Why I prefer cats.
The fact that I felt the need to write this differentiates a “cat” person from a “dog” person. Why is it that people who own cats must always defend their choice in pets and endure being the butt of jokes and object of ridicule? I don’t think of myself as an “anti-dog” person. In fact, I would love to own a dog. But given the choice between a dog and a cat, I will always choose a cat, and this is why.
Felines and canines are obviously very different types of animals, just as there are very different types of humans out there. No animal is “better” than the other; it’s simply a matter of taste in types of pets. I do believe that people choose pets according to their personality type. I like the fact that cats, for the most part, are very independent animals. Cats do not “need” you, really. They can be perfectly happy sunning in the window all day, or wasting time curled in a ball at the end of your bed for hours and hours. This doesn’t mean that they don’t need you come dinnertime, or they won’t hop in your lap to watch evening TV, but they can be content doing their own thing for extended periods of time. Dogs need attention all…damn…day. I don’t have that energy! To be honest, I don’t like the idea of having to worry about taking the dog out every few hours so that he can do his business. I like the freedom of being able to meet friends for a Happy Hour after work without having to run home to walk the dog. When my cat needs to do his business, he does his business in the box. I have to scoop it when it gets full of his bottom deposits, but if you own a dog, you are picking up poop all day long. Dogs require that much more work. Cats are pretty easy, generally. The are great low-maintenance pets.
The idea that cats don’t like to play, or they don’t have personality is a joke. I’ve never owned a cat that didn’t want to play at some point during the day (often that playtime occurs at 4am), and I certainly have never owned a cat that didn’t have a personality on par with any dog or person I’ve met. Each and every cat I have ever owned has had a strong, distinct personality not like any other cat I have come in contact with over my lifetime. If you have had the pleasure to meet my current furry love bug, Frisco Bay, I’m sure you can vouch for his “unique” personality. I will admit that he is slightly more co-dependent than most cats, but I can assure you that he still maintains his independence…sometimes.
Frisco is a funny animal. His “thing” is that he collects plastic bottle caps. In fact, he hoards them. I’ve lifted up pieces of furniture in the past only to find stockpiles of bottle caps. Any time someone finishes a bottle of water or soda, Frisco is right there waiting for the cap to be tossed his way. He will pick them up and bring them to you to play with, and he will fetch them when you throw them across the room. He especially likes for you to throw them into the bathtub where he frequently plays in his water bowl. I have to keep the water bowl inside of the bathtub because Frisco will splash around in it, and he ends up getting water all over the surrounding area.
My special little kitty also loves to drink running water from the kitchen sink or bathtub faucets. He goes through phases where he will only drink the fresh running water dripping from these sources. He will jump into the bathtub and meow to get your attention until you appease him by bringing the water to a light drip. Steadying himself up on the ledge of the tub with his front paws, he will drink from the head of the faucet for minutes. Now, if that’s not personality to you, you don’t know what you’re talking about anyway.
If you ask most “cat” people how they classify themselves, they will most likely say, “I’m an animal person.” Ask a “dog” person, and they will adamantly say, “I’m a dog person. I hate cats.”
Why is that?
I suspect that people who claim that they hate cats have not taken the time to get to know a cat, or they simply do not understand them. Cats are truly fascinating creatures. They are smarter than most humans, I promise. They are probably smarter than your dog too, but they will never let you onto them if they can use their intelligence to get what they want. Cats are not plotting to kill you; they simply don’t give a crap about you, unless, of course, they love you. Sounds a little bit more like us humans than an eager-to-please, puppy, doesn’t it?
A cat will be by your side just as much as a dog will. Have you read Homer’s Odyssey, the story about the blind cat who at one point saves his owner from a burglar who broke into her apartment? I know that Frisco sleeps by my side every night, and he warns me if there is any unusual sound or movement.
I believe that all animals are little furry or feathered angels; both cats and dogs, birds and rabbits too. Any animal that is nurtured and cared for by a human will form a bond and develop a love for their caregiver. Cats are just as capable as dogs of forming this bond and giving a lifetime of love, laughs, and companionship.
All I’m asking is to please stop judging those who choose to own cats. What makes us crazier than someone who owns a few dogs? And if you refuse to acknowledge cats as pets, for whatever silly reason, then you are really missing out on the joy that those of us “cat” people get to share.