Have you ever been asked the question, “Are you a cat person or a dog person?” This is a topic that has sparked many debates over the years and is often a deciding factor in friendships. While there may not be a scientific answer to this question, knowing whether someone prefers cats or dogs can be important when getting to know them better.
When it comes to owning a cat vs a dog, there are many differences. For instance, owning a dog is a social experience in and of itself. You need to take your dog for walks twice a day, interact with other dog owners in the park to find playmates for your dog and bask in compliments about your adorable dog.
On the other hand, owning a cat has several differences. Cats generally live longer than dogs, so owning a cat means you get to enjoy a longer companionship. Cat owners may not be as strict in controlling their pet as dog owners. It is even said that you do not own a cat, but rather it owns you. Winston Churchill, former US President, famously said, “Dogs look up to us, cats look down on us.”
While there may be differences between cat owners and dog owners, it is not entirely accurate to generalize all owners.
If you’re considering getting a pet, whether it be a cat or a dog, it is more important to think about your living conditions and how well you can adapt to a pet, rather than whether you’re a cat person or dog person. Below are a few essential things to know before adopting a pet:
1. Dogs Are Pack Animals
Dogs naturally travel in packs to hunt for food and protect themselves. They typically have a pack leader that the rest of the pack follows. In order to maintain this instinct, pet dogs become social, friendly animals that harmoniously live with their family. This herd mentality also means that you cannot leave your dog alone for long. Dogs need attention and closeness and are similar to having a child that never grows up.
2. Cats Are Solitary Hunters
With the exception of lions, most feline species hunt alone at night. Unlike dogs, cats are agile climbers and jumpers that rely on speed and vertical height to help them hunt or escape danger. When it comes to catching prey, cats have a much better and alert vision. Due to their hunting instincts, cats can survive on their own and don’t need to herd with other animals.
Domesticated cats are independent and spend their days sleeping and wandering around the house at night. They claim the space where they live and make it their own with their scent. They dislike changes in the environment and take time to adjust, compared to dogs who adapt quickly. While they can cope better with loneliness, some cat breeds may require more attention and affection. They are intelligent creatures who know when they’re being fed or played with and act accordingly.
3. Training Dogs vs. Cats
Dogs are usually easier to train as they naturally follow their pack leader. They are more obedient and follow commands easily. Training a dog typically involves teaching it to obey specific commands and giving positive reinforcement. Dogs enjoy pleasing their owners and are eager to follow orders.
Cats can also be trained, but it requires patience and persistence. When training a cat, you need to focus on setting limits and boundaries. Toilet training is generally easier with cats as they can naturally urinate in a litter box. This is not the case with dogs, where toilet training requires diligence and repetition.
4. Consider Your Home Space
You can own a dog even if you live in a small apartment. However, you need to take your dog outside regularly for walks and playtime so that they can exert their energy outdoors. A garden or yard provides extra space for your dog to run and play. If you live in a small apartment and can’t take your pet outside every day, then a cat may be a better option. Playing games that involve hunting is all that’s required to satisfy their physical and psychological needs.
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