Minnesota Musing: Cat People - How to Identify if You are One of Them
A cat person is one that other people associate with cats, many times the cat person does in fact have a cat. Although, you can be a cat person and not own a cat. I personally find myself to be a cat person, although I have not had a cat in over 30 years.
The First Cat
The first cat that I can remember having, was a striped cat I received from my second grade teacher back in the late 1960's. My teacher had named the cat Buster because that just seemed like a good cat name at the time.
I called it Tiger. Tiger was a female cat, which we discovered later when it produced a litter of kittens. We kept one kitten from that litter and named that kitten "Goshagains".
My second cat was named Tipper. You see when you name a cat, its usually based on the cat color or some cat behavior.
Tipper and I did not get along as well as Tiger and I did.
First, let me clarify that I do not have a cat. I have two dogs. I have had cats, in the past, but currently, I have none.
I know a little bit about cats. I know that you either find a kitten, and raise it from a baby, or you can go to a local shelter and purchase an older cat that perhaps has been declawed, litter box trained, and is set in its ways of being an established cat.
Cats are not like dogs. A dog will demand to know who you are. It will sniff at you to determine how many dogs you currently own, and God help you if it gets its own scent on you, since when you get home, you will get the jealous dog routine from your own dog, who will defintely ask many questions about who you have been with.
Yes. My memories of having a cat are mixed. I have had friendly cats, and I have had a few not so friendly cats. The last cat I owned, was a black cat with a white heart on its chest. It was a small cat with longer fur. She was of a breed that warmed up to one person and the rest of the people could just go away. My father was visting one day, and the cat decided to climb up on his lap. He commenced to absent mindedly pet her while she snuggled on his legs. At one point in our chat, he apparently stopped moving his hand across her back. That was unacceptable to her, and she reached around and snapped her teeth around his fingers. He was to continue and that was that.
Cats will identify with you if you show that you care at all. An aloof cat will suddenly start to crawl on your lap if you pass its initial scrutiny.
There are staunch cat people who will flippantly insist that their cats will not make friends with you and suddenly, you will find it pressing against your legs and purring, which really angers an opinionated cat person, who has been challenged by its own cat, which has deliberately made its cat owner a liar. Cats are like that.
Picking a Kitten
If you are going to pick a kitten, be aware that if you find a cat that wishes to control you at all, that is the kitten to pick.
If you put your hand down in a pile of kittens and one starts to sniff your hand, keep an eye on it. It may be your next cat. If a kitten starts to rub its face on your extended fingers, pay attention to it. It may be picking you.
That's the thing. You do not pick a kitten. The kitten picks you. You may hit it off with some kittens, and others may just decide you are too scary. Don't pick a kitten that is obviously afraid of you or is ready to bite your fingernails off. They will warm up to someone else.
Litter Box Training
If you are going to have a house cat, you will need to get a cat box. A cat box is a box or pan of some sort, large enough to comfortably fit the cat so it can crawl into it and go the the bathroom.
As I recall, I had a covered cat box which confined the cat little to the box. It also needed to be washed every once in a while, for the humidity in the cat poop and cat pee will cling to the sides of the inside and will add to the unpleasant aroma coming from the box.
Cats, although they are willing to use the cat box, do not like to have lots of chunks of poop to walk on, so you will need to remove hardened lumps as they appear. This is a daily chore. But, it must be done, or you will find some spot in your house that the cat will use instead, like behind your couch.
Feeding a Cat
Water is very important, and cat food is in stages. The younger kittens will require eating kitten food and as they grow, the cat food needs change as the cat grows older. You can choose dry cat food and add water to it, or you can purchase cans of cat food that are of a more textured, meat variety. Some cats are pampered by people who prefer to feed their cats from canned cat food. It is a personal choice.
I have often wondered why they do not have mouse flavored cat food, since I know that cats often chase mice, but, I think it's because they don't actually eat mice, just play with them.
Plus, I'm sure there is some human taste tester for cat food and I'm sure that mice flavored cat food would be unappealing to them. Smile.