A Personality Test for Animal Lovers

Man hugging a happy dog
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At some point, we all come across polarizing questions like, “love or money?” A classic example along similar lines would be, “Are you a dog person, or a cat person?” Dogs and cats are best friends to humans, but wouldn’t it be interesting if we could determine personalities based on our animal preferences? In fact, there are studies that look at personality traits based on just “dogs versus cats”. Here is one animal lover personality test that focuses on your animal preference!

Couple sitting on a sofa beside a dog and cat.
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Compassionate Dog Person & Free-Spirited Cat Person

According to the Big Five personality traits , our personalities can be categorized into the following five:

1. Extraversion
2. Conscientiousness
3. Agreeableness
4. Openness to Experience
5. Neuroticism

Using this model, the following results were found about dog and cat lovers personalities:

  • Dog lovers scored overall higher on “Agreeableness” compared to cat lovers.
  • Cat lovers scored overall higher on “Openness to Experience” compared to dog lovers.
Person sitting with pet dog and cat
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“Agreeableness”, which represents the person’s compassionate and cooperative spirit, was higher in a dog lover’s personality compared to cat lovers. In other words, dog lovers actively seek meaningful relationships and connections with other humans. On the other hand, cat lovers scored higher on “openness”, which represents the person’s independence and curiosity. It seems that a cat lover’s personality tends to have a stronger sense of individuality and creativity compared to dog lovers. Now, here is the personality test: are you a dog or cat person? Once you have your answer, keep reading to discover what this may reveal about your personality.

Dog Lover’s Personality: Loves to Receive Praise

Woman with her pet dog in a park
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Studies show that dog lovers have higher “reward dependency” compared to cat people. “Reward dependence” is a trait that seeks out relationships and connections, while having the desire to be appreciated by others. (It’s important to note that “reward” here doesn’t necessarily mean material gifts. Rather, it points to intangible rewards we obtain through meaningful human relationships.) If you know of a person who cares about social media likes, they could be more of a dog person who feels the need for approval.

Cat Lover’s Personality: Good at Rising to the Occasion

Cat sitting on a stack of papers
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The traits of a cat lover’s personality are rather interesting. Study participants who wanted cats expressed greater degrees of extroversion in public situations compared to their private lives. In other words, cat lovers were introverts in private situations but were capable of presenting themselves as extroverts in public situations. Therefore, they were great at rising to social occasions only when they needed to. Above all, perhaps a cat lover’s personality is like a jack of all trades; changing their outward impressions based on the situation and how they want to be perceived. 

Birds of a Feather Flock Together

Woman lying beside two cats
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It’s intriguing to think that this simple animal lover personality test can reflect aspects of our own personalities. One theory suspects that this happens due to the influence of similarities. Let me explain what I mean by that.

Below is a summary of the characteristics mentioned above.

  • Dog lover personality: Cherishes connection and cooperation with others. Loves to receive praises and approvals.
  • Cat lover personality: Prefers to do things their own way. Changes how they want to interact depending on the situation.
Cat and dog lying together in tje grass
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These personality traits closely describe how we view dogs and cats themselves. Moreover, there’s a possibility that we tend to gravitate towards the animal that closely represents our own interests and personality traits. In other words, your personality doesn’t become more cat-like because you like cats. Rather, you gravitate towards cats because you see a bit of yourself in them. This would make a lot of sense!

This Animal Lover Personality Test is All in Good Fun

Did anything ring true? Of course, everything in this article is based on general statistics and tendencies, so it’s not a definitive trait for every cat or dog person on earth. A personality test is all in good fun, so take it with a grain of salt. So, the next time you meet someone new, ask them about their animal preferences. It could reveal some hints about their personality!

Cat and dog sitting together on a bench
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Saito, A. (2010). Personality Differences Between Cat-lovers and Dog-lovers. Annual convention of the Japanese Psychological Association proceedings, 74, 21.

Saito, A., Nakamura, T., Hirashi, K., & Hasegawa, T. (2011). Personality Differences Between Cat-lovers and Dog-lovers (2). Annual convention of the Japanese Psychological Association proceedings, 75, 40. doi: 10.4992/pacjpa.75.0_1EV020

Tajima, T. (2017). Personality Characteristics of Dog-Lovers and Cat-Lovers: Multiplicity of Personality and Similarity to Personality of Pet. The Japanese Journal of Personality, 26(2), 109-120. doi: 10.2132/personality.26.2.5