The Green Eyed Dog - Do Dogs Get Jealous?
Have you ever done something that has left your dog huffing or acting like you betrayed them? Well, it turns out that dogs get just as jealous as we do. It’s not just little Freddie here who is getting upset that you ate the last chicken nugget in front of him, it’s his whole ancestry dating back to wolves and even his coyote cousins.
You may be thinking “Well of course dogs get jealous” because you can see it in little Freddie’s eyes when you come home smelling like another dog. There has been a variety of research, such as non-invasive brain scans, done to look further the workings of those cute little brains and it’s one step closer to humanity understanding man’s best friend – exciting right! It turns out that a dog’s brain works like ours when we get jealous.
While some dogs may become a little aggressive when in a situation where their owner is petting another dog. Other dogs will try to gain the attention of their owner again, activating those puppy dog eyes to win affection, or just barging in front of the rival dog and making sure to give their owner plenty of fusses. I mean, what dog doesn’t do this?
Our little angels can very quickly become green-eyed monsters when they need to be. If you think about all those times you’ve given a treat to another dog or petted the cat in front of Freddie, chances are he did not ignore those events. It begs the question as to if dogs can hold a grudge?
There was a study done by Friederike Range of the University of Vienna, where two dogs had been commanded to ‘shake hands’, next to each other, one dog was rewarded and the other was not. The dog who was not given the treat, noticed they were not being rewarded fairly and they just stopped following commands, who’d blame him?
There have been arguments over the years that dogs just don’t feel emotions in the same way that humans do. The truth is that any dog owner could tell you, without the science, that their best friend most certainly does have emotions and feelings.
While there is the theory that behaviours are learnt, the fact that our furry companions understand when we are in pain or just go out of their way to give us a cuddle, it shows a lot of love. If you consider the emotion of love, you’d need to remember that jealousy is a part of it, so it makes sense that dogs would be able to feel both ends.
So, the next time you are giving your undivided attention to another lovely furry friend, rather than your dog. Don’t be surprised if little Freddie starts to give you a few nudges and nuzzle or lick your face. Despite the negative reputation of jealousy, it really does make you feel closer to your fur baby, one step closer to understanding their incessant woofs maybe?