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Discussion Starter #1
I sometimes think my dog's attachment to me is only based on my access to resources such as food, toys and my ability to take him for a walk.
Can such philosophical questions be answered?:redface:
 

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I don't know if there is really an answer out there for this. When I had my older dog you could tell his love for us was very deep, it went beyond food and toys. He protected us, he loved us, you could feel it. Somtimes he didn't want anything but to be near us. My new puppy is the same. Since he is a puppy his focus is mainly on playing, toys, food, and so on, but I can tell at night when he hops into my bed and snuggles up against me I can feel that he really does have a deep love for me. When I am gone and I come home I can feel that he has missed me and I have never seen a dog get as excited like he does to see me. He also comes to me for protection, like if he is fearful of a larger dog or noise, he comes straight to me.

So do I think a dog can love their owner deeply? Absolutely. Some might not depending on how much you have bonded.
 

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I think they do associate us with food,care,treats,walks..good things but I also like to think they truly care for us much deeper.I find this in the way they will protect you and their home even if you aren't there,this leads me to believe they have a deeper connection to the ones that takes care of them other then just food and water.
I also am a Christian and looking into this from the Bible aspect,animals were put here for us to use for work,warmth,food and companionship..so companionship would mean they have the ability to have a deeper since of caring for their owners.
 

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I guess it depends on the type of relationship we choose to have with the dogs. I've had a few opportunists, but I've also had dogs that I wouldn't doubt for a second that they would lay their lives down for me if they thought it was necessary. Some of the deepest heart connections I've had have been with dogs.
 

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I've wondered this as well. Human "love" for the dogs can be superficial enough when you look at some people with multiple animals, having favorites and having those favorites change when they get another pet.

I would wonder how my dog were to react if I were to give him to someone else for a couple of year that will show him the same kind of love and attention that I do. Then when I come back, will I still be his favorite human? I suspect not. He may still recognize me and like me but I don't think he'll be as attached to me as he is now.
 

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I wake up every mornng to a 100 lb female Rottie licking my face and mouth.
I beleive that she is expressing her love for me...
However,
During the evening ..She spends a lot of time licking her private parts.
 

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I have thought about this a lot. When a human loves it is based on a lot of things. some of them being Experience, Emotion, Action, Thought. We have different levels of love based on all sorts of things. Dogs are not capable of thinking to that level obviously. Their feelings are very basic. When they are happy they are HAPPY when they are angry they are ANGRY. They don't stop to think why they are angry or happy, or what caused them to be angry or happy. they just feel. they can associate those feelings with things. "good dog!" makes me happy. "BAD DOG!" makes me unhappy. Food is good! Treats are good! Very basic. Does this make it less special? not at all. A computer and everything it does is based off of a code of 1's and 0's. That simple code makes for amazing and complex technology and makes our computers capable of doing everything they do.
So to me even though a dogs feelings are basic. it can still produce a whole lot of special. We can see this when a dog grieves over the loss of someone. and they DO grieve. some more then others. And if a dog didn't have some level of caring they would not grieve. dogs can get over things easier then we do because the do not possess the ability of self pity and reflection and other things that make it difficult for humans to move on. I know my dogs love me only its dog love which is special in its own way.
 

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Can any philosophical question be answered is a good philosophical question.....lol!

Dogs certainly show preference and many breeds bond deeply ...... but Love?
We adopted a then 14 month old Akita, deep bonding breed, from our Son.
He raised him from a Pup.
Dru is now heavily invested/bonded w/ my Partner.
He is either w/ her or at Day Care 24/7.
He goes to Daycare and lights up when he sees the owner.
I work and now when I come home he comes flying to the door. Tail flying!
When I pick him up ay Daycare he goes crazy and runs around like an idiot for a minute or so.
4 months later it's like our Son was never in the picture.

He's now confident, relaxed and 'happy' w/ us.
But he was w/ our Son when he had him.
 

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Summer is a very simple dog. I don't mean that in a bad way at all, it makes her very endearing. She loves anyone if they look at her and smile or feed her or pet her.

Mia's bond seems a little bit more complex. In general she is just more complex of a personality. She is very demonstrative or her affection and very specific. She will not 'love' anyone that feeds her. It takes a long time to gain her affection. Would she bond with someone else over time if I did have to give her up? I'm sure she would. But humans can bond with multiple people and love multiple people. Why couldn't dogs?

I think bond and love are similar if not the same thing. Dogs don't have to love in the exact way we do to still 'love'.
 

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Well I think it depends on the dog, just like it depends on the person if you're asking the question about people. Some people love deeply, some love superficially. No reason to think that individual dogs don't experience things individually, too. Or that if they don't experience things precisely like humans do that they don't "love" in some fashion.
 

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I wake up every mornng to a 100 lb female Rottie licking my face and mouth.
I beleive that she is expressing her love for me...
However,
During the evening ..She spends a lot of time licking her private parts.
I think it is a good thing that your dog "loves" her body!
 

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I believe it depends on the dog and whether you believe a dog is capable of "love". I believe dogs are capable of affection, why are they affectionate?? I don't know.
I know that I have had a few heart dog's that I knew were VERY "in love" (very affectionate) with me. Boomer- black Lab/Newfoundland, Tika- a Jack Russel, Feena- a Havanese/Border Collie and Ozzy- a standard Dachshund. They showed ample amounts of affection.
My current dog Ruby is not a heart dog but I do know that she has a lot of affection for me and I for her. Do I think it's superficial? No I think it's a bit deeper then that...l although she does love her treats lol
 

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Dropped my dog off at a boarding kennel the other day. He was thrilled by the place. Forgot about us, licked the owner/caretakerand became very inquisitive. Maybe it's a chance for him to talk to other dogs? I mean the opportunities for walks, treats and play was minimal to say the least. He was glad to see us again after a week though.
Our dog gets very excited about visitors, and kind of puts them on a pedestal it seems. He's such an extrovert. Loves meeting other dogs and other humans too. (but does get bored by pup's antics at times)
His "love" seems universal mostly. And his affection is boundless. but as far as his attachment to us in particular, I'm not sure. He could easily adjust to a new owner I reckon and we would be a distant memory.
 

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I'm not sure why people are upset that dogs love the treats and such. I mean, I love my husband, but if he stopped doing anything at all for me, even just saying nice things to me, how much longer would my marriage last? Would anyone find it unreasonable that I'd be upset about that? Relationships take work and there's no substitute for time, either.
 

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I think the love our dogs have for us knows no boundaries. They will lift you up when you are feeling down, they are always there with a shoulder to cry on, they never judge , I have seen homeless people with dogs and one look will tell you that that dog would lay his life down for his human ! I personally think dogs are our guardian angels sent by God to look over us !! call me crazy but .............
 

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i think a lot of it has to do with the relationship between the dog and the owner... but mostly... i think if the relationship is strong there's no reason why it's not deep :)
 

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Our neighbour in the country had a dog named Champ, a GSD who was his constant companion throughout his life. Whenever Ross left the property Champ would lie out by the driveway and wait for him to return. Ross was quite elderly and one day he died of natural causes. Champ lay out on that driveway for a full year after his death leaving only to eat or if he was leashed and forced to go for a walk. Eventually he wandered off the property (I suspect to find Ross since he never wandered far before). When he was finally found far from home he had been injured and despite vet care died from his injuries as well as exposure. People cared for Champ following Ross's death but I just dont think he ever got over the grief of his lost master. Stories like that make it so clear to me that animals are every bit as capable of deep emotional connection, doesnt mean it exists between every pet and owner but like with people, real connections are possible.
 

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I like the fact that dogs are honest. They might choose the one who holds yummy stuffs in the moment, but then when you don't have treats, they still show affection. :) Mine would come to me and give me kisses, lay down next to me on the bed (even lays on my neck lol), and is happy to see me whenever I went to another room and come back after, and so on... And the morning kisses... :)

They are honest, if they like you and trust you, you can notice that by their body language too.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I'm not sure why people are upset that dogs love the treats and such. I mean, I love my husband, but if he stopped doing anything at all for me, even just saying nice things to me, how much longer would my marriage last? Would anyone find it unreasonable that I'd be upset about that? Relationships take work and there's no substitute for time, either.
Which reminds me. I need to say nice things to my wife more often.
I think my wife loves me more since I got a much better paid job, by the way.
The difference in respect is amazing!
 
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