A group of people who claim to identify as dogs has caused a stir on social media after they gathered in a public place in Berlin, Germany, and communicated by howling and barking. The event, which took place at the Berlin Potsamer Platz railroad station, attracted an estimated 1,000 participants who wore masks and collars and behaved like canines. Some online commentators mocked the trans-species folk and suggested calling animal control, while others expressed curiosity or support for their lifestyle choice.
What is trans-species identity?
Trans-species identity, also known as therianthropy, is a term used to describe people who feel a strong connection to a non-human animal and believe that they are partially or entirely that animal in spirit, soul, or essence. Some therians may also adopt the physical appearance, behavior, or lifestyle of their animal identity, such as wearing costumes, accessories, or prosthetics, or living in a natural environment.
Therians are different from furries, who are people who enjoy dressing up as anthropomorphic animals for fun, entertainment, or artistic expression. Furries do not necessarily identify as animals, but rather as fans of animal characters. Some therians may also be furries, and vice versa, but they are not synonymous.
Why do people identify as dogs?
There is no definitive answer to why some people identify as dogs or other animals, as each individual may have their own personal reasons and experiences. However, some possible factors that may contribute to the development of a trans-species identity include:
- A sense of alienation or dissatisfaction with human society or culture
- A desire for freedom, simplicity, or authenticity
- A spiritual or religious belief in reincarnation, animism, or shamanism
- A psychological coping mechanism for trauma, stress, or identity issues
- A neurological condition such as autism spectrum disorder or synesthesia
- A genetic predisposition or hormonal imbalance
How do people express their dog identity?
People who identify as dogs may express their identity in various ways, depending on their preferences and circumstances. Some common methods include:
- Wearing dog-like clothing, accessories, or costumes
- Adopting dog-like mannerisms, gestures, or sounds
- Engaging in dog-like activities, such as playing fetch, digging holes, or chasing squirrels
- Joining dog communities, such as online forums, social media groups, or meet-ups
- Seeking dog partners, friends, or owners
- Using dog names, pronouns, or titles
What are the challenges and benefits of being a dog?
Being a dog in a human world is not easy. People who identify as dogs may face various challenges and risks, such as:
- Social stigma and discrimination
- Legal and ethical issues
- Health and safety hazards
- Psychological and emotional difficulties
- Relationship and family problems
However, being a dog may also bring some benefits and rewards, such as:
- Personal fulfillment and happiness
- Self-expression and creativity
- Community and belonging
- Fun and adventure
- Learning and growth
What is the future of trans-species identity?
Trans-species identity is not a new phenomenon. Throughout history and across cultures, there have been stories and legends of people who could transform into animals or had animal traits. However, with the advancement of technology and the rise of social media, trans-species identity has become more visible and accessible than ever before.
As more people discover and explore their trans-species identity, there may be more opportunities for research, education, and awareness on this topic. There may also be more challenges and conflicts between trans-species individuals and mainstream society. The future of trans-species identity may depend on how well humans can coexist with other animals – both real and imagined.