Klear wrote:Flumble wrote:Then again, Usain Bolt isn't in your vicinity and, even if he were, he would not try to assert his dominance by scratching your eyeballs out if you don't show your obedience.
Cats do not form clear-cut social hierarchy like canines do, though. One cat may be stronger, but that doesn't mean the others will consider themselves to be its underlings.
Dogs don't form clear-cut social hierarchies, actually. The whole myth of the "Alpha Dog" has been the subject of much debunking over the last decade or so. Much of the early study that led to the "alpha dog" theory was flawed, and it's now more accepted that the relationships as seen in nature are parent/child relationships, not alpha/subordinate relationships.
By the same token, one could argue that a pride of lions or other wild cats belies the idea of cats not having a social hierarchy.
The ways in which humans tend to anthropomorphize animals and assign human traits to their behaviour has many pitfalls, not the least of which are spurious conclusions such as "these animals have clear-cut social heirarchies, these animals share a hive mindset, these animals mourn the loss of their peers, these animals are total assholes."