NEANDERVILLE — Following conclusion of a randomized, completely unscientific study, dogs today sealed their place as the pet most likely to accompany the species through the coming millennia.
Inexplicably, cats recorded a high level of love despite their dead-last ranking in the study.
Besides cats and dogs, Dwellers analyzed the future potential of the parrot, the garter snake, the guppy, the rabbit and the mastodon — animals commonly encountered in and around Neanderville. The mastodon was eliminated in the first round when it attacked and ate a Dweller, ending his life in one big swallow.
“We told him the mastodon was a bad choice,” said Assembly leader Vlad. “But did he listen? Always displayed bad judgment, that one. Better to have him out of the gene pool.”
The animals were rated according to these seven criteria, each of which required a straight YES or NO answer:
1. Does the animal obey commands?
2. Does the animal eat its own poop?
3. Does the animal pee inside?
4. Is the animal loyal?
5. Can the animal speak?
6. Does the animal have fleas?
7. Will a cute video of the animal go viral when that technology is available?
With its inability to speak, follow commands, be loyal or act cute, the garter snake was quickly eliminated. It did receive praise for not having fleas. There was some dispute as to whether it poops at all, let alone eats its own feces; or, whether it once had legs or is a distant relative of the serpent that caused Adam and Eve to be cast from Eden.
No appeal whatsoever was found in the guppy, although one Dweller, known for his sick take on everything, thought a video of it trying to survive out of water would be cute.
“Not cute enough to go viral, though,” he conceded. “YouTube would take it down, anyway.”
The parrot received credit for being able to speak, though Tribe jester Griff was criticized for teaching it to say “life sucks and then you die,” which it has been repeating 24/7 for weeks.
Rabbits also scored low, and Dwellers agreed they could not truly fit the definition of pet since they are commonly eaten and their hides are often stitched into warm coats.
Cats received credit for not eating their own poop, but otherwise scored miserably.
There was debate, however, about their potential for being cute — with Tribe Shaman Kari noting that even when they are fed the finest canned 100-percent-salmon-with-no-byproducts meals on their own schedule, have their litter boxes kept immaculately clean, are never fitted with collars or put on a leash, and are otherwise pampered, the best they do is nap and occasionally purr.
“Let’s be honest,” she said. “Cats sneer, bite, yowl, swat, sink their razor-sharp claws into you, climb on counters, attack sleeping dogs without cause, lick the milk off babies’ lips, kill beautiful songbirds and leave their bloody corpses at the cave doorstep, and rub against your leg, their tails upright and twitching excitedly, like they’re dying to hump you. Where’s the cute?”
But Kari was outnumbered, especially in the opinion of elderly female Dwellers.
“You can have your loyal dog,” one said. “But you may want to rethink your position the next time it eats its own poop — or yours, for that matter. I’ve even seen dogs eat their own feces, throw it up and then eat their vomit. Give them credit for a bizarre sort of closed-loop ecosystem, I suppose. Cats, on the other hand, are constantly cleaning themselves.”
“With their own dead-bird flavored saliva,” a Dweller said.
“Mark my words,” the elder said. “Cats will be with us always. Their videos one day will rule the world.”
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