Unlikely Friendships by Jennifer S. Holland
Isn’t it so special when two very different animals seem to be friends? The elephant and the dog? The cow and the cheetah? The dove and the monkey? The cat and the crow? It all seems very unlikely, especially when said animals might prey upon each other in the wild, but somehow they’re friends.
We don’t know for sure if animals can develop true friendships, but, you know, why not? I’ve seen plenty of cats and dogs that get along great, why not other animals.
This book holds forty-seven stories about unlikely friendships between various animals, like a dog that is friends with a koi fish. It happens sometimes and it just makes you want to say, “Aaaahhh, how sweet,” with as much sugar you can get into your voice.
What I liked
There used to be a show that came on TV called Animal Miracles. It was narrated by Alan Thicke, Growing Pains dad. I really liked the show. It amazed me that animals, which we tend to think of as less intelligent for human, and less capable of any abstract thoughts, were performing complex things that were classified as miracles. There was the story about the pig whose owner had a heart attack so it got out of the house, went and laid in the road, and waited until someone stopped to check out the supposedly dead pig. When they did, the pig hopped up and got the people to follow it back to the house so that its owner could receive medical care. That’s really impressive.
I think animals are more aware than we give them credit for and that’s why I like stories like this. It’s proof, or anecdotal evidence rather, that animals are more complex than we make them out to be. I really can’t imagine what animals would say if they could actually speak with us in our native tongue, but I’m betting it would be more interesting than, “Polly want a cracker.”
The fact that these animals seem to be capable of inter-species friendships is amazing.
What I didn’t like
Devil’s advocate here–or something–if animals can bond with humans to the degree that they do, how come they cannot form friendships with other animals in the same manner? Animals get super attached and in-tune with humans. It shouldn’t really be a surprise that a dog and a horse can make friends. I mean, I still like these stories, but if you put them on the level with animal/human bonds, they’re just not as impressive. A cat can bond with a human and apparently it can also bond with gorillas, chimpanzees, bears, dogs, goats, and more.
Cute stories, and photographs.
What unlikely animal friendships have you seen in your life?
Do you think it’s really that out-of-the-ordinary that animals can make friends with other types of animals?