- Pets and Animals
The Top 5 Reasons Cats Improve Your Life
Cats are the new little black dress
Okay, not really. In fact, I gave up long ago on ever wearing black again as everything I own is covered in a fine patina of cat hair. As a long time cat owner, I have a deep love of anything that meows. However, even I sometimes need a reason not to chuck my furry babies into the streets. Cute and fluffy though they may be, cats are also expensive, exhausting, and aloof, destructive, or downright annoying depending on the phase of the moon. As such, I've spent years justifying my decision to continue to own cats, sometimes to other people but mostly to myself. So for any cat owner ready to tear their hair out or to non-pet owners thinking of bringing home a new companion, let me give you my top 5 reasons owning a cat gives you a competitive advantage. Also, it's an excuse to make you stare at gratuitous pictures of my own cats!
All pictures were taken by me. In case you're interested, the orange tabby is Big Fluffy and the grey is Felix. If you want to see more of them along with other cat topics, visit Trial By Cat or visit my other cat lens!
1 - Cats Improve Your Health
Cats are the magic pill to better health. They can lower your blood pressure, fight depression, and boost your immunity. Fact. Google it. Boo-ya!
I don't know about you but cuddling up with my cats after a bad day at work, a breakup, or even just when I'm a little lonely is enough to cheer me up. They may not cure cancer (yet), but just being around cats can lower anxiety which is good for overall health. Plus, stress induces quite a number of illnesses and can lead to long-term damage, so just avoid that whole mess. Go to the animal shelter today.
2 - Cats Provide Companionship
Sometimes more than you bargained for. When they are constantly underfoot and tripping you, just remember that you're not alone. You may have a whole wide world that is currently ignoring you, but you ARE their whole world and they just want to be with you. That changes your perspective about things.
Cats may own the most comfortable seat in the house, but they don't hog the remote. When I'm scared in the dark, I make sure I have a cat with me because they'll see the zombies before I do. They don't care that you pronounce nuclear wrong or try to sing opera in the shower - they're just there for you.
They also make great portable space heaters.
3 - Cats Both Start and End Conversations
Owning cats provides endless fodder for conversation as well as the best excuses to get out of one. I think cat owners all relate on the same issues, but cat antics are great conversation starters. Many people don't want to look at pictures of your ugly baby but they'll gladly watch a 15 second clip of your cat jumping in and out of a box that you shot with your iphone. You can relate, you can laugh, or you can even debate the merits of owning cats or the morality of owning one if that's your thing.
However, never underestimate the power of cats to relieve you from a boring conversation. Likely, any number of vet visits have given you fodder to excuse yourself from a situation. In fact, I just had a conversation this morning about rectal dams with my vet that would shoo most people away from me at lunch. Really digging into the finer points of your favorite cat litter is another option.
4 - Cats Provide Endless Entertainment
Note that I said endless and not free. If I pay money for a toy, there is an 80% chance that they will refuse to play with it. But if I bring home a box, watch out world! It's become the new Cardboard Castle of the Cat dynasty in Apartmentland. Regardless of what they deign proper for a good workout, nothing is more fun that scaring my cats with plastic bags or watching them chase each others' tails. If you don't find cat antics funny, then you are dead inside.
For example, here's my cat Felix in super stealth mode, hiding in a cardboard tube. He thinks he is absolutely a ninja.
But the fun doesn't stop there. Funny cats have infiltrated the internet in the form of Lolcats, funny cat videos, and other memes. Technology allows us to easily exploit our furry families when we squeeze them into embarrassing cat sweaters or catch them falling off their perch during a nap. Luckily for us, lacking opposable thumbs means they will never find out.
Snobby Cats Still Love Toys
Only selective ones though. Of all the cat toys, games, tunnels, and cat perches I've bought, it seems that some of the cheaper toys works better for me. Also, I'd reconsider buying a cat perch. The box forts I made for my cats they actually loved, but I dropped $120 on a professional cat tree and NOPE. They're not having it!
My cats don't like the dried catnip, which is fine since they also manage to scatter it all over the carpet. I bought this not sure if they would like it, but it was cheap enough to give it a shot. Now they LOVE it! It's also useful for distracting them when I need to get them into their cat carriers.
They have never chased a ball more. I figured if they didn't play with it or use it as a nail scratcher, then I'd just give it away. However, not only do they use it but I've had mine for about four years now and it still looks good. I replace the middle cardboard bit about once a year and it costs less than $4.
You can never go wrong with a funny cat video and here are some of my favorites!
5 - Cats Are A Selective Person Deterent
I don't know about you, but I know plenty of people who I want to strangle on a regular basis who are also allergic to cats. This works totally in my favor.
"I wish so much you could come to my dinner party but there is cat hair and dander all over my house and I don't own a vacuum or dust or clean. Ever."
This works equally well on my friends who have babies that I would rather not have screaming to my neighbors through the walls.
"My cats aren't accustomed to children and they bite. Hard."
So they don't have kids or cat allergies? All is not lost, my friends.
"My cat has been sick lately and thrown up on all available seating and have booby trapped the rest of the house instead of using their litter box. Also, they attack strangers. And they have fleas."
Got any great cat stories? Want to share your favorite reason to be a cat owner? Let us know in the comments!