Differences Between Cats and Dogs

Cats and dogs are the most popular pets in the world. Cats are more independent and are generally cheaper and less demanding pets. Dogs are loyal and obedient but require more attention and exercise, including regular walks.

Comparison chart


Kingdom Animalia Animalia
Phylum Chordata Chordata
Family Felidae Canidae (Canis lupus familiaris)
Class Mammalia Mammalia
Order Carnivora Carnivora
Genus Felis Canis
Species F. catus Canis lupus familiaris
Hunting ability Cats still have their hunting ability. Due to their domestication, dogs have a weaker instinct to hunt. most breeds of dog’s teeth are too small to rip open a deer’s throat, indicating an adaptation to a different diet.
Life Expectancy 12-25 years 7-20 years
Grooming Less frequent – no baths Less frequent if short-haired, very frequent if longer-haired to avoid matting
Loneliness Can be left alone during the day Can be left alone during the day if necessary, but usually require attention throughout the day. Varies widely between breeds.
Space Can live in small apartments Depends on breed
Affection Very affectionate towards owners sometimes, but are more independent Affectionate if taken care of
Protection Do not guard owners Some are protective of their owner.
Annual cost $450 $660 (varies depending on the breed)
Good with children Can be; depends on the cat If socialized. Some small dogs are OK with children but are fragile if handled roughly. Wait until children are 8 years old before getting a dog. Ironically, some small breeds are the most agressive.
Medical Costs Approx. $160 per year Approx. $290 per year
Energy Generally lazy; can sleep for 16 hours a day depends on age and breed
Walks Some cats like walks Dogs need exercise; a daily walk.
House training Easily trained to use a litter box One to two weeks, if trained properly as puppies


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