Are you a dog or cat person? Have you ever stopped to think why you prefer dogs to cats? Apparently, genes have a say on who we choose as our fur baby–in more ways than you think you know.
In a recent study conducted on tendencies for dog ownership, a team of scientists examined information from over 35,000 pairs of twins twins for any possibility of genetic component for dog preference. The results show that genes have a significant influence on whether a person will get a dog for a pet.
“These findings have major implications in several different fields related to understanding dog-human interaction throughout history and in modern times,” says Professor Tove Fall, the lead author of the study.
Interestingly, it seems that one’s innate inclination to get a dog or a cat is rooted in genes. For now, scientists still need to conduct further studies to explain which gene exactly affects this tendency, though it may have been cultivated through the years of domesticity between dogs and people.
When Dogs Are Life–More Than People!
In another study, researchers found that many people even feel more empathic towards dogs than other people. Findings showed that people who read news stories of humans and dogs of different ages experiencing distress were more likely to feel empathy for puppies, babies, and older dogs. Human adults, however, received the least amount of empathy.
It appears that pet owners view dogs on the same level as babies or children in terms of familiarity and helplessness. This is not surprising considering how many dog owners consider themselves to be fur parents.
Mutual Affection With Humans
Dogs return that affection, though they do it in different ways. They tend to actively seek out affection from humans–and they even do this with or without a treat waiting for them! This affection-seeking behavior further differentiates them from many other animals in that they just want to get affection from the human they are close to.
This tendency to affectionately stare at their human and seek their attention is also written in their DNA. It has also come to evolve with domesticity over the years. This goes to show that perhaps some people and dogs are just made to be the best of friends!
Do you think you have the dog lover gene? How does your dog show affection to you? Tell us your story in the comments below!