The characteristics. These qualities are therefore thought to overlap

The purpose of this study was to further investigate the perceived stereotypes that are held by English-speakers in regards to the notion that cats are attributed to female and feminine characteristics, and dogs are thought of as male and have masculine characteristics. These qualities are therefore thought to overlap into gender theory and cultural expectations (ex. Dogs and men are expected to be hunters and be protective, while cats and women are expected to be soft and graceful). 
Most people accept the stereotype that gay men are perceived to be gender atypical and hold more feminine qualities over masculine ones. Therefore the study expected participants to identify a homosexual man as a cat person over a dog person, in addition he would also be identified as more feminine rather than masculine. This would be opposite for a heterosexual man (identified as a dog person, and therefore more masculine). 
For this specific study, undergraduate students at Eastern Kentucky University watched a short 6-minute film evaluating an exchange between two self-identifying gay men—one of them being more masculine and less feminine than the other. The study was set up into two parts: (1) the preliminary phase which used 78 male and 197 female participants to rate the men without labels, and (2) the labeling phase which used 114 male and 324 female participants to rate the men after they were labelled. The students from both phases were then asked to complete two questionnaires. The first one rated each man on 24 adjectives using a 6-point interval scale from 0(worst)-5(best). The second questionnaire was multiple choice which allowed for the evaluation of the characteristics the men had, as well as the likability of said characteristic.
The study found that even though stereotypes of cats and dogs and their applications to humans is still prominent in modern society, when compared to labelling the subjects gay—the cat and dog person labels have a less of an influence on the masculine and feminine ratings of the men. These findings would suggest that when applied, the cat person and dog person characteristics are inconsistent on gender-related stereotypes, whereas the gay label consistently enhances expectations of atypical gender attributes.