1. badgersdaughter says

    The BBC say it. They did a report on an “experiment” in which they examined human babies’ reactions to being left in the care of a stranger briefly and their reactions to seeing their mothers again. Then they repeated the situation with dogs and their human family.

  2. badgersdaughter says

    oops, I hit Enter too soon… anyway, the dogs’ reactions were similar to those of the babies. They did the same thing with cats. The cats were content to play with the strangers and not run to their human family when the human entered the room again.

    The BBC report chose to use this as evidence that our cats can’t love us. Any cat owner could have told them that cats aren’t dogs or apes. Cats express love by mimicking how kittens relate to their mother, mostly. This does include physical bonding and touching, but when threatened, cats run away, to a safe place, not to a safe person. So what? The BBC report was ignorant.

    • Elaine Watkins says

      I adopted a stray cat about three and a half years ago. She’d been dumped in a church parking lot, and walked over to greet me as I arrived for a meeting. She stood outside the glass door, making insistent eye contact and displaying cute body language to all of us women in the group. When we went downstairs, she tracked us via the outside walkway to the lower level and repeated her loud entreaties. When we finished the meeting and went back upstairs, she was there at the front door again. She was cold, skinny, dirty and desperate, but not in the least afraid, and it has often occurred to me since that time, what is it about humans? What is it about these big, oversized, potentially VERY dangerous creatures whose day-to-day lives are far removed from theirs, that would make an otherwise independent-minded and aloof being such as a cat make that type of connection? Surely there were other cats nearby, or perhaps friendly dogs in the houses on that block — but how is it that cats know that humans are the ones to go to when they need real care? I’m sure my cat had human owners at one point, since she knew how to use a litterbox, adapted quickly to a permanently indoor existence, and responded to spoken language and the sound of a can opener. But cats are also believed to have very short memories, and this one had been living rough for months. How did she know who to approach, and how? Three and a half years later, my “best pet ever” is nothing short of a miracle to me.

  3. StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return! says

    Who says cats don’t love? Not me.

    Great picture – good to see. Cheers.

  4. lorn says

    The cat no more loves you than you love your couch. To a cat your reclining body is just a warm and soft place to perch. Your association with food doesn’t hurt either. A friend’s cat snuggles up on her bed when she leaves the electric blanket on and gazing lovingly out the pillow.

    They curl up on a human and the human, always thinking it is about them, assumes the cat is having loving feelings about them. They do the same thing to inanimate objects. Humans project their emotional attachment onto an animal just looking for a warm, soft place to curl up. The effect is exaggerated when humans insist on keeping the heat low, or the AC high. The warmest spot in the room is often on top of you. Don’t mistake it for love.

  5. says

    We currently are staff to a community of 5 cats. That is 7 beings. Every pairing has different ways of relating, and for every cat there are different weights to the different pairings. We just love them all.

    Cat # 6, the subject of the webblog my name points to, also suffered separation anxiety whenever he lost track of where I was. He is still my wallpaper on my iThings. Five years after he passed on.

    As to more than 2 beings relating together? More? Truly a chatoic system. I have to herd cats every morning just to get out of the garage.

    The biggest dfference I have noted between humans and canines vs cats is: it is pretty clear to me that cats include context as a large component of whether or not they recognize you. When they show affection it is because the contet matches, when not it is more likey wrong context than they don’t love you any more.

  6. smrnda says

    Wonderful picture! Love the kitty.

    On more than 2 cats – we’re having better luck with 3 than with just 2, since the 2nd cat would chase or bother the 1st cat (which is much less sociable) and now cats 2 and 3 run around and leave cat 1 on my lap or near the computer.

  7. haitied says

    cool #7 is totes a scientist who studies cats, probably likes them a lot too. . Seriously tho. I’ve had my share of different cats and am aware of the human tendency to project emotions, that being said some cats hate people some like being social with them, some bond to a single person and get upset when the person shows affection to others, much in the same way dogs do, the reality is dogs have had a head start on the human association / domestication thing. We screwed up somewhere with feline domestication though, somehow loving servant turned into benevolent overlord. . I think the problem with trying to divine what a cat is feeling is a lot of cats are very opportunistic, they will take attention any way they can. Really though I’ve yet to find 2 people who agree on what the fuck love is anyways, so good luck getting people to agree on weather or not your cat can love you.

  8. Bob Dobbs says

    I think you’re confusing love with pride of ownership.
    We’re just lucky we outweigh them by lots and so don’t usually become prey candidates.

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