Meta’s research on cat and dog people

Yesterday was International Cat Day 2022 and in honour of this day, I’m going to refer to Meta’s research on cat and dog people, which was conducted on August 7, 2016, one day before International Cat Day 2016. Facebook is in an enviable position when it comes to analysing people because they have billions of users and they store their personal details to which can be added the number of their so-called “friends” and other Facebook information which can help provide some insights into human character. When matching up this information about human character and whether they live with cats and dogs we end up with the research that I mention below.

Cat and dog picture
Cat and dog pic. Photo: Warren Photographic/Mercury Press.
Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles: Toxic to cats | Dangers to cats

The first complication for this research is that Facebook divide up their users into two categories: cat people and dog people but there are many people between these two extremes, on a spectrum, and therefore the research is rather artificial but nonetheless quite interesting.

Moods of cat and dog people compared
Moods of cat and dog people compared. Image: FB research.

Here are the results in bullet form:

  • Dog people are more outgoing because they have more Facebook friends;
  • On average dog people using Facebook have 26 more friends than cat people;
  • Dog people make more connections online;
  • Cat people are invited to more events than dog people;
  • Cat people tend to befriend cat people and dog people tend to befriend dog;
  • Cat people are little more than twice as likely to befriend other cat people than others;
  • Cat people are little less than twice as likely to befriend dog people than others. This points to “animal people” rather than cat or dog people which I infer in the second paragraph.
  • For dog people, they are 1.8 times more likely to befriend dog people compared to others and 1.6 times more likely to befriend cat people than others;
  • Cat people are more likely to be single than dog people, based upon the profile relationship status on Facebook;
  • About 30% of cat people are single compared to 24% of dog people being single;
  • There is no connection between being a single cat person and their age or gender;
  • Cat people appear to have more indoor activities compared to dog people who prefer outdoor activities;
  • Cat people disproportionately like, TV, movies and books compared to dog people and they are especially fond of fantasy, sci-fi and anime. Dog people like love stories and information and stories about dogs.
  • Across America, there is a preponderance of cat owners in the middle section of America whereas the north east coast has a preponderance of dog people and on the West Coast, from top to bottom, there is a preponderance of dog people. In the west of America generally there are more dog people but the differences are not great as the map below shows.
  • Cat people are disproportionately likely to feel loved, happy and tired;
  • Cat people express a wider variety of feelings on Facebook than dog people;
  • Dog people are more likely to express excitement or pride compared to cat people;
Cat and dog people movie and book preferences
Cat and dog people movie and book preferences. Image: FB researchers.

You can make your own conclusions and reasons behind these findings. For instance, it is possible that cat people are more tired than dog people because they are living alone and therefore doing the work of 2 people! It would also seem that cat people dislike the human-created word more than dog people who appear to accept the status quo. Or cat people being independent-minded are more likely to challenge the status quo. Dog people prefer to go outside because they have to! To take their pooch for a walk ?. Cat people can enjoy the company of their full-time indoor cat indoors at any time.

P.S. The concept of Facebook ‘friends’ is completely devalued. It is a shame. These are not friends in the true sense. And you can buy friends and followers. It is a mountain of fraud. This undermines the findings substantially.

Map showing where cat and dog people live in America
Map showing where cat and dog people live in America. Image: FB study.

Below are some more articles on cat lovers.

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Please search using the search box at the top of the site. You are bound to find what you are looking for.

Useful tag. Click to see the articles: Cat behavior

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