While human parents have nappies, terrible twos, school runs, homework and driving lessons to deal with, in the animal kingdom the parental tasks are as diverse as the animals themselves. They learn to swim, stand, and feed themselves and go to great lengths to ensure the survival of their species.
Animals are classified into two selection strategies. R-selected species live in unstable and unpredictable environments. The young have a very low chance of survival and to ensure some make it adulthood, they produce many young and reproduce quickly. This is mainly the case for bacteria, insects, small rodents and some reptiles.
On the other hand, K-selected species invest a lot of time and energy into fewer offspring which have a much higher chance of survival. They are usually long-lived animals such as elephants, whales and, of course, humans.
Seals teaching their pup how to dig holes to breathe under the layers of snow, slow lorises licking their venom into their young's fur to keep predators away while they hunt, otters blowing air into their pup's fur so they won't sink - parental duties require a love and a lot of dedication!
David Skinner / Flickr / CC BY 2.0