Friday, May 25, 2012

U.K. Study Shows Dog Breed Mirrors Owner's Personality

Via Huffington Post - Would you rather own a domineering pit bull or a loving Labrador? The answer may say a lot about your personality.

New research, detailed last week in the journal Anthrozoos, finds that people with argumentative personalities are more likely to choose bull terriers and other aggressive dogs than their agreeable counterparts.

The finding, along with other research, suggests the dog breeds we choose act as mirrors for ourselves. For instance, research presented in April at the British Psychological Society Annual Conference suggested individuals who own toy dogs are more likely to be open to new experiences, a trait called openness.

Meanwhile, owners of famously friendly dogs, like retrievers, are likely to be the most agreeable personalities around.

In the new study, 235 adults, ages 15 to 64, indicated their preference for different dog breeds and also filled out personality tests, among other questionnaires.

The study focused on seven of the ten most popular dog breeds in the United Kingdom: Labrador retriever, English cocker spaniel, West Highland white terrier, border terrier, German shepherd, boxer and Staffordshire bull terrier. Studies showed people had difficulty differentiating the other three breeds in the top 10 — English springer spaniel, Cavalier King Charles spaniel and the golden retriever — from other dog breeds.

Dogs were independently rated on their perceived aggressiveness, with terriers thought of as the most aggressive, followed by boxers; retrievers and cocker spaniels were rated as the least aggressive.

Results showed the participants who scored lowest on agreeableness — someone who is less concerned with others' well-being and perhaps more suspicious, unfriendly and competitive — were more likely than others to prefer an aggressive dog.

Read full article at: http://huff.to/Ln4VAU
Written by Jeanna Byner

9 comments:

  1. Well, Rumpy is of a breed thought to be aggressive, but is one of the sweetest and happiest dogs in the whole world. Does that describe me? Well, some would say I am aggressive.

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    1. I don't necessarily agree with the results of the study. I know many people with dogs who are considered to be aggressive (like Pit Bulls), but their dogs are actually very sweet. I think there may actually be reverse effect - disagreeable people may encourage aggressiveness in their dogs. JMHO

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  2. Hrm...that sounds more like they adopt/buy a dog they THINK matches their personality, then as the dog grows up and imprints, the owner's own personality influences....no?

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    1. What worries me about this is that it reinforces stereotypical thinking about certain breeds and their owners. As I mentioned above, I know several people who are involved in Pit Bull rescue. They are not disagreeable nor are their dogs aggressive.

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  3. You really make it seem so easy with your presentation but I find this topic to be really something which I think I would never understand. It seems too complicated and very broad for me. I am looking forward for your next post. I will try to get the hang of it!

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  4. Thanks for sharing, I will bookmark and be back again...


    Study Abroad

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  5. Of course one needs to consider the bias there is against some breeds. We are Rottie lovers; we love them for their loyalty and loving nature.

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    1. Jana - I agree. When I was a kid, German Shepherds were the dog everyone feared, then Dobermans and Rotties, and now Pit Bulls. Truthfully I love all those breeds and tend to be more put off by small, snappy dogs!

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