Can dogs really fall in love with other dogs? I trademarked the phrase, “my heart beats dog,” so of course, these are thoughts that run through my mind in the wee hours of the morning. I mean, I know my dog loves me, and I know there are throngs and throngs of dog parents who love their dogs, but can dogs really fall in loved with each other?
Yes, a resounding yes, dogs can and do fall in love with one another in the deepest, dearest way that only dogs know how to do. Fidose of Reality fans were recently asked this question and to show us a photo of your dogs who love each other, and more importantly, why you believe this to be true.
“Hank and Holly were fosters. Holly *the brown girl* was here for about 3 weeks when I was asked to foster Hank … it was an immediate love affair. And I do mean immediate,” dog mom, Kaye Rish recalls. “When they met, I knew that they would probably never be adopted together, and that they would never want to be apart. In July, it will be 2 years that I’ve had them.
Patti Thomas of Rumford, Maine, has a similar story. “My Jade and Jasper are brother and sister. They are Boston Terrier mixed with French Bulldog/Xolo mixes. They will be 2 years old in March. They were picked up as strays on the side of the road in Dublin, GA when they were about 4 months old. I started fostering them in Nov 2013 and adopted them in Jan 2014. They have always been very bonded to one another. Jasper was recently diagnosed with an autoimmune disorder and has been very sick. He is still early in his treatment stages, but we are trying to stay positive and hopeful that he will pull through.”
Breeds and sizes: It doesn’t matter. Just ask Kim Mangrum of South Caroline. Her Pug, Olivia, and her best friend’s Pug, Jaxon, are in love with each other. They give each other kisses and snuggle together. They can often be found napping together spooning or with Olivia on top of Jaxon. When reunited after being separated their tails wag and they are kissing and jumping on each other.
Science Sounds Off
As with all romantic notions, science has something to say about this. In an article for Psychology Today, Dr. Stanley Coren, Professor of Psychology for The University of British Columbia , says as with humans, dogs have the hormones and undergo the same chemical changes that humans do during emotional states.
Scientific researches, he continues, proves that a dog’s mind is roughly equivalent to that of a human of 2 to 2-1/2 years of age with regard to mental abilities and emotions. So does a young toddler have the propensity to love deeply?
Perhaps the full range of emotions have not developed, but the groundwork is certainly there.
Let’s take this one step further: Scientists at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, discovered that a part of the brain associated with positive emotions, was similar in dogs and humans. In his book, How Dogs Love Us: A Neuroscientist and His Adopted Dog Decode the Canine Brain, Gregory Berns, a neuroscientist, says that dogs empathize with human emotions and experience friendships similar to humans.
Sounds like there’s room for love in there, yes?
To Have and To Hold Forever?
When the AP calls, I listen. So when a reporter from the AP asked if I could comment on dog weddings, since my dog was in one, my dog-beating heart went pitter patter.
“I do believe that dogs can love and be in love with each other,” is what I told the reporter. The truth of the matter is that dog weddings make a fabulous fundraiser and dog lovers (like myself) enjoy the pomp, circumstance, and fun that comes with hosting an elegant pet-friendly gala for pets in need.
You can read the entire NY Times pick-up of the AP story here.
We Are Not Alone in This Sentiment
Falling in love is not for humans alone: Canine couples show love, affection, and warmth to one another all the time. Just ask the millions of pet parents who can attest to the bond between their dogs.
In an oh-so-adorable slideshow for Pet360, here’s what some other dog moms and dog dads have to say regarding dogs who fall in love with other dogs.
This Much I Know Is True
Dogs do show love in so many ways: Their tails wag, their cuddling near us, their nuzzling, their risking life and limb to save us from a fire, and the examples linger on and on.
So what do you believe? Can dogs show love to one another? With Valentine’s Day in the air, no doubt that cupid’s arrow is aiming her bow at the canine lovers, too.