Which is right:

1.The dog is friendly to/with me.
2.My classmate is friendly to/with me.

How would I choose the right one.

  • 1
    You can be friends of someone, friends/friendly with someone or (feel) friendly towards someone. Commented Jun 1, 2018 at 20:45
  • Looks like it depends on if the preceding words are nouns or adjectives or adverbs.
    – user17814
    Commented Jun 2, 2018 at 10:29

1 Answer 1


I would start off by saying that you can be friends with someone, you can be friendly to someone, you can be a friend of someone, or you can be friendly towards someone. These all mean almost the same thing, which I'll get into.

"I'm friends with X" and "I'm a friend of X" both mean the same thing, that X is your friend and the relationship is mutual.

"I'm friendly with X" is similar in meaning, but more ambiguous, and doesn't imply as close of a relationship. You wouldn't say this about your best friends, you would say this about your coworker that you'd go out for some beers with after work in a group but probably not alone. You two aren't super close, but you have a positive relationship and really don't hate each other - you're friendly with each other.

Now, be careful using this term. to "get friendly with X" has a mild sexual connotation; it can mean flirting or more. If you told your friend to go "get friendly with" a girl at a bar, you're telling him to try and take her home. If some girls "got friendly with" the football team, it implies that they had sex.

The terms "being friendly towards X" and "being friendly to X" are usually equivalent. The relationship implied is even more ambiguous - we don't know whether or not the friendliness is reciprocated, just that someone's being nice to someone.

Again, there is a sexual connotation under the surface - if someone is "too friendly", that's a polite way too call them creepy or overly sexual. If someone's flirting too much with someone's wife, the husband would say that they were "too friendly" to his wife. If someone's being mildly creepy, "too friendly" can be used as well. Additionally, if I saw some guy making out with his girlfriend in public, I would say that they were "getting too friendly".

I hope this helps :D

  • Thank you very much. I understand it for people. What about dogs? - I think only "with" is right then, isn't it?
    – Helen
    Commented Jun 2, 2018 at 12:16

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