I will admit it – before meeting my spouse and settling down, I gave online dating a try. It wasn’t for very long, and I didn’t like it very much. But what I found myself doing, for the most part, was swiping yes on profiles that featured a pet. Cat, dog, rabbit, it didn’t matter. If there was an animal, I was swiping yes.
Apparently, I’m not the only one who thinks that the dating profiles with a pet are just that bit better. Apparently, there is a new study that has found men with dogs in their profile pictures on dating apps are perceived as more attractive.
The study was conducted by researchers at the University of Jaen in Spain, who collated data from 300 female university students. According to the Mirror, the study found that women feel more comfortable when they see men with dogs in their pictures.
Interestingly, the size of the dog can also have somewhat of an effect on whether or not someone swipes left or right. The data showed that men with smaller dogs were thought to be “less threatening and intimidating.”
According to the Mirror, one of the researchers weighed in on the matter and stated, “The current study has shown that the small-sized dog prompts more positive emotional reactivity and higher levels of safety than the medium-sized dog in most emotional contexts, pointing out that emotional and safety benefits from dog presence might also be related to size.”
The researcher then added, “We selected two unpopular, medium-and small-sized adult dogs (Portuguese podengo-like mixed-breed dog and wire-haired dachshund, respectively) to examine whether the positive dog effect was due to dog presence itself or dog specificity.”
Of course, even if a man has a picture of a dog in his profile, it doesn’t guarantee that he actually has a dog. Apparently, there is an emerging trend of “dogfishing” going around. If you’re wondering, yes, it’s like catfishing, but where someone pretends to have a dog in their dating profile but doesn’t actually. It’s a phenomenon where men purposefully “borrow” someone’s dog in order to take pictures so they can increase their chances of getting more likes and matches.
One dating expert, Erica Eaton, said to Mammamia’s The Quicky that women should still exercise discretion, as they might unknowingly be getting dogfished. Eaton said, “If he knows that’s true and is borrowing dogs to use that to his advantage, I wouldn’t say you should dismiss that person, but I would be annoyed that they’re using something else’s dog as bait.”
Eaton encourages women to inquire about the dog in order to suss out whether or not they actually have a dog.
She said, “I actually have my clients sometimes say like ‘wow what a cute dog, how old is he and what is his or her name?’ And that will automatically lead to the person telling you if that’s his dog or not.”
Granted, this doesn’t rule out the potential liars, but hopefully you can spot those before they happen. For those who are doing the online dating thing, good luck and may the odds be ever in your favor!