Love and companionship can be found anywhere, and that includes the wild kingdom. While humans may think that we have already written the book on how to foster successful love/parent/friend relationships, there are still a few tricks that animals can teach us… make that ten tricks!
Holding hands encourages love
Male and female African elephants gently caress and intertwine their trunks as a sign of affection and love for each other. Studies show that the act of holding hands in people releases the hormone oxytocin, which encourages heath, love, security, and happiness.
Catcalls only work in the animal kingdom
While the male Mandarin Duck may find the occasional success by barking and whistling at an attractive female, most construction workers report a much different experience. Studies show that the catcall arouses negative feelings in not only the female subject, but also the surrounding witnesses. If you really want to make a bad impression on just about everybody in hearing distance, this is one way to do it!
Women prefer masculine body language
When the Blue Bird-of-paradise finds an attractive mate, he will hang upside down from a branch, rhythmically contract the feathers on his chest, arch his tail feathers, and call to her in a low, sexy voice. Studies show the majority of men will puff their chest and deepen their voice as a means of using body language to attract women. Even more amazing, it sometimes works.
Women like stones
The Adelie Penguins live in small nests made of stone, and one of the ways a male can get on his female’s good side (enforce bond, initiate courtship ritual), is to bring her a carefully chosen stone as a gift. All women dream of the moment her chosen prince will bring her a stone (the 24 karat variety usually works best), and this moment is more important to her than most men will ever realize.
Morality and apologizing
The K-9 society follows a very strict code of moral conduct. When dogs play fight, they are taught as pups to follow certain rules, otherwise they’re ostracized from the pack. When playing, all dogs must use proper etiquette, such as handicapping their strengths so that a playmate does not become injured. If an injury does occur, the instigator is expected to bow in apology (and mean it) before continuing with play. Birds do it… dogs do it… but not all educated humans do it!
Give of yourself, just not pieces of yourself
Male masked Boobies attract a female’s attention by offering small tokens of themselves in the form of feathers. Now, we all know that Van Gogh tried this very same tactic with a portion of his ear wrapped in a box. He unfortunately found very limited success. According to national surveys, the majority of women (29 percent) prefer clothes as a gift, but giving a “stone” is pretty nice too.
Sex is fun
While the majority of the animal kingdom uses sex for procreation purposes, the ones with the higher brain development also use it for romance and recreation. Dusky Dolphins live in rather promiscuous societies, where they engage in frequent, group sex acts to strengthen the bonding between societal members. In the human kingdom, however, most couples prefer creating that bond one lover at a time (I said most).
Nature’s booty call
Baboons also live in rather promiscuous (sex loving) societies, where women learned to shake their booty in the air to gain male attention. Dance clubs all across the world see this very same act being played out for the very same reason. When actually consummating the sex act, the female baboon emits a distinctive groan, closing her mouth and puffing out her cheeks. In human terms, this means the male is doing a good job, and the police will be momentarily knocking at the front door.
Can’t we all just get along?
Some folks are cat people, others are dog people; some snakes cuddle with hamsters, while others choose to eat them. The animal kingdom has shown us that friendship and love have no boundaries. A rat snake was documented in a Japanese zoo as befriending his dinner (a hamster), resulting in this rather odd couple being filmed “cuddling” together. If a snake and a hamster can get along, anyone can!
Parenthood should know no boundary
There have been many stories passed down describing the dedication of a parent to their young, and nowhere has this been more celebrated than in the animal kingdom. Mother dogs have been documented nursing abandoned animals for centuries. However, one of the most unusual stories of this incredible drive was a wild male crow who was found looking after a female kitten, beak-feeding and protecting her from danger (traffic, predators, etc).
What do you think – what do animals have to teach us?