Whether based on studies, surveys, television, or the latest viral quiz on social media, there are stereotypes for just about everyone and everything. And don’t pet owners know it! Any woman with more than two cats has heard the “crazy cat lady” reference. And if you muzzle your garbage-eating dog on walks, you’ve probably seen people quickly move aside out of fear of being bitten (despite his muzzle). According to research, some stereotypes are true, especially surrounding the idea that pet owners’ personality types are linked to the types of pets they own. What do you think? Have a look at the pet owner stereotypes below and guess which pet (cat, dog, bird, rabbit, or reptile) completes each one. The “answers” are at the end.
A. If you own a _____, you are vocally expressive, outgoing, easy to get along with, and socially dominant. You are always able to see the “bigger picture” and remain optimistic in the hardest of times. You have a career in advertising, sales, administration, or construction, and whichever it is, you love what you do!
B. If you own a _____, you are outgoing, conscientious, and agreeable. You likely adopted your pet from a shelter or rescue agency, and you feed it better quality food than you feed yourself. For work, you are either a teacher or professor, nurse, IT professional, or entertainer. Strangers often strike a conversation with you when you’re out with your pet.
C. If you own a ______, you are analytical, hard-working, and open to new experiences, and you don’t mind letting others be the center of attention. You can identify personality traits in your pet that others tend to overlook. You believe patience is a virtue and good things come to those who wait. You have chosen a career path in law, engineering, social work, or accounting.
D. If you own a ______, you are emotionally sensitive, dependable, and maybe a bit neurotic. You likely have more than one of this type of pet. You value education and, to pay the bills, you work as a physician, real estate agent, science or medical lab technician, or personal caretaker. If you’re a single male, you hoped that owning this pet would attract prospective partners but, so far, it has had the opposite effect.
E. If you own a ______, you are introverted, creative, and unorganized. You may consider yourself a geek, but a cool geek. You are proud to own this kind of pet and love connecting with like-minded individuals to chat all about them! Your creativity has landed you in a career in design, photography, or copywriting, though your immense love for your pet may have inspired you to become a veterinarian.
“Answers”: A – bird, B – dog, C – reptile, D – cat, E – rabbit
Did any of these stereotypes ring true for you? Now, think of other pet owners you know, like your neighbors, your boss, your mother-in-law…have fun!