Here are some thoughts on our relationship with cats by Jackson Galaxy. Jackson gave an interview to the New York Times and in it he expresses some interesting views. Personally, I don’t think it is that good an interview but as mentioned it is interesting. One problem is that it may have been overly condensed because the New York Times say that it has been condensed and edited. I sense that some of the context may have been taken out of the interview.
He says that but for his experience with animals he would have been dead 20 years ago. It is animals that keep him honest and without living a rigorously honest life he would relapse to being what I understand to mean an alcoholic. It appears that Jackson Galaxy is a recovering alcoholic and his relationship with animals including cats help to keep him sober. This is probably the most important point he makes in his interview. The emotional honesty of cats grounds us. It is refreshing and charming and in stark contrast to human behaviour.
Jackson Galaxy believes that he has roots in the spirit world and he learns from cats what lies beyond the tangible. He believes that cats are in touch with things that we cannot see and touch. For example, Jackson believes that we are surrounded by energy and that cats are tuned in to this. An instance would be when cats stare at a spot on the wall. Jackson believes that they are locked into an energy pattern in a corner of the room and they are observing it and taking it in. We should allow ourselves to accept this. I wonder if he is correct. This may seem far-fetched to some people. Perhaps a cat, when he looks at the wall, is looking at something on the wall that we cannot immediately observe such as a small spider for instance. That’s my more practical take on this form of behaviour. Personally, I don’t believe in the spirit world but I am open to those who do and accept their views.
Jackson believes that we cannot try and work out what a cat thinks. He says it is silly to try and do so and we are invariably going to be wrong. He believes it is silly that cats see us as large, strange hairless cats. He thinks that it is wrong that cats regard us as cats. I tend to disagree with him on that too. I agree that we do not know what cats think but in our relationship with cats they interact with us in a manner which indicates that they treat us as another cat and in fact a mother cat because we feed them and take care of them. That does not necessarily mean that a domestic cat sees us as their mother but it does indicate it.
Jackson believes that everyone should be bipetual by which he means that people should like dogs and cats equally and that there should not be a strong demarcation between dog people and cat people. I agree with this.
Like many of us, he agrees that the press perpetuates the demonization of cats. I don’t think that they always demonise cats but too often they do through ignorance or simply to hype up their articles. The press tend to take studies and exaggerate the claims and he mentions a recent story in which the press said that your cat would eat you if it could. This was a story about the inherent wild nature of the domestic cat by which I mean that the domestic cat is less domesticated than the dog and would, if much larger, treat us as prey. I don’t think that’s correct anyway because the cat has a friendly relationship with us as, for example, lions in a pride are friendly with each other.
Jackson believes that the current time is a “renaissance for cats”. He is referring to the mass popularity of Internet cats and amusingly says that Lil Bub could run for president right now and would have a better chance than Donald Trump. It has always interested me that the Internet cat is so popular yet there appears to be more and more cat abuse “on the ground”. In the ether of the Internet domestic cats are incredibly popular and amusing but in reality there appears to be this dichotomy and the cat is less respected than the Internet indicates.