Friendship Between Cats
by Elisa Black-Taylor
Furby and Marley
I love to observe the cats at Furby's House. It's very much a study in cat psychology. I've noticed something unusual happening over the past six months or so and I'd like to know if any of you have anything similar going on.
I've often asked myself whether cats know what they look like. Do they look in a mirror and say "ah, that's me and I'm a beautiful kitty." Are cats colorblind? I don't know the answer to these questions, but since I dream in color, I have an open mind.
Now for what's going on at Furby's House. The cats are pairing up with cats of the same color as themselves. Take a look at the pictures I've included for this article.
Garfield and Cupcake
I first noticed this with Garfied and Cupcake. Both are orange/red tabbies. They were always together until Cupcake went to a forever home in N.C. Then Garfield and Jethro began a friendship. Until Jethro went up for adoption at Greenville County Animal Care Adoption Center next to where he was rescued.
Garfield went around the house for weeks meowing for Jethro. He just doesn't understand what happened to his best friend. Then Alto enters the picture. He's a larger exact replica of Garfield and Garfield has fallen in love with him. We don't know how long we'll have Alto since he's a foster. I hate to think what will happen to Garfield when another best friend leaves us.
Here's a video I made around the time I noticed the bonding of similar cats. It shows Garfield giving Cupcake a bath.
Marley and Furby
Then there's Marley. She came in early summer. She's a Maine Coon mix and at first glance resembles Furby. Furby fell in love with her immediately. We'd catch them napping together all over the house.
Sammy and Frog
Sammy, from our very first rescue has a best friend named Frog. Frog's a foster for a friend of mine whom I took off her hands for awhile so she could spend more time with her foster kitties. Sammy and Frog are almost identical gray tabbies and lay together in one of the "bad boy" cages. We have blankets set up in there and the cats enjoy a nap with the door open. The photo of Frog is an old one. Th two cats are the same size now.
Tom and Misty
Even Tom and Misty seem to know they're both gray cats with a similar shape and features. Misty is our senior declawed girl who also writes for pictures-of-cats.
Jasper and Johnny
Jasper, from our first rescue, and a kitten named Johnny could also pass for father and son and bonded from the day we brought Johnny home.
Cassie and Midnight
Cassie and Midnight, our black kitties sometimes lay together. I wonder if their time together will increase as Midnight grows older. Technically, she's still a kitten.
Mia and Baby Fluffy
And last of all we had the relationship between Mia and Baby Fluffy. Again, Maine Coon mixes. We lost Baby Fluffy to panleuk the Friday before Christmas. Mia was really sweet on him. She gave him baths and took naps with him. Mia has never done this for any other cat we have.
So what attracts cats to other cats who look like them in appearance? Does it go deeper, meaning do they choose their friends according to personality? Do cats give off a scent according to coloring or breed that attracts their own kind to them? It baffles me. I've watched this too many times over the past year for it to be coincidence.
What do the readers here think determines friendship between cats?
I wish I had room to add all of the cats and their look-alike friends. I hope you all enjoy the examples I've posted.
P.S. I have a new page that will keep everyone up to date with my rescues and fosters. It's at Furby's Halfway House on Facebook.