Can dogs know that someone has autism?

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TenMinutes
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24 Oct 2021, 7:06 pm

I can tell when a person considers me a peer or less than a peer by unspoken cues. Possibly a dog is determining whether you are so far above them in the hierarchy that you are unapproachable, or not.



meatball4u
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24 Oct 2021, 8:57 pm

I think animals can tell if we're autistic, though of course they have no word for it that they're labeling us with. This is not nature's first trip around the block, autism has occured for millennia so animals have had time to adapt. And on this note, they can sense it's a disorder. I am disabled living at home wirh my parents. Our two dogs are with me all day long, and they're quite happy to see me in the morning when I come to take them out of our laundry to start the day. But compared to how they greet the rest of my family, they are not very attached to me. When my NT mom comes home, it's like they throw a party and can't contain their excitement.

We have a bird, too, and he's with me all day long. He always needs to sit on my shoulder and gets anxious if I'm away. But compared to when NT family around, he's mostly unaffected by my presence. When family comes tho, he's cooing and singing little tunes. I notice this, and try to be more social with him, but he just doesn't seem to care about me all that much.

I think animals have to know this because survival depends on the fitness of your owner, or in nature, your pack or mate/flock. Autism IS a disorder, with diseases being increased in autistics. Nature is unforgiving, and animals are all instinct



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25 Oct 2021, 7:47 am

meatball4u wrote:
I think animals can tell if we're autistic, though of course they have no word for it that they're labeling us with. This is not nature's first trip around the block, autism has occured for millennia so animals have had time to adapt. And on this note, they can sense it's a disorder. I am disabled living at home wirh my parents. Our two dogs are with me all day long, and they're quite happy to see me in the morning when I come to take them out of our laundry to start the day. But compared to how they greet the rest of my family, they are not very attached to me. When my NT mom comes home, it's like they throw a party and can't contain their excitement.

We have a bird, too, and he's with me all day long. He always needs to sit on my shoulder and gets anxious if I'm away. But compared to when NT family around, he's mostly unaffected by my presence. When family comes tho, he's cooing and singing little tunes. I notice this, and try to be more social with him, but he just doesn't seem to care about me all that much.

I think animals have to know this because survival depends on the fitness of your owner, or in nature, your pack or mate/flock. Autism IS a disorder, with diseases being increased in autistics. Nature is unforgiving, and animals are all instinct

Unlike humans, excited dogs are not necessarily happy or healthy. A calm submissive greeting is the only way to have a good relationship based on respect with a dog and avoid training excitement and anxiety in them which can create behavioral issues and they can't get out of that state and relax and that could lead them to destroy your home or start having separation anxiety. Humans who greet and leave a dog with excited energy or pitying them create anxiety separation. Usually you are supposed to ignore the dog when you leave and come home so it settles down and not work it up and put all that emotion that belongs to you on them. They don't see the world like you do and will feel betrayed and confused if you pour pity on them before leaving. Instead leaving is common and normal and doesn't require change in emotions but calm.

Maybe the dog is not having a relationship with you as much as with your mom and you can tell by the way he listens to you. To create this you can play and get it to work for you and learn new useful things. It's not very good for a dog to be disconnected with some members while with others too connected because then they might get defensive of that person against the others which should be the dogs family too. But there are so many dogs which are super disconnected with their very owner despite being the one who spends time non stop with them, and you see they have no control over the dog and the dog doesn't respond to them because the relationship is lacking.


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Ettina
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25 Oct 2021, 2:13 pm

meatball4u wrote:
I think animals can tell if we're autistic, though of course they have no word for it that they're labeling us with. This is not nature's first trip around the block, autism has occured for millennia so animals have had time to adapt. And on this note, they can sense it's a disorder. I am disabled living at home wirh my parents. Our two dogs are with me all day long, and they're quite happy to see me in the morning when I come to take them out of our laundry to start the day. But compared to how they greet the rest of my family, they are not very attached to me. When my NT mom comes home, it's like they throw a party and can't contain their excitement.

We have a bird, too, and he's with me all day long. He always needs to sit on my shoulder and gets anxious if I'm away. But compared to when NT family around, he's mostly unaffected by my presence. When family comes tho, he's cooing and singing little tunes. I notice this, and try to be more social with him, but he just doesn't seem to care about me all that much.

I think animals have to know this because survival depends on the fitness of your owner, or in nature, your pack or mate/flock. Autism IS a disorder, with diseases being increased in autistics. Nature is unforgiving, and animals are all instinct


Has it ever occurred to you that they might just be excited by novelty, or happy to be reunited with someone they've been missing? I don't think dogs or birds think that ableist BS about you being less fit or whatever, they just take you for granted because you're always there. If you spent most of the day away, they'd party when you came home, too.



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25 Oct 2021, 2:35 pm

I remember that some dog specialist said to this blind woman who had a dog guide that normally and traditionally dogs aren't like the excited dogs we often see. They have a more calm demeanor like hers had. She was concerned and frustrated about him not behaving like the previous dog she had that passed away, complete different personalities. He has eventually grown on her and she gave him a chance because he chose to work for her. The trainers said dogs choose who they want to work for. And he chose her.


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25 Oct 2021, 3:23 pm

Rexi wrote:
Unlike humans, excited dogs are not necessarily happy or healthy. A calm submissive greeting is the only way to have a good relationship based on respect with a dog and avoid training excitement and anxiety in them which can create behavioral issues and they can't get out of that state and relax and that could lead them to destroy your home or start having separation anxiety. Humans who greet and leave a dog with excited energy or pitying them create anxiety separation. Usually you are supposed to ignore the dog when you leave and come home so it settles down and not work it up and put all that emotion that belongs to you on them. They don't see the world like you do and will feel betrayed and confused if you pour pity on them before leaving. Instead leaving is common and normal and doesn't require change in emotions but calm.

I just wanted to pop in and say this is actually helpful for me and my current dog, thank you. lol

He came to us with separation anxiety, and while I try to ignore him when I leave or come back from somewhere and he gets excited/upset, I still feel like I eventually have to give him attention to reassure and calm him. I don't think I've realized that I'm probably just reinforcing his separation anxiety. I'm going to stop giving him attention until he calms down completely now.



meatball4u
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25 Oct 2021, 4:48 pm

Ettina wrote:
meatball4u wrote:
I think animals can tell if we're autistic, though of course they have no word for it that they're labeling us with. This is not nature's first trip around the block, autism has occured for millennia so animals have had time to adapt. And on this note, they can sense it's a disorder. I am disabled living at home wirh my parents. Our two dogs are with me all day long, and they're quite happy to see me in the morning when I come to take them out of our laundry to start the day. But compared to how they greet the rest of my family, they are not very attached to me. When my NT mom comes home, it's like they throw a party and can't contain their excitement.

We have a bird, too, and he's with me all day long. He always needs to sit on my shoulder and gets anxious if I'm away. But compared to when NT family around, he's mostly unaffected by my presence. When family comes tho, he's cooing and singing little tunes. I notice this, and try to be more social with him, but he just doesn't seem to care about me all that much.

I think animals have to know this because survival depends on the fitness of your owner, or in nature, your pack or mate/flock. Autism IS a disorder, with diseases being increased in autistics. Nature is unforgiving, and animals are all instinct


Has it ever occurred to you that they might just be excited by novelty, or happy to be reunited with someone they've been missing? I don't think dogs or birds think that ableist BS about you being less fit or whatever, they just take you for granted because you're always there. If you spent most of the day away, they'd party when you came home, too.


Yes it has occurred to me, and no I don't think that's the case. It's a tough pill to swallow, it's not surprising you don't like my opinion. But nature couldn't care less about our feelings, it's absolutely neutral and isn't guilty of ableism



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27 Oct 2021, 6:46 am

meatball4u wrote:
Ettina wrote:
meatball4u wrote:
I think animals can tell if we're autistic, though of course they have no word for it that they're labeling us with. This is not nature's first trip around the block, autism has occured for millennia so animals have had time to adapt. And on this note, they can sense it's a disorder. I am disabled living at home wirh my parents. Our two dogs are with me all day long, and they're quite happy to see me in the morning when I come to take them out of our laundry to start the day. But compared to how they greet the rest of my family, they are not very attached to me. When my NT mom comes home, it's like they throw a party and can't contain their excitement.

We have a bird, too, and he's with me all day long. He always needs to sit on my shoulder and gets anxious if I'm away. But compared to when NT family around, he's mostly unaffected by my presence. When family comes tho, he's cooing and singing little tunes. I notice this, and try to be more social with him, but he just doesn't seem to care about me all that much.

I think animals have to know this because survival depends on the fitness of your owner, or in nature, your pack or mate/flock. Autism IS a disorder, with diseases being increased in autistics. Nature is unforgiving, and animals are all instinct


Has it ever occurred to you that they might just be excited by novelty, or happy to be reunited with someone they've been missing? I don't think dogs or birds think that ableist BS about you being less fit or whatever, they just take you for granted because you're always there. If you spent most of the day away, they'd party when you came home, too.


Yes it has occurred to me, and no I don't think that's the case. It's a tough pill to swallow, it's not surprising you don't like my opinion. But nature couldn't care less about our feelings, it's absolutely neutral and isn't guilty of ableism


It's not nature, it's you. Nature isn't as ableist as you think it is. You're heavily anthropomorphizing your dogs and projecting your own internalized ableism onto them.

Autism means nothing for fitness outside of the specific context of an NT-dominated society. After all, all cats are autistic (they are highly sensitive to sensory stimuli, tend to be aloof to social interaction, calm themselves with grooming and crave routine) - do you think dogs shun cats thinking they're unfit? That certainly hasn't been my experience - dogs either see cats as territorial intruders and potential threats, or as a temperamental pack member who plays a bit weird, depending on whether the cat is a member of the household or not.

Dogs have no conception that it's considered abnormal for humans to live with their parents throughout adulthood. That is a standard unique to modern Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich, and Democratic (WEIRD) cultures, and not even the norm for all humans - even two hundred years ago, living with your parents your entire adult life was considered normal in European cultures, and it still is in many other cultures today. It's certainly not the norm for members of the canis genus - wolves, feral dogs, and coyotes all live in packs that are essentially family groupings, with grown offspring of the alpha pair assisting in the rearing of their younger siblings, and most of them spend their entire lives with family. The fact that you're an adult living with your parents would definitely not stand out to a dog. Dogs have no clue what skills are needed for an adult human to function independently in WEIRD society, and I can guarantee that they have no clue that you're considered disabled.

Also, canis species don't shun obviously disabled members of their own species. Wolves will bring food back for sick, injured or elderly pack members, tend to each others' wounds. Dogs, too, will happily socialize with disabled dogs - my dog has a littermate with a deformed paw, and whenever she comes over to visit, it's a wild and crazy party. She'll bodyslam her sister to the ground, whereupon her sister will happily chew on her ankles, and it's like all the humans have ceased to exist - all that matters is playtime with the other dog. She occasionally outruns her sister and then comes back to encourage her, so I think she is aware that her sister can't run very fast, but she certainly doesn't treat her sister as frail or incapable or unfit.

There's a stereotype that animals will abandon sick or disabled offspring. This is very species-specific, and generally only occurs if there's literally no way that animal could, in the absence of human assistance, actually raise that offspring. For example, if they're a migratory prey species that must run several miles every day to survive, of course they'll leave a calf who can't run fast enough behind, because to stay with them would mean their own death. But if they're a den-dwelling animal, they won't kick out a disabled cub, instead they'll do their best to raise them to adulthood. And if they're a species that lives socially in adulthood, they'll support disabled family members throughout their lifespan. There are lionesses who have suffered crippling injuries from hunting and live perfectly healthy because their pride supports them. One pair of sisters I saw in a documentary even had the disabled lioness help with hunting by serving as the ambusher - her sister would scare prey towards her and she'd pounce, because a badly-healed leg wound made her unable to run quickly.

Animals don't shun disabled people for being unfit. They don't subscribe to human notions about what's considered normal or disordered, and even if they see someone as disabled, they're still willing to accept and welcome them as part of their social group.

I recommend you research the lifestyles of the wild relatives of your pets, and see just how wrong your preconceptions are.



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27 Oct 2021, 11:00 am

The only dogs i have encountered are one's in a park area, which rushed me, with possible bad intentions.


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27 Oct 2021, 11:11 am

theprisoner wrote:
The only dogs i have encountered are one's in a park area, which rushed me, with possible bad intentions.


What makes you think they had bad intentions?



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28 Oct 2021, 1:58 am

HeroOfHyrule wrote:
Rexi wrote:
Unlike humans, excited dogs are not necessarily happy or healthy. A calm submissive greeting is the only way to have a good relationship based on respect with a dog and avoid training excitement and anxiety in them which can create behavioral issues and they can't get out of that state and relax and that could lead them to destroy your home or start having separation anxiety. Humans who greet and leave a dog with excited energy or pitying them create anxiety separation. Usually you are supposed to ignore the dog when you leave and come home so it settles down and not work it up and put all that emotion that belongs to you on them. They don't see the world like you do and will feel betrayed and confused if you pour pity on them before leaving. Instead leaving is common and normal and doesn't require change in emotions but calm.

I just wanted to pop in and say this is actually helpful for me and my current dog, thank you. lol

He came to us with separation anxiety, and while I try to ignore him when I leave or come back from somewhere and he gets excited/upset, I still feel like I eventually have to give him attention to reassure and calm him. I don't think I've realized that I'm probably just reinforcing his separation anxiety. I'm going to stop giving him attention until he calms down completely now.

Im glad it helps. That is a good decision and selfless of you, i know it's hard but i hope he'll improve. It'll make him feel better.


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