Today I’d like to write about cats.
I’m a cat person. I’ve owned many cats in my life and have hand raised more kittens that I can count. I’m not ashamed to be called a “cat lady”. Now don’t get me wrong, I like dogs. I work with dogs every day and I own the best dog in the world (who also happens to love cats) but I am not a Dog Person. There’s a difference.
I’ve found that most people tend to gravitate one way or the other. I think you can tell a lot about a person by their choice of pet. Owning a dog is much more demanding both emotionally and physically. They can’t be left alone for long periods of time, they need to go out, to be walked, to be bathed and trained. Cats need to be fed and usually prefer a clean litter box but that’s about it. If you visit the home of someone who owns a dog, you know it. On the other hand, you could stay for several days in a house where three cats live yet never see so much as a whisker. Cats are observers, typically suspicious of everything and usually satisfied with minimal interaction. Owning a cat is much lower maintenance but they make their demands in different ways, like walking on your face while you sleep.
In my opinion, cats are often underappreciated and misunderstood. Most people who say they don’t like cats just haven’t spent enough time around them to realize how amazing they are. Cats are strong and fierce, even a tiny little house cat. I think that’s something you might not fully understand unless you work with cats in a veterinary setting.
I don’t have a philosophical point to make with this essay. I’m not even trying to prove that cats are better than dogs. I simply wanted to acknowledge that my life has been enriched over and over again by the animals I’ve come in contact with (except birds). Being 30 and single and living alone, it was always nice to come home to creatures that were happy to see me. And maybe it’s because I don’t plan to have children but I have found hand raising a litter of kittens to be one of the most rewarding experiences I’ve had.
So the next time you pet your cat or come across one that you don’t even care for too much, take a minute to appreciate it’s awesomeness. And then either feed it or leave it alone.