The question is unfair and you could argue it is erroneous. It implies that dogs are better companions simply because they are pack animals. Dogs belong to a pack which is similar to humans. For a human the family is their pack. It’s important that pack animals have a strong sense of allegiance, one with the other.
There is, however, a certain amount of human projection onto their dogs, which may convert/translate a dog’s needy behaviour to one of assumed loyalty.
Domestic cats can also be loyal to their human guardian. However, we all know by now that domestic cats are essentially solitary animals. They are independent animals based upon their wild cat ancestor which is a solitary small wild cat living in arid conditions. That’s the basic character. However it isn’t as straightforward as that because domestic cats have adapted to social living over about 10,000 years.
They are used to living with people in their homes, becoming attached to people. There’s been quite a lot of evolution over those 10,000 years which includes a certain amount of loyalty towards their human family members.
The short answer to the question in the title is that the dogs are pack animal and the cat is not. However you have to qualify that with thousands of years of domestication which has, in my view, substantially equalised this fundamental aspect of cat and dog behaviour.
The Siamese cat is said to be more loyal than earlier other domestic cat. That’s probably an exaggeration because cat breeders like to distinguish their creations from others but there may be some truth in it. The truth may lie in the fact that Siamese cats like to be close to their human companions, follow them around and are generally lap cats. Is that loyalty?
You’ll find, on the internet, quite a few videos of cats defending human family members and often they are children. In one video a family cat raced out of the house and charged into a dog who had viciously attacked a toddler. The cat regarded the toddler as his friend and was defending him. It is as clear as it could be that this cat was acting in an incredibly loyal and brave way towards a human.
There are also numerous videos on the internet of cats sitting on the graves of their recently deceased human companion. This, I would argue, is an act of loyalty.
The word “loyalty” means a strong feeling of support or allegiance. Hundreds of millions of cat companions provide support to their human owner/Guardian by providing pleasant company. Domestic cats are a lifeline to millions of people who are lonely and who lack human companionship. Surely this is loyalty and support?
We must also take into consideration the individual character of both cats and dogs. This has an impact of the animal’s loyalty credentials.
You don’t have to be a pack animal to be loyal, not in the world of cat and dog domestication. I conclude that the title is misconceived.
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