Updated: Apr 11, 2019
If you are a cat owner, you know there are SO many joys that come with our fur babies. I thought for this post I would make it a bit light and fun and talk about some of the most common things we experience on this journey. Feel free to chime in and comment on some of the things you can relate to or share a funny story with us about your pet!
We all have those moments where we literally cannot handle our lives when we see how adorable our furbabies are.
For me, I can be watching television or working on a crochet project or a blog post and look over at my cat and find him sleeping. I am suddenly overcome with how cute and cozy he looks and I immediately have to stop what I'm doing, grab my phone and snap a photo of him and share it with the world. I cannot tell you how many photos I have taken of him in a series where he is sleeping, he moves into a new position and I have to take another photo because let's face it, even though I didn't think it was possible, he's even cuter than he was just seconds earlier.
If you don't yet have a furbaby of your own and need a megadose of cuteness, check out Clowder Creek Photography. I can barely handle all of the cute photos Jessica captures!
Say Goodbye to Privacy
One thing you will quickly learn as a cat parent is that they do NOT like to be closed out of the room where you are. This is especially true for the bathroom. Say goodbye to having privacy. Even if you think you are alone, they will be outside anxiously waiting for you to emerge. Most likely you will see their little paws under the door as they desperately try to get in so they can be with you. It's actually quite cute.
Most generally I just leave my bathroom door open so Stormy can come and go as he pleases. His interesting quirk about the bathroom is he seems to be terribly worried for me while I'm in the shower. He will meow in to me and I have to reassure him that I'm fine. However, if I reach for the conditioner or something and he sees my hand, he will run over as quickly as he can and he paws at my hand as if he is saving me from some fate worse than death. It's really rather sweet and endearing but it also makes me wonder what is going through his head.
Stepping in Hairballs This one is not so endearing and definitely not as funny as some of the other items on this list, but let's face it -- chances are, if you have a cat, you have been walking through the house, not really paying attention and then it happens: you step in a puddle, sometimes cold, sometimes warm, depending on how long it's been there waiting for its unsuspecting victim. You may have socks on or you may be barefoot -- either way it is most definitely NOT a pleasant experience.
Fortunately, there are some things you can do in order to make sure this does not become a regular occurrence. One easy thing to do is to groom your pet regularly. Depending on whether you have a short hair or a long hair and their grooming habits it's probably best to do this either once a week or once every other week. This will definitely help to keep those nasty hairballs from forming in the first place. Secondly, there are certain formulas of food that are designed specifically to help with hairballs and to keep them from becoming an issue.
Finally, we recently posted an interesting article on how a grain-free diet might be key in helping to eliminate hairballs. I will link to this article at the end of this post and you can read it and decide if this is something you would like to pursue.
Lack of Personal Space Personal space? What's that? Once you become a cat owner you quickly realize personal space is not really a thing. Yes, some cats can be standoffish but for the most part cats want to be involved in what you are doing. They want to be near you but it's even better to be ON you.
As you can see if our fun photo here, our owner, Jessica is all too familiar with the fact that cats will be all up in your business and will be loving every minute of it.
Another fun thing cats like to do (I secretly think it's one of their favorite things) is to either walk across the keyboard of your laptop as you are working on something or to come over for cuddles and just decide that you have spent enough time with this lightbox and it's time to pay attention to them and so they just plop down and make themselves at home. Meanwhile there are now 1,000 lines of spaces and letters in your document that you were working on.
The Infamous Butt in Your Face The photo to the right really explains it all. You are so happy when your cat jumps up into your lap and comes to lay down with you and suddenly you look over and BAM! Your cat has its butt right in your face. Now, some might take this as a slight, however, as gross as it might be, your cat is actually letting you know that it trusts you.
Cats communicate in many different ways, whether it is with other cats or with their humans. I came across an interesting article that stated the following: "When cats rub alongside each other, they are facing in opposite directions and usually end up standing with their hind ends positioned toward one another. Since we do not rub bodies with our cats but use our hands instead, this is probably why they end up directing their posteriors toward us."
Soul Crushing Fear Our cats are our family and while most of the time we spend together is filled with love, happiness and fun, there are those times when they scare us. Nothing strikes fear in your heart quite as fast as when you realize they are not well or they have been injured. We have that immediate feeling of helplessness since they can't really communicate to us what is wrong. Sometimes, even if there are subtle signs, a cat parent knows when their cat is acting differently and can sense that something is wrong, but cats are especially difficult because they hide their symptoms. By the time we are onto them, it is usually time that we get them to the vet as soon as possible.
I know the experiences I've had with my cat being unwell have been fraught with stress and emotion. I hate knowing my baby is hurting and I want to do everything I can to make them feel safe, loved and taken care of.
Ah, Love. There is nothing in the world like coming home to a cat who greets you at the door, purring and rubbing against you. They are just as happy to see us as we are to see them. We are the foodbringers and they are our companions.
On rainy days while we are at work, we are all daydreaming about being at home curled up with our cat and a good book or movie or let's face it, just napping the afternoon away.
While cats are fairly independent and like doing their own things, they do also like to be near us and to show us affection. My current cat is a Maine Coon mix and he's not really a lap cat. However, he LOVES to be pet, loves to sit on the floor near me and his favorite thing in the whole world is when I first get home, he wants me to pick him up and love on him a bit. He will usually rub his face on mine to let me know he missed me and so I always cherish those moments with him.
Of course to go along with those moments of euphoria, the other side of that coin is when I go to leave the house in the mornings and look up and he's sitting in the window watching me leave and I get that gut punch at leaving him for the day.
They sure do tug on our heartstrings, don't they?
Hours of Endless Entertainment Cats are so fun! I love getting out the toys and playing with Stormy and cheering him on as he jumps higher than he did before or does some sort of acrobatic flip to catch the bird!
However, there are also those fun times when I will be sitting on the couch and suddenly he will bound into the room and go on a vicious rampage of playing with about 5 toys at once. It's hilarious to watch him hunting and attacking and having fun.
Then there are those things they are doing that don't include playing per se, but are hilarious. Sometimes even though they are doing the smallest things, we could just watch them for hours on end and not have a care in the world. Aren't they the best?
Being Unable to Get Up
This one is universal to ALL cat parents. The golden rule...if there is a cat on your lap or laying near you -- you cannot under any circumstances disturb them. Nevermind the fact that they spend most of the day sleeping and will likely just curl up and go right back to sleep. WE cannot be the ones to disturb their slumber!
Suddenly your basic needs as a human take a back seat. Are you hungry? Do you have to go to the restroom? Do you need to stretch? Too bad. Wait it out. You can meet all of your needs once your precious child has naturally awakened and gone about their business.
While this is an unspoken rule, I feel it is just a given and we all cater to it. We love the precious time we get with our babies and cherish the time they want to spend close to us.
Making New Friends No matter how awkward, introverted or shy you might be, when you have a cat and you hear someone start talking about cats, your ears perk up and suddenly there is that brilliant ray of connection that zings you!
I am not often good at making small talk, but when someone starts talking to me about cats, I could go on for hours (ok, you're right...days). Cats are not only great as companions, but they help us to expand our own social circles and maybe even step a little our of our comfort zones in order to share stories with other cat parents.
Also, I feel that when you find that other people are cat people, you know they are good people. The photos in this section are proof of that, just sayin. *wink
We would love for you to share some of your stories with us regarding some of the things we talked about or add some suggestions for the next post we do like this!
References: Some Startling New Thoughts on Cats and Hairballs - Fern Slack, DVM
Why Does My Cat... Stick Her Butt in My Face? - Dr. Wailani Sung MS, PhD, DVM, DACVB