I'm of the unpopular opinion that it is furry cause it works off of the combination of human and animal traits. But many consider it not furry, either cause they detest the idea that the thing they like is of the hated furry or they just don't think its animal enough.
To answer seriously to your not serious, it would come down to tagging, at a hard rules level, and intelligence at an in-world level.
If they have the beast tag, then they have the best tag, and are appropriate. No playable races do - they're all 'humanoid'
In the world space, animal intelligence generally caps at 3 unless it's a magical beast of some sort, and sentient creatures all generally punch well above that.
Ah, that is interesting to learn. So it all depends on tagging and intelligence, makes sense. Would be disturbing and messed up if you could walk up to a random person in the world and go "You are my animal companion, now follow!" And they kinda had to.