I was at the club the other playing Scrabble with some friends. Sounds cosy doesn’t it? Sometimes I do activities other than working on the website you know ;).
Anyway, a friend of mine, an old gentleman, said he wanted to get a cat again. He’d had a cat years ago and missed him. He likes cats, which came as no surprise to me. You can tell who the cat lovers are can’t you?
He said his wife also liked cats. So what was the problem? There are cats all over the place who’d love to live with this guy.
He told me his wife wouldn’t get a cat again because she couldn’t go through the difficulties of a cat dying. My friend would probably die before the cat but his wife, being younger, would outlive their cat. She would have to go through that tough time when a cat dies.
As cats have a lifespan that is a fraction of the human’s we are bound to have to suffer the emotional torment of losing our beloved cat – if we love cats. I guess some cat owners don’t really love cats. They want to get rid of them.
That got me thinking. I understand the sentiment. I have lost two cats, one to an accident and the other to old age. I am yet to get over the first loss despite it happening almost 20 years ago. When my old lady cat was dying it was agony for me and her I guess. She was better at it than me, though. The whole emotional roller coaster spanned about 9 months before she died and it still hurts now after her death more than a year ago.
An added trauma with really caring for a cat is struggling with that most difficult of decisions: when to gently put her to sleep if that is the best course of action.
But are we to succumb to those emotions and allow them to present a barrier to adopting a cat that needs a home? A person who suffers when their cat dies will be a very good cat caretaker. There are lots of cats who need a very good cat caretaker. Good cat guardians/caretakers are a precious resource to be used.
Death is a part of life. Being sad is also a part of life. We need to accept these things. I feel that people are unwilling to accept sadness in a world that has difficulty in accepting the difficult bits of life. It is like depression. Back in the old days people called it being sad or melancholy. Today it is a medical condition requiring treatment – drugs. This is wrong.
My argument is that my friend’s wife is wrong. I am not being critical. I am sensitive to her feelings. When we adopt a cat we do it for the life of the cat. We factor in all the things that are going to happen including, the joys, the expense, the worry and the sadness when she passes on to a better world. It’s a bundle of emotions called living. We are able to adopt the right mindset to travel that journey. And the joy vastly outweighs the sadness.