You may consider your dog to be your best friend. But are you their friend? Every time you see them, they greet you with warmth and sincerity. They are a part of your family, and you wouldn’t trade their love for anything. You may have wondered if dogs can be friends.
Dogs are man’s best friend, and that’s true. Maybe your dog is charismatic and likes to meet people and dogs on walks. Your dog may enjoy companionship. But do dogs have best friends like people?
Are Dogs Friends with Other Dogs?
It is often debated whether dogs are friends or just friendly animals. Although we don’t have any conclusive scientific data, many observations and anecdotes suggest that dogs have friends. Marc Bekoff, PhD writes in Psychology Today that researchers Robert Seyfarth and Dorothy Cheney have provided evidence to support the idea that dogs can form friendships.
Living in groups is essential for certain species, including dogs, to survive. These animals benefit from positive feelings being shared by their pack members, which encourages them to stick together. This is friendship, functionally speaking. Certain dogs are more likely to show signs of friendship. Chihuahuas are known for their loyalty which extends to only one person. These dogs are loyal companions who will always follow their friends, looking for their company and attention whenever possible. German shepherds are also known to be close to their families. Dogs can be more social and friendly to strangers than others, but these dogs often form long-lasting bonds.
Dogs are more likely to bond with other dogs than humans. These relationships can be between dogs and other animals. For example, dogs and cats can be close friends, cuddling or cleaning up after each other. Psychology Today reports that some dogs will look after their companions in trouble.
Do I need a second pet?
Stephanie Borns-Weil DVM, Head of the Tufts Animal Behavior Clinic, says that dogs are social creatures, and it is a good idea to get another dog. Dogs are generally happier when they have other dogs around. A companion dog or pet can provide stimulation and companionship for your pets, improving their quality of life.
Some dogs are not able to live with other pets for different reasons. It is important to take the time to get to know your new pet and to give them a chance to get to know you before adopting another dog. You could be adding stress to your dog’s life.
You may be able to allow your dog to socialize with other dogs if you don’t have the budget for a second dog. Some dogs can benefit from these social experiences.
What if my dog isn’t acting like a friend?
Positive changes in your dog’s behaviour can often indicate that something is not working. Your dog may be experiencing sudden antisocial tendencies or other symptoms. This behaviour could be an indicator of anxiety or jealousy in some cases. Dog behaviour can also change as dog’s age, just like humans.
First, you should visit your veterinarian if your dog seems less playful or cuddly than usual. You should also pay attention to your pet’s health to check for signs such as a limp, decreased appetite, or loose stool. These symptoms can help your vet diagnose health problems. If all is well, you might consider meeting with a behaviorist to help you understand your dog’s behaviour.
Consider any recent changes to your household. Have you moved recently? You might feel anxious about your dog moving to a new place. How about a new roommate? These changes can make your dog feel less important and cause them to withdraw or exhibit undesirable behaviors. Are you on an extended vacation? Beyond health concerns, there are many reasons your dog may not be behaving like your best friend. Consider any changes made by your veterinarian if your dog is given a clean bill. These situations may require that they get back to their “normal” state or remind them that you are still there for them.
So, do dogs have best friends? Dogs can have best friends. You are often their best friend. You can build a strong bond with your dog through walks, play and other activities.