What have you learned about cats since owning one?

Nature9000

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I've always hailed that I'm a dog person, growing up I had dogs and cats but mainly dogs. I had an ex with 9 cats and I couldn't stand it, it was just too much. But after so many years and finally getting out on my own in this small studio apartment I wound up getting Prince and Nikita. Prince, mainly because I wanted a pet for a companion and the pet store I worked at at the time didn't have dogs (pet supermarket ya'll), and Nikita whom I name Nikita the third and there's an entire backstory there....

In November, I'll have had Prince for three years (He'll also be three in a couple days now) and I'll say I've learned much. I still would love to have a dog, one that I can hold for hours on end that will let me; but I've seen just how loving, affectionate, and social a cat can be. It's always annoyed me even in the past when I wasn't a fan of cats, that people would say cats were "boring" or they just hated them because they couldn't be social or something of the sort...​
Every day when I come home from work, Prince and Nikita are at the door (usually Prince is the first). They'll see me drive up in the window, watch me leave the car, then disappear from the window only to be waiting at the door. When I've had to go somewhere or have a contractor over at the apartment and need to drop the cats off at my grandparents for a day, Prince is usually the one with the most noticeable change because Nikita is already the one more social and attention-seeking while Prince is very much independent and not always seeking attention, it will be Prince who starts meowing loudest and craving attention once he sees me which shows that they've been missing me. Even then on normal days if I call for Prince, he'll come running over. Nikita won't, but she usually always has to be nearby or follows me anywhere.​
So I've gone from being a dog person to being, as someone said, "an animal person". Which is true, because I adore all animals, but Prince and Nikita have taught me to appreciate and value a cat far more than I have before. Not that I hadn't before, but I can see that they are just as affectionate as any other animal out there.​
Who can complain when they get stuck in a position where the cat has curled up on them and gone to sleep so you cannot move from that spot XD​
 

Suru

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Hmm... for me it would definitely be - I learned that I will never have a dog.

I love how self sufficient cats are. We co-exist so well, he tolerates my attentions and I tolerate his. Making him two good meals a day, scooping his litter and brushing him/wiping him down is just the amount of work I'm willing to put in! Also cats smell nice! I can't say the same for dogs....

At the same time, I don't think I will ever get another cat after this one. I would be too afraid to. I'm so comfortable with my cat's chill personality. The fact he lets me do whatever I want to him short of giving him a bath. The fact he loves to ride in the car. The fact I can bring him with me to "foreign" places and not have him freak out... He is the ultimate companion and I don't think I will ever be able to accept another.
 

Lola3791

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That they are very in tune to emotions. Cats are often regarded as being insensitive, cold, and uncaring. Lola is very good at reading my emotions. If I'm sad, she'll start purring and rubbing all over me. She's the best cat; I don't deserve her.
 

MonaLyssa33

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Patience. Maisie was a difficult cat to home because she is very skittish. When my late cat Willie died, I wanted to adopt a cat that was older and/or had been looked over at the shelter. Maisie was at the shelter for 2 years before I adopted her with Remy. It took nearly a year for Maisie to feel comfortable enough to let me pet her sometimes. I've had her for a little over 2 years and she still runs away if I approach her too quickly but she will sometimes come and lay on me which makes me feel really special. I feel because of her I learned how to act around and interact with scared animals so they can feel safe with me.
 

Roxabelle

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I didn’t realise how quickly cats will train you to do things! I mean it when I say I’m my kitten’s human slave in my profile... 😆

I also didn’t think that I’d ever have such a special bond with a cat after my gorgeous boy Atari went missing 9 months ago. As fate would have it we welcomed his little sister into our world and she is simply adorable. She hasn’t replaced Atari at all - their personalities are so different - but she has definitely helped to fill a cat-size hole in my heart. She’s only been living with us for about a month and I feel like I’ve known her forever.

Cats are also a wonderful reminder why I’d never have dogs or children! 😂
 

Xraystyle

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Yes, after teaching pre-schoolers, I can definitely say cats are like small children and it highlights why I don't want kids (of that age, I have thought more about fostering or mentoring older kids) Their needs (which are at times very unclear but so very important to them) always supersede your own! Puar and I have figured out he loves to be vigorously patted. Not petted. Heavens no. Patted like he's getting a Swedish massage. Now he thinks he can jump on me whenever he wants for his pats when before he avoided me most of the time! I guess it's a good thing I chose drumming as my new hobby...who needs a practice pad when I can just use my cat!
 

mommytobuck

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My dad always told us that cats needed little care. But since owning them I now think that is wrong.
I think cats need:
  1. Proper food and water. Kibble with a water dish is not proper food and water and I don't know how many cats I have lost to this because I didn't know any better. They need wet food at the proper times and they need to get a lot of water IN the food. They don't drink like dogs. In the wild most of their water comes from blood.
  2. Their fur needs care. You can't just let them do it. You need to wash gently with litle water from time to time and be sure to comb to get a lot of the hair out. This cuts down on hairballs.
  3. You can't just set up a little box and never know what is going on. You have to watch it. Make sure the cat is going or not going too much. Make sure the cat isn't straining or having hard stools.
  4. Cats need preventative care as much as urgent care.
  5. Cats are actually highly trainable. So you should start them young with good habits.
 

jeannem

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It's amazing the places Suki gets into!
I have had to change how I open cabinet and closet doors. I have learn to know where Suki is when I open the door to the garage! ( Oh the places she could hide out there!)
As times goes on I am sure she will be training me further to be the 'purrfect' slave!
j
 

betsygee

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  1. You can't just set up a little box and never know what is going on. You have to watch it. Make sure the cat is going or not going too much. Make sure the cat isn't straining or having hard stools.
This is true. I never in my life imagined I would look at, think about, and talk about poop so much! :poop: :lol:
 

nurseangel

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Each one is so very different. We are all living happily under the Elsie Dictatorship. Well, I don't know if the other cats like it, but I am fine with her being the boss. :lol: The smallest of us all came in and took over.
 

minish

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Seeing cats around and having one are definitely very different. With minish, my first and only cat, in addition to all the above, the most important thing I learned was how consideration and respect pay off.
As a dog person, I never even wanted a cat and had all the misunderstandings about them as people who don't live with one. I had had parakeets and a dog before, who were pretty independent but still trying to please us humans. It's ingrained in some social species. You don't expect otherwise since it's "your" pet. You are theirs as well but you are not reminded of it.
When your cat doesn't invade your personal space, does something simply because it gives you pleasure (rolling on her back to expose belly and letting you touch, showing off some skills just for your cheering up..) or ceasing to do something because it makes you worried or sad or angry (trash diving, peeking down the balcony, getting off the counter with no squirt gun involved.. ) you know you deserved it because you have given her the respect for her rights and responded to her needs as much as you can. She is simply paying you in kind. It's a wonderful feeling, and I wouldn't give that up for anything
 

neely

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So I've gone from being a dog person to being, as someone said, "an animal person". Which is true, because I adore all animals
I guess that makes me an animal person too! :thumbsup: Living with both cats and dogs makes me aware of their unique personalities. However, one thing I've learned is that cats are definitely more graceful.😉
 

aurorabee

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My beloved soul cat who recently passed displayed genuine empathy. She would run out if she heard the sound of a baby cry with a worried look on her face. She liked to be near/on people constantly. You could pick her up at random whenever you wanted to place her on your lap and she would just go with the flow. She was the OPPOSITE of aloof and independent. She was extremely dependent. She would do 'protest' vomits if we left for the night, ha. You could bring her into the bath with you. She loved water drops on her head. She liked stimulants (catnip and the smell of bleach!). She once travelled thousands of km in a car with me without complaint and also took a plane trip* with a stranger (to her) without issue (*I couldn't bear to put her in cargo, so I need to enlist the help of a friend in order to bring her in the cabin because of the pet limit).
I think she might have thought she was a person because she didn't like other cats though and refused to 'mother' our kitten!
I think a lot of cats get the stereotype of being 'distant' because they don't receive socialization from their humans.
 
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