The Narcissist’s Weird Relationship With Pets And Animals…

Sherile Turner-Myles
5 min readNov 24, 2021
Photo By Krista Mangulsone

Did you ever observe something off or worse yet, really wrong with how the narcissist treats pets and animals? Looking at the symptoms of narcissism and some even more severe personality disorders, this sadly makes sense. I am on the total opposite end of this spectrum; I adore animals and frequently turn down invitations on a Saturday night to stay in with my dog. The narcissist struggles to connect, acts awkward or indifferent, or is just mean to animals. Here are some ways that I have observed in my own relationships and some reports from clients about the ways narcissists have a very unhealthy relationship with animals and the psychological explanation for why.

They lack empathy- I feel like almost any manifestation of narcissism goes back to their lack of empathy. Narcissists have many examples in the real world, movies, books, and television to guide them to fake empathy in relationships. They have a blueprint of how they “should” understand and show compassion for humans. There are less examples with animals, especially animals that are not typical domestic pets. If you notice that the narcissist does not care if your dog is sick, the cat has died, or they have no reaction to a sad story on the news about animals, this is a red flag. Pay attention to how people act around animals, they are the most innocent and vulnerable of all creatures. If someone is not able to relate to, establish a connection with, or believe that animals have rights and deserve fair treatment, I would suggest proceeding with caution. If they never have thought about these subjects or struggle to have a conversation about relationships with animals or animal rights, I would also proceed with caution.

They struggle with relationships-This struggle also applies to four leggers. Even the most awkward or difficult person is usually able to bond with and love a pet. Domestic animals like dogs and cats are capable of providing humans with judgement free unconditional love and acceptance. Science has even shown that petting and playing with our furry friends increases feel good brain chemicals like oxytocin, dopamine, and serotonin that make us feel happy and facilitate bonding. It is natural to connect to animals, especially if you spend time with them. Developing a relationship with a pet is easy to do for healthy…

Sherile Turner-Myles

I write about Covert Narcissism and other Personality Disorders, and how they impact relationships.