The Differences (And Similarities) Between Dog People and Cat People

Are dog people and cat people really all that different? A new report revealed fascinating differences (and surprising similarities) between families of Fido or Fluffy.

dog people

Rover.com®, the nation’s largest network of 5-star pet sitters and dog walkers, today released “The Secret Lives of Cat People and Dog People” report, which investigates how having a cat, a dog or both affects humans and the relationships we cultivate with our pets. 

The data revealed that cat people and dog people are more alike than different. For both, their pets occupy a familial role in pet parents’ lives, affecting everything from furniture selection (35%), to purchasing a car (29%) or renting a home or apartment (26%).

Rover’s report found that pet parents are nearly unanimous in seeing their pets as family members, with most even preferring animal company to the human variety. Fifty-two percent of cat people prefer to spend time with their cats versus people, and 43% of dog people prefer to spend time with their dogs over people.

The Secret Lives of Cat People and Dog People: Report Findings

dog people

In the U.S., 60% of households have a dog and 47% have a cat. While these numbers have remained relatively constant in recent years, the pet economy has exploded. Spending on pets increased to $72.1 billion in 2018, up 8.1% from 2016, which exemplifies how today’s pet parents are embracing their role as a parent and splurging on their pets—with more spending and attention.

The Secret Lives of Cat People and Dog People report includes responses from more than 1,000 pet owners across the country. Overall, the data revealed that the human-dog and human-cat relationships are different but equally devoted.

Pet Parenting Secrets Revealed

  • Cat people are 16% more likely than dog people to admit they are bothered when their pet cuddles with other people.
  • Dog people admit to talking to their pets so many times in a day they can’t even count, whereas cat people talk to their cats 1-5 times per day.
  • Cat people lead on singing to their cats with 70% making up new songs all the time or singing to their pet at least sometimes.
  • Cat and dog people love to take pictures of their pets with 84% indicating that up to half of the photos on their phone are of their pets.

Furry Family Members

  • The majority of both dog (69%) and cat (67%) owners admit they say hello to their pet before their family when they get home.
  • The majority (61%) of cat and dog people said their pets are spoiled and always take over the couch or bed.
  • Cuddles are universal: dog and cat people claim to spend 1-2 hours cuddling their pet a day.

Living with Cats & Dogs

  • The majority (70%) of both dog and cat people have 1-5 nicknames for their pet.
  • Dog people are more likely to wake their pet from a dream than cat people.
  • Cat people take the lead (66%) in owning lint rollers, followed by 55% of dog people.
  • Meow-th Reader: 91% of cat owners claim to understand the meaning of the sounds their cat makes.

To view the comprehensive report findings and infographic, visit www.rover.com/blog/cat-people-vs-dog-people

About the Report

For “The Secret Lives of Cat People and Dog People”, Rover.com conducted a survey via PollFish in March 2019 among 1,261 U.S. adult dog and cat owners. 

About Rover.com

Founded in 2011 and based in Seattle, Rover.com® is the world’s largest and most trusted network of five-star pet sitters and dog walkers. Rover connects dog and cat owners with pet care whenever they need it. Millions of services have been booked on Rover, including pet sitting, dog walking, in-home boarding, and doggy daycare.

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