Just Because I Like Cats, Doesn’t Mean I Am A Cat Person

Yes, I like cats. As a matter of fact, I adore them, and have always gotten along well with them and understood their movements and instincts. As a child I was able to befriend strays who would never dare come near any other humans, so this earned me a label very early on of “cat person”. Why do I have to wear such a label because I like and own cats? The labels “dog person” and “cat person” are often attached to an applied exclusion in which the two are not expected to comingle, and in which both labels could not possibly be worn by one person. So what if I have cats? It doesn’t mean that I am anti-dog! I would LOVE to have dogs, but since I have always been a fan of large dog breeds, and because I don’t have a yard, it would be unfair of me to have dogs at this point in my life. I am also so incredibly busy that I wouldn’t have time to walk a dog or devote the extra time which dogs demand from their owners. Most importantly, two of my cats are very doglike and follow me EVERYWHERE I go when I am at home.

My babies...

My babies…

Another thing I do not engage in is collecting cat motif items. Do not expect to walk into my home and see cat pillows, cat artwork, etc., in the common areas, because I will not subject myself nor anyone else in the household to such feline tributes. The only cats you will see in my living room are the living furry companions who are family members and sources of great joy to me. I do have photos of my cats on the fridges (we have two fridges in our place), but there are only a few.

It always surprises me when people who don’t know me well reveal with hesitation that they have dogs, as if I am anti-dog. Instead, I respond with excitement, asking them what kinds of dogs they have. Honestly, I adore dogs so much that I get dog lust if I hang around great dogs. I have also been tempted on more than one occasion in my life to adopt a dog even though my schedule has never been accommodating enough for me to be a good doggy mom.

Whether you have cats or dogs, chances are I will be fine with them all.

I Am Not A Cat Person

cat-dog-cuddleI find it very interesting how people choose to be polarized when it comes to dogs and cats, suggesting that it is not possible to like both mammal species. Though I have cats as pets and have spent my entire adult life being owned by cats, this by no means establishes an exclusive love for cats and dislike for dogs. In fact, I adore dogs, especially the larger breeds, and truly wish my lifestyle could accommodate the needs of large dog breeds. When I visit friends who have large dogs, I become envious and find it incredibly difficult to leave them. I love the unabashed loyalty that dogs deliver to humans, and I appreciate all the characteristics of the canine species which have earned them the nickname “a man’s best friend”.

Why don’t I have dogs? Again, I love large dog breeds and simply do not have the space to accommodate a large dog. I do not have time to walk a dog daily either. Though I enjoy the company of smaller dog breeds, the idea of a small dog breed as a pet does not resonate with me at all. I have cats because they do not require daily walks or regular baths (though I do bathe my cats every other month). I also have chosen two Burmese cats as part of my three cat brood because they are so doglike. Burmese cats are lap cats, very intelligent, active, affectionate, and will follow me from room to room. As a matter of fact, they enjoy being with any of the humans in the house. My Burmese cats will approach strangers and make instant friends with them. One of them plays fetch regularly, initiating play by bringing toys to my feet and dropping them, then looking up at me expectantly, just like a dog would. Check out this video of Kazu playing fetch:

My rescue is a different story, as she is skittish, very “catlike”, and spends most of her time hiding in my bedroom. She is very choosy about the people she warms up to and is the type of cat who perpetuates the stereotype that cats keep to themselves. She is my quiet, shy, moody child and I accept her completely as part of the family.

Just because I have a household with cats and no dogs does not mean that I am a “cat person”. What it comes down to is that I love animals, period.