I know I go on about my dog a lot. And she is great. But did you hear the story about puppy-dog eyes and how dogs developed facial muscles (aka puppy-dog eyes) that would get humans to do things for them? Master manipulators. But a great tactic from an animal that is as needy as dogs can be. Think about it, in most animals (I’m emphasise most) newborns and offspring are independent relatively quickly. Calves are walking on their own within hours, birds are flying within weeks and baby alligators (not the cutest for sure) swim pretty much from the get go. Independence. It’s a beautiful word.
Now, none of the above make for ideal pets, but what does? A cat. Cats don’t need us and that’s what I like about them. Even when we’re feeding them, they are out catching mice and birds and doing what felines do best. I have a friend whose cat went missing for a few weeks. They looked for him and put up posters and hoped for the best but prepared their kids for the worst. But, in their hearts they knew, the cat is a fighter. It had gotten locked into a shed while some neighbours were away on summer holidays. And while it came back a bit scruffier and skinnier than usual, it had survived on its own instincts. Living, no doubt, on mice it caught all on its own.
I don’t think there is an animal out there with more attitude and sass than a cat. And, as a straight shooter, I appreciate that. You know exactly where you stand with a cat. It will tell you when it wants something – to be fed, to be let out, to be cuddled or to be entertained. You know exactly what they want. I think they are a far more honest pet.
Also, I’ve said it before, one of the downsides of pet ownership is cleaning up after them. https://petparlour.ie/blogs/news/we-are-what-we-eat-and-so-for-our-dogs>>
You don’t have that issue with cats. They, like me, appreciate cleanliness. Whether it’s taking care of business or cleaning themselves, it’s definitely another tick on the pros list for the cat population. I actually hear a story about a cat using a human toilet once. This freaks people out a lot and I can kind of see why, but can you imagine how amazing it would be if they managed to do that all the time and flush?!
You have to work a bit harder where cats are concerned. They are not as trusting or quick to submit to humans, they walk around like superior beings and we must appeal to them for love and attention. It’s like mean girls. Everyone wants to be liked by the nonchalant, popular one. Just watch a group of people when they are around a cat, you’ll see the neediness as they vie for the cat’s attention, lure it to their lap and then, when the cat is bored, it’s off. On to the next big thing.
There is also something mysterious about cats, which is helped by their association with the pharaohs and witches and their ability to stare into the middle distance for ages like they’re seeing something your not.. But maybe there is some truth to it. I sat down to write this blog in appreciation of cats on August 8th. Little did I realise August 8th is international cat day. I’m not a superstitious person, but you can’t deny that’s a bit freaky.