Is the great cat/dog debate any more than another way of stereotyping ourselves? Recent research suggests not. Studies have found the common traits held by cat people and dog people, giving us paws for thought.

Curiosity cats

creative painting cat

In a 2010 study of over 4500 participants, cat people were found to be 11% more open minded, with more appreciation for art, culture, and more progressive ideologies.

The self-confessed dog people held lower scores on openness, tending towards more conventional ideas and traditions, thus less curious than the cat lovers.

 

Clever cat?

intelligent cat

600 US students were asked their preference over cats or dogs and subsequently given an intelligence test. Those who preferred cats scored higher on the intelligence test overall.

According to a poll of over 200,000 people, both cat and dog people were equally likely to hold a four-year degree.

 

It's the way I tell ‘em

happy dog

In the same poll, dog lovers were found to be 30% more likely to appreciate physical comedy such as slapstick and impressions whereas the feline fans were 21% more likely to enjoy more wordy humour in witticisms, irony and puns.

 

Space issues

cat and dog

Psychologist Stanley Coren found in his studies of cat and dog owners that when asked if they had the space available for a cat or a dog in their home, 68% of cat owners would not accept a dog, while 70% of dog owners said that they would admit the cat into their household.

This could be down to what we are used to growing up. Of the people who had cats in the house as children, almost half now owned cats as adults, while only 11% of those who had dogs as pets growing up now own cats exclusively.

 

For the love of dog

cat buddah

Some research data suggest that feline friends are more inclined to be atheists than their dog loving counterparts. But as this Professor of psychology mused;

“You couldn’t tell this based on my experience, which is that cat people seem to worship their felines like the ancient Egyptians worshiped their pharaohs—as gods. We dog lovers just talk to our hounds like people.”

 

Motives

happy dog

Cat owners were found to be lower in dominance scores, suggesting they are less assertive and self-confident than dog owners. They would apparently appear quieter and more timid in social gatherings. Cat owners were also found to be more trusting, obliging and straightforward: behavioural traits often linked to the canine.

The dog lovers’ results showed them to be slightly more suspicious, perhaps explaining why they would gravitate towards owning a pet more associated with loyalty and trustworthiness. Recent studies found that the reasons for choosing a particular pet were different for cat and dog enthusiasts, with almost 40% of dog devotees looking for friendship, while 45.6% of cat lovers wanted affection.

 

Do any of these findings ring true with you? Let us know what you think in the comments section below

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