Cats harm the likeability of both heterosexual men and women

This is disappointing. I think this study has been written about before but it is worth addressing again. The study basically says that if you are looking for a date on one of the dating sites and you are holding a cat you are less likely to attract someone. That's the bottom line of it and what's surprising is that it negatively impacts both women and men.

Man with domestic cat companion
Image by Pexels from Pixabay 

Straight men that own a cat have a 5% lower 'like' rate on average compared with straight men who don't own a cat and for women the 'like' rate is even worse at 7% lower.

For the heterosexual woman looking at the heterosexual man who has a cat with him in the photograph the man is perceived as being "less masculine when holding the cat, higher in neuroticism, agreeableness and openness and less datable."

That's interesting because they see the man as being more agreeable and more open but less datable. Therefore they don't seem to appreciate or rank the character traits of openness and agreeableness. Obviously neuroticism is not a great trait and I can see why they don't like that but this rather strange, isn't it?

And how do they equate having a cat with being neurotic? It seems that some women see man who have a cat as being more likely to be neurotic. I know that some women think that many man who have cats are homosexual. But both these trends or biases are, I would honestly suggest, incorrect. They are prejudices or stereotypes.

Perhaps it is all about perceptions and those perceptions come about through social media presenting fake ideas. Social media affecting the thoughts of people. Perhaps it is social media changing the opinions of people because they been bombarded with poor ideas and false concepts.

You might think it is true that men with cats are more neurotic but where is the science or logic that says this? You could equally argue that men who have cats are more likely to be decent people who appreciate animals and are concerned about animal welfare. That should make them more attractive to women.

Perhaps the problem is actually with the heterosexual women who might have a tendency to like disagreeable, testosterone-fuelled, secretive, unreliable and super-masculine men. Perhaps they have a tendency to go for that sort of man to their detriment. So the problem could be with the heterosexual women rather than the men.

The same, to be totally fair, could be said about men who see women as being less datable because they have a cat. But perhaps the reason is different in this instance. Perhaps when they see a heterosexual woman on a dating site with a cat they see competition. Perhaps they don't want to compete with the woman's domestic cat companion and therefore don't bother to make contact.

Or another possibility is that as women tend to prefer cats to men it may be that a heterosexual man looking for a woman does not like cats and therefore it puts them off.

It's particularly galling to note that the opposite is true with dogs. If either a gay or straight man is presenting himself with a dog they have a 20% higher chance on average of scoring a 'like' and for women that is a 3% higher likelihood. So dogs are beneficial to dating both for women and mainly for men.

This probably points to the suggestion that I made earlier that women want a more masculine heterosexual man. And if a man has a dog they might think that he is more likely to be more masculine. This in turn may go towards looking for a person who can protect them. Women might think that more masculine men are more able to protect them because they are more competitive and physically stronger et cetera.

It is all somewhat stereotyped to be perfectly honest. The logic isn't really quite their. It is a simplified attitude but nonetheless there it is; provided you believe that it is true because the study only had 1300 participants i.e. women looking at men. Perhaps more work needs to be done on this to get a more accurate picture and even then I'm not sure I would believe it.

The study comes from Colorado State University. It was reported on the Wall Street Journal and other online news media. I think this is a repeat reporting though.

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