How to Become a Crazy Cat Lady
Start early. Get born into a family where there is always at least one cat. Sleep with cats as a baby. They don’t suck the life out of you. That’s a myth. You’re living proof of that.
Grow up feeling isolated from people. When loud family conflicts have you racing for solitude, retire to your room with your cat to protect the poor thing from the harsh realities you are growing up with while you take comfort in the soft purring affection and quiet non-judgmental acceptance from your cat. Feel as if this is the only friend you have that really understands you. Remain isolated as you move into adulthood.
Develop Your Cat Expertise
Move into an apartment where there is already an established colony of abandoned cats breeding in the crawl space under the house. Befriend the gray tiger cat who nurses her kittens every morning on your doorstep. Call her Mama and softly call out “Hey the Mama” every time you see her on the doorstep, so she gets used to your presence and the sound of your voice. Call a neuter and release program to try to manage the growing population of cats under the house.
Tame the feral kittens by dangling a string from the porch. When they are too excited with the string to notice you, shorten the string so your hands are closer to them. Patiently keep dangling and shortening the string until you can touch the them while they play. Gradually reach for the cat and gently get it used to your touch until it doesn’t run away. Marvel at how they fall for the string trick every time.
Give all the cats names and bring them into the house over the winter. Try to tame the feral ones that were born under the house all in order to find them homes. Find homes for a few of them and finally realize that nobody wants adult cats. Keep the ones you can’t find homes for.
Browse through a card store and find a card with cats on the front of the card. Count all the cats in the picture. There are 42. All 42 cats are draped all over furniture in the living room, walking on kitchen countertops and windowsills, sitting in rattan dining chairs, feeding from dishes placed on the floor, the chair and the countertops and windowsills, sleeping on the living room couch and nestled into its red and white striped pillows, sitting on cushioned chairs and sprawled out on the floor. Cringe when you think of all the work it would take to feed all 42 cats in the picture and clean their cat boxes every day.
Walk out of the card store feeling glad you only have nine cats to worry about, not 42. Do a head count every day when you leave the house and another when you return to make sure all cats are accounted for. Look for the ones that you let outside that morning to make sure they are all safe.
Watch one of last year’s kittens stalk a squirrel in the yard that runs up a tree and stops about a foot from the ground. As the cat runs toward the squirrel, it turns around and chases the cat halfway across the yard. Both stop and the chase reverses again with the cat running after the squirrel. This happens several times, back and forth. Wonder if this is one of the little squirrels you saw playing the same game with four of the kittens in the yard last summer.
Sit reading on your bed with Mama in your lap sound asleep during a raging blizzard outside. Watch Mama raise her head to the sound of the wind rattling the windows, slamming and shaking the house. Her sleepy eyes widen as she sees all the snow whipping by the window and hears icy pings hitting the glass. She turns to look at you, purring loudly with a look that says, “I’m so glad you took me in and I’m not outside in this weather!” Feel vindicated for adopting and protecting her and her many kittens.
Live alone. Go to the supermarket to buy cat food. Listen as people you know complain to you about how ridiculous it is to rescue animals or save the environment or travel into outer space while there are still homeless people and starving children who should be taken care of first. Note that these are the same people who do not help homeless people or feed starving children.
Join an animal rescue group because they were looking someone who knows how to domesticate and socialize a feral cat. Believe this is a good idea because socializing feral cats is now second nature to you. Imagine you will not have to bring any cats home from the rescue group. Learn that one of the group’s members will drop the cat, an adult tuxedo female, off at your home because the group doesn’t have a building and does its work from the homes of all its foster members. Tell the group when the cat is socialized and ready for adoption. The worker who dropped her off at your home exclaims “Oh, I thought you’d want to keep her!” You keep her.
Foster another cat from the group, a timid 5-month-old tuxedo male who was abandoned in a dumpster behind a restaurant. Cringe that they named him after the restaurant because it highlights where he was abandoned and triggers your own abandonment issues. Name him Ninja because of the sneaky way he saunters through the open the door when you think you are letting out one of the other cats, the adult tuxedo female who looks a lot like him. End up being a “foster failure” by keeping Ninja too.
The director of your rescue group arrives to give annual vaccinations to your group of cats and tells you that she’s moving several states away. Before she leaves, she says she would like you to socialize another feral cat she has had for some time because she hasn’t had time to spend socializing her. Bring the cat home and discover that she is affectionate with the other cats but is afraid of people. Notice that the other cats ignore her.
Get close to this cat by dangling a string in front of her. Sit in front of her while holding Mama who is very affectionate, enjoys being held, and purrs loudly every time you give her attention. She watches you and Mama interact with interest in her wide, curious eyes from her hiding place between the boxes you store in the corner of the room and she finally figures out that human contact can be enjoyable.
Call the director of the rescue group to tell her that this cat is now ready for adoption only to find out that she moved two weeks ago because she had a family crisis and had to leave early. You keep this cat too and quit the rescue group.
Make a will so that the rescue group you just quit will take care of your cats when you die. Mention in your will that you wish all 42 of your cats be present to comfort you when you to take your last breath.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2020 Emily Daniels