Cat People

Let’s throw the proverbial cat among the poodles as we have a look at how cat lovers can settle the discussion of who comes out on top...

The battle between cat and dog people can be a tad vicious sometimes so here's some tongue-in-cheek ammo for the next time cat lovers find themselves in a "who's better?" debate.

Cat owners are smarter

According to a 2010 University of Bristol survey, cat owners are smarter than dog owners - both in terms of IQ score and overall level of education, people who own cats come out on top in the brains department.

Researchers do point out however, that the superior intelligence of cat owners is unlikely to be caused by their exposure to the famously cunning and selfish pets. Rather, more educated people may work longer hours and choose a pet to fit their lifestyles.

Cats are greener

If you're worried about your carbon footprint, it's better to own a cat!

A 2009 study found that over its lifetime, the resources needed to feed a dog make the same eco-footprint as that of a Hummer. Meanwhile cats, which eat less in general and are more likely to eat fish than corn or beef flavoured products, only have the approximate carbon footprint of a VW Golf.

Hmmm, perhaps some genius politician is already polling the merits of a climate change tax being included in future Dog Registration fees?!

Cats help you cope

To be fair, this one is kind of a tie really. Losing a loved one is incredibly painful, but one of the best ways of coping is to own a pet.

Cats have been shown to help people get over loss more quickly and show less physical symptoms of pain by serving as a social support during difficult times. People in mourning often talk to their pet to work out their feelings. Pet owners report it can be easier to talk to something that won't respond and can't judge than to another human being.

Cats help with the ladies

If you're a single guy, get a cat!

A British survey conducted by Cats Protection found that 82 percent of women agreed they are more attracted to men who like animals and a whopping 90 percent of single women stated men who own a cat are 'nicer'. It seems women feel that cat owners are more sensitive and thoughtful. So, listing that you own a cat on your dating profile could do wonders for the number of responses you get.

But remember guys, a cat is for life, not just for Tinder!

Cats are good for the heart

Whilst owning any pet is good for your heart, cats in particular lower your stress and anxiety levels.

According to Vet Pathologist Lawrence McGill, this may be because dogs need more hands on attention in terms of exercise and feeding routines whereas cats can practically take care of themselves.

Researchers at the University of Minnesota's Stroke Institute found that owning a cat could reduce your risk of heart attack by 30%. Executive Director of the Institute, Dr Adnan Qureshi, said they had expected to see an effect, because the theory was plausible, but the size of the link was a surprise.

Cat companionship

The stereotype that dogs are more affectionate than cats is just that, a stereotype. In fact, it turns out that cats can be just as good companions as dogs.

While men certainly get along with their cats, a University of Vienna study saw more interactions between women and their animals, finding that cats were more likely to approach women than men and to do things like jump on their laps to initiate contact (cats that is, not men!).

Cats also seem to remember kindness and return the favours later. If owners comply with their feline's wishes to interact, then the cat will often comply with the owner's wishes at other times.

"The embedding of a cry within a call that we normally associate with contentment is quite a subtle means of eliciting a response," said Karen McComb of the University of Sussex. This cry can sound like a human baby's cry and since our brains are programmed to respond to our children's distress, it is almost impossible to ignore what a cat wants when it demands it like that.

Personality traits

Owning a cat can reveal a lot about your personality.

In a University of Texas study, a psychologist found that cat owners were 11 percent more open than dog people. The openness trait involves a general appreciation for art, emotion, adventure, unusual ideas, imagination, curiosity and variety of experience.

A further study, conducted at the University of British Columbia, suggests cat owners are generally quieter and more introverted. However, they score highly when it comes to how trustworthy they are and how much they trust other people. Cat owners are also less suspicious and manipulative… and apparently more modest!

So the next time you are in one of those cat -v- dog debates, pull out some of these treasures and see what reaction you get!