Are dogs jealous of wolves

Animals are jealous too

Animals get jealous when they have to share their owner. A new partner, a baby or a second dog can quickly become a problem. This is how your four-legged friend reacts to jealousy and you can do that about it.

Feed envy in animals

They got cucumber, that can't be true! Guinea pig Momo sniffs the mouths of his roommates Mia and Lilly. Cucumber, fact. The little rodent starts to whine. "Cucumber and peppers are very popular with guinea pigs," explains owner Sandra Hönisch. "If one of my animals notices that the other has gotten a cucumber, but not it itself, it squeaks excitedly until it also gets a piece."

Jealousy and fear of loss go together

In a way, this is an expression of jealousy, says the Hamburg woman from the animal welfare organization "Four Paws". In humans, jealousy describes the feeling of not getting enough recognition, attention, or affection for another person or thing. "It's similar with animals," says veterinarian Tina Hölscher from the Aktion Tier association in Munich: "Here, jealousy is mainly paired with a fear of loss. The four-legged friend is afraid that his beloved mistress could turn away from him."

Animals want to secure their rank

According to behavioral biologist Ariane Ullrich from the Professional Association of Dog Educators and Behavioral Consultants (BHV), jealousy in animals has not yet been fully proven. However, in her opinion, many animal behaviors suggest that they feel deprived. "Animals are concerned with securing their resources," confirms Melitta Töller from "Vier Pfoten". That could be food or the traditional rank in the family.

Cats pee, dogs destroy shoes

Cats then begin to withdraw, refuse to feed or pee in places where there is a particular smell of the intruder: this could be the bed, the cradle or the sofa. Dogs destroy shoes or carpets and push themselves aggressively between their master or mistress and the new ones and demand tenderness, describes Töller.

New living beings should herald something positive

In order to prevent or end jealousy, the new living being must become something positive for the animal. "It can announce nice things, for example, by only starting the walk when the new dog is there," suggests Ullrich. Or by only lowering the food bowl when the baby is around.

Avoid deprivation of love in dogs

"You should avoid neglecting your dog as much as possible and look after him intensively, especially when the family composition changes," advises Dorit Feddersen-Petersen, a veterinarian specializing in behavioral studies from Kiel. Because deprivation of love leads to insecurities and loneliness, which dogs also suffer from. "After all, they are highly social and dependent on their attachment partners."

Include dog in baby care

When it comes to dogs, it is important to keep giving the old animal higher priority. It must first receive its food, keep its basket and bowl. When a new partner enters the owner's life, it helps if the person deals intensively with the animal, advises veterinarian Hölscher. And if a baby comes into the house, the dog should be involved in baby care.

Common cuddles help

Joint cuddling units also promote acceptance. "It is advisable to have the baby in one arm while breastfeeding and to scratch the cat with your free hand," says Hölscher. If, on the other hand, you banish pets to grandma or the pet sitter while the baby is coming home from the hospital in order to make the first few days less stressful, this is exactly the wrong signal for the animal. "That says to the four-legged friend: 'We have something new. We don't need you anymore'", warns the vet.

Fear of loss can make animals sick

As with humans, the degree of jealousy is a matter of character. "Extroverted animals may suffer more from neglect," says behavior expert Feddersen-Petersen. In contrast, indifferent, relaxed characters are not easily upset. The emotional excitement of the animals is to be taken seriously in any case: The constant fear of loss can make animals sick.

Animals can also become depressed

"That can lead to pronounced depression and everything that goes with it," says behavioral biologist Ullrich. But not only dogs, cats and guinea pigs can suffer from jealousy. "It affects everyone who lives in social organizations such as budgies, parrots and rabbits," says Töller. The same applies to animals that form lifelong pair bonds: from monkeys to parrots and wolves to the orca whale.