Do you ever wonder if animals have feelings and emotions like humans do? Come to think of it, a dog would not be “man’s best friend,” if it didn’t show any feelings or inclination toward its master. Even cats display certain emotions when they don’t like what’s going on around them. There is even a video where the dog doesn’t want to leave its dead dog friend behind.
Not convinced? Then check out YouTube and search for animal videos showing extraordinary behavior.
Fine, you and your dog or cat, or whatever animal you have at home have a special emotional connection and bond that only you and your pet understand. However, keep this in mind: Animals are animals, and no matter what happens, their instinct is to eat every time they feel hungry and you can’t forgot to feed them.
Still, those YouTube videos will tell you otherwise. Plus, your I-don’t-believe-you attitude will say that animals are capable of emotions, too, just like humans. In fact, there are extraordinary ways animals show they have feelings, regardless of their shape, size and the type of class they belong to in the animal kingdom. If you still don’t believe us, read on.
1. Don’t Mess With The Tiger
By now it’s safe to assume that you’ve been to a zoo, animal park or the circus. Since animals and emotions may not be a good combination, you would think that taunting them and throwing whatever hard things you can find is okay.
They won’t remember it anyway, right? Or would they?
Well, take the tiger’s case, for example. Believe it or not, tigers take revenge. They can pretty much remember all the nasty things you do to them. Case in point: a Russian man by the name of Vladimir Markov.
Sometime in 1997, Markov shot and wounded a tiger. To make things worse, he also stole some parts of the tiger’s recent kill. Unfortunately, the tiger survived and managed to find Markov’s hunting cabin in the woods. Luckily, Markov wasn’t there, so the tiger ruined everything with Markov’s scent on it then waited at the front door. Well, you probably know what happened next as Markov arrived at his cabin.
Tigers may not be the “King of the Jungle,” like lions, but they sure know how to make their presence felt.
2. Fruit Flies Get Drunk
Uh-oh. Looks like you got some party animal competition right here.
Alcohol has always been the go-to guy for most humans. It makes you forget your problems and at the same time, makes your world a little happier, even for a few hours. Apparently, you’re not alone in this world of those who like alcohol.
As it turns out, fruit flies – yes, those tiny creatures you hardley even notice – need alcohol to make them forget about bad feelings.
Researchers may have had some “Aha!” moments, so they decided to experiment on fruit flies and see what happens when they are sexually rejected. One was sexually happy while the other one was rejected. How they knew which was which is another story altogether.
Anyway, they let the two male fruits flies choose between normal food and food infused with alcohol. Believe it or not, the sexually-rejected male fruit flies were more likely to go for alcohol-loaded food, than eating the normal food.
At least you know where to find your drinking buddy, just in case you get dumped. And he won’t hurt your bar tab. All he needs is an eye dropper full of beer.
3. Rats Will Never Leave You Behind
Do you have that someone who you can trust with your life? Is there a person who stays with you, no matter how crappy life gets? If yes, then you found yourself a rat.
Oops, before you react, you should know that rats – yes, those filthy, disease-infested creatures – are one of the most compassionate creatures in this planet. Believe it or not, they are the type of animals that can put humans to shame because of their loyal behaviors.
In one experiment, experts observed the behavior of two rats placed in an enclosed cage for quite some time. One of the rats went into a restraining enclosure, leaving the other rat to look at its trapped friend. The captured rat cried out of distress, as if asking for help. To make things worse, the free rat even ignored the pile of treats left near him.
Yes, the rat just wants his friend back. He shows no interest on the rewards and treats given exclusively for him. Now, that makes them even better than humans, don’t you think?
4. Elephants Will Always Remember The Dead
And you think that only humans have space in the brain for long-term memories.
Catholics mourn for 40 days when someone very dear to them dies. Chinese and Japanese people hold elaborate rituals before burying their dead. As crazy as it may sound, even elephants feel grief – yes, the Dumbo character you fell in love with when you were four years old.
It turns out that elephants have some of the most elaborate rituals in the animal kingdom. Unlike most animals who eat their fellows once they are dead, the largest creatures in the land treat their dead differently. They will gather around the dead and caress the tusks and skulls using their trunks – clear evidence that they show respect.
That’s not all. They will even take time to bury their dead with leaves and grasses. They then hold a vigil over the body for a week. Surprisingly, they do these burial rituals for other creatures, too, as evidenced by two people attacked and then buried by elephants in Kenya.
In case you get struck by an elephant, at least you know they feel guilty about it and make up for it by giving you a decent burial and treating you with respect.
5. Pigeons Can Be Superstitious.
Black cat, Friday the 13th, wearing your wedding dress before the Big Day – these are only some of the beliefs that set humans apart from the rest of the mammals – or maybe not.
Apparently, there’s another set of species in this planet that believes in superstitions.
Say hello to pigeons, the superstition freaks and ultimate airborne car destroyers.
Aside from experimenting on rats, psychology guy, B.F. Skinner, also put pigeons in boxes and tried to figure out their behavior. Skinner developed mechanisms that would release food inside the pigeon’s cages, so they could eat it as if it’s their last day on the planet. Then the pigeons must’ve realized that they should do something in order for the food to come out.
Since they wanted the food so bad, some pigeons decided to do certain actions, thinking that a particular act can make the food go out. One pigeon was spinning around as the food arrives, while other pigeons made pendulum movements using their heads. In other words, each pigeon developed a “belief system,” which it thought would make their food appear.
7. Jealousy Among Birds
Okay guys, looks like women aren’t the only ones capable of ripping your throat out if they catch you with another woman.
And yes, humans are not the only ones who are capable of experiencing jealousy, although how we deal with it is different from the winged creatures.
While male bluebirds are away working to provide for their mates and offspring, they expect that the female bluebirds will stay in the nest to watch their babies.
Apparently, female bluebirds must have been so horny; they decided to look for any available male bird they can have sex with when their mate is away. Of course, the loyal bluebird won’t less this pass.
It may be a mystery how they find out about the cheating incident, but as soon as the male bluebird goes home; it’s time for him to seek revenge. He will beat his partner, ripping her feathers out, and snapping their beaks.
Okay, that’s just too much violence right there.
7. Dogs, Truly A Man’s Best Friend
Among the pets in Animalandia, dogs will always be the number one choice among humans. For sure, there is an explanation somewhere why there is a special connection between man and dogs. The point is dogs are capable of human emotions such as compassion, empathy and even guilt.
According to a study published in the Journal of Behavioral Processes in 2009, researchers found that the guilty looks on a dogs face doesn’t necessarily equate to remorse.
The researchers told the dog owners that their respective dogs had eaten a forbidden treat when they left. It turns out that not all dogs ate the forbidden treat, although all of the dogs wore the guilty looks on their faces.
The study suggested that the dogs were reading their owner’s anger, even if some didn’t eat the treats. In short, they were anticipating that they’ll be scolded, hence the guilty face. However, the researchers are still open to the idea that dogs feel true guilt from time to time, depending on the situation.
Who says only humans are capable of emotions? Based from these examples, it’s safe to say that animals, no matter how many legs they have, also have feelings. They may not show it directly and they can’t talk to humans, but they sure know how to show it in the most human way they can.