Purr-fection Personified: Why Cats Crush Canines as Pets

Hazel contemplating a crime

Tyler Eversole

Hazel contemplating a crime

Tyler Eversole, Editor

The topic of whether cats or dogs make better pets is quite a contentious one, and I’m sure most people have heard heated debates regarding which pet is the best. Yet, in my opinion, it’s not even a contest – cats reign supreme. 

To begin with, one of the main reasons why cats are the better choice for a pet is because they are fairly low maintenance. Unlike their canine counterparts, cats don’t require routine walks, obedience training, or excessive socialization. They can often amuse themselves with a simple plaything, toy, or a cardboard box for hours on end, and they are not overly demanding of their owners’ attention. This is especially beneficial for people with hectic schedules or those who work long hours. In other words, cats are highly independent. They don’t typically rely on their owners for every little thing and are more or less perfectly content being by themselves. Of course, cats still enjoy snuggling and playing with their owners at times, but they often keep to themselves rather than actively seeking out their owners like most dogs. This makes them the ideal choice for people who value their personal space and privacy. 

In addition to their low-maintenance nature, cats are also much cleaner than dogs. They spend a rather sizable portion of their day grooming themselves, which means they are less prone to developing unpleasant odors or getting excessively dirty. They also have an instinct to bury their waste, making litter box training a relative breeze. Dogs, on the other hand, need regular grooming, bathing, and brushing to keep them looking and smelling good after their frequent adventures into the nearest pile of mulch…or mud. 

From an environmental standpoint, cats are the better choice as well. They require less food, water, and resources than dogs due to their smaller size. Moreover, cats are natural predators that can help control the population of rodents and other pests, which can pose a pesky threat to both homeowners and the environment. This being said, not every cat is so proactive as to seek out pests, but it still stands that they consume less than dogs overall.

Lastly, cats are more affordable than dogs. Adopting a feline from a shelter or rescue organization is typically less expensive than adopting a dog. Furthermore, the previous points show that cats usually require fewer supplies, such as food, toys, and grooming products, which can save owners money in the long run and make pet ownership less cumbersome. 

Now, it’s important to note that every pet has its quirks, and there are certainly some dog breeds that need less attention and upkeep than others. On the flip side, some cats may be rather clingy and high maintenance. Nevertheless, on the whole, cats are the best pet for those new pet owners in search of an entry into the pet experience or those seeking a lower-maintenance, independent, and cleaner animal companion. 

Admittedly, some people may argue that dogs are better pets because they are known to be fiercely loyal, protective, and that they make great companions for outdoor activities like hiking. Dogs may also be more friendly and keener to warm up to young children. However, these qualities can come with their own set of challenges. For instance, many dogs need rigorous training and consistent socialization to become well-behaved and obedient, and they are prone to separation anxiety when left alone for extended periods or with unfamiliar people.

Personally, I’ve lived with various cats and dogs throughout my childhood and currently have a cat named Hazelnut. I’ve also interacted with many of my friends’ pets throughout the years. Either I’ve gotten unfathomably unlucky with my experiences around dogs, or cats are just simply the more suitable pet. Even with my current cat – who is by no means the most well-behaved cat I’ve encountered – she is still more pleasant to have around than most dogs I’ve had. My cat may scratch me and be a little petulant at times, but it sure beats a dog tearing up bedsheets for fun, chewing on sofas, and/or defecating where it pleases. Not to mention, have you ever been awoken in the middle of the night to an alarm? Try a howl or a hundred and see how long your patience can hold.  

All in all, while dogs may be labeled as “man’s best friend,” cats undoubtedly win the title of “best pet.” So, if you are considering adding a furry friend to your household, I strongly suggest adopting, or at least considering, a cat. You can even visit a cat café to interact with several cats before deciding. You won’t regret it!