What Are Some Similarities Between Cats and Dogs?

By Staff WriterLast Updated May 27, 2020 7:35:59 PM ET
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Dogs and cats are from different species of animals, appealing to different types of people. Both have provided services and companionship to humans for many centuries. Even though each species has its own distinct looks and characteristics, they do have some common traits as well. Exploring them will give you a more in-depth look as to what each type of animal has to offer.

Body Design

While there are definite differences between the look of dogs and cats, each carry similar body designs. From the need to carry themselves using four legs to the tail that each is born with, their body design helps them carry out their natural instincts for surviving in the world. 

Some dog and cat breeds have been modified through breeding practices humans have implemented throughout the years. However, each of these species of animals was originally intended to have certain physical characteristics to protect them from things such as their environment and predators. For example, most breeds of both dogs and cats have fur to cover them and keep their skin safe from hot and cold weather in which they live. Cats and dogs have claws designed into their paws to give them tools for hunting and fighting off predators. However, some breeds are now found without these natural features due to artificial genetic engineering.

Survival Instincts

It is the basic instinct for all living things to seek out food when they are hungry. This is no different between dogs and cats. When necessary, these different species of animals will hunt for their food if needed. Most domesticated animals will find ways of communicating their time of hunger with their owners. However, if left in the wild or on their own, these animals will find the prey necessary to feed on.

Both dogs and cats are carnivorous animals. This means that they need meat for iron, protein, and nutritional supplements to survive. They will consume smaller animals or fish to fulfill their dietary needs.


Dogs and cats will protect their territory. For domesticated animals, this is often their home and the people they see within their pack. While cats tend to be more isolated with their territory, dogs tend to gravitate to other dogs to form a full pack. Each of these animals understands who their predators are, allowing them to defend their territories as needed.

Need for Affection

While each animal has its own way of showing their need for affection, both dogs and cats have a natural need for receiving this type of attention. Cats tend to burrow into their owners or other animals while dogs tend to be more vocal about their need for affection. 

Both species of animals need praise. For dogs, this may be found in simple acts, such as doing something on command. One common way in which cats seek praise is through their hunting instincts. For example, it is not uncommon for a cat to hunt a mouse or other type of rodent. Even if they are not hungry, the cat will drop the dead rodent at the feet of their human companion, seeking out praise for their services.

Body Language

Dogs and cats have a certain body language that they display. When content, the animal can often be found curled up in a resting position. However, if the animal feels threatened, you will see characteristics such as a tenseness between their shoulders, tucked tails, and tufts of fur sticking up along their back.