People Are Way More Obsessed With Their Cats Than We Think, A New Study Shows

by Isami McCowan
Carl Court/Getty Images News/Getty Images

The rivalry between cat people and dog people is a tale as old as time. It's truly a house divided: we all share the common thread of loving our pets and appreciating adorable animals, but we'll defend the species we prefer with everything we have. Cat people make it known how much they love their feline friends, and there's a new study that is officially setting in stone just how intensely they root for the animals.

According to Apartment Therapy, the Mars Petcare U.S., Inc. commissioned survey tracking cat owners' behavior, conducted by OnePoll, shows that of 1,000 cat owners on social media, the average cat owner "likes" 398 cat-related posts and looks at 725 cat pictures and videos in a year. That's a whole lot of cat content. That's not the only way they appreciate cats through a screen, either. The study also found that 47 percent of cat owners who were surveyed reported often taking pics of their pets (and additionally mention that it takes an average of three tries to get the perfect shot — I'll admit, that's roughly 98 less than it takes for me to get a decent selfie).

Of course, it wouldn't be official until the cat craze enters the home: the survey showed that the average cat owner owns 13 cat-related items. Apartment Therapy reports that that number includes "the 44 percent who have a framed photo of their cat, 43 percent who own a cat stuffed animal, and 38 percent of owners who own a cat calendar." Wow, I wish someone appreciated me that much.

Let's get into the yearly statistics collected through the survey: out of 365 days, the owners surveyed spend a total of eight days talking to their cat and 20 days cuddling with their cat. The bonding time actually proves to be super beneficial: 60 percent of the cat owners surveyed said their cat has aided in combating loneliness, and 54 percent explain their pet is something of a support system during stressful times. Cuddling cute animals really doesn't get the credit that it deserves. It's a mutual relationship: cats give their owners support, and owners pay a lot of attention to their pet's health needs. The survey showed that cat owners' most paid-attention-to cat-related concerns are eating habits and amount eaten, quality of their coat, energy levels, moods and engagement levels, and, of course, their cats’ overall happiness. I have to give it to them, cat owners are really on top of their game.

If you're like me and have never owned a cat, you might be pretty surprised by the next statistic found through the survey: 54 percent of owners say that they have successfully trained their cats. I always assumed that cats did whatever they wanted to and then brought sacrificial mice to their owners doorstep as a thank-you gift for being allowed to run free. "Creating a positive reward system for training allows you to bond with your cat while having fun and learning," explained Jessa Paschke, pet behaviorist at Mars Petcare, to Apartment Therapy. "Training your cat to enter and exit a carrier and participate in their nail care will not only make trips and nail trims a breeze – it will also be less stressful for your furry friend. You can even train your cat to wear a harness and walk outside to offer them more safe exploration opportunities, as well as provide a fun interaction for you both," she added. Okay, I can't lie: it would be really cute to see a cat on a walk.

Now that we've gotten tons of interesting info on the habits of cat owners, I'm curious to see how us dog people measure up — survey away, people.