Gorgosaurus, ballet dancers, cats, penguins, and hobbits all share one thing in common: they spend a lot of time on their toes. When you walk on the balls of your feet, you are walking like a dinosaur, cat, dog, or deer. For all of these animals, the metatarsals rarely, if ever, touch the ground, and instead help to make the leg just a bit longer. Ever wonder why a flamingo's knee bends backwards? It actually doesn't, they just have an extremely long ankle!
During the 1800s, a man named Alfred Hitchcock was able to glean fantastic insight into dinosaur anatomy simply by studying their fossil footprints in the Connecticut River Valley. Reverend Hitchcock determined that these animals looked like modern birds, walking on their toes, and their tails held well off the ground. Some critics of Hitchcock point out that the good Reverend never actually said that his bird-like track makers were dinosaurs. At the time, however, the best scientific minds in Europe believed dinosaurs were colossal, lumbering quadrupedal behemoths, with sprawling legs, a crocodile-like gait, and mammal-like paws. No one in their right mind would have put the two together, and Hitchcock was clearly blessed with a brilliant, highly analytical mind.