The following page contains Garfield's relationships with other characters.
Jon Arbuckle is Garfield's owner. He is frequently a victim to Garfield's abuse, which comes in the form of Garfield shedding everywhere, Garfield taking his food, and Garfield destroying his property, among other things. Garfield is arguably Jon's biggest source of frustration. Garfield has almost no respect for Jon and does not think he is very intelligent. Despite Garfield's overall superiority in the relationship and Jon's general ineptitude, Jon is sometimes able to see through Garfield's antics and outwit him, especially in the series.
Jon and Garfield have nevertheless been shown to be able to get along. Although Garfield views Jon as a dork and takes advantage of him, Garfield still values and seeks Jon's companionship. In addition, Jon has grown accustomed to Garfield's behavior and can put up with it from time to time.
Odie is a yellow dog who used to be Lyman's dog; he now lives with Jon. Garfield considers him to be his friend, although this is debatable within the fan base.
Garfield enjoys the fact that Odie is less intelligent than he is and frequently takes advantage of his gullibility, usually resulting in Odie being hurt in some way, or his food being stolen. He abuses him so much, in fact, that Odie rarely gets a chance to get Garfield back. One time Garfield threw a flowerpot off the table onto Odie after kicking him off the table, and another time he got Odie to eat rocks, although it is unknown whether Odie ate them because he was stupid, or if he was just trying to make Garfield happy.
Garfield also enjoys making fun of Odie's stupidity, and of how he pants all the time, which he cannot really help, and also of how he drools everywhere as a result of this panting. He scarcely has anything good to say about him, even though he does compliment him sometimes when Odie does something smart.
Somehow, despite all of this, they are inseparable. They enjoy many of the same interests, such as playing pretend with each other, and pranking Jon or just laughing at him. They will also team up sometimes to achieve something, even though it is often just Garfield using Odie to help him with something he wants. Garfield usually is able to put up with Odie's dumbness, and Odie tries his best to ignore Garfield's nonstop abuse.
Contrary to typical cat behavior, Garfield does not chase nor eat mice. He does not wish to see them eaten, thinking himself above doing something so low. He comments on other cats' habits of chasing and eating mice as horrifying.
He has even befriended a few mice in his house, and often has small conversations with them. Sometimes, though, he needs to either hide the presence of mice, or pretend to hunt them to prevent Jon from kicking him out due to not doing his job.
On January 15th of 2006, Garfield did consider the idea of eating mice, his reason being, "If I ate mice, I wouldn't have to wait around for Jon to feed me." His mouse friend (either Squeak or Herman Vermin) talks him out of the idea by pointing out the appearance of the mice in Jon's house, which are ugly enough to make Garfield lose his appetite.
The Mailman has constantly been harassed and attacked by Garfield. This has led him to try to fight back in any way possible. He has tried hiring thugs, kidnapping him, or even delivering it extra early. None of his methods have deterred Garfield from continuing his harassment, although the mailman has occasionally emerged triumphant.
Arlene is a character and one of Garfield's romances. The comic strip and The Garfield Show depict the relationship between Garfield and Arlene as an on-and-off romance, where they crack jokes at each other's expense. Typically in the comics, Arlene commonly makes clever remarks about Garfield's ego, while Garfield tends to make fun of Arlene's teeth, which often ends up with violent reactions. The Garfield Show presents this casual relationship, in a milder way, limiting the conflict of Garfield's ego and Arlene's disapproval of such attitude.
Merchandise for couples, presented by PAWS Incorporated, have always depicted Garfield and Arlene as a healthy-looking couple, mostly in their products, which is addressed to spouses and families. Similar depictions appear in the Infinite Learning Lab, where Garfield and Arlene often appear spending time together, either in the house or outdoors.
Jim Davis did confirm the relationship in February 2017, precisely stating that Arlene is Garfield's girlfriend, although the relationship conflict remains in the comic strip.
Nermal is a gray tabby kitten, who regularly appears in the comic strip and the cartoons. His relationship with Garfield can be described as a natural rivalry between two similar egocentrics, often ending up with Garfield shipping Nermal to Abu Dhabi. There have been cases (as seen in The Garfield Show), where Nermal has managed to take over Garfield's ego, for his own purposes.
On rare occasion, Nermal is seen to be having a more neutral kinship with Garfield, usually when they both experience misfortune. Nermal is shown to secretly look up to Garfield and sees him as his best friend, despite Garfield mistreating him.
Over the course of the strip, Garfield has shared information on members of his family:
- Uncle Arno: Uncle Arno is known for saying, "Life is like a festival; you have to get out there and enjoy it.". He was run over by a parade.
- Uncle Barney: Uncle Barney once went to the vet and came back as Garfield's Aunt Bernice. (comic June 25, 1979)
- Uncle Berle: Uncle Berle is described as crazy, and thought that he was a dog. He always chased himself up trees and was constantly exhausted as a result.
- Uncle Bernie: Uncle Bernie coined the phrases, "Never listen for a train by putting your ear on a train track.", and "Curiosity killed the cat.", in that order. (September 19, 1988)
- Uncle Bob: Uncle Bob used to say, "Slow down, take it easy." before being hit by a bus.
- Great Uncle Buchanan: Great Uncle Buchanan appeared in the episode of Garfield and Friends, "Astrocat." He was the first animal to land on the moon. He looks and sounds exactly like Garfield.
- Uncle Ed: Described as crazy, Uncle Ed liked to sniff waffle irons, and his face was used for "Tic-Tac-Toe" games. He also always said, "Never belch out loud," and blew out an eyeball one day (this may be a different Uncle Ed).
- Aunt Edna: Aunt Edna used to say, "Let a smile be your umbrella," until her dentures were blown clean through the garage door by a bolt of lightning. She also married a hyena.
- Aunt Evelyn: Aunt Evelyn plucked all her hair from her body to stop shedding. She currently resides in L.A., with a family that thinks that she is a chihuahua. (comic October 10, 1979)
- Auntie Em: Auntie Em has only been mentioned once, after Garfield fell off a recliner and lost his memory, saying, "Auntie Em, is that you?", although this could be a side effect of the fall and/or a joke.
- Uncle Harry: Uncle Harry lived in a glass plant in Gas City, Indiana. He was a famous mouser, eventually chasing a mouse into Tank #2. He is now a paperweight in Bayonne, New Jersey. (comic May 23, 1979)
- Uncle Hubert: Uncle Hubert once caught a 30-pound canary in Chicago, and was last spotted over Dallas, Texas. For this reason, Garfield claims he does not chase birds. (comic June 23, 1979)
- Uncle Leo: Uncle Leo always had a smile until an incident with denture weevils.
- Uncle Morty: Uncle Morty was killed by his gluttony, after trying to take a papaya from a silverback gorilla.
- Uncle Nick: Uncle Nick loved to destroy things and used to eat chickens whole. There are two conflicting statements to his current status. In one strip, it is said that he tried to swallow an ostrich after he mistook it for a chicken, with his last words being, "That's the biggest chicken I ever saw.". In another, it is stated that he is presently a postal employee in Chicago.
- Aunt Rockelvia: Aunt Rockelvia was known for saying, "A rolling stone gathers no moss.". She lived for thirty years before she was squashed by a meteor.
- Uncle Patrick: Uncle Patrick was famous for the quote, "I regret that I have but nine lives to give to my country."
- Great Uncle Ralph: The only mention of Great Uncle Ralph claims that he was a warthog.
- Aunt Reba: Garfield reacts with her name when Jon revealed that his tennis racket was strung with catgut. (comic June 06, 1979)
- Uncle Roy: Uncle Roy was said to be weird, he underwent a species change operation that transformed him into a dog; He later chased himself to death.
- There are also two unnamed uncles and one great uncle. One uncle went to the vet once and had his brain replaced with that of a chicken. The rest of his life was spent sitting on eggs in grocery stores. Another uncle used to play with yarn, and is now a pattern in an angora sweater. The great uncle was a lion who ate a sick monkey.
- Cousin Sly: Cousin Sly is a mouser. Appeared in Garfield on the Town.
- Raoul: Raoul is Garfield's half-brother, a mouser.
- Great Grandfather Oslo: Great Grandfather Oslo was a pioneer. He moved his family thousands of miles across uncharted territory and kept saying, "I hear a can-opener.".
- Jarfield: A pile of Garfield's shedding Jon mistook for Garfield's brother for three weeks.
- His mother
- His grandfather (from his mother's side)
Relationships in Garfield and Friends
In the first cartoon series with Garfield, Arlene made only cameo appearances in three episodes: The Legend of the Lake, Remote Possibilites and The Feline Felon. Several other female cats appeared as love interests during Seasons 3, 5, 6 and 7:
- Penelope Pussycat : Penelope replaced Arlene in Seasons 5, 6 and 7.
- Mona : Mona is shown to have a close relationship with the Lasagna Kid in The Life and Times of the Lasagna Kid.
- Miss Kitty: Miss Kitty appears in The Cactus Saga episode. Instead of asking her for marriage, the Lasagna Kid asked her for lasagna.
- Lola: Lola was the first female Garfield dated in Garfield and Friends. Their relationship was shown in Beach Blanket Bonzo and in The Garfield Rap.
- Gwendolyn: Gwendolyn is seen dating Garfield in The Idol of Id episode. Their relationship comes to an end due to a personality swap caused by the statue.
- Lorelei: Lorelei attempted to take Garfield over from Penelope in The Second Penelope Episode.
Old Girlfriends (The Garfield Book of Cat Names)
- Amy: Amy was a cat Garfield once dated. They had a great time until she wanted him to leave his blanket at the house. Garfield mentions that he was not ready for that commitment.
- Bijou: Bijou was a cat Garfield on dated. He says that she was a gem and was the high heels and lots of jewelry type. He also says that he personally thinks it looks stupid on a cat.
- Crispina: Crispina was a cat Garfield once dated. In the book, nothing is mentioned on her; he does say that the name sounds like a breakfast cereal.
- Priscilla: Priscilla was a cat Garfield once dated. Garfield mentions that there was nothing prissy about her. She drank out of Odie's water bowl on their first and last date.
- Babe: Babe was a cat Garfield once dated. Again, nothing is mentioned about this girlfriend. Garfield says it is used in preliminary stages of a relationship.
- Tammy: More coming soon
- Margot: More coming soon
- Fatima: More coming soon
- Zoe: More coming soon