Men with cats who are looking for a woman to date online may still be encountering preconceived judgments. At least, that’s what a recent scientific study of over a thousand heterosexual American women ages 18 to 24 suggests.
In an anonymous online study, the scientists randomly presented pictures of men by themselves and men posing with their cats. Surprisingly, the women found men holding cats “less dateable,” “less masculine,” and “less extroverted and more neurotic, agreeable and open.”
So, what’s going on here?
Men with Cats are Less Dateable?
Now, of course, we heartily disagree with the notion that men who prefer kitties are less dateable. Recently, we shared a story about Netflix’s Cat People series, which features stories of how the most masculine men love cats. In the media, we are seeing how male cat lovers can be more dateable, not less.
Indeed, to the researchers, the finding of their own study was surprising. Perhaps, they suggested, America still has some outdated tropes and “old cultural norms” that led to the outcome?
Interestingly, they said an earlier study showed women see men with pets as having more partner potential. So why were women less inclined to date men with cats? Certainly, they are likely to be animal lovers in general. That’s always a good thing, right?
Cats Associated with Women
To explain the study’s findings, the researchers suggest women may have defaulted to the “outdated trope” that cats are somehow more feminine pets. Then, stereotypes about male femininity further influenced their reactions. For example, seeing men who keep cats as more feminine, agreeable, and open may be linked to thinking that nice, “sociable men” are more likely to be gay. Nevertheless, studies have shown dog lovers are more likely to be outgoing (more on that next).
Further, research shows that women looking for a date may first look for clues about masculinity, both in behavior and appearance. Surprisingly, this CAN be found in cat loving men…
As a result, some women may place men with a cat in their photo in the “friend-zone.” However, the study is limited, so we don’t know how it would change if participants were from other cultures or sexual orientations.
Women with Cats More Likely to Date Men with Cats
Perhaps unsurprisingly, women who identified as “cat people” were more likely to find men with a feline photo dateable or have no preference.
Thus, it appears that women ailurophiles (cat lovers) know men with cats are a catch.
An App for Dating Cat Lovers
Now, there’s even an app for people who want to date fellow cat lovers. Influencers Sterling Davis, the “TrapKing” cat rescuer, and actor and animal lover Nathan Kehn, aka “Nathan the Cat Lady,” became spokesmen for “Tabby Dates,” designed for all cat lovers.
The Trap King is a former military man with a beard and tattoos who appeared on Netflix’s Cat People series. On occasion, he’s had dates who walked out on him once they saw his cats Rick James and Alanis Mewisette. In response, he started Tabby Dates to change the stigmas for cat lovers and the “cat dad” stereotypes.
Below, enjoy some pictures and a video from Sterling “TrapKing” Davis’ Instagram.
Killing the Stereotypes
Likewise, Nathan has seen first-hand how dates reacted when they saw his cats.
“I know first hand what it’s like to be sitting across from the person you care about, and have them look you in the eyes, and tell you that they want to be with you, but they don’t want to live with cats,” said Nathan, who has four cats.
“That’s a decision that I don’t want anyone to ever have to face ever again,” he told Metro.
Nathan decided to become a self-described “cat lady” when his four cats came into his life unexpectedly. After he started sharing pictures on social media, people wanted to see more. Now, he has over 321K followers on Instagram.
“Yes, I definitely think I’m crazy, but in the best way possible,” Nathan told Jejune. Not in the way most people think of crazy cat ladies though, because that stereotype needs to die. More in the crazy, wacky, doing funny videos with no shame sort of way.”
Now, Nathan has joined forces with Sterling to change the stereotypes about “Cat Dads” and “Cat Ladies.”
“I don’t know how Cat Dads got a bad wrap, but I’m basically gonna make it my mission to fix that,” Nathan posted on Instagram. “Don’t worry; I haven’t forgotten about my Cat Ladies either. Only a matter of time before the world realizes just how cool cat people are. Hang in there. But In the meantime, go follow @tabbydates for some exciting news coming soon about the world of cat people and dating. 🙌🏻”
Besides potential dates, cat lovers can find friends in the app’s “Cat Tree” social feed. Rather than an app for hookups, Tabby Dates focuses on building strong relationships.
“It’s a dope thing to eliminate the cat-related issues automatically,” Sterling told StarterNoise. “If you’re on Tabby you’re meeting someone else that loves cats. So now when a woman sees Rick James she won’t leave.”
Even better, a portion of proceeds from the app benefits cat rescue groups. Also, cats available for adoption are sometimes featured on @TabbyDates social media accounts. So, while people are looking for their ideal matches, they are helping match cats with their forever homes.
Below, enjoy some pictures and a video from Nathan the Cat Lady’s Instagram. Fair warning: These guys are beyond fun!
Men With Cats Rule
Next, we’ll let you in on exactly how men with cats rule. A popular Bustle article suggests the following advantages for men with cats:
Cat owners tend to score higher on intelligence tests than self-identified dog owners. For women who enjoy clever conversations, men with cats will keep it engaging and interesting. That’s not to knock dog lovers, and many dog lovers also love cats. Further, the study suggested cat owners tend to be more non-conformist and open-minded. Notably, it also suggests people with cats may be more sensitive and introverted, while dog lovers tend to be lively, energetic, and outgoing. *See above men for debates on this theory.
Cat-Like Qualities to Consider
Cat lovers tend to be aware of and appreciate cat-like qualities. For example, men with cats could be less squeamish and appreciate good hygiene. For cat lovers, cleaning up litter boxes, hairballs, and the assortment of special “gifts” they leave on your pillow is part of the territory. So, men with cats have to have a certain toughness. On the other hand, cats and their humans also enjoy staying very clean.
Also, men with cats may be more comfortable with their masculinity without the need to prove it. Thus, they are comfortable with who they are while more sensitive to their partners’ needs and subtle cues. However, other cat-like qualities are they tend to be independent, less needy, or possessive.
How is that for some advantages?
The Takeaway for Men with Cats
After their study, the researchers suggested men with cats may want to avoid sharing their cat pics in their dating profiles. UNLESS the dating site was specifically made for that! Instead, perhaps wait until the first or second date. Why? Unfortunately, people are quick to judge when they see photos online.
According to one survey, people will get their first impression in a split second. On the other hand, they are willing to overlook a dealbreaker if they see an impressive photo that checks all the boxes.
However, we’d have to say that posting a picture with your cat could be the best choice of all. Why? Well, how much do you want to date someone who would judge unfairly? By sharing your beloved cat, you can screen out the dates who are prone to snap judgments. Because we can’t all have Nathan The Cat Lady there to throw a flag on the date!
And then hopefully, your “purrfect” match could be the next to respond. So if a woman who finds you less desirable for stroking a cat passes you by, then that’s probably a stroke of luck.
To help break down the stereotypes of men with cats, enjoy these “Giant Men” meeting tiny kittens from BuzzFeedVideo: