Note- I may expand on this chapter later. As always, suggestions in reviews are taken into consideration. If you're curious about a specific petalia behavior, ask. This is one of the Chapters that will get updated. I will Mark a (i), (ii), etc. as its updated. Recent updates will be towards the end of the chapter. Remember to request documentaries. Even if its already listed, lack of support can mean I will cut it for more popular ones to come out quicker. You've got a voice, use it!
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While not every factor of behavior can be discussed there are some key social elements and displays that will help you understand your pet better. In general most research points that Petalia are more animal like than human like based on their body language and life style. The behaviors are broken down in categories. Greetings, Play, Fighting, Social Order, Mate Behavior, Parental, Pup, Working and Death Rituals.
When two Petalia first meet there can be a lot of tension. Males meeting can get competitive or may feel threatened if they have a mate or pups to account for. Females may be stand offish. Males may be seeking a mate and come off strong. There are many things that can cause this tension. Some Petalia get excited to meet others and take well to socialization.
When meeting observe your pets spine. Is it angled high at the withers? Your pet is excited to see this new Petalia. Is the pet stiff? They are tense. Hackling of the fur is a sign of aggression and your pet should be removed if he is doing this. If your pet is coiled up, has his/her tail tucked, pulling away, or hiding your pet is afraid.
Normally, Petalia will meet each other by sniff over each other's bodies. They will also pay close attention to the scent of the groin glands. Do not stop your Petalia from doing this. It is vital they understand each other. The Petalia will then react, positively or negatively, to the scent. Some licking, nipping and vocalization may occur. Beware of any biting, growling, or puffing of the chest as this indications your pet is being aggressive.
Breeds that socialize well are the Italian breeds except the Southern, Austria, France, Finland, Canada, Ukraine and Spain. Breeds that require a lot of socialization in order to get along are the Russia, America, Netherland, Belarus and Poland. Breeds which tend to only greet then walk away and prefer the company of their owner are the Germany, Sweden, Switzerland, Japan, Greece, and Rome.
Petalia love to play. From puphood to elderly, play is an important part of social behavior. Pups spend most of their free time playing which helps develop their muscles and practice good social skills. Play can play rough at times, especially males, but rarely will they get hurt.
Good play involves tackles, wrestling, chasing one another, hunting down one another, and racing. Petalia are often noisy during play and may nip and pin. This is ok and rarely draws blood or bruise. Pups will play with siblings or pups of neighboring herds under the supervision of adults. Parents correct play that gets too rough. Males will play with each other as bonding and as stated before tend to be rougher. Females don't tend to play as much and prefer chasing games to physical contact.
Playful breeds include the France, Spain, Italian breeds, Finland, Canada, America, Russia, Ukraine, Sealand, China and Prussia. Breeds which are not known to be playful are the Sweden, Norway, England, Japan, and Belarus.
There is a strict pecking order in Petalia society when there is a herd formed. Ranking is usually done by those fit to lead or hold such a position in the herd mentally and physically. There is an Alpha of the group who is usually male. If the Male takes a mate the two become the Alphas and co-exist as equal partners. However much research has shown that the Alphas will split duties. Female Alpha looking out for pups, the herd, nests, dens, and storage. Male Alphas keeping everyone in line, providing food, materials, and making the decisions.
From alpha on, members of the family fall in order of how much responsibility they can handle. Pups are excluded from pecking order but as they grow up are considered bottom members until they prove otherwise. Females are usually held in a higher position than males because of their value in their society. Even females who are at the bottom will be well attended too.
Alpha's often eat first and have the pick of best bedding, den, and drink first at watering holes. The alpha's pups are considered in higher respect but that doesn't entitle them to extra care. All pups are priceless and the group will care for them regardless.
While herds have a typical social order, herds are not always formed. Germany, Austria, Poland, Switzerland, Sweden, Russia breeds will very rarely form a herd consisting of more than their mate and pups. A Petalia is considered a "herd" when more than 3 adult members that are unrelated come together as a unit. More commonly it is only a bonded pair and their offspring. There is no pecking order however it is observed the male is respected and heeded. The female's word generally is law as well but females spend more time raising pups.
Fighting can occur for several reasons but its rarer than one may think. The most common is between males that are sparing for a mate. Most breeds end the spar after a few good blows. These fights don't normally end up life threatening. Some breeds however are more brutal in mate fights. Germany, Russia, Netherland and Belarus males are known to get very rough, drawing blood and leaving injury. The Russia is the only breed known to go into battle expecting to kill. This is known because they take on hunting motions.
Females occasionally will fight over social disputes. This fights are small and tend to not leave any marks. Females may also fight males, especially younger males, if they step out of line. Another common reason is if they pups are in danger. This is the most violent form of fighting a female will generally engage in. Germany and Ukraine females are notorious for fighting to the death for their pups.
Territory is the next biggest thing a Petalia will fight over. Pets will often engage in this type of fight and it's usually marked by a large amount of running and some scenting. These fights usually end fast with only minor injuries.
Social fighting can occur when a member of a herd challenges another. This could be to prove dominance or a disagreement. This fights occasionally get nasty. If an alpha is challenged it usually gets more physical than most other fights. If the alpha looses, the whole structure of the herd is altered.
You should never touch or provoke your Petalia when eating. While most would not react to having a good belly rub while eating, some Petalia will immediately snap or bite. Food is gold in the Petalia world and they have strict behaviors. The animal that controls the food is always alpha. Pecking order is also feeding order and violations of this pattern are dealt with aggressively.
Parenting is different from breed to breed. Each has its own survival strategy. The parenting methods are considered part of the primitive "culture" of Petalia. This is because if a pup is taken at birth and raised by humans exclusively, it shows no influence of its parents methods of parenting or breeding. It may be nervous and fearful of its own pups. If a parent dies, the pup may not have learned all of what that parent did and may not exhibit their behavior.
Most Petalia will bond for life or at least an extended period of time to raise pups. The mothers have great influence because they spend the most time with the pups. Fathers are more important later and set example for what mates should do, hunting, caring, and other daily needs.
The Prussia doesn't stick around long, in fact males may impregnate and leave females who smell of other males. Until the smell of pregnancy is around, the males are flighty and romp around on a quest to spread their genes. Pups hit about mid to late puphood before the male leaves. As teenagers the pups usually leave the care of a mother, who is usually pregnant and nursing a litter at the least. Females will stick around their mother a little longer and up until they birth their own litter. This extra support helps the females survive.
The Russia has particularly harsh but successful techniques. A strong male will seek out the strongest female and they will continue to have litters until a larger male or female comes along. The Males generally only care for their prime female and her pups. Russia males are brutally territorial and defend their den violently. Even a Rabbit is a threat. Their pups often stay until teenhood and leave. Since the breed has large pups only a 1-3 may be born per litter. Sick, deformed, or runts of the litter are usually killed. The amount of energy it takes to raise ill and small pups takes from the healthy ones and in a place such as Russia, resources are scarce. It is believed that the males are primarily the ones who practice infanticide. Males have a unique psychological ability seen in humans under great stress which is the "Doubling" effect. Russia males have a split psyche, the survivalist side only comes out when needed and prevents the male from undergoing depression due to the severity of his actions.
The North Italy has unusual habits of parenting as well. Generally gentle, they tend to form herds where all pups are cared for equally. Parents keep tabs on their own but pups share milk supplies and even dens. Males generally hunt and females will seek out any sort of food they can. Massive eaters, their pups are never victims of intentional infanticide. They parent gently and set example. They keep their pups into teenhood where they can choose to leave or remain.
The Germany breed's strategy has already been discussed but besides being extremely successful though low in production, they have adapted exceptionally long periods of parenting. In fact, most pups won't leave the parents until they are adults and most of those adults will still often see their parents. The breed's center on family units and protection of their kin means they control a large amount of wild territory. The breed is firm with discipline.
The Ukraine often forms large herds of separate family units. Though they don't contribute much to each other, they form for protection and raising of pups. While some families may get close and share resources, they raise the pups in a communal nursing setting. That is, any pup that is hungry is fed. All mothers agree to nurse any hungry pup. This sharing of calories has lead to high pup survival and strong immune systems. Males generally agree to protect all females and teach their son's to do the same. Often times, female pups will meet their future mate in puphood. This communal living is the largest of it's kind. Family units paired up can grow into a herd of over one hundred individuals. This is most commonly seen in the Ukraine and Hungarian plains but not in Russia as often. This may be a "cultural" example of raising pups.
Hunting: Petalia hunting is unique compared to animals of other species. Their hunting behavior has come under scrutiny based on research done with the human's close relative, the chimp. Scientists are now wondering if Petalia hunting is instinctual or cultural. Petalia haven't been identified as having anything beyond a bare minimum culture. By culture, most mean that one way of doing things is passed down to the next generation but is not inherently done by other means.
An example came in apes who used multiple stick tools vs. rocks. Though both apes had access to both in the different parts of the world they lived in, one type of ape does not use stones as tools. The others don't fashion brushes or tools from sticks.
Petalia hunting may be a blend of both. They hunt by instinct and the drive of hunger. All animals seek out food sources. The Petalia's hunting strategy is closely related to that of big cats rather than wolves, even though the modifications to their DNA are more derived from wolf genetic markers. Petalia rarely hunt in groups except in the cases where large herds are formed. They prefer to stalk prey and entrap it before striking rather than running it into a trap or cornering it. However, across breeds this ranges.
In herds, gender plays no role in who hunts. Females have a slightly better kill rate of ¼ than males at 1/5 attempts. Breed differences occur in the rare and popular breeds.
The Prussia is an example of what may be cultural hunting. Prussia males will spook and run prey until its tired. After that it attacks it's weakened foe. The Prussia will pace itself and lag behind and around, making noise to keep the prey fleeing. In a small area of the Alps, Prussia breeds have been seen stalking and giving a fatal bite then following the animal until it's too weak to fight back.
Germany breeds are the rare example of group hunting if they are in a herd or larger family. Because the pups stick around so long they often have a large family and thus developted different hunting strategies. Some families tackle their prey all at once, while others stalk around it to cut off escape routes while the strongest takes it down. Many males however don't have a herd or will eventually leave their families. The Germany rarely chases prey but uses its size and weight.
The Russia also uses its size like the Germany. The Russia however is far more opportunistic. Often compared to a polar bear, the breed can be found digging through and crushing ice to get at young animals in dens. While most breeds will dig after things like rabbits, the Russia uses its weight to collapse a den before digging through it.
Most other breeds hunt with typical predator tragedies. Some breeds are avid fishers and prefer to take to the water. Most fish are caught from above. Others have the physical ability to dive into the water and catch fish with their teeth. The Japan is an example of a breed able to do this. The Cuba however cannot because its body is strong and thick. As a result, it fishes by grabbing them from above. The Greece also fishes from above as well.
Mental or Emotional Dysfunctions:
Rarely, Petalia have inborn behavioral dysfunctions. In some breeds this is a normal while in others it is not even reported. This oddities stem from mental or emotional causes. The most common type across all breeds stems from an emotional aspect.
Emotional problems from abuse usually lead to nervous vices or lashing out. Emotionally dysfunctional Petalia cannot be trusted as much as normal Petalia. They may bite, pace, scratch, kick and head butt others. Sometimes, Petalia can heal on their own or if introduced to a healthy herd setting where others of their own kind can aid them. Emotional Dysfunctions have a higher rate of healing than mental ones.
In the Wild, emotionally dysfunctional Petalia may be outcast. Unable to control themselves they may be rejected by the herd. Generally, pecking order keeps even severely challenged Petalia in line and functioning. Sometimes breeds are known to have emotional dysfunctions regarding death. The Russia tends to have a high case of this. It doesn't seem to sympathize with other's pain or what death is. This may be a coping mechanism because the breed is noted for its cheerful, playful, nature. They can be seen smiling as they play roughly with rabbits until they die, not understanding why it's no longer moving. Not connecting that just because you didn't intend to kill it, doesn't mean it won't die if handled roughly.
Some wild Petalia can suffer when there is a loss of family. The Germany breed is very sensitive to the death of mates and pups. Males and females suffer severe depression but may also voluntarily die. By self starvation, they can often be found dead in environments flourishing with food and water. Petalia do not generally die from Emotional causes if they have pups to care for. Ukraine Breed also suffers from severe emotional damage when pups and mates meet unfortunate fates.
Mental Dysfunctions are a widespread problem in inbred breeds of Petalia. Mental issues do not mean insanity but in Petalia anything which stems from a problem in the brain. Some are harmless and many owners aren't aware of them. The most common is hallucination. A majority of the England breed suffer this and it is noted by rapid eye movement, sudden tension, random biting or vocalization. While most go just fine and accept these hallucinations as if there, others may become aggressive. Some of the older lines of the Japan breed also suffer this but besides rapid eye movement and skittish behavior, they rarely lash out or become dangerous.
Other problems are more noticeable like ticks and twitches. The most famous breed for this is the North Italy which is seen giving a verbal cue often which has no actual meaning associated with it. Similar to how a person may excessively or uncontrollably say 'ums', 'ahs', 'ahcks', or 'ehs'. This is sometimes accompanied by a closing of the eyes. Make sure your Petalia doesn't have eye issues before dismissing it as a an uncontrollable tick. These things don't interfere with the animal's quality of life.
Another breed known for mental dysfunction is the America. Because of its wide genetic gene pool ranging from Russia to African to Mexico breeds the breed as a whole has less instances of genetic illness. Mental Dysfunctions however seem to have been inherited strongly. Based on the influences of its ancestors it may give verbal cues like the Italy or even twitch. Hallucination is fairly common. The chemistry of the breed's brain can be effected by conflicting norms of other breeds.
Narcolepsy in categorized with mental health because of its root cause in the brain. These Petalia need close monitoring. This isn't limited to one breed but in general seems to affect the southern European breeds and far western European breeds like the Spain. These animals fall asleep in the midst of consciousness. In the wild, these animals don't survive long. The Russia is the only breed without cases of adult Narcolepsy because the parents will often kill a pup that shows this illness. Other breeds band around the sick one, like the North Italy, but it is still unlikely to survive. In captivity these animals need softer environments in case they fall and an attentive owner. Some medications help the Petalia but it can be a costly option.