By Riya Lahoti (dogs) and Ms. Carie Ferg (cats)
Cats vs. dogs, a mere lighthearted debate to see which animal makes for the greater companion. For, it is barely a discussion, as dogs hold no competition in being named the better pet.
Famously said by King Fredrick of Prussia in 1789, “The only, absolute and best friend that a man has, in this selfish world, the only one that will not betray or deny him, is his dog.” A dog is one whose loyalty and faith to its owner will remain the same within a world of constant tyranny and change. A dog will overlook all physical and materialistic quantities, and will mirror its basic needs being met with unconditional love.
Dogs have had a mutualistic relationship with humans for centuries, who take care of their physical needs in return for canine companionship. This symbiotic relationship undoubtedly plays a big role in the bond individuals have with dogs. Though it doesn’t account for the lengths at which a dog would go to protect his owner. Studies of the dog-human bond have observed that dogs have been evolutionized to empathize with the human race much better, as they are able to read human facial expressions, body languages, and even analyze tone to better connect with their owner (Psychology Today).
For example, most dogs will go out of their way to comfort their owner if they sense their owner is upset; a quality rarely shown within cats. However, their loyalty yields greater when placed in a situation of dismaying death. In 2018, a golden retriever cleverly used her body to keep its elder owner, who fell in the snow and was on the verge of freezing to death, warm and barked continuously until they received help (CBS News). Stories like these further show the pure devotion dogs hold for their human bonds and why they are the overall better choice.
Further showing why dogs exceed cats, dogs help our community aside from personal relationships. First, dogs are more likely to be chosen as aid in emotional therapy, as their company has been shown to reduce anxiety, help overcome PTSD and emotional disorders, and help the individual become more socially active (Boston).
Along with therapeutic aid, assistant dogs have helped thousands of people with various disabilities complete regular tasks that they would be unable to do alone, such as helping those physically handicapped, visually impaired, or with loss of hearing.
Additionally, dogs’ usage in areas of security and crime-solving has exponentially increased over the years through their role of simply protecting property to being crucial in solving legal cases.
These are all tasks simply that cannot be done by cats, showing their inferiority when compared to dogs.
In conclusion, there cannot be a debate where there is no discussion. Dogs should be, and are, the better pet.
The classic debate over which species is superior — cats or dogs — continues to rage. There’s no doubt that the endless variety of canines, ranging from fierce to friendly, is downright captivating. The intimidating heft of a bully breed that has the gravitas to make even an armed thief flee is not a feat to be scoffed at. But, ultimately, cats are superior creatures due to their independent yet loving nature and low-maintenance, affordable requirements.
There’s no question that dogs are known for their loyal and loving temperaments. Indeed, the idea of a devoted pitbull having one’s back at all times is a tempting proposition. And the unswerving adoration of a playful poodle definitely would stimulate that sought-after serotonin chemical in the brain. But for busy adults with kids and careers and households to manage, how much is too much love? Dogs require an extraordinary amount of love and affection, even when one is too busy to give it adequately. And if one is too busy to love on a dog a whole lot, they get sad and depressed, which then triggers guilt in the human companion. Cats, on the other hand, survive and thrive in environments independently with bits of love doled out to them as time allows, making them far more pragmatic companions in busy American households. Not only are their feelings not hurt if their owners can’t love them a ton, they actually prefer a healthy distance sometimes.
Additionally, when it comes to basic needs, cats are just easier and cheaper to take care of than dogs. While their needy counterparts demand walks daily and have to use the outdoors to go to the bathroom (which then needs to be scooped into a baggie and disposed of by its owner!), cats can use the litter box in the house for several days without inconveniencing anyone. Then, after three or four days when the litter box gets full, the whole thing can be dumped into a garbage bag and replaced with relative ease. Incidentally, the “gross” factor is far less when it comes to the refuse of a cat vs. a dog. And heaven forbid a dog owner leaves town for a few days. If they don’t have friends who they can inconvenience to dog-sit, expensive doggy daycares become the only option. Meanwhile, with adequate amounts of food, a clean litter box, and perhaps a quick check-in from a friend, cats can go three or four days without human care. For the pocketbook-aware pet owner who likes having the freedom to travel without breaking the bank, there’s no doubt cats are the way to go.
All in all, it’s understandable why dogs have many fans due to their unique attributes like unassailable loyalty. But cats are loving creatures, too, and their adaptable and independent natures just make them a better all-around choice for the majority of American’s who tend to have countless other commitments they are tending to on a daily basis. Cats, in the end, are superior pets to own.