It always amazes me when people so easily can say, “It’s just a cat” or “It’s just a dog” as if they have no feelings or soul of their own. In fact, I think animals have just as distinct and unique personalities as from person to person.
I will take my cat as an example, whose name is Kenji (I also call him Kenny, Ken, and Kenneth)
He will be two years old this December. I spend a lot of time at home, so I do know a lot about my cat. There’s still a lot to learn as far as raising a cat, but his personality has grown on me.
A year ago, before he got neutered I had a really hard time with him. He urinated on everything and kept me up at night with his prowling meows. One visit to the vet and a few short hours after being snipped and many of his habits changed. He stopped meowing late at night and he only used his litter box at that point, which was a huge relief for me.
Now he and I have a routine that I never experienced with any other cat. He follows me around and will be in absolutely any room I am in. Basically, if he can’t come to the bathroom with me, (as I often shut him out) he will cry and paw at the bottom of the door.
In the morning when I wake up, somehow he knows I am up. Maybe it’s the difference in pattern of my breathing, or maybe I move a certain way. I am not sure what it is, but at that point when I open my eyes, I hear a coo from his cat tree at the end of the bed, or when he’s on the floor the opposite side of me. If I respond to his coo, and tell him “Hello” or anything, he jumps on the bed to greet me.
At this point he follows me into the bathroom, where his litter box is as well. I have a small apartment so the bathroom is the only place where I can really put it.
For the rest of the day he will be in whichever room I am in. Now my cat is actually not the nicest cat. He is very timid around other people and hides. He is a little aggressive and claws me sometimes when he gets too hyper when he plays. But either way, he has his own personality and he can really lift my spirits up.
When I take a shower, he likes to sit on the back of the toilet. And yes, I do sing in the shower, and he will sing too.
If for some reason he happens to wander into another room for a moment, and I don’t see him anywhere, all it takes is for me to call him once. My mom has a cat that sits in the same spot all day. Calling her would not get her to move one inch. My cat however is very easily manageable. I can lead him from room to room just by coaxing him to keep following. Even if he’s a little scared at new surroundings, I can still assure him it’s okay, and he comes.
Often times I bring him to my parents house so I do have to move him from room to room. He does not like to be held very long, and I decided to let him keep all of his claws, so carrying him around like a baby is not an option for me.
If the litter box begins to be not to his liking, he will actually bring items into it such as rolls of toilet paper, caps, shavers; I think he somehow got a thing of lipstick in there. It’s kind of annoying, but also funny. When that happens his litter box gets cleaned immediately, because I know exactly what he’s asking for.
One time I left him for two days by himself, and he really punished me. An entire roll of toilet paper was unraveled, shredded, and landed in his litter box, along with chairs being knocked over.
Now I do realize a lot of pets may have these habits; some do, and some don’t. But I do believe every animal has their own personality. I had a cat before him, (named Hector), who sadly died of cancer, who was nothing like him. Hector loved to be held and when he was held he would wrap his paws around you as if he was hugging you. Hector also was not timid and was affectionate to everyone. Hector hissed if he felt threatened, Kenji does not.
Some day I will write a story about my sweet Hector. I am interested in other things people’s cats do. What kind of routine do you have with yours? People I know can tell me all they want that I should just “get rid of him” and “find a more people social” cat, but every cat has their own personality. The way he stays so close to me all day, I know it would be wrong to just cast him away just because he’s timid.
I think cats are wonderful pets. Dogs are too but I do not have one of my own right now. And I think we should all cherish their individual personalities just like with people.