When COVID-19 first started, many people were sent home, and lockdowns were put in place. I, like many people, found joy in my pets. Pets are an odd thing. We pick little creatures and give them names and collars, feed them and call them ours.
I have a dog, Macy, and a cat, Joey. Macy, like most dogs, does not tend to change in her feelings for me. She is typically happy to see me, and when I came back from college, it was like nothing had changed.
But Joey, like most cats, is a very complex critter. I genuinely think he was upset with me for leaving him and staying away so long, much like how a human would react. It took some time to convince him that I was sorry and was going to stay with him for a while. Even with that, I still consider myself a cat person and believe that cats are the superior pet and animal.
The dogs versus cats debate is often very heated and typically one sided. Cats are often demonized and labeled as the clear loser with dogs reigning supreme. I simply do not think that cats should automatically be pinned as the underdog.
It is worth noting that while cat people are ruthlessly stereotyped, dog people are not. A cat person is seen as a quiet, introverted loner. This is just not true. A person’s preference about an animal does not determine their personality traits. An occasional correlation does not equal causation. I believe that these stereotypes are, in part, a reason why people do not voice their preference for cats over dogs. There is a stigma around being a cat lover, and this is not fair to the cat-loving community.
The same issue with stereotypes can also be applied to cats themselves. Just because not all cats are happy-go-lucky creatures, like the stereotypical dog, does not mean that cats are evil or cold.
Kailey Lindahl, a sophomore nursing major, explained, “I have never met a cat I do not like. I have met plenty of dogs I do not like, though, and that is saying something since I consider myself both a cat and dog person.”
Cats simply have more complex personalities. Cats require trust to form a good relationship. This makes having a cat love you even more special and meaningful. Dogs typically love everyone. Thus, having a dog love you is not all that special. Having a cat love you, however, is special.
Besides giving meaningful love and crafting a complex relationship with their humans, cats also have many other perks. Cats are independent. Because of this, cats can be left home alone for extended periods of time. This creates the freedom to be out all day, night or even for a week or weekend of vacation. If a cat has food, water and a litter box, they are set to stay alive while you are away.
A dog requires much more planning and attention. If a spontaneous night out with friends comes up, you must worry about your dog and find accommodations for it. Having a cat relieves these issues.
Even if you do consider yourself a dog person, please remember that cats are not just one-sided animals. There is more than meets the eye. Animals are a blessing that bring joy to many people’s lives. Let us not discriminate against some of our furry friends simply because they do not trust as easily as other animals.