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This article about cats made me mad and sad

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
USA Weekend has an article today, "The Facts about Cats." I am just too and to write anymore so you will have to read it:

http://www.usaweekend.com/08_issues/...80706cats.html
post #2 of 11
I read it and like you I was mad at the idiots and sad for the cats. I did do a search on "Rebranding Felix" and came across this page. There are a couple of links to presentations which have some interesting information. In particular "Rebranding cats" goes through the idea of rebranding and what it can mean to cats.

This rebranding effort could be really helpful to all cat owners as we may finally start getting the research in cat health care that we know they deserve.
post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by katachtig View Post
I read it and like you I was mad at the idiots and sad for the cats. I did do a search on "Rebranding Felix" and came across this page. There are a couple of links to presentations which have some interesting information. In particular "Rebranding cats" goes through the idea of rebranding and what it can mean to cats.

This rebranding effort could be really helpful to all cat owners as we may finally start getting the research in cat health care that we know they deserve.
I found the "Rebranding Cats" interesting - particularly because I have an MBA.

I swear, the cat on p. 62 is related to Butzie,
post #4 of 11
Yes, I agree cats are treated with less regard, but people abuse dogs plenty, too. And cats as pets outstripping dogs is a relatively recent phenomenon.

I didn't know how wonderful cats could be until I met my boyfriend's RB cat, Cato. He totally changed me. Now I am an unrepentant cat lover ( dogs, too, but cats are special.)
post #5 of 11
I've always felt that there were at least two basic reasons why cats tend to be treated as second-class citizens compared to dogs:

1) People perceive dogs, particularly working dogs, to be much more useful to humans, who value the services they provide. Examples: police dogs, guard dogs, etc. Cats don't sniff out drugs at airports and don't chase burglars off the property.

2) Dogs are easier to train, mostly because they have an inherent need and desire to please their humans, who represent the pack leaders. Therefore, people find it much easier to achieve dominance over a dog. Quite frankly, this fits in perfectly with mankind's general desire to exert control over his surroundings to the greatest possible extent, using force where necessary to achieve this objective. Since cats pretty much only wish to please themselves, it is harder (impossible is more like it) for humans to attain similar results with cats. This can be frustrating to some people, who, not knowing any better, tend to attempt to train cats using the same methods as they would for dogs. When that approach inevitably fails, they label cats as "aloof" and conclude that cats are obviously inferior to dogs.

Just my two cents.
post #6 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by RobertM View Post
I've always felt that there were at least two basic reasons why cats tend to be treated as second-class citizens compared to dogs:

1) People perceive dogs, particularly working dogs, to be much more useful to humans, who value the services they provide. Examples: police dogs, guard dogs, etc. Cats don't sniff out drugs at airports and don't chase burglars off the property.

2) Dogs are easier to train, mostly because they have an inherent need and desire to please their humans, who represent the pack leaders. Therefore, people find it much easier to achieve dominance over a dog. Quite frankly, this fits in perfectly with mankind's general desire to exert control over his surroundings to the greatest possible extent, using force where necessary to achieve this objective. Since cats pretty much only wish to please themselves, it is harder (impossible is more like it) for humans to attain similar results with cats. This can be frustrating to some people, who, not knowing any better, tend to attempt to train cats using the same methods as they would for dogs. When that approach inevitably fails, they label cats as "aloof" and conclude that cats are obviously inferior to dogs.

Just my two cents.
I think the whole training/obedience issue plays a role in the amount of veterinary care they respectively get, too. Given my druthers, I'd much rather take even multiple dogs to the vet's than a cat, especially my own cat (who is known as "the cat from hell" at our vets' office, and isn't half as bad as his brothers)!
post #7 of 11
I agree with the article on most of its points (although I think that quote from Phoebe on "Friends" was taken out of context, given the character I highly doubt she would have downplayed a cat's value ).

I think, though, that cats seen less at the vets could have another cause. My cats, compared to my dogs, are much healthier (even being fed crap food). Siam, and Ashten (RIP) never had to go to the vet for anything other than their routine checkups and shots (until Ashten got old and got hyperthyroidism). My lab, Daisy, has had to go to the vet many, many times in her six years, mostly due to recurrent infections in various places. I have seen many more dogs than cats with chronic health problems.
post #8 of 11
After reading this I was a little more sensitive to it. I went to a movie and in the previews, a cat was kicked for laughs in one. In the other (an animated feature), a cat was sitting on the villain's shoulder and a cat was kidnapped by the hero dog because supposedly he knew the villain.
post #9 of 11
As an owner of both dogs and cats, I can understand a lot in the article. Maybe not agree with it now, but understand why.

I grew up with a dog, and was a dog lover until I inherited a kitten my boss found as a stray. I would have never hurt a cat growing up, and felt honored if one actually wanted my attention, but I was a die hard dog lover. Then, years later, this little kitten showed me that cats have personalities too!

When I was a kid, you rarely heard of an "indoor only" cat. The only people who kept them strictly indoors were either crazy old ladies, or if the cat was older and it wasn't safe for them to be outside. Most of the people that had cats let them run loose, would feed them on the porch and might let them in the kitchen when it got cold. Spaying was only done for medical emergencies (unless you had the money to do it for "no reason" and it was frowned upon by most vets as an unnecessary procedure). This was 30 years ago.

Because cats were basically considered "live stock" and not a part of the family back then (I'm not saying there weren't exceptions, but that was the norm) a lot of people still look at them that way. I know my grandparents hated cats because they would kill their bird and squirrels in the yard. If the mind frame was different back then, the cats wouldn't be allowed out to do what they do...hunt.

I think things are taking a turn for the better. More people are keeping their cats in or building enclosures but there are still many people that haven't been exposed to an actual family cat.

Also, dogs bond MUCH faster that cats. I'm not saying cats don't bond...believe me, I have one that I wish wouldn't bond so much! But, most cats are aloof, do their own thing, play on their terms, give love when they want to give it. Completely opposite of most dogs. With my dogs, if someone comes over, the greet them as a new friend. Tails-a-wagging, mouths-a-barking, nose-a-sniffing just trying to make the new guy part of the pack. The cats, on the other hand, lay on the back of the couch (or their various perches), twitch their ears and blink their eyes as if to say "ok, I've acknowledged you...now, lets see if you are worthy of my attention". For someone who doesn't understand cats, who are you going to vote for?

I think the cat ownership has gone up because cats don't have to go out every so many hours. My life was much more simple before we added dogs into the mix. Clean the litter box, fill the food feeder, fill the water jug...ok, we're good to go. Cats are so easier but they take longer to bond with someone. Especially if that person only has them for "company" and not because they love him.

Yeah, I hate that people give up animals because they don't match their couch or they shed to much. Believe me, if that was a concern of mine....I would have goldfish! I don't understand people like that.

Ok...rambling done. Hopefully something good will come out of the article. Maybe some people will wake up and realize that cats can be part of the family too.
post #10 of 11
I was a dog person too but I have noticed that people who love cats REALLY love cats. Once you get to know them they are magnificent to me. I see why the Egyptians worshiped them.
Now we see cats going on leashed walks and dogs using litter boxes.
My dogs were great and I loved them dearly but my cats are in my soul if that makes sense. We communicate easily and they have such individual personalities. I love the different breeds and markings.
When I meet up with another cat person we have at least 15 minutes or more bonding over our cats.
When I found out I could not have more children my cats have healed that wound for me by being my furry babies instead.
I think those who stereotype cats are missing out and I hope things turn around even more.
post #11 of 11
I have always been a dog person. They are easier to train, and much easier to understand (for me anyhow). Hubby and I wanted to get a dog, but the hours that we work were not compatible to having a well-adjusted dog. There is no way we could expect it to stay inside for 10+ hours during the day and we don't have a fenced backyard.

We decided that a cat would be a good substitute for a dog. Now we have two cats and they fill the house with love and good energy, but they are not the same as a dog. I find them difficult to understand, but I love them both very dearly and would never give them up. My hubby also seems to really love them and he was really anti-cat before we adopted them.
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