Seriously. I know that there are hundreds of thousands of psychology books out there, mapping out the intricate, Freudian depths of men’s psyches. That we men are fully realized human beings, that some of us are mature adults with complex desires and lofty goals. But at the heart of it, are men just like dogs? Can you boil us down to a few commonalities, and in so doing, figure us out? I think the answer is quite clearly: yes. Read on, and decide for yourself!

1) Men/dogs like to be praised. One of the easiest way to make a guy happy is to tell him how good he is at something, how impressively he can accomplish a certain task. You don’t even have to make the compliments nuanced or subtle. In fact, the more direct and simple the praise, as long as it seems sincere, the happier the dude will be. “Good boy! Who’s a good boy? Yes you are! Yes you are! Gooooood boy!” Try it and watch our tails wag.

2) Men/dogs like to be rubbed. Notice how a dog will just melt if you scratch behind his ears? Offer a guy a neck rub and he’ll just collapse on the floor. It’s very simple: guys love to be given backrubs, head rubs, foot rubs, neck rubs, anything and everything. It’s like the Vulcan neck pinch, but without the pain. Nobody is more content than a dude lying down getting a good, strong backrub from somebody he likes.

3) Men/dogs love to be fed. We love to eat. Some of us love it so much we’ll even cook, but the vast majority just like to be fed. Good food, heaped high, steaming and delicious, slathered in BBQ sauce and with plenty of ranch dressing for us to dip it into. Surprise us with a large, delicious meal, and we’ll practically start barking with happiness.

4) Men/dogs love to have sex. Do I need to elaborate this one? It’s one of our most basic drives, if not the most basic. We want to have sex all the time, and a lot of us have trouble confining our attention to just one person. We think about sex all the time, dream about sex, want sex. It’s really that simple.

5) Men/dogs love to take naps. Whether it’s after lunch or during the opera with you, we like nothing more than to just snooze off, preferably where its warm and comfortable. Naps, whether stolen or planned, always hit the right spot. Sometimes it’s because we’re worn out from exercise, other times from too much work, or too much food, or just because we’re feeling lazy. But it’s always the right time for nap time.

6) Men/dogs like exercise. These days, too many dudes have grown lazy, confined behind their desks, but go to any gym, and you’ll see a ton of guys lifting weights, exercising, getting ripped. Turn on the TV, and you’ll see endless sports teams competing for the championships, each one surrounded by thousands of guys who tried to make the cut. Getting out into the sun, running around, throwing balls, playing with other guys and then collapsing in a heap at the end of the day? Perfect.

So there you have it. Give us food, scratch us behind the ears, let us out to exercise and then collapse into a nap, and provide us with sex whenever we want it, and you couldn’t have a happier guy. See? It really is that simple.