Dogs Rule the Political Spectrum, Let’s Sniff it Out

65 percent of Americans own pets. The common three are dogs, cats, and fish. From the research of the University of California Press, there is a psychological identity for owning pets in a political spectrum. Conservative thinkers are more likely to have dogs than cats for pets. Cat people tend to be more liberal because they are defying the norm of having a dog as a pet.

This can be explored with the 2016 election when Donald Trump owns a dog. Tennessee, West Virginia, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Nebraska, Idaho, and Mississippi had the greatest percentage of dog owners in the state and they happen to have conservative views. Vermont, Massachusetts, Maryland, New York, Illinois, Rhode Island, Connecticut, and New Jersey have the lowest rate of dog ownership and have the lowest number of people who had voted for Trump. States with a lower population than others tend to be more conservative and more likely to own dogs.

From a self-study on dominance-related traits, it has been found that dog people have a stronger competitive personality than cat people. A few months ago, Jill Biden introduced a grey cat to their family. Researchers at Miami University in Ohio and Purdue University in Indiana noticed that nearing the elections, people post a lot of photos of their pets. Although President Joe Biden has a cat, their family has dogs too. They have a separate fan account on Twitter for his dogs, Champ and Major Biden.

Jennifer Hoewe, assistant professor of communication at Purdue, asked, “One thing we’re interested in looking at is, if you feature a dog on your social media as a politician, does that make you seem more empathetic, more warm, like maybe more of a people person?” She points out that, “Parasocial relationships are basically when we feel like we have some connection with an individual that is largely, if not entirely, mediated. So even though I’ve seen Elizabeth Warren post about her dogs, I’ve never met her in real life and she has no idea of who I am.”

In general, dogs often embrace the mind and leadership of the larger community, but that doesn’t mean that cat people are lacking that social skill. Possibly the Biden’s family cat will introduce better views for cats since they have been often negatively reprimanded for their behavior. Cats have definitely brought love in people’s hearts, but the sightings of dogs in politics further show the general voters to trust a man’s best friend to do the job.


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