WORDS | Manisha Josephraja
Q: My kitty is such a sweetie and recently I’ve become really close to him. He always smells really good, he has the prettiest eyes, and I really like his ears. He’s so sweet to me! He always thanks me when I feed him, he sits on my lap, and whenever my mum yells at me, he stands up for me!
A: The relationships we have with our pets are some of the strongest bonds we’ll ever experience in our life. First off, I have to say that I’m not a cat person, but judging by how much emotive power cats seem to evoke on the internet, there has to be something relatively not so terrifying about them. There has been rigorous research conducted on the area of human attachment with pets, and it has been consistently shown that owning a pet, does in fact, alleviate negative moods and lead to intense feelings of affection, sometimes stronger than that we feel for other humans.
Naturally, as human beings, our favourite topic to talk about is ourselves. How could you not love something that always listens intently to every gripe, rant or complaint you have, and never offers condescending opinions on how you whinge too much (how is that even possible?). Pets will never ditch you for a last minute date, or remind you of the terribly embarrassing things you did last Friday night. It’s always nice to be appreciated and feel needed, which is essentially what owning a pet is all about. You provide them with a little food and TLC, and in return, you receive all the affection they can master.
Essentially, how you feel is pretty normal, and you are definitely not alone in feeling this way. This being said, try and make sure you are not consistently cancelling plans with your non-feline friends and family. That’s not particularly healthy. What if those horrible stories about cats eating their owner’s faces while they’re asleep are true? Who would come and find you? Your cat doesn’t have opposable thumbs or the ability to speak, so they wouldn’t even be able to call an ambulance if they felt really remorseful about what they did. Hey, it might not happen, but I’m just trying to look out for you.