Tuesday 15 June 2021

Agitated cat owner - agitated cat

You can't have a calm and contented domestic cat companion if the owner, or to put that in a better way, the cat's guardian, is agitated and anxious. If the owner's mind is restless and incessantly worried it is very hard for that person to achieve a calm environment and an ambience within the home which is conducive to contentment in their domestic cat. 

And that is not in any way to criticise anybody. I know, like anybody else, how easy it is to have a mind which is not restful but overly anxious and racing sometimes. Panic attacks are on the horizon.

John Butler. Photo: His website.
John Butler. Photo: His website.

I do believe that many people have anxiety problems because of the pressures of life. Life has become more complicated with the Internet compared to the relatively innocent days of the 1970s. Life is speeding up with technology, particularly artificial intelligence. The world is more febrile, I feel, particularly so with Donald Trump. 

It is calmer now under Biden but I sense that there is tension in the world, between on the one hand Russia and China and on the other hand America and her allies. A war is not unimaginable and it may be playing out already as a cyberwar. 

The Covid-19 pandemic has made matters considerably worse for many. Job and financial problems have been exacerbated. We are not out of it and will have to learn to live with it and any other new virus,

This background undermines stability and a settled mind. A lot of people have panic attacks and their lives are quite difficult to manage. Many people simply don't cope and succumb to alcoholism or drug abuse. Once again, I fully understand and am highly sympathetic to their mental health problems. It almost seems like the world is driving people to these problems.

But, set against this background, cat owners need to do their best to maintain a calm and balanced mind which feeds through to the ambience in which both they and their cat lives. Quiet calmness and stability backed up by great routines between the human cat caretaker and their cat fosters, very strongly, a happy cat.

And it is the ultimate goal of all cat owners to ensure that their cat is happy. Of course, there are many aspects to achieving this goal such as ensuring the cat is in good health and safe from injury and in the worst-case premature death. That's why people keep their cats indoors full-time and why that mode of cat caretaking is becoming more popular. It is also a lifestyle which emphasises the need to make the home environment enriched and calm.

But in this article, I would like to focus on the calm cat owner and how to achieve it. Each person will have their own way and many of them are already calm enough but if you suffer from anxieties and it is manifested in your behaviour it's going to be felt by your cat and in the environment generally.

I'll get to the point now: there's an old guy, a retired British farmer, John Butler, 84, has a YouTube channel in which he talks about meditation and how to calm the restless mind. He's become quite famous and was featured in The Times today which is why I am mentioning him here. I immediately felt the importance of what he says in the modern world which, I guess, is why he has become popular.

I do believe, too, that the default position for a domestic cat's state of mind tends towards being anxious for two reasons, (1) they are living in the human world which is inherently alien despite 10,000 years of domestication because the domestic cat is barely domesticated and (2) they have acute senses and are acutely aware of hostility and the need to survive which can ramp up the agitation levels.

The agitated cat owner is likely to have an agitated cat and in opposition to that the calm and balanced cat owner is likely to be living with a cat who feels the same way. Everyone can find their own way to calmness but it may be useful to take a look at this elderly man's YouTube channel to see whether you can glean one or two tips from his words.

Cat owners should aspire to creating a calm ambience for their cat packed with reassuring routines and interactions. John Butler's views may help.

Below are three rather obtuse quotes from him and below that is a video from his channel. Stay calm.

Butler's words of wisdom:

"Feel your feet on the ground-listen and look."

"In order to be what we are, we have to come out of what we are not."

"What is it like when a carrot is pulled from the ground? The ground is left behind. And the carrot is lifted into another realm. All the teaching is left behind."

P.S. It goes without saying that the human-to-human relationship can have a big impact on the home environment. Our relationships are vital to the wellbeing of our cat.

Note: This is a video from another website. Sometimes they are deleted at source which stops them working on this site. If that has happened, I apologise but I have no control over it.

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