By Ashley Watson
At Pet Naturals® of Vermont, we’re pretty proud of the fact that we get to help pets live healthier lives through our work. We know first hand what it’s like to have pets because most of us are also pet parents. We also know how much our readers and customers love pets as much as we do. That’s why we were curious about what makes someone a cat or a dog person. We recently wrote about how pets improve our lives, and now we want to explore the reasons people become pet parents and how they found their furry family members.
Here in Vermont, over 70% of households have at least one pet. Last year, the AVMA survey listed Vermont as the #1 cat owning state in the country! That’s a lot of feline parents, but we wanted to know why dogs didn’t make the list since dogs are everywhere in Vermont. We did a little research and found some interesting facts about why people choose cats, dogs, or any pet.
Why Do People Love Cats So Much?
Close to half (49.5 percent) of all Vermont households make their habitat a home by including a cat. For dog owners, that increase was just 8 percent. For cat owners, it was 24 percent. Perhaps the reason is that cats make the perfect meme, or maybe this is due to the fact that cats are more independent than dogs, even though they still need as much attention and love. They also tend to be less work than dogs since cats do not need to be taken for a walk every day, and they generally keep themselves cleaner than dogs. But a 2010 study at the University of Texas in Austin indicates that pet preferences may be directly linked to personality.
What Makes You a Dog Person?
If you have been following our blog, you may have noticed that we like to feature our employees and their dogs in our monthly “Breed Breakdown” posts. Adrienne Bombard kicked off this series in September with her post about owning huskies. As her friend and coworker, I have watched her home and her dogs on several occasions while she and her fiancee were out of town. I must say that Achilles and Hadley make it tempting to become a husky parent (minus the shedding). I had always considered myself a cat person, but dog sitting for numerous friends has turned me into a dog and cat person.
The University of Texas study asked 4,565 volunteers if they considered themselves dog people, cat people, both, or neither. The results indicated that more people considered themselves dog people, and dog people tend to be more extroverted, while cat people tend to be more neurotic. Here’s how the results were broken down in terms of preferences.
- 46% dog
- 12% cats
- 28% both
- 15% neither
In addition, dog people were approximately 15 percent more extroverted than cat people, and cat people were 12 percent more neurotic but 11 percent more open than dog people. Whether or not you relate to these results, the findings do support the belief that someone’s personality reflects their pet preference.
Do you consider yourself a dog or a cat person? Share your thoughts with us on Facebook.