There’s no doubt; People and animals interact with each other on so many levels. Either we use them for making our daily activities more comfortable, making our menu’s diverse and healthier, either we care for them and keep them as pets. We live on the same planet, and even with all this technology we created, we are still part of nature. We must never forget that.
Even when we were cavemen, we have left traces of connections to animals. I will skip the pictures of oxen and animals that people hunted, and mention, for example, worshiping of cats and cows in ancient Egyptian and Indian culture.
Apart from those apparent facts, my question is, are humans and animals connected on some deeper level, other than seeking benefit?
“How it is that animals understand things I do not know, but it is certain that they do understand. Perhaps there is a language which is not made of words and everything in the world understands it. Perhaps there is a soul hidden in everything and it can always speak, without even making a sound, to another soul.” ~ Frances Hodgson Burnett
I will answer immediately, and the answer is simple and clear: yes. There is even a study of the interactions and relationships between human and nonhuman connection, called Anthrozoology.
According to nature neuroscience, the root of our connections starts at the beginning of human existence. During the time, the human brain has adapted to running either from or after animals.
Some scientists, such as a biologist John Bradshaw, state that it had all started with domesticating the animals, which later made people keep animals as pets. In the Victorian era, having a pet was a showing of status symbol, but the thing that is important for our research is the fact that wrecked the boundaries between people and animals.
But what about the modern era? Most people live in big cities; not many people live on farms with animals. Why people still tend to keep animals as pets?
One of the Bradshaw’s solutions is the evolution of the human brain that resulted in us being able to understand, perceive and analyze animal behavior. Furthermore, animals have all kinds of roles in our lives, apart from being pets. So many dogs saved people from avalanches and deep snow. Therapy dogs, cats, and other animals are also common. It’s proven that dogs can even understand some of the peoples’ words, which is amazing. Dogs can anticipate when their owner is going to come back from work or set off on a long trip.
(as you can see, all kinds of animals can be used for therapy)
But there is another side of the story, which is the best proof for our assertion: what about animals people don’t consider as “friends”? It seems that it’s a much bigger taboo in our society if you hurt an animal that “cannot” become a pet. It’s somewhat essential and inevitable to use animals for various kind of things (at least, still) even if, as a lot of people state, that sometimes goes beyond cruel.
That is where our final answer is hiding.
I firmly believe that not only dogs and cats can be pets; If you go to any farm, you will see people interacting with domestic animals such as cows, pigs or chicken in a much different way people that are not living on a farm would. That’s because they’ve created a bond, even if people use those animals for their products. For example, my grandmother loved her cow very much, and she was the only person who could stand close to her calf. There are even some crazy cases when lizards or hamsters showed differs in behavior towards their owners. Crows, foxes or squirrels that were saved by humans often stayed with their saviors. There are dozens of “weird” cases like that.
Time and affection make a bond. Between humans, between humans and animals, even between humans and plants. Animals can sense our love and appreciation, and they will respond to it. They will also sense whether we were honest or not. Animals can sense different things than humans. Each species have different receptors and senses, therefore, some animals, for example, can sense fear well, like horses or dogs. They can also sense love. Love is an emotion stronger than any other. If you give love, you will receive it.