Pet Tips

Cats are Affectionate – Pet tip 190

Different people get house cats for different reasons. Some people are simply cat people; they love everything about cats and often have a few of them. Other people get cats as a compromise. They want to get a pet but they don’t feel they have the time to take care of a dog and they have heard that cats are more independent, they sleep more and generally require less interaction than a dog. Although these points are mostly true, many prospective cat owners mistakenly think that another compromise they have to make has to do with cats showing affection. Many people think cats are not affectionate.

This belief that cats are not affectionate is false. It’s true that cats are not as affectionate as dogs but most domestic house cats are still affectionate. The difference is that cats seek out affection on their own terms whereas a dog will often shower you with affection 24/7. Cats also seem to have more individual variability with regard to the quantity of affection that they shower upon their owners. As mentioned, most cats are affectionate with their owners, with many cats being extremely affectionate. Many cats will let you rub them for hours and many cats will try to rub on you, or jump into your lap and purr throughout the day. Many cats will also follow you around all day long.

This buildup of affection does take time though and this is another difference between cats and dogs. Most dogs seem to form a quicker attachment to their owners than do cats. Some cats bond and become affectionate right away but many cats take a few days to a few weeks to a few months to bond and become affectionate. Another factor that plays into this is the age that you adopt the cat. The younger the cat is when it is adopted the faster it is likely to bond with you and become affectionate. There is one caveat to this, don’t adopt the cat before 8-10 weeks of age as the cat should still be with its mother and litter-mates at this time. At this crucial period of time the cat is learning how to socialize with its litter-mates.

Another misconception about cat affection is the thinking that cats are completely solitary creatures and are not affectionate with other cats. Perhaps our human interaction has something to do with this but cats in multi-cat households can often be seen grooming one another, marking one another and displaying signs of affection toward one another. Even when they are not living inside of a house, cats that interact with humans on some level seem to tolerate each other more easily and show affection to one another. A good example is barn cats. Cats often form colonies around barns, and many of these cats are extremely friendly toward one another. Perhaps it’s due to the fact that in many of these cases there is no shortage of food so there is no need for cats to fight each other, but many cats can be seen living in harmony and displaying signs of affection.

At the end of the day it’s safe to say that cats are indeed affectionate. There is variety with regard to how quickly they become affectionate, but they have the ability and the desire to bond with us. All we need to do is be patient, and then we may not even feel like we made a compromise by getting a cat instead of a dog.

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