Guys who love animals are automatically endearing, right? It shows that they’re likely kind, compassionate, and really care about living things. Unfortunately, giving off that aura apparently depends on what kind of animal we’re talking about, as a new study out of the University of Colorado suggests that single men with cats don’t do quite as well on dating apps.
Single guys with cats are seen as “less dateable.” According to the study of more than 1,380 people, not only are men who hold cats in their profile photos seen as less desirable, but they’re also perceived as “less masculine” and “higher in neuroticism.” Whether or not that’s true is a whole different story, but perception is sometimes greater than reality, as they say.
So how was this actually decided? Straight women between the ages of 18 and 24 were shown photographs of the same guy in their age group. The guy wore the same thing in both pictures and was photographed against the same background. The difference? In one of the shots, he was posing with a tabby cat. The women were then asked to rate the man in both photos and the one holding the cat scored consistently lower across the board in all areas.
It wasn’t all bad news for the single guys with cats. The photos of the man with the cat made him seen more open and agreeable, which is kinda nice. The women also admitted that he seemed more confident and outgoing than when he didn’t have the cat at all. See, that’s a good thing!
There are some overall considerations to make. “This study found that college-age women viewing a photo of a man alone versus a photo of the same man holding a cat rated the man holding the cat as less masculine,” the study authors concluded. “Yet, it is important to note that these findings were influenced by whether the female viewer self-identified as a ‘dog’ or ‘cat’ person, suggesting that American culture has distinguished ‘cat men’ as less masculine, perhaps creating a cultural preference for ‘dog men’ among most heterosexual women in the studied age group. These findings suggest that pets continue to play a role in women’s mate choices and dating preferences, but that a closer look at the effects of different species of pets is warranted.” Fair enough!
Bottom line? Give cat guys a chance! After all, can you really judge someone by their pet?
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