Cats are smart, funny, and utterly gorgeous. They snuggle up to you at night, and even let you share the pillow with them. And they make wonderful little heaters in winter, nestled against your legs, when you’re wrapped up in blankets
My pet preference is undeniably cats. In fact, the biggest compliment I can give a dog is that it is cat-like. Actually, my sister’s black labrador, Ellis (short for ‘little shit’), is one of the most cat-like dogs I know – intelligent, playful, and mischievous, with eyes that are a deep pool.
The cat born, felines with large eyes, soft faces, and suede noses, are intuitive, and self possessed. Cats have a free, mystical quality, though some, like all of us, can behave like little terrors at times – clawing the furniture, climbing up the fly screen on the door, chasing a bug, and pulling the mesh on the door down because they are no longer the tiny kitten. Or marking the floor under the window with cat urine.
Cats are expressive, and when showered with love, very tolerant. It is said their purr is very healing to themselves, that a cat will purr not just when she is content, but sometimes in times of stress. Certainly, cats have a very healing effect on their companions. Studies have shown that when cats are brought into hospital wards, and the homes of people with high stress levels, or illnesses, their stress decreased, and their illnesses improved. Whether this is because their sense of wellbeing and outlook improved by spending some time with our feline friends, and this had an indirect effect on their illnesses, or whether there is some more scientific reason, the fact remains that even despite allergies, cats are good for our health! Pets in general have this effect, but our felines seem to have a special talent for it.
Cat owners know how their pets come to them when they are sick. Not in a demanding way, simply comforting. After my grandmother had a stroke, our Siamese, Sebastian, really gravitated to her. He would sit on her lap for hours, but do you think I could get him to sit on mine for long!
Sometimes cats need help too – and we need help understanding them. That’s when cat magazines, with their insight, and information on cat illnesses and health, can really come in handy.
Some people find cats stares unnerving. Perhaps it is their stillness, or that sense of their individual intelligence. I love the way my cats stare. Oscar, my Tonkinese, has moments when I’m scratching his head, of such love radiating through his stare. The essence of their being is timeless.
Cats’ history mirrors this mystique. Many cats were the companions of Emperors. Some spiritual traditions recognize an aspect of cats that is almost like a Guardian, such as the Azurite Press.
Cat breeds have been both revered and hated in different cultures. In Egypt, our feline ancestors were buried in the tombs and sarcophagus of Egyptian royalty. They were honored so much it is believed that if a person was found hurting a cat, they were executed.
Unfortunately, in some eras, like the Middle Ages, cats were reviled. Nowadays, there seems to be an increasing level of violence against cats, and animals generally. Given that this is often an indicator of how kids will treat people when they grow up, it’s not a good sign for the society of tomorrow.
Cats have (according to the studies done at Cornell), 100 different vocalizations. My favorite is the rrow-rrow-rrow one as if my cuddly baby is chirping with delight.
Cats are generally happy creatures. Love them, treat them well, give them delicious cat food, and they return the affection many times over . They might scratch the furniture, but they don’t do it out of spite. They’re sharpening their claws, subtly marking the area with their scent. As annoying as this can be, they can be retrained, with a little bit of patience. Patience and cats – yes, the two go hand in hand. But patience is a good skill to develop in life, too.
And if you’re lucky, they may even get you a cat gift for your birthday!