Traitify Blog

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Personality and Dogs: Finding Your Perfect Canine Companion

Noreen Honeycutt

VP/Founder of Psychology for Traitify | Psychotherapist and Psychoanalyst, Obsessed with Dogs | Mentor/Analyzer in Play

These days, no one would question the importance of finding a partner whose personality is compatible with yours. In fact, it's really a must for the sustainability of the relationship. In the world of psychology, and now in the world at large, self-awareness and identifying one's lifestyle choices and preferences drives a type of personalization that wasn't quite as acceptable in the past. No longer do we live in a "one size fits all" world. There is not just one right way to live a life — but we can build a life based on what works best, just by understanding our own unique personalities.

While we are often focused on finding the perfect partner, humans have a wonderful capacity to love in many directions, including the animal world. Here too, it is important to understand personality in selecting the just-right pet.

 

For purposes of this blog post, I'd like to use the example of (Wo)Man's best friend: The Dog. According to an article published in February 2015 in Psychology Research and Behavior Management, dogs and humans have the same attachment patterns — both have the possibility of being either securely or insecurely attached based on personality factors, temperament and early life experiences with caretakers. Not a wonder then that so many of us love our dogs as part of the family. But just like any other special relationship, will any dog do? One might think so, but just look at the number of dogs in shelters that just "didn't work out."

Humans are complex. They have core personality traits: they are extroverted, introverted, shy or friendly. Some like affection while others prefer their space. Some are active, others more sedentary. Some are highly intelligent and some just prefer to be goofy and playful. See where I'm going with this? Guess what… this is all true about dogs as well! So, like any significant relationship and life choice, the right match is essential.

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