Not the Cat’s Meow? The Impact of Posing with Cats on Female Perceptions of Male Dateability
College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523-1601, USA
Department of Anthropology, Boise State University, Boise, ID 83725, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 28 April 2020 / Revised: 28 May 2020 / Accepted: 4 June 2020 / Published: 9 June 2020
People use dating sites to look for both long-term and short-term potential partners. Previous research suggests that the presence of a pet may add to women’s perceptions of male attractiveness and dateability. This study sought to understand to what degree, if any, the presence of a cat has on women’s perceptions of men. Women responded to an online survey and rated photos of men alone and men holding cats on measures of masculinity and personality. Men holding cats were viewed as less masculine; more neurotic, agreeable, and open; and less dateable. These results varied slightly depending whether the women self-identified as a “dog person” or a “cat person.” This study suggests that a closer look at the effects of different companion species on perceived masculinity and dateability is warranted.