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It’s catty, I know but men who like cats are less likely to get a date

Ditch the feline if you’re looking for love

In a new study by Colorado State University, women are less likely to swipe right – or say yes – to men if they’re posing with a cat in a picture. 

In the study, women were shown photos of two men. Both pictures with and without a furry companion. Their responses showed that the man’s luck significantly worse when women saw the picture with a cat. 

 “Men holding cats were viewed as less masculine; more neurotic, agreeable, and open; and less dateable,” the authors wrote.

When the women were shown a picture of the man sitting by himself, 38% of them said they were likely or very likely to casually date him, while 37% said they’d consider a serious relationship with him.

The women surveyed were between 18-24

But a picture of the same man holding a cat gave the respondents paws for thought — and those numbers dropped to 33% for each category. Meanwhile, the proportion of women saying they’d never consider getting involved with him rose from 9% to 14%.

Women surveyed for the online survey were between 18 and 24 years old. The findings are likely the result of long-held cultural stereotypes about cat and dog owners, the authors concluded. 

“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,” they wrote.

Crazy cat man

“Women prefer men with ‘good genes,’ often defined as more masculine traits,” they added, citing previous research. “Clearly, the presence of a cat diminishes that perception.”

A different study last year found that the “crazy cat lady” stereotype is not supported by evidence.

“Cat-owners did not differ from others on self-reported symptoms of depression, anxiety or their experiences in close relationships,” the study said. “Our findings, therefore, do not fit with the notion of cat-owners as more depressed, anxious or alone.”

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One Comment

  1. Christa Sampson Christa Sampson June 25, 2020

    Interesting info Shane – and so timely! I’m currently working on a fictional piece where the female main character’s love interest (male) has a cat and while it’s not the reason they break up, she is not a fan of the cat. Now I have scientific research to back it up 😉

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