet of the Apes (2001) seriously dislikes being called a "monkey":
      Krull: Monkeys are further down the evolutionary ladder... just above humans!
  • In the Cartoon Network TV Movie Re-Animated, Crocco gets offended when he's called a "pea-brained crocodile."
    Crocco: I'll have you know I'm a pea-brained alligator. Crocco is just a family name.

  • In the Apprentice Adept books, the unicorn Clip explains that black or brown unicorns are considered inferior because they look like a horse, and it is even worse if you actually compare them to a horse. Unicorns don't always enjoy knowing that their ancestors are horses, and Clip points out that it's just like how humans don't always enjoy knowing that their ancestors are apes.
  • In the sixth Artemis Fowl book, Opal consistently mistakes the lemur for a monkey, to which Artemis always responds that it's a lemur. This becomes a plot point at the end, when Artemis switches the lemur for a stuffed monkey when Opal isn't looking. On the bright side, she finally says "lemur."
  • In the The Bad Guys books, Mr. Piranha is constantly mistaken as a "mutant sardine" by the news, much to his extreme irritation.
  • The Cat Who... Series: Eddie Trevelyan, who's working on Polly Duncan's house in book #17 (The Cat Who Blew the Whistle), refers to Koko as a weasel a couple of times. There are also a couple other instances in which Koko and Yum Yum are mistaken for animals other than cats, due to the somewhat unusual appearance of Siamese in comparison with the types of cats people are used to, particularly at a distance.
  • Discworld:
  • Endling: Byx is a dairne, a species which resemble bipedal dogs. However, she dislikes being called a dog, as she is not one.
    Byx: Let me make clear: I am not a dog.
    Khara: Yes, I know. If you were a dog, I wouldn't be debating this with you.
  • In the Myth Adventures series, people from the dimension Perv are Pervects, not Perverts, and don't you forget it.
  • In the first Percy Jackson book, Percy meets the Greek-mythological dragon known as Echidna. He mentions the Australian mammal called the echidna, which was named after the mythological dragon. Echidna is irked by this comparison; she always hated having a small anteater named after her.
  • In the Redwall books by Brian Jacques, the heroic and generally weapon-ready hares absolutely cannot stand being referred to as rabbits, since rabbits in the Redwall world tend to be quiet and passive Upper Class Twits as opposed to the hares being, essentially, RAF pilots.
  • In Sonic the Hedgehog in the Fourth Dimension, an imaginary creature (long story) refers to Sonic and Tails to Sonic as "you and your ilk". Tails replies indignantly, "I'm a fox, not an ilk." The fault is Tails', though, as "ilk" is an infrequently used term used similar to "kind" used to describe similar cohorts. The creature was merely referring to Sonic and Tails as both being real animals.
  • In the Star Wars Expanded Universe, the rodent-like Chadra-Fans are sometimes mistaken for Ranats. Ranats, for their part, have been mistaken for womp rats — an especially grievous insult, since womp rats are not sentient and Ranats themselves are (falsely) considered to be only semi-sentient.
  • In Storyteller, Loquastro, the mynah bird gets mistaken for a crow by several characters, much to his chagrin.
  • Tortall Universe: In one scene in Wolf Speaker, Daine is telepathically communicating with Tkaa, who then passes on her message to Numair, while riding in the mind of a marmot named Quickmunch. Later on in the conversation, Daine informs Numair that if he keeps on incorrectly identifying Quickmunch's species, the marmot will bite him.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In Doctor Who, several species of aliens resent being described as looking like Earth animals (or, in the case of the Sontarans, boiled potatoes).
    • The Vinvocci resemble cacti, but object being referred to as such by the jubilant Wilf (and the Doctor, who actually is just correcting Wilf's grammar after Wilf calls them "cactuses"), calling the choice of terminology "racist". They also dislike being mistaken for Zocci, who look similar to them but are short and red instead of tall and green.
    • The Abzorbaloff resents Rose mistaking it for a Raxacoricofallapatorian.
    • The Doctor can get a bit tetchy when people tell him he looks human.
      Amy: You look human.
      Eleventh Doctor: No, you look Time Lord. We came first.
  • In Colombian series "El Show de Perico", Amanda is a tapir who is often mistaken for another animal, and she angrily points out that she is not that animal but a tapir.
  • Occurs with human John Crichton in Farscape. Due to being pretty much physically identical (at least externally), he is often mistaken for a Sebacean, which is unfortunate since they're mostly bad guys.
  • Inverted in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (1981) when Arthur Dent is assumed to be an ape. But as the Guide points out humans are sensitive about their relatives, and don't invite them to dinner.
  • From the Mystery Science Theater 3000 take on Eegah!:
    Roxy: I didn't say it was a monster! It's a giant!
    Crow: There's a big difference!
  • A Running Gag in Pixelface is that visitors to the console, such as Alexia's parent, keeping thinking that Rex is somebody's pet; usually mistaking him for some kind of dog.
  • Data, on Star Trek: The Next Generation, would occasionally correct people that he is an android, not a robot.

  • In 1968, the band Canned Heat teamed up with Alvin and the Chipmunks to do a version of the Chipmunk Song ("Christmas Don't Be Late"). The intro to the song was Bob "The Bear" Hite barging into the Chipmunks' recording session as it was Canned Heat's turn to use the studio, and asking somebody to "get those mice out of here", drawing protests from the insulted chipmunks.
  • Flanders and Swann's The Gnu Song has two references to g-nus (that's the way they say it in the song) objecting to being confused with "similar" animals like bison, okapis and hartebeests. One even threatens to sue.

    Puppet Shows 
  • The Muppet Show:
    • In the episode with ventriloquist Edgar Bergen, his dummy Charlie McCarthy sees Kermit the Frog and tells Bergen, "Call the janitor, there's a toad loose in the stage." Kermit corrects him, explaining that "frogs are handsome, debonair and charming, while toads are ugly and give you warts." McCarthy then backtracks himself: "I guess the toad is supposed to be here."
    • The King from the Muppets' rendition of "The Frog Prince" kept making the same mistake about Kermit's little nephew Robin.
  • In The Great Muppet Caper, Neville (John Cleese) mistook Kermit for a lizard, but then again, he also thought Miss Piggy was male. Later on, a girl confuses Kermit for a bear before her father corrects her (bears wear hats).
  • In A Muppet Family Christmas, Fozzie's mother keeps calling Kermit a lizard, no matter how many times he corrects her.
  • From Muppets Tonight, Pepe is constantly telling people that he's a king prawn, not a shrimp.
  • Also from The Muppets, there is the Running Gag surrounding Gonzo the Great and his indetermined species. He's been called an alien, a "Whatever", a "Weirdo", a "Thing", etc.
    Kermit: [Gonzo looks] a little like a turkey. Yeah, a little like a turkey, but not much.
    • Though he does strongly resemble a Russian insectivore called a "desman".
  • On Sesame Street, Snuffy gets upset whenever he is mistaken for an elephant, to the point where he once sang a whole song about it. After the song, an elephant reveals that a lot of people have mistaken him for a snuffleupagus. That being said, in Dont Eat The Pictures, he's ok with pretending to be an elephant.

  • In the ZBS Foundation series Ruby: Adventures of a Galactic Gumshoe, rat-faced alien Rodant Kapoor has to constantly correct pronunciation of his name. ("Not rodent, Rodant!")
  • Though not an animal, the Amoral Attorney Howard Weazelle in the Adventures in Odyssey episode "A Victim of Circumstance" (understandably) insists on the proper pronunciation of his name.
    • Bart: (reading) Howard J. Weasel.
    • Rodney: That's Wie-zel.
    • Weazelle: Actually, it's Wea-zelle. It's French.

    Video Games 
  • In Banjo-Tooie, Kazooie refers to Honey B. as "wasp lady". Honey B. responds by stating that she's actually a bee. Kazooie then proceeds to call her "hornet girl".
  • Yuuki Terumi of BlazBlue fame is prone to doing this as per his politically incorrect nature. In some instances, he calls the wolflike Valkenhayn house-dog names (Fido and Old Yeller, for example), and at the end of her CS Arcade run he calls Makoto a chipmunk. This is just the tip of his Fantastic Racism, mind you...
  • Upon creating a Holy Dragon in Disgaea 3, it'll take a moment to inform your other characters, that despite looking like a dog, it's indeed a dragon, after which it says "woof".
  • Buzz Buzz, an insect of indeterminate species who provides much of the exposition early on in EarthBound (1994), introduces himself thus: "A bee I am... not..." Shortly afterward, Lardna Minch mistakes him for a dung beetle and squishes him.
  • In Final Fantasy Tactics Advance, it's common knowledge that nobody ever should call a Bangaa (the reptilian humanoid race of Ivalice) a lizard; that is, common knowledge to everyone but the protagonist, who crashlanded in the world almost immediately before. Said innocent confusion instead leads to Marche almost getting, one would expect, killed. Likewise, upon their first prolonged meeting, Marche confuses Montblanc, a Moogle, for a stuffed animal...
    • The sequel has a Shout-Out where Montblanc manages to prevent Luso from making the same mistake. Luso knew they were Bangaa, but he didn't know how far his insult would hit or his frustration with the Bangaa in-question caused him to speak without thinking.
  • In Granblue Fantasy, a common running gag is that Vyrn, the tiny flying dragon that always accompanies the player, is always referred to as a lizard by others to his frustration.
  • Jak and Daxter:
    • Daxter has been referred to as everything from a muse (sparky yellow cat-things) to a muskrat, though he asserts he is, in fact, an ottsel. In an inversion of the trope name, though, he is, in the most literal sense, a weasel: an ottsel is an otter/weasel hybrid, which are both members of the family Mustelidae.
    • Played straight in PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale, where Clank from Ratchet & Clank calls Daxter a weasel creature. This seems to be Daxter's Berserk Button, as it is what eventually leads to Jak and Ratchet battling.
      Clank: Did that... weasel... creature just call me a "sidekick?"
      Daxter: WEASEL CREATURE?
      Jak: Maybe it's time someone taught you some manners! (Daxter hands Jak his gun, as Ratchet draws his Omniwrench)
  • Max of Jay's Journey refers to Atolla, a man turned into a lion, as a "talking kitty" throughout the game. Mind, Max has his own issues, but an NPC makes the same mistake, referring to Atolla as a "calico", to Jay's utter bewilderment.
  • The Wind Fish in The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening reminds you that it is neither wind nor fish when you finally meet it.
  • In Lego Marvel Superheroes if you walk around in Manhattan as Spider-Man, a civilian will make the same gag as in Western Animation below by calling you "Insect Boy." And if you walk around as Doctor Octopus? He'll call you Professor Squid. (Though animal misidentification isn't his only problem; he also thinks Black Widow is Dark Window.)
  • In The Lost Vikings II, the vikings are joined by a werewolf, Fang; it's a Running Gag after he joins the group to have the vikings mistake his species (or at least make horrible animal puns in his presence).
  • Lunar:
  • In Lunistice's character select screen, unlocked after beating the game once, the third bullet point in Hana's description reads "Not a fox", implying that she is often confused for one.
  • Namu Amida Butsu! -UTENA-: Even if he has a crocodile tail, General Kubira is not a crocodile. He's a boarnote .
  • Kohaku of Onmyōji would like many people, especially Hiromasa, to know that it is a fox, not a dog.
  • In Persona 5, Morgana often objects to being considered a cat (or worse a Yōkai like a Bake-Neko or "Monster Cat"), despite everything about him indicating as such including his own "Meow-varlous" puns, as despite his memory loss he's convinced he had to be human at some point given that he can talk at all. As it turns out, he's actually a cognitive being that represents humanity's hope.
  • In Sam & Max Hit the Road, a fisherman catches a giant fish:
    Fisherman: Holy mackerel!
    Fish: I'm a trout, stupid! note 
    Fisherman: Holy trout!
  • In Sonic and the Secret Rings, the Djinn Erazor repeatedly calls Sonic a "blue rat", even when he was sucked back inside of his lamp for the rest of eternity. And each time he did, Sonic repeatedly reminded him that he was a hedgehog, and not a rat. Sonic got the last word in that argument.
  • In Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World, the main characters are accompanied by a Centurion (a spirit-creature) named Tenebrae, who has a vaguely lupine appearence. When the party runs into Collette, a hero of the previous game, she promptly starts referring to Tenebrae as a "doggie", much to his annoyance. When he requests a name more appropriate of his power and dignity, he is instead titled "Mr. Doggie."
  • In Uncharted 4: A Thief's End, while playing a stage of Crash Bandicoot, Nate keeps calling the main character a fox despite being corrected by Elena.
  • In the Nintendo DS RPG The World Ends with You, Shiki sewed herself a stuffed cat named "Mr. Mew", and she gets extremely angry when Neku (repeatedly) mistakes it for a pig. "Go, Mr. Mew!" "Get 'em, piggy!"

    Web Animation 
  • Helluva Boss: A human woman calls a very drunk Moxxie a possum. Which he mentions later in the episode then slurs that he is not a possum.

  • The species of Exploitation Now's Ralph is a Running Gag in the strip. Whatever people guess, he denies with indignation. (He looks most like a no-name-brand Moogle.)
  • In Fletcher Apts, the main character Bob, a hamster who is rather ambiguous-looking, is mistaken for different rodents (a squirrel here and a rat here) and produces a rant about it, which no-one pays attention to.
  • George Fennec, from Kevin & Kell, is often thought to be a rabbit. (A fennec is a type of fox with huge ears.)
  • In Freefall, Florence Ambrose, a red wolf, get almost invariably mistaken for a dog on first contact.
  • In Schlock Mercenary, the title character is often mistaken for a pile of dung.
  • Rappy, an Otter, from Rappy the River Otter is often confused for a weasel.
  • In all of the Rhapsodies Christmas stories, Kevin is constantly mistaking Bert, a Koala, for a woodchuck.
  • Murphy from Boy and Dog mistakes Rowan (a human baby) and Milo (an adult cat) for dogs.

    Web Original 
  • We Are Our Avatars:
    • Kyon once mistook Silver for, of all things, a parrot. Later Hohenheim mistakes him for a parakeet. And mind reading Pikadevil revealed that he believes that he is a hen. His being mistaken for a bird has become a Running Gag. And then the Lost Vikings came along, and mistook him for a platypus, a duck, a swallow, a goat, a cow, and an elephant of all things and later on, he learns that he's 1/16th bird.
    • Klonoa's a Phantomillian; he's not a Mobian, he's not a rabbit, and not a nekomata.
  • In a Retsupurae video in which Chip Cheezum tackles an LP of Ōkami, the kid starts calling Amaterasu a...bunny. Chip then rages that Ammy is not a bunny, she's a dog. The original description read "IT'S A DOOOOOOOOG", but later "SHUT UP IT'S A WOLF" was added.
  • Played for horror in SCP-953. Under no circumstances should one ever confuse her for a Kitsune. She is a Kumiho. Despite her loathing of being confused for her distant, less homicidal kin, however, she happily exploits the confusion. It makes enthralling her victims easier.
  • SuperMarioLogan
    • Sonic The Hedgehog (featured prominently in the "Mario and Bowser's Stupid and Crazy Adventure" story arc) does not like being called a cat.
    • The Crocodile in the episode, "Bowser Junior's Broccoli Problem!" hates being called an alligator. When Junior, Joseph, and Cody kept mistaking him for an alligator, he had to show them the differences between an alligator and a crocodile just to prove he was a crocodile.
  • Don't Hug Me I'm Scared dabbles in this in the third episode. Duck Guy refers to both a butterfly and a maggot as "pesky bee[s]". The Yellow Guy refers to Shrignold as "A little baby pigeon", despite him clearly being a butterfly.
  • DSBT InsaniT: Bear thinks Chilly the chinchilla is a squirrel, and Andy thinks Angie the snow leopard is a cheetah.
    • Killer intentionally calls Doom the mongoose every species except mongoose just to spite him.
  • In the first episode of RoboSplaat, Splaat asserts that he is not a robot like everyone seem to think, and explains that he's actually an ink splat. In real life, Splaat - who appeared in Klasky-Csupo's 1998 Vanity Plate - was often assumed to be some kind of robot due to his appearance.

    Western Animation 
  • Adventure Time:
    • Flame Princess mistakes Finn for a water elemental when she notices tears coming from his eyes.
    • Happens again in "Up a Tree", when a chipmunk mistakes him for a squirrel.
  • Cow and Chicken and its spinoff/Trope Namer, I Am Weasel:
    • Cow is often called by the Red Guy various hoofed mammals like a moose, a horse, or an antelope while Chicken is called other farm birds like a turkey or a duck.
    • Weasel is often mistaken by other characters (particularly the Red Guy) as various rodents, such as a squirrel, a gerbil, or a hamster (weasels aren't even rodents). Baboon is mistaken for various other kinds of primates like a gorilla or an orangutang.
  • Looney Tunes has some examples:
    • Some of the myriad Looney Tunes shorts featured Henery Hawk, an angry chicken-hawk who would violently react whenever anyone called him otherwise.
    • The black-and-white cat that Pepe LePew would always "romance". He constantly thinks she is a skunk.
  • The Looney Tunes Show:
    • Daffy thinks Speedy Gonzales is a rat.
    • In the same show, Mac and Tosh occasionally get mistaken for squirrels, to which they respond in deadpan unison, "We're gophers."
    • In "Year of the Duck", Lola thought that Daffy was a crow and thought ducks were beavers and thought Porky was a seal.
  • Kaeloo: A Running Gag is to have somebody call Olaf an auk instead of an emperor penguin.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog:
    • Dr. Qwark, of Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog, is constantly being mistaken for a duck, despite being human. "I'm not a duck!"
    • Mechanical example at the beginning of the Sonic Boom episode, "Circus of Plunders". When Sonic and his friends battle Dr. Eggman's Octopus Bot, they constantly confuse it for different eight-legged creatures, much to his annoyance. It even gets to the point where he starts doing it!
      Eggman: "Next time, study your cephalopods before we do battle!"
  • The Angry Beavers are constantly mistaken for weasels. Or, more commonly, for "pointy bird things". It's not surprising at all — even for a kid's show, they don't look remotely like beavers except their tails.
  • In the Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers episode "Out of Scale", "Ratso" Ratskiwatski sends his two thugs out for squirrels for his daughter. They pick up Chip and Dale. None of the humans can tell the difference, and call them squirrels throughout, each time corrected with a "[We're] chipmunks!" from one or both of them. Not that they ever pick up on this...
    • Worth noticing is how Hilarious in Hindsight it is because in most non-english-speaking countries, there is no word for chipmunk (since in those countries there are no chipmunks period), and Chip and Dale are called squirrels in comics and cartoons. In Rescue Rangers, they replaced the gag by having other people call them "mice" and their angry answer being "WE ARE SQUIRRELS!".
  • Fang from Dave the Barbarian is always being mistaken for a monkey, to the point where "I'm not a monkey!" is her Catchphrase. She even is delighted that when she meets her idol, he calls her a human. (Even after him doubting for a second.)
  • Possibly the example to beat all others goes to Rufus of Kim Possible, a naked mole rat. Various characters assume him to be a gerbil, bald mouse, nude rat, and mutant vermin, and in one case, an alien genetic experiment.
  • Doctor Hamsterviel of Lilo & Stitch: The Series is frequently mistaken for a gerbil or other small rodent, insisting that he is, in fact "hamster-like". Though he really does look considerably more like a gerbil/rabbit hybrid than a hamster.
  • Mighty Max:
    • Virgil is constantly referred to as a chicken. ("Fowl, actually.") Which makes it even more confusing since Virgil has revealed more than once that his race is in fact the next evolutionary stage of mankind. So somehow humans managed to evolve from bipedal primates into a class whose fossil record indicates they should have evolved from therapod dinosaurs?
    • There was also an episode with Beetle Brow with a running gag of "Bug." "Beetle." "Whatever!"
  • Animaniacs:
    • The Warner siblings aren't based on any real sort of animal, but are often refered to as dogs, cats or monkeys. Not that the Warners seem to mind, as even they don't know what they're supposed to be. Whenever asked what they are supposed to be, they simply reply, "We're the Warner Brothers! (And the Warner Sister!)"
    • Pinky and the Brain are mice, not rats.
    • Defied with Rita and Runt. Runt has a disposition to chase cats, but is too stupid to realize that his friend Rita is one (he thinks she's a dog). It's probably for the best, though.
  • Being an Edutainment Show, Dinosaur Train frequently has to clarify what is and isn't a dinosaur. For example:
    • In "Carla Cretoxyrhina", when Buddy says he loves meeting big dinosaurs, Carla clarifies that sharks are fish (note that this show usually has No Cartoon Fish).
    • In "Paulie Pliosaurus", Buddy asks the titular character if he's dinosaur, but Paulie says he doesn't even know what a dinosaur is.
  • Rocko's Modern Life:
    • Rocko is typically mistaken for a beaver. He's also mistaken for a dog once. As he's explained many times, he's a wallaby — "Like a kangaroo, only smaller." He's even been mistaken for a platypus at one point.
    • On the same show, Heffer is often referred to as a cow, and has to correct people that he's a steer. In this case, it's not a distinction of species, but sex; "cow" is the word for a female bovine, even if it's sometimes used for the species as a whole. Technically, he should probably say he's a bull, because Heffer being a steer would mean he was castrated.
  • Samurai Jack: Three anthropomorphic dogs take offence at Scaramouche's words:
Dog A: Rover?
Dog B: Barking?!
Dog C: I think he's calling us dogs.
  • The Simpsons:
    • In one episode, Bart and Lisa are rescued by a clan of hillbillies. The patriarch claims that he married a bear and started a family with it after wandering away from a school excursion. His (human) wife keeps loudly insisting that "I ain't a bear!" He's so convinced that he responds to everything she says with "Raar raar raar! No one understands you, she-bear!"
    • Grampa Simpson misidentifies the family dog Santa's Little Helper, walking across the room wearing a cone collar, as the lamp trying to escape.
      Grampa: (Chasing SLH in another episode) That raccoon stole my lamb chop!
  • Not quite animal, but Larry the Cucumber of VeggieTales is often mistaken for a pickle, which bothers him.
  • In the first episode of Xiaolin Showdown, Raimundo refers to Dojo (who is a small dragon) as a gecko. Dojo is... not pleased, and shapeshifts into his larger form to intimidate him. This may be a reference to the Mulan example.
    Dojo: (Leering down at Raimundo) Don't. Ever. Call me a gecko!
    Raimundo: (Nervously) M-My mistake!
  • Done with much humor in one of the episodes of Disney's The Legend of Tarzan, where a greedy scientist catches a supernatural silver gorilla with healing abilities. Much to his annoyance he repeatedly has to remind his henchman that it is an ape, and not a "giant monkey".
  • SpongeBob SquarePants. This has happened to Sandy Cheeks a few times, especially in the episode "Someone's in the Kitchen with Sandy", where townsfolk mistake a naked Sandy for a ferret and even a goat among other things.
  • It's Pony: Mr. Pancks, the landlord owner of the apartment the Bramley's live in, will generally have a tendency to mistake Pony as some sort of "Big Weird Dog".
  • Aaahh!!! Real Monsters. Ickis is rather insistent that he is not a bunny, but a long-eared gremlin.
  • The Ren & Stimpy Show:
    • Ren is constantly referred to as other animals like a rat, a weasel, and even, most commonly, a mosquito and he angrily corrects then that he's a chihuahua.
      Ren: I'm an Asthma-Hound Chihuahua!
    • Also, Stimpy himself is mistaken for a dog by his two-episode-lasting owner George Liquor. Even after Stimpy corrects him, he still insists otherwise.
      Stimpy: I'm a cat.
      George Liquor: Atta boy, Rex.
  • A Kids' WB! promo for Channel Umptee-3 had Jim Cummings mistakenly identifying Ogden the Ostrich as a chicken.
    Ogden: [points to Chicken Boo] See? Chicken! [points to himself] Not a chicken!
    Cummings: Well, ya do look like a chicken...
    Ogden: Do not!
  • The Fairly OddParents!:
    • Another not-animal but not human so it probably counts: fairies don't like being confused with Pixies and vice-versa.
    • Lawn gnomes also hate being confused for Pixies, to the point where they wrote a rap about it.
  • A running gag in the original Spider-Man cartoon involved the bad guy of the week refer to Spider-Man as an insect, at which point Spidey angrily yells, "Spiders are not insects! They're arachnids!!!"
  • In one episode of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2012), an irate New Yorker named Vic tries to make money from a video he took of the turtles fighting, and throughout the episode he kept referring to them as "Kung-Fu Frogs".
    • Hilariously this is lampshaded when he gets mind-controlled by the Kraang in a later episode, calling them "The ones known as the turtles that I call frogs".
  • In Tiny Toon Adventures, animal lover Elmyra Duff mistook Dizzy Devil (a tasmanian devil) for a dog and Fifi La Fume (a skunk) for a cat. The latter even had to remind her otherwise (though in the latter's case, Elmyra knew she was a skunk, but thought "skunk" meant "stinky kitty").
  • Heckle and Jeckle, billed on screen as "the talking magpies," are often mistaken to be crows.note 
  • In The Tick, Arthur's white moth costume, complete with long thick antennae, is confused for a rabbit.
    • Speak, the "dog" that The Tick rescued in South America, was actually a capybara (described by his vet as "a giant rat"). Tick makes the mistake of calling Speak a dog one more time while bathing him, but profoundly apologizes for the mistake and assures Speak that he respects his "lifestyle choice."
  • In Littlest Pet Shop (2012), Russell the Hedgehog is constantly mistaken for a porcupine.
    • In the episode What, Meme Worry?, Sunil is mistaken for an otter, a weasel, a bear cub and a fur turtle. In the Brazilian Portuguese dub, his species is even changed to be a weasel.
  • A Running Gag in WordGirl is that the titular heroine's monkey sidekick, Captain Huggy Face, is often mistaken for other animals by people. He has been called a hedgehog, (flying) rabbit, dog, koala, rat, aardvark (in tights), ferret, otter, llama, a hairy kid, and many more.
  • The Twisted Tales of Felix the Cat had a woman mistake Felix for a squirrel and a raccoon in the episode "Black Magic Bag".
  • At various points in Phineas and Ferb, Perry the Platypus is mistaken for a rodent, a marsupial, a beaver, a duck, and a beaver-duck.
  • In one of The Ant and the Aardvark cartoons, Aardvark has chased Charlie Ant on to a beach, but the lifeguard on duty refuses to let Aardvark go after him, thinking he's a dog, and stating that dogs aren't allowed on the beach without a leash. After several attempts, the lifeguard calls a dogcatcher and has Aardvark sent to the pound.
  • Darkwing Duck had this problem with the superhero group "The Justice Ducks". Neptunia constantly reminds them that she is not a duck (she's a mutated fish) while Stegmutt will say that he used to be a duck (he was a duck turned into a Stegosaurus).
  • Happens at least once in Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness with Fung, the leader of the Croc Bandits. In the episode, "Good Croc, Bad Croc", Po and Fung are playfully insulting each other for how lame they are, until Po calls Fung a “moron alligator”, causing Fung to sternly tell him that he's a crocodile, even pointing out that his snout is "totally different" from a gator's.
  • Magical Girl Friendship Squad: A Running Gag involves Nut often being mistaken for a raccoon when she's in fact a red panda.
  • Disenchantment: A running gag is Luci being mistaken for a cat (talking animals are common enough that nobody's surprised when he speaks).
  • Inverted with Baboon in Tinga Tinga Tales, who often corrects others that he's a baboon and not a monkey — baboons are monkeys, Old World monkeys to be exact.
  • In the Fangface episode "The Space Monster Mishap", the title character - a werewolf - is deeply offended when an astronaut mistakes him for a dog.
  • Naarky from ''Theatre/{{Starland Krew]] is inaccurately called a bunny when he's really an aardvark.
    ]Naarky: ' And I am not.. a bunny!"

Alternative Title(s): Mistaken Species, I Am Not A Weasel



How well does it match the trope?

5 (8 votes)

Example of:

Main / IAmNotWeasel

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