Why are people so much attached to pets?

@cvrajan (356)
India
July 6, 2009 7:23am CST
I am not a pet lover; I have no attraction for pets. It is not that I hate animals; but it is because I feel I need not share my home space with animals. I feel home is for human beings to live and love! I have no emotional need for sharing my love with animals. But too many people think otherwise. Why is there such a compelling need for pets in many people's lives? Is it something deeply psychological? Can all pet lovers love their neighbors or neighbor's children the same way they love their pets? Do we love pets because they show gratitude to us, they are loyal to us, they respond to our whims and fancies better -- better than human beings? In other words, do some people feel loving animals to be better than loving people? Do people think "investment in love on pets" brings better selfish returns than "investing your love in people?" How come people who get so much attached to their pets that they can't even imagine getting separated from them, can easily get detached with their spouses, parents and children? I believe love of pets has an intrinsic link with affluence. Am I correct in my view? American's spend in billions on pets, pet care, vets, pet food, pet fads and even on pet burial! Pet care, by itself is a big industry! Are all these spending worth the money? Will the money spent on pets be more usefully spent on eradicating hunger of people in less privileged countries? Could it have been spent better on health care of people?
5 people like this
18 responses
@Soniasony (1827)
• India
6 Jul 09
I guess the unconditional love that the pet shows cant be explained but it has to be experienced . I guess you never have had a pet before so you are not emotionally attached to the feeling of having a pet.Scientifically it releases your stress brings into you the pleasant and like feelings when they are around.You raised a question that people detach with their spouses, parents and children...But I guess we cant fight with the pets? is it? they love us as it is .. in every condition. I dont want to comment on expenditure but its their own way of expressing their love for pets.
4 people like this
@cvrajan (356)
• India
7 Jul 09
You are right that I have never had a pet. Nor I had a longing for it. My son would love to have a pet, but we parents never encourage him. Perhaps, I have a pet, I too will turn out to be a pet lover!
@tundeemma (896)
• South Africa
6 Jul 09
i do believe people are so much attached to their pets because pets are the friendliest animals to humans, i have heard about several cases of how dogs have protected some infants and young kids from possible dangers and how some older adults have also been rescued from danger by their pets
@cvrajan (356)
• India
7 Jul 09
You are right. But do you have something to share about the other issues I have raised on the "pet" subject?
@FFFrocks (306)
• Canada
6 Jul 09
Pets love you and give you loyalty with out conditions. They don`t judge they just love. It's nice. Pets are used in therapy to help people (adults and kids) who have experienced great emotional and mental trauma and have been shown to help these people on the road to recovery as well. I agree with part of your views. Some people do take it too far. Much of the money spent in the pet industry would be better used on people, there is not doubt about it. I also think part of it is cultural and generational. views vary on this subject between cultures and generations.
3 people like this
@cvrajan (356)
• India
7 Jul 09
Thanks! Your reply is very balanced, without too much of emotions on the subject!
6 Jul 09
I'm a pet lover especially to dogs. Every time i came home from school so tired, my dog approaches me right away from the gate and hopping on me. It makes my stress away every time i see her.
2 people like this
• United States
6 Jul 09
Hi, It is pretty sweet when you come home they are there waiting , and they do get so happy to see you . You kinda start to look forward to seeing them. They keep me company and I love going walking with them , and in a way i feel much , much , much safer.
1 person likes this
@cvrajan (356)
• India
7 Jul 09
In olden days when moms were taking care of home exclusively without running for a job, there were there right at the gate to receive children returning from school with warmth. Perhaps such a role is now provided by pets?
@echomonster (2227)
• Greenwood, Mississippi
6 Jul 09
It's actually good that you don't have pets if you are incapable of feeling an emotional connection to animals. We would have far fewer animal abusers in our world if more people who thought like you followed your example. Personally, I love animals, and think they have made my life much richer. You make it sound like humans and animals are so utterly different that they have almost nothing in common, but those with pets know that isn't the case -- animals also can play, love, show loyalty, explore, protect their owners, and so many other things that humans can also do. Loving animals is no stranger than loving people...both things come natural to many of us. In fact, I know many people who think that if you cannot love an animal you also cannot love a person; that in some ways is the direct opposite argument of what you have presented here. I'm skeptical about your argument that spending less money on pets would somehow benefit people. Affluent nations spend more on EVERYTHING -- spending on pets pales in comparison to spending on people. If everyone stopped taking care of their pets, I think they would be committing a great crime...domestication has in my view put a certain amount of responsibility on the shoulders of humans. They have a duty to care for the animals which live amongst them and whose survival strategies are intricately linked to living near humans. If poorer nations cared more for their pets and reproduced less, I suggest that would raise standards of living far more than if the wealthier nations of the world abandoned their pets and gave more in charity.
2 people like this
@cvrajan (356)
• India
7 Jul 09
Well thought out reply with neatly placed arguments. One of the best responses I have received. Thanks!
• United States
6 Jul 09
Hi cvrajan. I'm going to have to agree with everyone else here. Animals are by far the only innocent creatures on the earth that have no selfish intentions. For me growing up, I was surrounded by cruel kids at school, judgemental people...I was tired of human bullcrap and began to realize you don't get that from animals. You get love, affection, admiration. I have yet to meet a human that hasn't hurt me in some selfish way. In saying that, I have yet to meet an animal that hasn't truly changed my life or enhanced it for the better. For you, your home would not be a home with animals. For me (I have four cats), my home would be an empty house without my cats. My husband is a beautiful person--but he's human, and with that, has the ability to hurt me and make stupid mistakes. My cats don't. The spending is worth the money. Kids are worth the money, are they not? You raise kids, take care of them...I do the same with my animals, and animals are innocent and deserving compared to any of the kids I know or have known. Of course, there is a certain point you have to draw the line. Just like you wouldn't buy a kid something ridiculously expensive, I wouldn't buy my cats more than they could need and use. You view it as ridiculous that money is spent on animal burials...to me, it's ridiculous not to bury a family member, animal or not...and some people's animals have meant so much in their lives when other countries have nothing to do with it. My family involves cats, but with a family that involves children, are you going to ask them to take the money spent on their kids and send it over to a country when they clearly need it for their kids? On a last note, I couldn't imagine life without my cats, but I go out of the way to avoid my mother. Why? Because she's undeserving of the attention of people she treats like crap and takes advantage of. My cats have yet to hurt me. I don't expect you to understand, but I hope you do respect that there are people out in the world whose lives have been touched by animals.
1 person likes this
@cvrajan (356)
• India
7 Jul 09
Points taken. What you have written are some of the psychological aspects of pet loving I was thinking about. But do you think that our love for our pets and our excessive attachment towards them will too bring us misery when we have to part with them?
@polachicago (19075)
• United States
6 Jul 09
I love people and all animals. It is hard to say that I love pets more than people, but pets need more protection than people. I love all kids and it has nothing to do with pets. I am animal lover and I do share my life with pets. I bought a house with yard so my pets can have fun on own yard. I support charity for both people and animals in equal proportions. Animals know and understand more than we think. They are loving and protective for own children and for people. Few days ago I rescued baby Rabin...his parents were making such noise about the baby...and baby Rabin was placed back to his nest.... I learned more from animals about love and attention than I ever learned for people. Give them your love and you can see what you can get back......
1 person likes this
@cvrajan (356)
• India
7 Jul 09
And give your love to people and see what you don't get back?!
@polachicago (19075)
• United States
7 Jul 09
I didn't say that..Did you read my post? I say I love PEOPLE and animals.... I wish people treat animals with respect as they have for all forms of life... My respect is to be vegetarian and have pets that I love... People in my life can not complain for having not enough love or attention...
@dagma09 (90)
• Philippines
7 Jul 09
I think it is because they can lessen the stress in work, divert your attention and you may feel happpy specially if your pet is playful...I think pets are helpful...
1 person likes this
@cvrajan (356)
• India
7 Jul 09
How about the other aspects related to pet fad?
• Brisbane, Australia
7 Jul 09
Mankind behavior and animal behavior is completely different. Human qualities are much on comparison, arguing and so many more. Whereas animal or pet can never argue with you as they do not speak and just bark. I guess animal understands better how you treating them and give returns according to that.
1 person likes this
@cvrajan (356)
• India
7 Jul 09
In other words, we want to play a human role, but would love others to play a role of a voiceless pet in return?!
@preethaanju (3000)
• India
7 Jul 09
The answer is simple and straight forward. Pets dont argue and answer back unlike human beings. So you can do whatever u like with an innocent pet and get away.Not with an ego centric human being hehe
1 person likes this
@cvrajan (356)
• India
7 Jul 09
You have hit the nail on the head!
@candy2306 (577)
• India
7 Jul 09
I got my first pet when I was 24. My friend used to tell me about her pet and how nice to go home as her pet Shih-Tzu: Lenin will be waiting for her! I didn't have much to do at home and therefore, I hang around the office most of the time! So she advised me to get a pet and experience the welcoming feeling when you get home. Listening to her advise, I adopt a pet from the Pet Store. I adopt a Jack Russel: Bubbles, and we became so attached. Yup, there was lots of duty came with my pet, Cleaning was the major one. No mater what, I love when I get home after work! Oh, that sight of my Bubbles jump on me welcoming and that face she gives me! The best part is, when I'm too tired she won't jump on me! That's the amazing communication with pets! Ohh I miss my Bubbles..
@cvrajan (356)
• India
7 Jul 09
How about sharing your views on some of the issues I have raised?
@pxm204192 (160)
• China
7 Jul 09
yes, i very am agree with your idea of such lover the people, the peopel at first should love themselves,nowdays,the phenomena is not the single case for us of the people in the world, there are a lot of the case in the every engle of the world, you can see the people going with your pets.i think the people should love the human being themselves,the lives of our own is very valuale for all of us,but there are some deep reasons in these phonemona. nowdays, the people are habitual to close themselves, and then,they are not to love themselves, and do not believe other people,and do not need communicate othe people, then, such case like that, the people must love something,and put their belief on them, that is the people of instinct of them, then, they are thinking of the pets and other animals to love, the side to cost the time, the other side is let their mind on them, and do let the mind not be empty and nothing to do,and from the other angle, the people who are love for animal are empty for their mind.these cases are the last span to develop further for the society.from the business man, they can grasp this chance to make them form a big making a money.such is our society, everyone is feeling that it is not be suitable for all, and everyone is automatically to fall the way.
@cvrajan (356)
• India
7 Jul 09
A different view point indeed! When our attachments outgrow to fads, businessmen always chip in to make us spend on unwanted things and they make money out of it!
@metschica25 (5407)
• United States
6 Jul 09
Hey! I can see where you are coming from with this topic. I feel you with spending money on things that matter more , but sadly that won't happen, and the pets are just put into the couples/ families budget. You have to remember people give money , and maybe sometimes they dont talk about it . And I even thought hey if we all just give around $5.00 a month the world could , and would be a better place. For me it is as simple as they bring joy to my life!!! I am lucky that I have a great dog , and if I never would of adopted her I dont think I would of wanted a dog in my life , because I was more of a cat person . Because growing up we had to messy dogs , and they were not trained all that well , and I just hated that . You have to take time to work and train with a dog, but I know many people who just dont care about the mess LOL hard to believe I know . I like my dog because she is always there , and we play, go for walks, and this may sound silly she keeps great company. There are good dogs out there I have learned , but also messy ones LOL. I say to each there own .
@cvrajan (356)
• India
7 Jul 09
Working with dogs, training the dogs... I have seen some people doing these with lots of enthusiasm on their pets and succeeding but they fail to do get control over their indisciplined children and give up easily!
• India
6 Jul 09
hi, i hate pets(dont know why)...i really get annoyed when they have pets in flats..in my neighbor hood there are two dags,and it barks every time i come to my house...its like coming to some bodies house..whats interesting in pets too i cant really make out..till they didn't disturb neighbors its individual choice..
1 person likes this
@cvrajan (356)
• India
7 Jul 09
Dogs barking at odd hours; I have seen lonely dogs weeping in the absence of their masters and that sound is more horrible than dog's barking! I agree with you!
• India
6 Jul 09
I am sure the reason is because pets give unconditional love.They don't worry too much about whether you scold them,hit them or swear at them.Try doing that to another fellow human being and see what you get!!!Pets are also very innocent and give a lot of respect and a feeling of warmth.Cuddle up to a pet after a very tiring day and you will know.
1 person likes this
@cvrajan (356)
• India
7 Jul 09
Ah! This is precisely I was wondering about. Do we people have a psychological expectation that even if we abuse, kick or scold someone, they should still respond to us unconditionally like pets?!
@jshekhar (1563)
• India
6 Jul 09
Hello friend, Well, it is an emotion and all of us cannot understand it. I used to have a cat in my childhood days and I could not live without feeding her twice a day. However, time went on and then I outgrew the love for it. Thus, I can understand people loving their pets, more than the children of their neighbours.
1 person likes this
@cvrajan (356)
• India
7 Jul 09
Yeah. I think that outgrowing is needed. Saints say, that sort of detachment is even needed on our close relatives. When we love somebody more, become possessive, or get obsessed with them, we suffer more on account of these attachments in the long run.
@navint (36)
• India
7 Jul 09
People earn money to spend inorder to entertain themselves or to fulfill their desires. And pets are the most lovable creatures in the world. They respond to every loving action done to them. It is still better to spend on the pets than wasting money on addictive things.
@airakumar (1555)
• India
7 Jul 09
I just can't have an appropriate answer for it because I am not a pet lover. Rather I don't like pet but I do not have any objection with the pet lovers. May be they love them for the reason the pet have shown affection towards them. I really don't have any idea but one thing is clear the person who are pet lovers, love their pet like a child.