If I ever got a DNA test for my dog, I’m pretty sure she’d come back 100 percent fuccboi (or fuckboy or fuckboi, depending on the vibe). Because the more I snuggle and spoil her with treats and praise, the more apparent it is that she’d drop me in a second for the right scented butt outside. She follows me around the apartment, begging for attention, but when I finally take a break from work to play with her, she sneaks off to steal my sandwich from the dining room table. Then I’m just sitting on the floor, hungry, squeaking a stuffed bear like an idiot.
But her favorite fuccboi move is after laying in my bed all day, she relocates to the couch when it’s time for me to go to sleep — as if to say, “I need some space.”
I’m not the only sucker either. In a recent survey of 2,000 dog owners, 49 percent of respondents let their dogs sleep in their beds (the survey neglected to ask if the remaining owners were as brutally rebuffed by their pups as me); 52 percent cooked special meals for their dogs; 53 percent kissed their dogs more than their partners; and 72 percent said they’d put themselves in harm’s way to protect their dogs.
But again, while my dog is psyched to see me when I get home and affectionate most of the time, I know deep down that she’d behave the same way with anyone who took care of her. Research shows that dogs are naturally social and affectionate because they have a gene variant similar to people with Williams-Beuren syndrome, a developmental disorder associated with a surplus of oxytocin that makes a person very friendly and trusting. Scientists suspect this is evidence of the “survival of the friendliest” hypothesis of dog domestication, or the idea that dogs evolved to be friendlier than wolves for their own good. Simply put, it’s not our dogs’ faults — they became fuccbois in order to survive.
We, however, deserve at least some of the remaining blame. Dogs act like fuccbois because we hold them to a standard they can’t reach and mistake their charm for loyalty. “I wouldn’t use the word loyal, but I would describe dogs as affectionate, social and gregarious animals,” certified dog behaviorist and trainer Russell Hartstein tells me. “Loyalty is a human-made label, and dogs don’t function, see or interpret the world in that way.”
Luckily, there is a silver lining to my dog being a fuccboi. For example, when I go out of town and leave her with a dogsitter, I know that she’ll be fine as long as her needs are met. All the while, she’ll still be excited to see me when I return — even if she forgets that I exist in the meantime.
Who knows? She might even be happy enough to sleep in my bed. And if she doesn’t, that could be for any number of reasons — from her wanting to protect me, to her not being tired, to her just liking the couch more. “Dog parents shouldn’t take this personally and should allow their dog to sleep any place it’s safe for the dog,” Hartstein says. “Dogs are autonomous, unique individuals with preferences just like us.”
Better yet, in a world filled with fuccbois, they’re easily the best.