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Purrfect Match: Study Reveals Cats and Their Owners Share Personality Traits

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Dogs might boast the title of a man’s best friend, but that doesn’t mean that felines are playing the second fiddle in the pet world. Cats are not only as loved by their pawrents as much as dogs are, but they also love their hoomans back. No matter what dog people might tell you, cats really bond with their owners. And one of the aspects of that deep bond that cats share with their owners is their personality, new research indicates.

Not that long ago, Australian scientists determined that felines can have five different personalities. Aptly dubbed ‘Feline Five’ these personality profiles included neuroticism, extraversion, dominance, impulsiveness, and agreeableness. The test was based on the 5-factor model that psychologist usually use to define human personalities and it ended up being surprisingly accurate for felines, too. Now, a team of researchers from the University of Liverpool compared the personality test results of kitties with those of their owners. Their study, published in the Personality and Individual Differences journal, revealed staggering similarities between the feline-human duos.

While the owners filled questionnaires that would place their kitty in the ‘Feline Five’ test, they were doing personality tests of their own. In addition to the “big five” test, they were assessed for the Dark Triad (narcissism, Machiavellianism, psychopathy). People who scored on the dominance scale often had cats that fit in the neuroticism, extraversion, dominance, or impulsiveness personality model. Similarly, dominant, neurotic, and impulsive cats were often companions of owners who displayed Dark Triad traits.

The study leaves plenty of room for a larger scale study that would give more insight but concludes that people tend to be drawn to kitties that share their personality traits. Which is not that surprising- like rejoices in like, after all. But, here’s what interests me: what about us poor souls that have multiple cats? Does that mean that we have multiple personalities, no personality, or are we just certified crazy cat ladies (or lads)? Something to think about- for sure!

 


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