There are tons of questions we can ask ourselves and others about dogs and the question of jealousy. Do they act out and misbehave to show us how jealous they are? Do they withdrawal and hope to get our attention. Below you will see the results of a study conducted by the University of California in San Diego where they took 36 dogs and tested this theory. The results are pretty amazing!
Christine Harris, an emotional researcher at the University of California, San Diego, conducted an experiment designed to test the theory that jealousy is a primordial emotion experienced by a host of other animals, not just humans, according to a report by News Ledge.
Dogs feel jealousy just like us
An animated stuffed dog that barked and wagged its tail, a jack-o-lantern and a pop-up children's book that played melodies served as the three items. Dogs were twice as likely to try to push or touch their owner while they played with the fake dog. One-third of the dogs tried to insert themselves between the owner and the animated dog, and one-quarter snapped at the fake dog. One dog reacted aggressively to both the jack-o-lantern and the pop-up book.
“These weren't just aggressive acts they carried out. They tried positive things like being more affectionate to regain their loved one's attention, to try and gain their relationship back,” said Harris.
“Many people have assumed that jealousy is a social construction of human beings, or that it's an emotion specifically tied to sexual and romantic relationships,” added Harris.
“Our results challenge these ideas, showing that animals besides ourselves display strong distress whenever a rival usurps a loved one's affection.”
In regard to the dogs that didn't show jealousy, “It's possible these are not very bright dogs, who didn't even realize these items were something to be jealous over, or maybe they were very bright dogs who were not fooled by these inanimate objects. Another possibility is that the bond may not have been very strong with the owner.”
I find it interesting to read how the dogs reacted and why the researchers think some of the dogs acted non interested in anything or anyone. I hope we all develop bonds with our dogs.