Which makes a better pet: A dog or a cat? – Part 42

Let’s turn this topic on its head. What if animals were to say, “Which makes a better companion: A man or a woman?” (or any other variation of choices). It is not the dog or the cat that make a “good” or “bad” pet, but rather the experience of integrating an animal’s natural instincts and behaviors into a pet owner’s lifestyle.

I, personally, do not believe that one animal is superior to the other when it comes to offering companionship to humans. The question we, as humans, should ask ourselves is: “Which animal is better suited to my lifestyle? Which animal can I offer the best life experience to? Which animal would provide me the most joy and companionship?”

I am of the opinion that there are “dog fans” out there, the same as there are “cat lovers”, and that is of no coincidence. Most dog owners share a list of traits that make them better suited to be dog owners, and the same is true for cat companions. Perhaps someone has done a study on the personality traits of dog owners versus cat owners, and can categorically prove what I am about to assert:

Cat Owners are introverted, independent, and mysterious.

Dog Owners are extoverted, social, and straight-forward.

Cats and Dogs require similar medical/veterinary attention and vaccinations, so not much is of variance there. The true differences begin to surface when you look at the day-to-day activities of the animals and their owners.

Cats are quite independent. They are ones to accept praise and “petting” when it seems as though it is a good idea (or better yet, THEIR idea). They enjoy long naps, and basking in the warmth of the sun. A good stretch and a massive yawn is as invigorating as a chasing a ball of yarn throughout the house. Playful and predatory, they are observers. Often cats choose to lay back and take in their surroundings before deciding to interact (or should the company not be to their taste-they may decide to retreat).

Dogs are quite social. They are happy to accept, and to lavish praise and love, at any time. They enjoy playing, running, exploring, and cuddling. Their nap-time is once they are completely tuckered out from playing all day. Loving and affectionate, they are active participants in their surroundings. Often dogs choose to “introduce” themselves first, and begin “getting to know you” (or “sniffing” to know you) before the human may even be comfortable with the interaction.

So, which makes a better pet? The answer is subjective:

Do you primarily stay indoors? Do you enjoy napping, and cuddling throughout the afternoon? Does the quirkiness of a cat’s independence make you smile? Perhaps you would make a better companion for a cat.

Are you an active outdoors person? Do you enjoy daily walks (or runs) outside? Does the affection and the “pack” mentality of a dog warm your heart? Perhaps you would be best suited to adopt a canine.

I believe the first mistake we can make is by humanizing animals, and assuming that they have emotions and expressions like humans do. Rather, we need to remember one of the meanings of “pet” in the english language is “to be favored above all others”. A good “pet” to you, then, would be one that you favored above all else. One that was suited to your lifestyle.

It is not that a dog is superior to a cat, or vice versa. Rather, it is that there is an animal energy, or a vibration that is in closer harmony with your own. Find that energy-find your pet-and strive to be the best companion you can be for them.

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