I certainly prefer animals over people. People can be such assholes. So the question is can animals be assholes too? I'm not talking about violence, there are pit bulls that are dangerous just like there are human psychopaths. I'm just talking about being an asshole. We've all dealt with assholes we know how they can be. I haven't had a pet in a long time and while I've been on Safari and seen hyenas stealing food from other animals, I don't know if that can be considered being an asshole or just self-preservation. Maybe those of you who have had pets or had more exposure to domesticated animals might have experiences to answer this question. If so, interested to hear your examples.
I had two dogs: One, a Brittany Spaniel/Dalmatian mix, was tall, athletic and fast. The other, a Shar Pei mix, was short, with stumpy legs, and slow. She had a favorite toy, and would play with no other. When I would put them out in their yard, he would immediately grab her toy and race around the yard, holding the toy just high enough so she couldn't get it. She never caught up to him, but tried to on her stumpy little legs. He wouldn't ever give it to her; he was such an asshole, and you could almost see him sneering! When they were in the house together, though, they teamed up to destroy my rugs and the rug pads beneath them! They were both assholes! After she died, he never chewed up another rug again, and became a perfect pet. He is still with me at the age of 12, but I still call him 'Asshole.'
Depending on what you mean by asshole, yeah they can. All assholery may be some kind of self preservation, but all animals, including the human kind, can be aggressive jerks. More often the males.
I kept chickens for a while and I had some roosters who would cut you for no reason if they got a chance, but one in particular that was very friendly to humans and just wanted to be petted. An aggressive hen, on the other hand, is pretty rare.
Cats are similar. Females are usually docile. Among the males some are aggressive to other males, while some are submissive until attacked. All of which is instinctual behavior in animals including humans.
Then on top of that, some humans, both male and female, can just be cranky as hell, probably because humans are much more complex cognitively, and thereby more susceptible than other animals to affective dysfunction.
I had two male cats. One constantly bullied the other. The vet told me that animals are just like people and clearly I had two animals that just did not get along. I found good, but separate homes for both, and they are doing really well. The bullied cat has really come out of his shell, and is in a much better situation. As a pet parent, I hated to give them up, but in the end it was the right thing to do for the animals themselves.
If you ever seen your children chased by a goose, you will have no problem answering yes.
One of the horses of my youth would gallup to me immediately when I called him unless it was raining and then he as much as told me to forget it buster I'm going to play.
Somehow I can't ever remember a dog being an a**.