Thursday, April 28, 2011

How it all begins

When thinking about getting a pet - any pet, not just a cat - you must ask yourself whether you are ready for this new relationship. Indeed, pets are living creatures and it is important to realize that by getting one you are starting a very special relationship. Not quite a child, not quite a friend, not quite a roommate, a relationship with a cat in particular seems to be an odd one but once forged, never a regretful one.

So why would you get a cat? If you're asking yourself this question then you are already on the right track. Here I will go over a few misconceptions and facts and attempt to prepare you for this adventurous journey.

Cat's are selfish. This is a common train of thinking of anyone who never had a cat. It stems from the cat's common activity - sleep. Also, cat's are nocturnal species and prefer to roam around the house, play and even socialize while the rest of the household is asleep. While these are generally true, cats will also seek your company as they prefer to be around you - it may be subtle but you'll always notice them sitting on a chair or bed, just far enough to be "away" from you and yet still around you. And what cat is selfish enough not to bring you the "loot" from the night's hunt?!

Cats are easy. True that cats may be easier than say dogs since they don't require you to wake up early to take them outside, they are smaller and wouldn't eat as much, and they wouldn't chew your shoes. However you must be prepared for dirt being dug from large plant pots, shredded soft surfaces (and sometimes even scratched walls!), constant cleaning of their "potty". Cats are curious creates so you may find piles of papers being pushed on the floor, knocked over items on tables, clothes and other hanging items pulled off their hangers.

Cats are boring. Sure enough one may argue that knitting is boring and yet there are a lot of people who find that activity very fun, interesting and rewarding. The very same can be said about cats. Naturally you wouldn't expect your cat to play catch, chase its tail and jump on you, asking to be played with. However, each cat's personality is different. There are cats that are calm and prefer to rest on your lap while you watch TV and others are very playful and might even know how to play catch! In any case, the hunting instincts always get the best of them and they'll play with a small toy and chase a shoelace. Cats wouldn't become such a popular meme had they been boring.

Cats don't require much care/expenses. This is more to point out that just like with any pet, you would have to put in a lot of effort to make sure cat's life is fulfilling. And once it is, they will ensure that yours is too, making it all worth the effort. Also, just like with any other dependant (such as a kid) there will be a bill attached. Prepare to fork over a $1,000 per year on food, litter, toys, sticky rollers and more.

In the end, just like with any relationship, there will be ups and downs. Still, this is nothing that effort and love cannot conquer!

Happy purrs, everyone!

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