What Your Pets Can Expect When You’re Transitioning and Looking for Love

What Your Pets Can Expect When You’re Transitioning and Looking for Love

A lot of things can happen in a person’s life, and recently one of my friends has announced that they are going to transition. If I’m honest, it’s not a complete surprise. A transitioning transgender person will undergo a variety of changes in their lives and they were worried about how their pet might react to these changes and when they started dating, what would their dog think of them bringing home a new partner. So, I thought I would share some tips after speaking with them and consulting the TG community online on what to expect.

“Now that you have finally become determined to be yourself, you’ll probably use a combination of hormone therapy and gender-affirming surgery to start living the life you desire. This will impact every facet of your lives, from the people you date and how you find love, to the way your pets interact with you.”

When you are transitioning and looking for romance, your life will undergo many changes in a relatively short amount of time. When you’re ready to look for love you might consider joining a specialist website for TG dating where you can fill out a profile and start dating at your own pace. The speedy nature of online dating and the changes you’re going through during your transition will make for a bit of a roller coaster of emotions. 

Your body and mentality could be drastically altered, and those changes will not go unnoticed by your furry friends. You should expect some changes in the way that your pet approaches you during and after your transition, with more drastic changes bringing about the more serious changes. We’ll talk about this more, but first, we’ll consider how a pet might interpret what’s happening. 

Do Pets Understand a Person Is Changing?

All this conversation begs the question of whether pets have any understanding about a transgender person’s transition. According to the experts, pets have several methods they use to recognize their owners and friends. 

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For starters, they consider your scent; that is something that cats and dogs tend to recognize the most, but other animals can recognize your smell, too. Your scent can change during your transition, which could change how your pet recognizes you. 

Pets also rely on visual cues to determine who they are looking at. Of course, this is not with all pets. In fact, dogs are the species that use your face to identify you the most. Since the transition period will be lengthy and the transformation will be gradual, your dog will not suddenly think you’re a different person. 

Another cue that pets will have that a person is changing is their voice; one way or another, your voice will change. That can alter how your pet responds to commands, but again, the change will be gradual, so the chances are that a pet will adjust to the situation. 

All in all, it’s clear that our pets have many ways to recognize us as individuals, and unless you’re away from them for a long time during your transition, they should notice changes. They will likely work those changes into their schema of understanding about you, their human counterpart! 

The Impact Based on Pet Type

We posed the question of whether or not their pet acted any differently as a result of their transformation to the TG community on reddit. The answers varied quite a bit based on the type of pet and the amount of time the individuals had owned them.

“Most of my pets didn’t really react. The one cat that I had since childhood, though… I don’t think she ever really worked out who I was after transitioning.”


“My cat treats me with the same resentment since I got him!”


“I started taking estrogen a couple of years before I socially transitioned. A friends’ dog that humps only women went after me too, and it became a big joke about it until I explained what happened after transitioning.”


As these users show, various pets had different reactions to the transition. One of them found that their friends’ dogs liked to jump on them and act aggressively, a behavior that can be modified with the right training. 

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With these stories in mind, we will take a closer look at the impacts you can expect from common types of pets. 

  • Dogs will notice changes in your scent, face, and voice. They have the highest threshold for change. 
  • Cats don’t use visual cues to identify their owners very often, but they will notice your scent changing and your voice. Cats will probably still treat you the same. 
  • Bird interactions can change depending on how you keep them. If they are used to crawling on you, then they may react differently to the appearance of a beard or other characteristics. 
  • Reptiles and Amphibians can identify you by looks depending on the species, but their behaviors towards trans individuals are quite unknown.
  • Rodents will smell the differences, and they may avoid unfamiliar-smelling people, but they should come around or experience such gradual changes that it doesn’t matter. 

The thing to remember is that every pet is going to react differently. Many factors can impact the pet’s reaction to your transition, including:

  • amount of time you’ve had the pet;
  • the degree to which you transition; hormones, hair growth, scents, etc.;
  • the type of pet you have.

It would help if you also thought about how your pet will react around a romantic partner you bring home. If you are suddenly bringing men home, that could spark a reaction from your pet. But, again, many factors impact these changes, including the existing temperament of your pet.

Wrapping up

The interesting thing about pets is that they are able to identify us in a variety of ways. You may have had your pet for years, or you might just have adopted them recently. Regardless of the length of time, there will be gradual changes in how they react to you during and after your transition! It’s important not only to think about how people will respond once you change genders but also what happens when our furry friends start noticing differences on their own. Pets can act differently around someone who has undergone some type of transformation.

Dating while transgendered will be quite an adventure, and it only gets more intriguing when you add pets to the mix. If you’re worried about how your pets will react to you and any new partners you bring around, then don’t be too concerned. Remember that many pets are more sensitive to sound and smell than looks (except dogs). It’s doubtful that your pet will forget you or suddenly become aggressive because you transition. Just get ready to enjoy the rest of your life together.

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