Our Pet Column

Published weekly and read widely in The Watch, Telluride Daily Planet and Telluride Inside…and Out as well as this website the Pet Column offers insights from the Second Chance’s pet of the week on a variety of topics.

Can Pets be Extroverts & Introverts?

So the other day I made a breakthrough realization about pet disposition that I think will help pets like me meet our right people. It is called VertroPet– the study of pets as introverts and extroverts. Not only is this cutting edge science but I believe it will help people like you find the best pets for their personality.

Here is how VetroPet happened: I was commiserating with a cat here at the Second Chance Shelter named Lynx, who also has been waiting for a home for too long. Lynx, an 8 month young beautiful brown male tabby kept telling me the right person just hasn’t walked through the shelter doors, but I kept replying we needed to sell ourselves a little better.

Lynx is shy and struggles approaching new people so I told him to be more like me, because I’m not timid at all. I’m the opposite and people always see me as I excitedly jump and bark in my dog run asking all visitors to come and meet me. Lynx told me that was part of my problem.

I told Lynx he needs to perform like I do when people are around. I have learned to sit very pretty and take treats. I will lie down and wait and catch treats in my mouth if tossed in the air. Lynx said that performing for people just isn’t who he is and that he wants to live with someone that accepts his true self. I love all people and pets – the more the better. Lynx likes one person at a time…

So I started wondering if pets can be introverted and extroverted. And if so, wouldn’t it be best to be extroverted to grab people’s attention? I came across a book written by Susan Cain called “Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking,” in which she cited research with guppies in an attempt to understand how introverted characteristics might have survived the Darwinian theory of survival of the fittest. Shouldn’t the loudest, most aggressive, boldest, and bravest of the animal kingdom thrive while the quiet, shy species who avoided conflict become extinct?

Clearly that didn’t happen – I meet introverted dogs here at Second Chance all the time. Researchers have found that animals who were able to hang around the perimeters, remaining virtually invisible to their predators, were better suited to observe situations and adapt accordingly. Thus introversion, like extroversion, is just another survival strategy and it takes creatures with diverse personalities to make up a community and for all to survive.

Introverted pets will appeal to some people over extroverts, and vice versa. So I realized Lynx is right – we will do best being who we are. I’m willing to wait for the right person even if it takes a little longer - because being your best self every day is the only way to ensure that the best human-pet connection will be made. Come by the Second Chance Shelter today where you will find me dancing for attention and Lynx quietly assessing if you are his right person…

Second Chance Humane Society Animal Resource Center and Thrift Shops service San Miguel, Ouray and Montrose counties. Call the SCHS Helpline at 970-626-2273 to report a lost pet or to learn about adopting a homeless pet and the SCHS spay/neuter, volunteer, feral cat or other programs. View our shelter pets and services at adoptmountainpets.org.

Second Chance Humane Society

Contact

(970) 626-2273 | phone
(888) 751-0520 | fax
animalcare@adoptmountainpets.org
(970) 626-3233 | Ridgway thrift
(970) 728-1100 | Telluride thrift

Address

PO Box 2096 [mailing]
177 County Road 10
Ridgway, CO 81432

Shelter Hours

Tuesday - Sunday
11:00am - 5:00pm