petting cat

A woman using an online therapy app (Photo by Sam Lion on Pexels)

NEW YORK — Forget the “lonely cat lady” stereotype: a new poll suggests that when it comes to romance, cat owners are doing just fine, if not better.  In a recent comparison of 1,000 Americans who own cats and 1,000 who don’t, the survey found that marriage rates among both groups were essentially the same (79%).

What’s more, cat owners were actually slightly more likely to be involved in relationships (92% vs 89%) than non-cat ownersAnd half of feline-deficient singles claimed to be uninterested in dating to begin with, compared to only one in three cat fanciers. 

Is owning a pet a turn-on? 

Conducted by OnePoll for the brand World’s Best Cat Litter, survey results also reveal that 72 percent consider owning a pet to be “attractive,” regardless of their own relationship or pet ownership status. When asked to imagine a scenario in which a potential online dating match is pictured with a cat, the majority of respondents said they’d be “more interested” as a result – including 75 percent of people with cats and 61 percent of people without. 

Meanwhile, seven in 10 think you should have to disclose whether or not you own pets in your profile – same as the amount who think parents on dating apps should mention having kids.

“Even if you’re not the type to treat your pets like they’re your children, they’re still an important part of the family and can wield a lot of influence,” says Jean Broders, Director of Marketing for World’s Best Cat Litter, in a statement. “Cat owners clearly seem to know this, as our findings indicate they’re more likely to worry about making a good first impression on a partner’s pet.”  

Four in 10 admit they have even gone home with a potential date specifically to meet that person’s pet, according to the data.

Deal breakers for pet owners

Even still, 40 percent of cat owners polled said they’d still be willing to date someone who didn’t like cats – although an “open hatred of cats” proved the top deal breaker among that same group.

Being allergic to cats is also a bigger issue than you might think – while not surprisingly, 41 percent of cat owners cited it as a problem, so did 32 percent of those without cats. 

Interestingly, cat owners seemed slightly more willing to consider a romantic partner who didn’t have a job – only 34 percent described it as a deal breaker, compared to 40 percent of non-cat owners. 

“Perhaps they figure there’ll be someone at home to do all the feeding and cleaning,” muses Broders. “After all, almost 77 percent said they worry that guests will be able to smell odors from their cat’s litter box, so it’s clearly a pressing concern!”

Survey methodology:

This random double-opt-in survey of 1,000 cat owners and 1,000 non-cat owners was commissioned by World’s Best Cat Litter between Jan. 27 and Jan 31, 2023. It was conducted by market research company OnePoll, whose team members are members of the Market Research Society and have corporate membership to the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) and the European Society for Opinion and Marketing Research (ESOMAR).

About Sophia Naughton

Meet StudyFinds' Associate Editor, Sophia Naughton. Sophia graduated Magna Cum Laude from Towson University with a Bachelor of Science in Mass Communication directly focused in journalism and advertising. She is also a freelance writer for Baltimore Magazine. Outside of writing, her best buddy is her spotted Pit Bull, Terrance.

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