Disney has made a multi-billion dollar industry out of anthropomorphism.  Greek mythology and Aesop's fables are filled with gods and animals exhibiting human characteristics and behaviors, but it was Walt Disney who made anthropomorphism a mainstay of popular culture.  In 1928 Disney introduced us to Mickey Mouse and his girlfriend, Minnie, in Steamboat Willie, the first cartoon with synchronized sound.

Most of us engage in anthropomorphism every day of our lives, especially if we own a dog.  In May of this year Rover.com published the results of a survey they conducted called The Truth About Dog People.  (Rover.com bills itself as the nation’s largest network of 5-star pet sitters and dog walkers.)  Among the study's findings concerning dog owners:

  • 94% consider their dog to be a part of the family.
  • 56% have celebrated their dog's birthday.
  • 78% say they would include their dog in family moments like marriage proposals, holiday cards, and vacations
  • Of those who have a significant other, almost half (47%) say they’d find it harder to leave their dog for a week than their human partner.

If this doesn't convince you that we think dogs are people, too, then consider the names we give them.  In its annual study of pet names whose results came out last week, Rover.com reveals that 44% of dog names are human names.

Here are the Top 10 most popular male dog names:

  • Max
  • Charlie
  • Cooper
  • Buddy
  • Jack
  • Rocky
  • Oliver
  • Bear
  • Duke
  • Tucker

Here are the Top 10 most popular female dog names:

  • Bella
  • Lucy
  • Daisy
  • Luna
  • Lola
  • Sadie
  • Molly
  • Maggie
  • Bailey
  • Sophie

Walt would be proud.