Sunday 2 May 2021

Domestic cats' guardians are at the centre of their lives

It does us good to remember that cat owners are at the centre of the lives of their cats. A domestic cat's life revolves around the human home and their human caretaker. It is a human world that they live in and they have to do their best to adapt to it. There can be a bit of fiction sometimes because the domestic cat is not completely domesticated. That wild cat within seeps out often and it can cause a clash with human culture.

My cat when he was confined to the backyard (garden). Photo: MikeB

This is only a short note but something happens with my cat quite often which reminds me that the title to this article is correct. Although, the character of individual cats varies, I do believe that in the best households, where there is a strong bond between human and cat, the cat looks to the human as the centre of their world.

My cat is an indoor/outdoor cat nowadays although he started off living within the home and a back garden which was surrounded by a cat confinement fence. He broke out of it (only 1 in 1000 do I was told) so I gave up on that idea. But when he goes out for a quick patrol around his territory sometimes he comes back about 20 minutes later, walks through the cat flap, looks up at me, and immediately returns to his outside stroll.

He is checking up on me. He is checking that I am still there, a companion to come back to. An animal, in his eyes, who provides for him, gives him comfort, security and warmth both emotional and physical. So he is thinking of me sometimes when he is out there in the wild behaving as a wild cat. This reminds me that domestic cats' guardians are at the centre of their lives.

Perhaps you don't want your cat to think of you as the centre of their life. A lot of cat owners like their cat to be as independent as possible. This avoids them having to discharge their full responsibilities towards their cat's welfare. Perhaps I'm being unkind but I believe that to be true. A decent percentage of domestic cats are, to a certain extent, neglected. Their owners think of domestic cats as independent creatures and treat them as such. But, if you, through years of patient kindness and tender loving care, develop a close relationship with your cat both of you gain more out of the relationship and what I say above becomes a fact.

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