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Lizards are Cooler than Dogs

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/6/2013 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,150 times Debate No: 31016
Debate Rounds (3)
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Votes (1)




Lizards are cooler than dogs. That's what I'm saying. This is the truth and I will prove it in this debate.


Ok, prove it.
Debate Round No. 1


Lizards are reptiles, which means they're cold blooded [1]. Dogs are warm blooded, with internal temperatures of 102 degrees [2]. Therefore, lizards are cooler.



The resolution states that: "Lizards are Cooler than Dogs". My opponent interpreted cooler as a comparison between temperature. The definition of the word "are" is: "[The] present indicative plural and 2nd person singular of be."[1] The definition of the word "be" is: [It is] used as a linking verb between the subject of a sentence and its noun or adjective complement or complementing phrase. In this case be expresses the relationship of either essential or incidental equivalence or identity."[2] This means that if the resolution were to be upholded, the statement would have to be always true.

All cold-blooded means is: "Cold-blooded creatures take on the temperature of their surroundings. They are hot when their environment is hot and cold when their environment is cold."[3] In other words, cold-blooded animals are ectotherms, meaning they conform to the conditions of their environment.

The healthy temperature of a dog (an endotherm - an animal with a set normal body temperature, otherwise known as warm-blooded) is 38 degrees C.[4]

Lizards, being ectotherms, has an enormous variation in normal temperatures. "Lizards (Tiliqua scincoides) regulated their internal body temperature by moving back and forth between 15° and 45°C environments..."[5] In fact, "In hot environments, cold-blooded animals can have blood that is much warmer than warm-blooded animals."[3] This means that many desert lizards have body temperatures in the 40+ degree C range, greater than that of a dog, which is 38 degrees C.

Basically, the point I make is that while dogs can have body temperatures higher than that of lizards, the reverse can be equally true, especially in hot climates, and since the resolution indicates an essential equivalence, it must always be true, unlike what I just proved. The resolution is false.


Debate Round No. 2


TheSemanticist is making a philosophical error. He is equivocating between qualities OF the animal and the results from external factors acting UPON the animal. Heat is a quality of the dog, but it is NOT a quality of the lizard. The dog produces heat, so heat is a quality of the dog, but the lizard does not, so heat is not one of its qualities. You could add heat to a dog until it melts, but that doesn't make the heat you add a "dog" quality.

Even if we accept that forces acting upon an object are a quality of an object (putting aside all the bizarre logical issues that come from that), as my opponent said the temperature of a lizard can vary between 15 and 45 degrees Celsius, while a dog stays at 38. Firstly, this means the middle temperature for lizards would only be 30 degrees (half-way between 15 and 45), which is much cooler than dogs. Secondly, if we consider forces acting upon objects to be part of their qualities, we would have to control for these external factors by considering the internal temperatures of both animals held in a room-temperature environment. It wouldn't be fair to compare a dog living at room-temperature to a lizard living in a 40 degree environment any more than it would be fair to compare a lizard in a 40-degree environment to a dog being melted in an oven.

Room-temperature is 20 degrees Celsius. Therefore we are left with two options.

1. The qualities of objects ARE defined by the forces acting upon them.

In this case, both the middle-temperature and the fair comparison temperature (room temperature) put the lizard's body heat much lower than the dogs. Lizards are cooler.

2. The qualities of objects ARE NOT defined by the forces acting upon them.

In this case, dogs produce 38 degrees of heat while lizards produce none. Lizards are cooler.

To conclude, no matter which perspective we take, the lizard is cooler.


My opponent is the one making an error. Cool is defined as: "Moderately cold, lacking in warmth."[1] My opponent uses cool in the comparative degree, asserting that lizards are cooler than dogs. Alternatively, lizards lack in warmth more than dogs. I already proved that, in some instances, lizards have a greater body temperature than dogs.

The resolution is not "Dogs produce more heat than lizards". It only encompasses the broad assertion that in all instances (evidenced in his use of the word "are", which means it must be true at all times), lizards are cooler than dogs, regardless of which produces more heat. Air conditioners (at least on the inside) are cooler than boiling oil, regardless that air conditioners produce heat (heat, at least in the physical sense, means, "The transfer of energy from one body to another as a result of a difference in temperature or a change in phase."[2] In other words, anything that can change temperature can produce heat) and the boiling oil does not.

Also, as I already proved in the last round, the resolution needs to be upheld completely, with no exceptions. I also proved that lizards can have temperatures as high as 45 degrees C, much greater than a dog could ever reach. So, the mere fact that lizards can have higher body temperatures than dogs makes the resolution invalid, regardless of average temperatures between the two animals.


Debate Round No. 3
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1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Subutai 3 years ago
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro didn't word the resolution to his advantage. Con took advantage of the essential equivalence of the resolution and showed, that in some instances, lizards are warmer than dogs. Pro never really made a strong rebuttal because he's using a flawed definition of the resolution - it's irrelevant which animal can create more heat - it matters only if lizards are always cooler than dogs. In addition, with essential equivalence in play, even if the average temperature of a lizard is cooler than that of a dog, if lizards can be shown to be ever warmer than dogs, the resolution is negated, as con proved. Con pointed all this out in the last round. Con wins based on pro's wording of the resolution.