A new ASPCA study foud that people choose dogs based on looks, but cats based on behavior.
Appearance was the most frequently cited reason for kitten adopters (23 percent), while adult cat adopters cited behavior with people as the most important reason (30 percent). Appearance was the most frequently cited reason for adopters of both puppies (29 percent) and adult dogs (26 percent).
“The information can be used by shelters to create better adoption matches, prioritize shelter resources and staff training, and potentially increase adoptions,” said Dr. Emily Weiss, vice president of shelter research and development for the ASPCA. “
The study of 1,500 people also found that receiving information about the pet's health (nearly 90 percent) was more important than receiving information about the pet's behavior (roughly 80 percent), or about the pet's life before entering the shelter (roughly 60 percent).
Adopters also found greater importance in interacting with the animal rather than viewing it in its kennel.
- Thirty-three percent of adopters reported that the first thing their kitten did when they first met him/her was vocalize, while 22 percent of adult cat adopters reported their cat first approached or greeted them.
- More than 20 percent of people reported that the first thing their adopted canine (both puppies and adult dogs) did when they first met him/her was approach or greet them followed by licking (more than 14 percent).
- For both cats and dogs, seeing the pet's behavior when interacting with them was more important than seeing the pet behind the cage door, or seeing the pet's behavior toward other animals.
How did you choose your pet?