Do you consider yourself a dog person or a cat person? Depending on your pet preference, a lot can be revealed about your own personality. It’s been said that the animal you identify with the most tends to align with your own characteristics.
Pet owner stereotypes are fairly prevalent throughout society. Surely you’ve heard the myth of the crazy cat lady. She sits on her couch in a bathrobe day after day eating Pringles, surrounded by at least four of her closest feline friends: Molly, Daisy, Sadie and Chloe.
Or maybe you’re more familiar with man’s best friend. Most likely he’s a Labrador Retriever that goes by the name of Max or Buddy. And every day he gleefully hops into the crumb littered SUV with his active family of two caring parents and three rambunctious kids, eager for yet another 15 minute road trip to the other side of town.
Common traits of dog owners:
- Friendly and social
- More likely to be married with children
- Tend to live in households in rural or suburban areas
Common traits of cat owners:
- Independent and introverted
- Most likely to be single and female
- Tend to live in urban area apartments
So where did these common cliches even come from?
There is one easy answer. Research indicates that we generally gravitate toward the same animals that we grew up with. It’s all a matter of comfort, familiarity and a longing for nostalgia. Also, we can’t ignore obvious factors such as age and living situation. For example, if you’re a college student living in a 400 sq. ft. apartment, you’re less likely to own an energetic German Shepherd simply because your space (and probably your budget) won’t allow it.
The stereotypes are also born from the animals themselves. It’s been said that dog owners are more outgoing because their pets require them to be. Dogs need to go out for walks, which puts owners in unavoidable (albeit welcome) social situations. Cat owners typically don’t have to experience this. And they probably prefer it that way.
So what’s your take? Is the myth of the crazy cat lady really a reality? Do you think there’s a real difference between dog people and cat people?
Photo Credits: Shutterstock / cynoclub and a. katz