Do narcissists hate cats?
I think we are referring to domestic cats. And I also think that trying to answer the question is fruitless if we are honest. This is because, as I understand it, narcissism is part of a spectrum of so-called mental disorders and you will probably find it present with other personality traits. Therefore, it’s impossible to be precise when answering the question in the title. But despite that negative introduction perhaps we can take our lead from the best-known, modern narcissist who achieved the highest office on the planet, the former president of the United States, Donald Trump.
Several psychiatrists, at least, have stated that Donald Trump is a narcissist. He was the only president in 100 years not have a dog and you certainly can’t see him having a cat. Putting a domestic cat with him would be like placing the opposite poles of a magnet together: they’d repel each other. His excuse for not having a dog was that he didn’t have time. But I think he just doesn’t like pets that much because he’s too wrapped up in his own personality.
And this, I think, is the point to take away from this discussion, namely that a narcissist is a megalomaniac who enjoys exaggerated feelings of self-importance and cravings for admiration. They struggle for empathy. It’s all about navel-gazing and the self. It seems to me that a full-blown narcissist doesn’t have room in their mind for the love of a cat or even a dog. That’s giving love and narcissists want to receive it.
Some cat haters would say that cats are narcissists and if that is true then putting a human narcissist with a feline narcissist is bound to end up badly. Cats are not narcissist however. They might be somewhat independent compared to a dog and without doubt dogs are more likely to be loved by narcissists because they look up to their master for leadership. They admire their master which I guess is something that a narcissist would welcome.
If we are to answer the question it is probably fair to say that narcissists are not predisposed to liking domestic cats but within that wide spectrum of narcissistic behaviour you will find many who love them. This is borne out with first hand testimony on the quora.com website. One woman, Anna Keller, said that she is a person with NPD (narcissism personality disorder, I think that stands for) and she said that some narcissists probably do hate cats but that she is not one of them. Her cat, Frank, is her best friend and she adores him.
Another woman said that her ex-boyfriend or partner was a narcissist and he loved cats. When she was roughhousing with her cat he got annoyed because he was so sensitive towards the cat’s welfare. Another said that their mother was a narcissist and that she didn’t actively hate cats or dogs but did not possess “the ability to look after another living being”. That seems to have some truth to it in that it reflects on the inward-looking narcissistic personality, as I see it.
Another said that narcissists have an unusual relationship with pets because they regard them as “an object”. The relationship depends upon how their companion animal behaves. He thought that his ex-wife was a narcissist and that she neither hated nor love their companion animals. “Everything to a narcissist is an object. They relate to it depending upon how it reflects back to them.”
And finally, Catherine Bault on quora.com said that from her experience narcissists hate pets in general and they hate kids, especially if they are not theirs. They don’t like it when someone or something attracts attention away from them.
So, what is the conclusion? It’s hard to provide a precise answer as to whether narcissists hate cats because it is what I would describe as a spectrum disorder but for bona fides narcissists I would say that 80% of them dislike cats. That’s a guess of course.
SOME MORE ON HUMAN BEHAVIOUR:
I also get the sense Trump has a strong aversion to messes that might come with having a pet — perhaps that is a primary reason he chooses not to have a cat or dog? For example, he was chatting with Howard Stern about a charity ball at Mar-a-Lago in which an 80-year old guest hit his head after falling off stage. Trump described his reaction as, “I said, ‘Oh my God, that’s disgusting,’ and I turned away. I couldn’t—you know, he was right in front of me, and I turned away. I didn’t want to touch him…. He’s bleeding all over the place, I felt terrible. You know, beautiful marble floor, didn’t look like it. It changed color. Became very red…. And you have this poor guy, eighty years old, laying on the floor unconscious, and all the rich people are turning away. ‘Oh my God! This is terrible! This is disgusting!’ And you know, they’re turning away. Nobody wants to help the guy. His wife is screaming—she’s sitting right next to him, and she’s screaming.”
A person who has more concern for his marble floor than the well-being of a seriously injured human being has no business taking care of a pet, in my opinion. Can you imagine Trump’s reaction to accidentally stepping in a hairball or regurgitated food?
If Donald Trump is speaking truthfully about his reason for not having pets, then he is to be admired. It takes a strong person to admit that he/she is too busy, regardless of reason, to devote time and attention to another dependent, sentient being. That also suggests that the person knows the negative impact on that animal for being neglected. Two thumbs up for admitting a fault to the world.