Cats vs dogs: Which are better?
- Cats were first domesticated around 12,000 years ago in the Middle East’s Fertile Crescent area.
- Domesticated dogs are thought to have appeared alongside humans anywhere from 10,000 to 38,000 years ago.
- As of 2017, there are over 89 million pet dogs and over 95 million pet cats in the US.
- Dog lover Leona Helmsley famously left her Maltese $12 million in her will, which the dog then inherited in 2007.
- Abraham Lincoln was such a cat lover that he once fed his tabby from the table during an official state dinner and was rumored to have proclaimed that his cat, Dixie, was smarter than his whole cabinet of advisors.
Long before dogs became known as “man’s best friend”, cats were regarded very highly as a species. As far back as ancient Egypt, cats were believed to have ‘divine energy’. And in modern times, the Internet has created fame and fortune for many lucky felines. Superstar cats such as Grumpy Cat are worth $100 million alone.
But it’s as pets that cats are much superior to dogs. For starters, cats require less space. The average weight of a domestic cat is 10 lbs, whereas small dogs can weigh up to 20 lbs.
Since a pet’s weight impacts food costs, cats are more pocket friendly. On average, cat food costs between $100 to $200 annually, while dog food is $250 to $750 per year. Even when factoring in other expenses such as vaccinations and toys, cats are cheaper at $430 to $870 per year compared to dogs’ estimated budget of $380 to $1,170 per annum.
Cats also have the upper hand when it comes to hygiene. Not only do they spend 50% of their waking hours grooming themselves, they don’t slobber or develop a nasty odor. These are traits that cat owners come to appreciate as they grow older with their pets. And you can expect a long life since cat owners are 40% less likely to die of cardiovascular disease.
In addition to benefiting your health, cats are also less damaging to the environment than dogs. A cat's carbon footprint is equal to a small Volkswagen car, while a medium-sized dog has a larger carbon footprint than a standard SUV.
With just these few points in mind, it’s clear why cats are the choice of highly intelligent individuals.
A dog is a man’s best friend. While this seems like an overused cliche, it‘s absolutely true. Canines are perfect companions, natural protectors, and unparalleled in loyalty-- the ultimate family pet.
Scientifically speaking, dogs are genetic protectors. The University of California found that dogs had around 500 million neurons in their cerebral cortex--double the amount of cats--meaning that they are more aware and better able to predict. Canine research has also revealed dogs’ strong instinct to protect their loved ones, which no amount of socialization can diminish. Though, taken to an extreme, dogs can become aggressive protectors, it‘s up to the owner to administer a firm hand and corrective training.
Dogs are superior to cats in other ways as well, namely in how they excel at service jobs. K-9s are trained for suspect apprehension, scent detection (drugs, explosives, accelerants), and search and rescue in police/military work. These animals put their lives on the line to protect their owners and their country, even receiving awards for courage and bravery. Dogs are the most common service animal, trained to detect the presence of bad allergens, unhealthy blood sugar levels, and seizures.
Thirteen percent more American households own dogs than cats. The appeal for dogs is greater, especially in families with young children. One study found that children aged 3 to 6 years preferred dogs to cats. It is ingrained in our minds to love dogs. They are wonderful family pets--playful, compassionate, intelligent, eager to learn. Dogs are even better for your allergies, as cat allergens are so minuscule that they stay in the air for hours. There‘s just no comparison. Dogs are better than cats.
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