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OPINION: Dogs vs. cats: which is better?

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For thousands of years, the debate has raged on: cats vs. dogs. Which is supreme? Two Daily Wildcat columnists attempt to end the argument once and for all.

Doggo for the win

You pull up into the driveway after a long day of lectures. There sits your happy-faced floofer friend in the window, tail going crazy. The whimpering excitement gets louder as you approach the door. “OMG ITS YOU! FINALLY YOU’RE HOME,” says doggo, not with actual words, but with uncontrollable prancing that prevents getting a pet in. Heavy breathing, whimpers continue, maybe doggo flashes a toothy smile that is as terrifying as it is endearing. It is the same, consistent, reliable abundance of enthusiasm you are greeted with every time you walk through that door, regardless if you’ve been out for five years or five minutes. 

Just seeing your smiling face, no matter how ugly it may be, makes doggo happy. Nobody, not even your own mother, is ever that happy to see you. Ever. Egg their frenzy on a little, talk to them in that infamous high-pitched babble that only doggo understands. ”OH HAI YA POOP! YOUR BRRWEAF SMELLS WIKE TOIWET WATER!”

You can tell them anything in that voice. Anything goes with doggo, they don’t even think you are a weirdo, even though you probably are. I have heard people tell their dogs some weird shit in my life in various voices and tones — myself included; I can’t help it. They eat it up like the scraps off your plate.

“JUST LOVE ME AS MUCH AS I LOVE YOU,” says their sweet, pure, innocent eyes. Pick them up, whether doggo is 10 pounds or 110 ten pounds. Smother that pupper with affection. Hug. Cuddle. Kiss. They bask in it. Not only do they revel in every display of affection, they reciprocate it on a level unparalleled by any other living creature on this planet.

Not even real human babies can compete with this flood of oxytocin. I accept the kisses all over my face. Not for everyone, I get it. Not all poochers are smoochers, either.

That’s the thing about them — no two dogs are the same, but that companionship is nearly universal and guaranteed. Small dogs, big dogs, fat dogs, slim dogs. Fluffy pups, sleek pups, scruffy pups, mixed pups. They all just want to love you and be loved in return. Cats don’t give a heaping crap about you, seriously. Attacking your feet while you sleep, blowing hairballs on your new comforter, using their dirty little kitty-littered paws to tear up your furniture.

Meanwhile, our canine companions investigate every smell, noise and shadow to selflessly protect you with their life. Just the existence and acceptance of dogs is enough to be considered actual therapy. You don’t see therapy cats in the library during finals week when we are all dying inside.

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Besides cuddles, how else do we even repay them for the value they bring to our mundane existences? Treats, of course. Doggo will literally do anything for a bite of whatever you feel like feeding them. Sit. Shake. Roll over. Lay down. Dance. You name it. I taught the family dogs how to drink from human water fountains. 

So smart are those adorable little furry babies. They listen to you without judgement, unless you say the “W” word. Don’t even let it leave your mouth unless you intend to deliver a leashed adventure, because for that, they will judge you.

“Wanna go for a waaaa...” before you can even finish the word, an elated eruption ensues. Nothing in this life has given me as much fulfillment as I get vicariously from taking a dog, any dog, for a walk. Just to sniff and greet other lucky pups on the trail, while antagonizing the unlucky ones that bark from behind chain links, is the highlight of their precious lives.

It just makes me happy to make them happy. It is so easy to please them. When I see dogs on campus, and people act like they do not want me to pet their dogs, I get personally offended. P.S.: Don’t ever be that person. Even when I am in traffic and see happy dogs hanging out car windows, my heart melts. I want to pet ALL OF THEM.

I must now go find a pup to bask in all the love that I have just conjured up for their entire species, which is indefinitely better than their petty kitty counterparts.

Moe Irish is an all-around animal lover that adores all of the furry babies this planet has to offer, even cats.

Cats reign supreme

Many busy students need a companion for those long study sessions or to help unwind after a full day of classes, but people are so much work. So naturally, we must turn to the animal kingdom in order to find true happiness. The competition to determine the creature that sits atop the throne of best friend isn’t even close.

Cats are the supreme being for anyone looking for that bond needed to satisfy social desires, without violating your personal space in the process. Unless you have an irresistible lap, or are trying to get something done on deadline, kitty understands how to show affection from a distance. So much so, you may not even be sure they are still there, until feeding time of course.

As someone who is at class and work more than home, having a pet that doesn’t require constant attention is important. The amount of time and energy required to care for dogs is simply too great. Cats, on the other hand, want you to be gone all day.

Felines provide unlimited sources for entertainment, as any viral video fan knows. How many hours have been spent mindlessly staring at screens watching the antics of these four-legged fascinations? Imagine having such an entertainment factory in your very own home. The possibilities are endless.

Plus, how many stories have you ever read on cats going crazy and ripping their owners to shreds? Sure, they will probably destroy your couch and cover your clothing in fur right before you planned on leaving for a party, but at least they won’t maul you into an unrecognizable pulp.

In fact, many students will enjoy sleeping vicariously via their cats when they are too occupied to actually rest themselves. During an all nighter, just watching your furball nap without a care in the world can be quite refreshing. No barking or begging, just lots and lots of quiet time.

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Those with small living spaces are also better served by a delicate Siamese over a gargantuan Great Dane. Even small dogs should have a yard and be privy to at least one, if not several, walks per day, which many students will have a hard time providing.

Having a cat also teaches humility. Being forced to scoop the waste of an inferior creature while it stares at you with contempt builds character and helps prepare you for your upcoming professional career.

Some argue dealing with kitty’s box is one of the downfalls of having one, but dogs require clean up as well, unless you’re a horrible person. And you can always teach your cat to use a toilet, something doggo isn’t going to pick up anytime soon.

Plus, your feline friend will groom and clean itself, and may even reward you with a good slash to the face if you try to bathe them yourself, whereas doggo needs a weekly hose down in order not to smell like a rotting carcass. And those trims and clips at Petco ain’t cheap.

You may at this point feel that this column is less pro cat than anti dog, but that’s exactly how these beasts operate. Owning a cat is a realization that there are no better options. Even if what you have doesn’t really seem that great, be happy for what you have. Another life lesson gleaned from your association with them. Cats are very zen in this way.

It’s no coincidence that cats were revered as deities in ancient times. You too may find yourself on your hands and knees in prayer when owning one, possibly begging them to use their new $20 electronic water dish before they die of dehydration, or some other exciting, misguided venture. Another lesson in humility awaits. Also patience; cats are builders of virtue.

Unless you are the type of person that requires constant validation and subservience to achieve happiness, do yourself a favor an add a cat to your life. A life of ill-timed snuggles, semi-cute Snaps and mild annoyance awaits.

All kitten aside, both cats and dogs are great options for students looking to add some love in their life without the hassle of human-to-human interactions. Pima Animal Care Center, Hermitage Cat Center and many others in Tucson are waiting to introduce you to you newest four-legged friend. Rescue animals will never forget you saved them, instead of funding puppy mills or shady breeders.

As with any important decision, do your research and talk with experts before making the choice to take the responsibility of caring for another life.

When you’re ready, head down to the shelter and meet your new buddy. The hardest part might be bringing only one home.


Andrew Paxton wants to buy a farm and adopt all the kitties. Yes, all of them. Follow him on Twitter.



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