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  1. #1
    Senior Member Article Poster's Avatar
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    Mar 2014

    Default What Type Is Your Pet?

    I’m an incorrigible “dog guy” (probably because of that “unconditional positive regard” thing). My most recent canine buddy, Cooper, was a Pembroke Corgi. Like many of his herding-breed ilk, he had a strong sense of “how it’s supposed to be” and seemed driven to enforce this qualitative judgment. There’s an old saying from the days when it was common for farmers to have herding dogs to help with the livestock: “Never send a dog to tend to the animals alone, for they lack judgment.” A well-trained herding dog is fully capable of moving a herd without supervision under normal circumstances. It’s when they have to respond to something different that their judgment can’t be trusted. And without livestock to tend to, Cooper’s judgment often went awry. For example, once he got it into his head (for reasons that I could never understand) that I should not go where I was heading in the house, he would do everything in his power to convince me to turn around. I’ve never met any creature more attuned to emotional harmonics, nor so compelled to react to them. If I got angry about being herded, even though my behavior didn’t change, he would instantly escalate to adversarial tactics. But if I remained calm and empathetic, I could slowly talk him down from his herding frenzy. His preferred Judging function was clearly extraverted feeling (Fe), and in fact, I would go so far as to say it was the only Judging function he ever engaged. His sense of “harmony” also depended greatly upon familiarity. He was a huge fan of routine. When family members were engaged in normal activities in the usual locations, he would happily and calmly hang out with us. When we weren’t, he was alert and anxious. Talking on the phone, for some reason, was on his “not OK” list, and when it rang he always barked and tried to prevent me from answering it—resulting in many awkward explanations to clients. He was at his best when engaged in familiar tasks, and seemed conflicted and somewhat dysfunctional when the routine was broken. He found comfort in surrounding himself with his favorite toys. All this is typical of introverted sensing (Si), and since he was definitely an extravert, one might be tempted to type Cooper as ESFJ. But his extraverted sensing (Se) was as developed and present as his Si. When I played soccer with him, for example, he picked up on the tiniest nuances of my body language and seemed to move to intercept the ball before even I knew where I was going to kick it. It makes sense to me that his pack heritage might select for extraverted feeling; and that his ancestors’ survival as predators would have depended on acute Sensing in any form, with perhaps a touch of intuition.
    His predecessor was Cocoa, a Miniature Poodle. Cocoa bonded selectively and deeply. I was used to big dogs for my entire prior life, but Cocoa grabbed my heart like no other. He operated from a core value of loyalty, above all else. His trust in his immediate family was absolute. And he once tried to take on a beaver three times his size that he perceived as a threat to me. Thus, I saw a clear preference for introverted feeling (Fi) in him. Like any dog, he had Sensing skills; but they seemed introverted to me. He had a strong sense of what was coming next, based on past experience. Every day, when I would come home from work, I would hear the bump—bump—bump of his ball bouncing down the stairs as soon as I came through the door. He had been waiting for me at the top of the stairs; and pushed the ball over the edge to remind me that it was now playtime. This Si focus sometimes came at the expense of noticing his current reality (an Se focus), resulting occasionally in comical or even dangerous clumsiness. He once jumped blindly out of a second floor window because he heard me outside; and another time, he crashed into a picnic table chasing a ball.
    I rarely see full human-like typologies in my canine friends; but I do see very clear portrayals of the function-attitudes. They often manifest in animals in such simple and “pure” form that I feel like I’ve been given a glimpse of how our human typologies may have evolved, and at what the function-attitudes “look like” without the complex dynamics and conscious obfuscation of human personalities.
    What type characteristics do you see in your pets? How do they demonstrate their typology? What have you learned about type and human personality from your pets?

    Header Image: Franz Marc, “Die vier Begleithunde des Prinzen Jusuff” (“The Four Companion Dogs of Prince Jusuff”), (1913).

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  2. #2
    silentigata ano (profile) /DG/'s Avatar
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    Mar 2009


    Aren't all dogs sensors and feelers?
    To whom it may concern:
    Likes highlander liked this post

  3. #3
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    Aug 2010


    Likes five sounds liked this post

  4. #4
    Senior Member Studmuffin23's Avatar
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    Aug 2014


    My german shepherd is an ISTP, I think.

    My flying squirrel is probably ESTP.

  5. #5
    Member Evastover's Avatar
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    Jan 2015
    2 sp/sx
    INFj Fi


    First off,


    Second off,

    I have had seven pets and they have all died horrible deaths. My current pet is a black cat named Sir William Blake, and it looks like he might be going soon too. He's a young cat, but he keeps getting into fights with other animals. He's all scarred up and is likely going blind in one eye after his most recent fight. He's affectionate when he's sleepy/in bed, but he bites when he's hungry or mad.

    I'd say he's a bipolar ESTP.

  6. #6
    Junior Member Ham_Bomb's Avatar
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    Apr 2015


    I have three dogs. My six year old german shepherd husky mix is probably an isfj. He is super sweet, but a bit skittish and shy. My two year old mini aussie is an infj, I think. He is nervous and shy around strangers, but scatterbrained and spazzy around friends. And lastly, my one year old shepherd husky mix. I think he is an estp. He is rude, loud, rolly polly, and lazy, but still a silly lovable puppy.

  7. #7
    Suave y Fuerte BadOctopus's Avatar
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    Oct 2014
    5w4 sp/sx


    @Ham_Bomb I love your username.

    I feel kind of silly typing my pets, but my corgi seems like a total ENFP. She's happy and goofy and really outgoing. She loves everybody. Everybody. She's seriously the worst watchdog ever. She's also very forgetful and scatterbrained and easily distracted. She's the dog version of my best friend!

    My last dog was a Boston terrier, and I'd say she was an ENTP. She was crazy smart and hyper, and very playful and mischievous.
    Likes SD45T-2, Tater, five sounds liked this post

  8. #8
    Senior Jr. SD45T-2's Avatar
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    Feb 2012
    1w2 so/sp


    Border collies are ESTJs.
    1w2-6w5-3w2 so/sp

    "I took one those personality tests. It came back negative." - Dan Mintz

  9. #9
    navigating HongDou's Avatar
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    Nov 2012
    7w6 so/sx


    Lol my dog is probably ESFP 6w7 so/sx. They say dog take after their owners right?
    7w6 - 2w3 - 9w1 so/sx

  10. #10
    Super Ape Luke O's Avatar
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    Mar 2015


    Do dogs tend towards extraversion (dependent on breed) and cats to introversion? Most dogs I have known live for company, and cats seem to need to go away and have some "me time".

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