For me there is one major reason why cats are preferable to dogs: noise. Dogs bark and I don’t like noise and neighbours don’t like it either. Oh and they bite sometimes and a dog bite is damned dangerous. Ah..so do cats! So no real difference there.
There are many other reasons and here are some. People who prefer dogs might try and turn these reasons on their head.
For example: dogs eat faeces (coprophagia). Horrible, disgusting. How common is it? Common apparently. There are 16 possible reasons for it! Phew. Cats don’t eat faeces. Au contraire, they normally cover their poo. That’s a big cat plus for most people.
Cats vocalise, for sure but their voices are much quieter normally unless they are caterwauling (calling out for mates in season) but this is unusual because cats are normally spayed and neutered. Not all dogs bark a lot or annoyingly. Bulldogs are quiet as are Bernese dogs who only bark when there is a good reason.
One reader says that cats have fur and dogs have hair! Big difference. I am not sure that that is a fair criticism. It’s all hair at the end of the day.
I would add this: cats fit nicely on your lap if they are lap cats and when they do so they often purr, a great, calming and healing sound. Dogs can’t approach that sort of benefit for their human companion but..dogs do have benefits that cats can’t bring to the table e.g. going for walks (good for the human in terms of exercise and socialising).
Cats generally eat tidily while dogs wolf down their food or gobble it. They eat as fast as they can and eat as much as they can. I have seen dogs sitting with their owners at cafes eating junk off the sidewalk (pavement). Just pure junk even toxic stuff. Apparently dogs can vomit because the eat too fast.
However, we shouldn’t dwell on the topic of companion animal vomiting because cats are the king of vomiters! I exaggerating but they are good at it. Think about hair balls.
Here is a good one. Whole (unfixed) dogs have testicles which are much more visible partly because the fur is sparser than on cats. Male cats’ testicles are ‘held closer to the body’ and are therefore more discrete. Well, that may affect some women. There is a product called ‘glitter balls’ for dogs! It prettifies dogs’ testicles and it is edible. Let’s move on…
Cats ‘go to the toilet’ in a more controlled, genteel way. Even when going outside they cover their poop. Dogs do it on walks and, nowadays, owners have to scoop it up, place it in a plastic bag, and dispose of it in an environmentally friendly way. Cats use litter boxes naturally, normally. No problem. Well, that’s not entirely true. I think if we carefully analysed the pooping habits of dogs and cats the amount of workload for owners is similar if the cat uses a litter box.
We have to bring up the major difference in cat and dog behavior. Dogs are pack animals and therefore are needy and overly subservient to their leader, the human owner. Cats see us as equals although they also see us as surrogate mothers but sometimes as kittens (when they bring prey in to train us how to hunt)! But there is a greater equality between us in the minds of cats I feel. For some that is worse!
Dogs smell while cats smell great – a clean, nutty scent. And dogs get muddy and messy on walks while domestic cats who are well cared for are always clean. You will see dirty feral cats sometimes but this is because they are overwhelmed by the circumstances under which they find themselves. It must be uncomfortable for the fastidious cat.
Cats don’t slobber like dogs! I have mentioned walking but dogs need to be walked. It’s an obligation. Not so with cats and I dare you to try.
Cats are nicer to cuddle up to because they are smaller, cleaner and more manageable.
Cats are more able to self-manage themselves. This is beneficial to couples who are exhausted at the end of the day and who don’t feel like taking their dog for that mandatory walk and poop.
So what would people who prefer dogs say? I am sure they can compile a similar list in favour of dogs. The biggest criticism of cats might be that they are too independent and ‘aloof’. This means the person wants an animal that needs them which is a sign of human vulnerability!
There is one more pro-dog thing: if you are a woman or a man looking for a partner walking a dog is a nice way to achieve it.