People love easily. Look at most of your relatives or coworkers. How lovable are they? Really? Yet most have mates and children. The vast majority are still invited to family gatherings and their relatives will speak to them.
Many have pets to which they are devoted. Some even call them their fur-babies. Is your dog or cat or parakeet property or family? Not in law but in your heart? Can a pet really love you back? Or is it a different affection? Are you not kind to those who feed and shelter you? But what if your dog could talk back? Would your cat speak to you kindly?
How much more complicated might it be if we meet really intelligent species not human? How would we treat these 'people' in feathers or fur? Perhaps a more difficult question is: How would they treat us? Are we that lovable?
When society and the law decide these sort of questions must be answered it is usually because someone disapproves of your choices. Today it may be a cat named in a will or a contest for custody of a dog. People are usually happy living the way they want until conflict is forced upon them.
What if the furry fellow in question has his own law? And is quite articulate in explaining his choices. Can a Human adopt such an alien? Can such an intelligent alien adopt a human? Should they?
Of course if the furry alien in question is smart enough to fly spaceships, and happens to be similar in size and disposition to a mature Grizzly bear, wisdom calls for a certain delicacy in telling him no...
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