Animal Behavior: Animals And Their Pets

Between animals and people, a bond of friendship is often established. This often occurs when the role of the animal is being a pet. But did you know that animals also take in pets at times?  This usually occurs among animals in captivity. Just like with some humans, it is a luxury to have a pet.  One case is told about Lucy, who was a chimpanzee raised by humans.  In the intention to relieve her loneliness, Lucy was given a kitten as a companion. During her initial encounter with the little cat, her hair stood up on end.  Barking, she grabbed it, threw it to the ground, and attempted to bite it. Their next encounter was similar, but during third meeting Lucy was calmer. As she roamed around the kitten walked with her, and half an hour later, Lucy picked up the kitten, kissed and hugged it, showing a complete shift of attitude.  Lucy groomed and cradled the kitten later, carried it often, made nests for it and protected it from humans. The chimpanzee acted in a way as do affectionate small children with ideas of what think would please their pets. The kitten “no longer looked nervous to be carried by the chimpanzee” although it was unwilling to cleave to Lucy’s stomach, so she either carried it in one hand or let it ride on her back. In a similar case, a gorilla named Koko demonstrated great fondness toward pet kittens.  Her first pet was named All Ball.  When the kitten died because it was hit by a car, Koko was crying, which sounding something similar to a human weeping.  She later took on two other pet Manx cats named “Lipstick” and “Smokey.”  This animal behavior appears strikingly similar to what we humans called love.

There are several accounts wherein horses were known to forge friendship bonds with other animals such as goats. They are careful not to hurt the goats.  In fact, they often protect these goats. There are reports of racehorses who mope and refuse run well when detached from their goat friends. These goats may considerably be the equivalent of pets. The horses are not confused about species: they recognize that the goat is not a horse, but they like it anyway. There was also an account that one captive elephant routinely set aside a bit of its grain for a mouse to eat.