Every Dog Has His Day

It’s a doggy nation, and getting doggier. As you can see from the chart below, which draws on a new Gallup poll, a large majority of Americans see dogs as superior to cats in the role of house pet. Tellingly, respondents whose household includes a dog and a cat were in the pro-canine camp by 75 percent to 18 percent. Even in cat-only households, 35 percent of respondents said dogs are the better pets. As for neutral observers, people whose homes have neither dog nor cat chose the former over the latter by 72 percent to 24 percent. Cats fare a bit better when one looks at the figures for pet ownership. Gallup found 25 percent of Americans own dogs,14 percent own cats and 20 percent own both. Feline households average 2.1 cats; canine households average 1.8 dogs. While the average number of cats in feline households has declined a shade since a 1996 poll, the average number of dogs in canine households has risen (from 1.5). All told, the findings “suggest that for every 100 households in the country, there are about 79 dogs and 68 cats.” One other info-tidbit from the poll: 65 percent of households with income over $50,000 per year own a dog or cat, versus 52 percent of those earning under $20,000. (Almost makes you wonder if people are sending their pets out to earn a living, eh?)