Dogs have larger brains than cats, but cats have more neurons in the cortex, which increases their ability to process information. While dogs’ brains weigh about 64 grams, cats’ brains are only 25 grams. But cats have about 300 million neurons in the cortex, while dogs have only 160 million.
Dogs are known to bond a lot to their owners, so much so that their behavior has been compared to that of children toward their mothers. Cats are more independent and difficult to study in the laboratory because just being away from their territory stresses them too much. But there are patterns that suggest that dogs bond more to their owners than cats do.
Cats are more popular than dogs in many countries around the world, recent studies have shown. In cat-majority countries, such as Japan, felines are estimated at 204 million, compared with an estimated 173 million in dog-majority countries. Cats are also very popular on social networks.
Ability to understand
Dogs are able to understand human vocabulary and tone of speech, and have been trained to do various tasks. For example, the famous border collie Rico was able to understand a vocabulary of 200 words. Cats, on the other hand, are not as interested in human tasks.
Dogs are better at problem solving than cats because of their cooperative approach and motivation. While cats may be less attentive to stimuli given by humans, dogs more frequently succeed in solving problems assigned to them.
Dogs and cats have developed different types of vocalizations to achieve something or to communicate with humans. For example, dogs bark to express their happiness or mood, while cats have a meow with a frequency similar to that of an infant, which would act on their owners on a subliminal level.
Although dogs were thought to have a better sense of smell than cats, new studies have shown that the average cat has about 200 million olfactory receptors, higher than the average dog. Cats are also known to have excellent eyesight and hearing.
The ecological footprint
Although dogs are considered loyal companions, they have a large ecological footprint. Medium-sized dogs require 0.84 hectares of land to feed. Even the smallest of dogs, the Chihuahua, consumes 0.28 hectares, almost double the amount needed to feed a cat, which consumes 0.15 hectares.
In conclusion, the choice between dog or cat as a pet depends on personal preferences and individual needs. However, science has provided us with a lot of interesting information about these creatures that can help us evaluate which is the ideal companion for us. From problem solving abilities to sensitivity, from vocalization to bonding, each animal has its merits and flaws. So choosing between a dog or cat as a pet is a personal choice, but thanks to science we can make an informed choice and find the perfect friend for us.