Most people are familiar with the general claim dogs hate cats. We are reminded of this in advertisements, cartoons, and children’s jokes. We are familiar with the phrase “fighting like cats and dogs”. We may even classify ourselves as either a dog person or a cat person. But there are many people who have equal fondness for both dogs and cats. It is within these homes that the general claim dogs hate cats proves false. Not all dogs hate cats.
The Martin Agency’s Geico auto insurance commercial, compares the question “Could switching to Geico save you 15% or more on your car insurance?” to the question “Do dogs chase cats?”. They provide a visual to the answer yes by showing a car chase scene where the drivers are a dog and cat. Method Studio’s ISIS mobile wallet commercial compels the audience to purchase their product by showing a disastrous grocery store dog chase cat scene caused by someone fumbling in their wallet for paper coupons. Both of these examples stem from the stereotyped negative relationship between dogs and cats which their audiences can relate to.
From commercials to children’s cartoons, we are reminded of the dog cat rivalry. My favorite cartoon series, The Jetsons, has a dog chase cat scene that is part of a sequence of snippets preceding each episode. The scene shows George Jetson walking Astro on an automated dog walk. Suddenly Astro takes off after a cat causing the treadmill to speed out of control leaving George Jetson yelling for help. Similarly, there are children’s jokes reflective of the negative dog cat relationship. “Why was the cat afraid of a tree? Because of the bark!” and “What time is it when 5 dogs chase 1 cat? Five after one” (Funology, 2013). These media references strengthen the label dogs hate cats.
Not being disputed is the existence of negative relationships existing between some dogs and cats. While monitoring interactions among unrestrained fox, dog, and cat species, Krauze-Gryz, Gryz, Goszczynski, Chylarecki, & Zmihorski (2012) reported the dog as “a dominant species”. They further suggest, dogs and cats to have a “strong mutual avoidance” (p.1410). I feel confident in stating many people have witnessed dogs barking at or chasing cats. It is understandable why the dog cat relationship has been stereotyped as...