A cat at the Kitimat Community Humane Society. (Clare Rayment/Kitimat Northern Sentinel)

A cat at the Kitimat Community Humane Society. (Clare Rayment/Kitimat Northern Sentinel)

Clare’s Corner: Realizing I’m becoming the stereotypical ‘cat lady’

When it comes to pets, I tend to be a cat person rather than a dog person

If I had to pick, I would say I’m a cat person.

A lot of time, when I tell people this, the response I get is, “What? But you’re so happy and bubbly, like a dog! Nothing like a cat!”

And maybe that’s true. Or maybe these people just haven’t met the right cat.

Most cats you meet are not, in fact, happy, bubbly, in-your-face pets. The cat stereotype is laid back, elusive, and grumpy. However, most cats I meet are an in-between. Yes, they’re more laid back than an excited pup, but they still very much want your attention and will get in your face and between your feet to get it.

My old cat, Carmello, used to demand attention first thing in the morning, when I got home from school, and as soon as my light went off for bed at night. After school he’d just run over to me and ask to be cuddled or pet, then let outside. But morning and night, his demands came in the form of sitting directly on my chest and meowing a loud, deep meow until I started petting him.

He liked to make sure he was always in the same room as me, but would also make it appear as though I had followed him into the room and not the other way around. More of a, “Oh, you are already sitting in the seat I planned to come sit in? Well, I guess I’ll just have to lie in your lap then, we’ll have to share.”

All my life I’ve had a cat. My first cat, Georgie, was a Siamese. After he passed, we got Elly, a grey and white girl who used to be fairly elusive, but had gotten much mushier with age. Then I had Carmello, who sadly passed last January, but provided a lot of fun and comfort for the beginning of my final year at school.

I couldn’t say one exact reason why I’d consider myself a cat person rather than a dog person, there’s just something about cats that I find comforting.

Majority of dogs are naturally very friendly. Of course, there’s the exceptions but, like cats with their elusive stereotype, dogs have the bubbly, personable stereotype. And while, yes, I do tend to be a happy, bubbly person most of the time, I think part of the reason I like cats so much is because of their more elusive nature.

I tend to be more of an introvert, so in a job that involves talking to people almost the entire day, I enjoy having calm, quiet nights to myself to unwind and recharge for the next day.

Getting home from school and having Carmello come sit on my lap while I did homework was always such a cozy, comforting feeling, one I miss very much with not having a pet right now.

This isn’t to say that I don’t love dogs — I do. I grew up with two small dogs at my house and I love them to bits. And seeing dogs on the street that get excited to see you, that’s absolutely one of the best feelings in the world.

But if someone asked me what pet I wanted to get next, I’d say cat. A big reason, at this point, being the amount of effort cats take versus dogs, as I work most days and sometimes evenings. But even workload aside, having a small, fluffy companion to come home to, and having it sit in your lap and purr is such a heartwarming sensation.

Who knows if I’ll get another cat soon or not. I feel like it’s one of those situations that just has to happen, especially because it’s usually the cat that picks you.

And maybe that’s just it. Cat people aren’t cat people because they choose to be cat people, but because that life chose them. So if I end up being a crazy cat lady, honestly that’s okay with me. Just grab me a book and a mug of tea, as well, and I’ll be set for the year.

— Clare Rayment, Kitimat Northern Sentinel editor

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