Dog owners and cat lovers have very different personalities

Are you a dog person or a cat person?

However you answer that question, chances are you have a very strong opinion.

There are many reasons why people prefer one type of pet over the other. In fact, a study done on 200-thousand pet owners found, among other things,  that dog people are more likely to be extroverted and cat people are more likely to have completed a graduate degree.

NewsChannel 5's resident cat fanatic Roxanne Stein and dog lover Kelley Dunn teamed up to illustrate the differences between cat and dog people.

"Look at that face," said Kelley, watching a poodle running and playing with its owner.
"This is Deuce Bigelow," said its owner Brian Oelbermann.
"Dogs are a lot more loyal is the best way to put it," he said.

Joanne Hamel sure agrees. Her dog, Tyler, who bears a striking resemblance to the picture on Cesar dog food,  is like her child.

"Your dogs love you to death and in your eyes they're perfect and cats are very independent. If you come that's fine, if you don't that's fine too," she said.
That seems to be the biggest difference between dog and cat lovers.

"In general cats tend to be more aloof, and they'll come to you when they want that love and attention. If they don't want to be messed with, they won't be messed with," said Dr. Robin Waters-Poderski, of the Martin Downs Animal Hospital.

"As for me," said Kelley, "I'm a dog person. Gigi and Cookie are adopted and both are important members of my family. I've never owned a cat, but I can tell you I couldn't live without dogs!"

"Pumbaa, your Aunt Kelley has never had a kitty before," said Roxanne. "She doesn't know what she's missing, does she? Actually, I never had a kitty, until about 30 years ago and once you have had one you'll never want to live in a home without one."

Kibby Schipper really loves her 10 kitties, and agrees with our survey that says dog lovers are more outgoing.

"I'm an introvert," she said.

Here's another difference between canine and kitty lovers; 67% of dog lovers will call animal control if they pick up a stray kitten, but not so for cat lovers. Cat owner Taylor Saville couldn't agree more. "Yeah, all of my cats have been strays," she said.

Although our unscientific survey says she's likely to be into social media, on this one, our kitty lover strays from the pack. "I don't go on Twitter," said Saville.

Whether online or in person, dogs and their owners tend to be more social.

"There's a camaraderie with people who have a dog with other people who have dogs and even those who don't have dogs," said dog owner Stuart Agranoff.

What do the people who see dog and cat parents every day say about our survey?

Roxanne asked her vet, Dr. Margaret Bigg, who agrees we are breeds apart. She described kitty lovers as generally having softer hearts. "They pick up animals more frequently," she said.

But on the other hand, kitty parents tend to let visits to the vet slide.

"Cat people stretch it out for as long as they can," she said.

Daisy, a maltipoo, loves going to the vet. But her owner, is the vet.

"She's very portable because that's what people want. They take their dogs wherever they want to go," said Dr. Waters-Poderski.

She said dogs are taken out in public for very specific reasons.

"I have owners who have sons at universities who have dogs for that purpose, to get a girl or at least to meet them!"

From Kelley's point of view dogs are people pleasers and have earned the title, man's best friend.

"None of our cats would jump on our knee and make a fuss of us," added  pet owner Brian Prydderch.

"They're there for you unconditionally and how can you not love dogs," said dog owner Eleana Toledo.

"I think they are members of the family and we even let them kiss our teeth," said Dr. Waters-Poderski.  "See, it's ok," she said in a demonstration.

Whether a dog or cat fan, animal lovers are in a category of their own.

As for Roxanne, Dr. Biggs put her in a separate class of people who are cat lovers.

"You're very devoted, somewhat neurotic, really caring," she told Roxanne.  "You do what you have to do to make sure pets are healthy and happy, but are you a little crazy? Absolutely."

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