Are you in sync with your cat?

Being in sync with your cat is good for him/her. I’ll use ‘him’ to mean him or her. It is good for both of you especially your cat because it is reassuring which promotes wellbeing. So what do I mean by being ‘in sync’?

The best way to explain is to provide an example. I have just finished reading the Sunday newspaper with my cat on my lap. He nearly always sits on my lap when I read the newspaper or watch television.

My cat is in sync with me
My cat is in sync with me. Photo: MikeB
Until September 7th I will give 10 cents to an animal charity for every comment. It is a way to help animal welfare without much effort at no cost. Comments help this website too, which is about animal welfare.

When I stop reading the paper I throw it onto the coffee table. My cat regards this as a signal to get off my lap. He was never trained. He knows that I get up about five minutes after reading the paper. He’s just learned it and I never have to say anything for him to get off my lap. He does it before I open my mouth.

Another similar example: I am watching television with him on my lap. I turn off of the TV and chill out for a few minutes. He gets of my lap without a word said because he understands that I have finished watching the television. He does not know that I am watching the television but he does know that I will be getting up because I have finished whatever I am doing.

Once again he has learned my behaviours and routines over the years and is fully in sync with them. His behaviour and actions are in sync with mine.

Here’s another example. I go out for a walk in Richmond Park. He goes out the back door cat flap for a walk behind the house. He leaves via the cat flap at about the same time.

When I return from buying the newspaper he greets me on the pavement (sidewalk) and we walk inside the house together. He will ask for a treat at this time and he’ll get it.

There are many more examples which I won’t bore you with. It is like a dance that has been choreographed by both of us over 6 years of living closely together.

It certainly helps a lot to be retired as I am lucky enough to spend far more time with him. And my entire life is knitted into his life. I spend far more time at home with him. All this fosters a incredibly close relationship.

I am blessed too in having raised him from a 7 week old kitten. He has matured and over the last year learned to sync with me. His extra maturity is nice. He is more sensible and more of a homer. He likes to be inside more. More contact with me. More syncing.

There is a huge amount of reassurance in it for both. Predictability and knowing what is going to happen in a chaotic world is good for mental health.

This is one reason why cats and dogs are so good for us especially at this strange time caused by the pandemic. The world is unusual. It’s actually strange and it feels dangerous to some people. Also some people strange times can lead to stressful times. This in turn can lead to borderline mental health issues. Domestic cat companionship helps to manage lives. The cat is the most reliable and predictable companion, more so than a human.

There is a story today in the news media about a torrent of young girls in the UK developing tics. It is not full-blown Tourette’s but a tic. This is a result of stress and perhaps tiredness and anxiety. Doctors are perturbed by the development. The surge is linked to Covid-19. Young people see a difficult future and it worries them.

I would advise a family cat! I would get into a great routine. Get synced up and feel calmer.

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