Recently I read an article suggesting that dogs may have helped modern humans out-compete neanderthals. I eat up stories about neanderthals and their demise.
If there's a dog loving gene, I don't have it. I am most definitely not a dog person. I don't dislike them, but I wouldn't want one around all of the time. I much prefer a cat's style of interaction. My brother and mother are definitely also cat people. Why is that?
I might have thought that it was because I was an introvert, but I don't think my brother is quite as much of an introvert and he's definitely a cat person. There is also a stereotype I think of a lone, introverted guy with a dog. Let's see if dog person / cat person breaks down along extrovert / introvert lines!
The neanderthal theory of autism http://www.rdos.net/eng/asperger.htm is (way!) out there, but I think there may be a (small!) grain of truth to it. I was a dead-ringer for that reconstructed neanderthal boy growing up, and I think I tend very slightly towards the aspergers side of things, while others in my extended family definitely have aspergers. Could that be involved?
Poll: Where would you put yourself on the introvert/extrovert, aspergers/NT, and "dog person" / "cat person" spectrums?
Any other ideas what might be involved?
I was always a "dog person," but I never understood what it really meant to work with your dog and to depend on one another. Herding is mimicking the hunt, you just don't bite it or kill it when you catch it. It's been said that early man learned how to hunt by watching wolf packs.
I've worked several dogs but I have the strongest connection with my Stewart (pictured below working ducks). Sometimes he can accidentally hypnotized me with his intensity, power, and eye. He was loads of presence.
I'm not a spiritual person, but I can't deny the goosebumps I felt when he and I worked sheep together for the first time. It's hard to explain... but the connection I felt something old, somehow sacred, and primal. Not everybody gets to feel it. It's the perfect mix of woman/man and dog.
During a really good session we don't need words to communicate because we key off each other's body language and sometimes I swear it's our thoughts. It's a perfectly synchronized dance.
Poll: I can be both extroverted and introverted. I usually have stronger connections to animals because there's so much less drama. :-)
You don't happen to have rhesus negative blood? I have found that rhesus negative people love cats, and are not much for dogs.
The rhesus negative mutation, some say, is closely linked to neanderthals; the whole search for the mutation reason is also very interesting.
I'm a ENTJ, all caps, and have been a dog person, horse person, NON-cat person from day one.
My earliest memories are of feeling *connected with the ponies in the field behind my pre-school when I was ~two. I can remember thinking "these adults don't know how to communicate with ponies." Is that consciousness a connection with ancient DNA? According to my (farmer's daughter) Mom, it is. She claims I inherited my grandfather's abilities with animals, and I wouldn't dispute the inherited ability that *might have been a necessary survival strategy in my family's +1,000 year history in Wales.
Cats are not useful. Dogs may have herded, protected, and hunted with my ancestors, a 24/7 job, whereas cats may have provided some pest control, but not to the same degree as a good "ratter". Here's a good example of the work a cat couldn't do: Ratters
So to my NT brain, what is the use of a cat?
Maybe one of you SF or NFs can explain it to me ;)
Oh, and btw, I'm ~3% Neanderthal.
Introvert, more aspie than neurotypical (but I think it's just part of being introverted), definately a dog person. Cats are ok but there is something special about the relationships with the dogs in my life. Current dog (teacup poodle) belongs to my sister's family but I swear that Kesher thinks that I belong to him!
My husband is quite definitely a dog person. I'd even call him a dog whisperer. I'd consider him an extrovert.
I've gone from being a cat person to more of a dog person. I've also become less introverted over the same timeframe, though I don't think I'd call myself an extrovert. Not that I'm trying to make a causal relationship.
All my life, people be asking "You a dog person, or a cat person?" Can't I love them both?!?!?!?!?!?! Give me a cat, dog, rat, horse, goat, chicken, duck, sheep, cow...I will become highly attached and be completely in love. My dog is the best, and so are my two fluffy cats. Throw in my inquisitive pet rat, I am a happy camper. As a child, all my best friends were various animals. All family photos it's like a game of "what pet is Jenny holding?"
Ironically, I also have a hard time stating whether I'm an introvert or extrovert. Probably an introvert in most situations, but I really put all my smiley-friendly-happy-outgoing face on at work and usually enjoy it.
I love every animal. Pets I've had growing up; dogs, turtles, snakes, toads, birds, rabbits, horses, goats, mice. I am a Gemini, the sign of the twins and can be both introverted and extroverted. However, I would most definitely be classified as an extrovert 90% of the time. I checked out that quiz and I feel it is one of those that everyone can answer some yes questions to pretty easily. I also would rather be around dogs if you made me choose between dogs and cats. My boyfriend grew up without a lot of animal contact and treats them more as "just animals or pets" whereas I view animals as pretty much all potential life-long friends/family. He is VERY introverted and prefers dogs.
Maybe it has something to do with first experiences as young children? I believe in most phobias starting out when you are young and have a bad experience with something. My own phobia is hair-when very young at school, a meatball in my spaghetti was actually a large hairball I almost ate. Now, I am extremely grossed-out by all human hair-mine or other peoples. I go to length's to ensure my home is hair-free as possible. Talking about phobias with other people, I find a lot of them stem from crazy experiences when young, i.e. a friend being "chased" by a butterfly when little is now terrified of them. Maybe there is some connection with dogs/cats-which were you around more when young, etc?
INTP. O- blood. I think my father and uncle have aspergers but not me. I like both dogs and cats with equal mediocrity. I prefer smaller dogs. What I don't like about dogs is they are too happy and loyal. You can beat them and they'll come slobbering happily back. They have no pride. There's nothing to do to earn their respect. I find that behavior repulsive. A cat insists you earn their respect. What I like about cats is they ignore you and you can ignore them right back and everybody is happy. I don't consider myself a dog or a cat person. I am a bird person. I've had at least one parrot in my life for over half my life. I had one parrot for 22 years before she died. I have another one that is 21 years old now. I look into the eye of any bird and feel like I know what he/she is thinking. I feel such a strong kinship with them, like they are family, like we are the same creature speaking the same language. When wild ones scold me or fly away in fear, I sometimes feel personally affronted. Don't they understand I'm one of them? Their love has to be earned like a cat and yet they are spunky and energetic like a dog. They have all the strong emotions that people have: jealousy, anger, love, curiosity, manipulation. They look you right in the eye and you can see how they are scheming to take apart your whole house or ruin your very favorite possession. I wish one of my birds wouldn't call me "bitch", though. Why does she call me "bitch" but not my boyfriend? It's because they are damn smart, those birds. Always one step ahead of you.
I'm strongly introverted, high intelligence, tend to score high as an ASPIE and have an ASPIE daughter. Male, strawberry blond hair and red beard - my brother has red hair, as does my daughter. My family has a cat, which I get along reasonably well with, though she's definitely my wife's cat. I've always connected well with dogs (I wonder if dogs remember Neanderthal scents - most dogs tend to interact favorably with me once they smell my hand ?). Family comes mainly from the Scottish Highlands on my mother's side, and we're physically pretty Neanderthal typical - short, squat, broad chests, large heads relative to body, red hair, blue-grey eyes.
It depends upon the test as to whether I'm an introvert or an extrovert. For the Jungian personality test I'm an INTJ, which means I'm an introvert. I recently was part of a study done at my university and I was just barely considered to be a non-introvert, but not really an extrovert either. I -am- a dog person, but I think you have to be either brought up that way, or brought into it by someone you care for.
I've always had dogs, so they are a huge part of my life. I have been heavily involved in rescue and rehabilitation since I was a kid.
My husband, on the other hand was not raised with animals. He was not into animals at all when we were starting out, but, after a year of living with me and my family and our dogs, he fell in love. Now, he is just as much of a dog person as I am. He still has his setbacks with them, like when we got a rescue puppy and he suddenly decided that this was all my decision and thus the pup was my dog and my responsibility. But, he got over that attitude quickly when he realized he was being irrational. grins
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