Cats vs Dogs: Which One is For You?
Can you imagine your home with a cat and a dog at the same time? Would it be cats vs dogs for attention? These two types of animals can, in some cases, get along well. However, they are very different in how they will behave and interact with you. If you are considering a new pet and can select only one, you’ll want to know these distinct differences.
Dogs Are Pack Animals
Dogs, instinctively, are pack animals. The pack usually has an “alpha” that the others follow as their leader. Because dogs have this pack instinct, it generally makes them social, and happy to belong to a new family with you. Dogs will go wherever their pack goes. This makes them more accepting of new experiences. For instance, your dog will be happy moving or traveling as long as he is with you. Because pups are instinctively social, it is sometimes difficult for them to be left alone, especially for long periods of time. Dogs crave time and attention from their humans. The responsibility of having a dog, in some instances, is like having a young child.
Cats Are Loners
Compared to dogs, most cats are instinctively more solitary instead of being pack animals. Cats are able to jump and climb, making hunting and fleeing danger much easier. Therefore, cats do not have to work together to care for themselves like dogs. They also tend to be territorial creatures.
For house cats, these instincts lend to their history of being more independent or aloof than dogs. Cats are known to sleep all day and play at night. Because they are territorial, small changes in their lifestyle can be a source of stress for them. While their independence helps them manage time alone better than dogs, they are capable of forming deep bonds with their owners. Because they are highly intelligent, they understand who cares for them. Cats typically have a longer lifespan than dogs. Consider this while choosing a furry friend.
Pet Training: Cat vs. Dog
This is where the rubber hits the road. Dogs are generally easier to train than cats.
Because of a dog’s instincts, he is wired to please his leader. Some dogs learn faster than others. Generally, however, dogs want to be more obedient than their feline friends. Remember, each dog is different. Some take better to training than others because of learning abilities or temperaments.
Cats are trainable; just not like a dog. Keep your expectations of cat training limited to setting and establishing boundaries. For instance, teach your cat not to jump on the kitchen table.
For house training, cats win hands down. Within one or two days your cat will know how to and use their litter box. It’s instinctive. If they do not catch on quickly, check with your veterinarian as it may be a sign of an underlying problem.
Dogs, on the other hand, have a harder time learning and understanding appropriate places for bathroom time. Puppies will require more time and energy at this stage. Be prepared to provide positive reinforcement when they get it right. In the interim, be prepared to be patient.
Dogs and cats have different needs when it comes to living space.
A dog can be happy in a small apartment. However, they will regularly need room to play and exercise. Imagine a Bullmastiff in a tiny apartment without those things.
Cats on the other hand get exercise through playtime with you and their toys. You may notice that a cat will stalk its toys (prey) out of instinct. With a cat perch and play time, your feline friend will be perfectly content in a small space.
Let’s discuss costs of cats vs dogs. Preparing for a pet should include understanding how it will affect your budget.
In the long run, dogs tend to incur more expenses than cats. Their basic ongoing expenses generally include food, toys, and vet bills. You may also consider including training classes and pet sitting/dog walking services.
Cats are typically less expensive because they care for themselves for the most part. They rely on their owners for food and toys. Their toy bill is much smaller as they can often be entertained by an active flashlight.
Cat vs Dog:
Which Is the Best Pet for Me?
Considering all of the factors above will help in your decision. Also worth considering is your own temperament and lifestyle. Will you be able to meet a dog’s needs? Are you comfortable living with a solitary creature?
At Posh Paws Pet Care, we have experience will several types of pets and pet owners. If you need a little help choosing, just give us a call.