Categories: apartment living

Why are cats so popular in Russia?

There are several reasons why cats are popular in Russia. In fact a survey reported on the Enjoy Russian Language School tells me that in proportion to the country’s overall population more Russians (59%) have a cat at home than any other country.

Russian apartments . Photo in public domain.

One reason is to do with the historical culture. In Russia cats are considered to be wise while dogs carry negative connotations. Sometimes people call others a dog when they have done something bad (this not uncommon in many countries, incidentally) but when people sweet talk others who they love they call them a little cat or kitten (КОТЁНОК means kitten and КОТИК means cat).

On the quora.com website a couple of commenters who I’d consider qualified to comment say that (a) cats reduce stress in a relatively harsh life compared to the West and (b) Russians overwhelmingly own and live in apartments which are more suited to cats than dogs and there are no landlords to place restrictions on cat ownership under short-term rental agreements.

These are pointers to the reason why Russians like cats which is also demonstrated in the large number of cat breeders who create some amazing cats. Perhaps one the world’s most outstanding Maine Coon breeders creates cats with human faces. Russians are excellent Maine Coon cat breeders if you judge by appearance. It is ironic because of the incessant cold war between Russia and America.

For my part, I’d argue that the most likely reason is because most Russians live in apartments and 80% own their homes. This lends itself to cat ownership over dogs. However, it is far from an ideal situation as apartment living for domestic cats is very restrictive and there are no animal welfare laws protecting companion animals (src: Wikipedia). How good are the lives of these cats? I have a feeling that, in general, Russian apartments are pretty small and fairly basic. No disrespect intended.

There are animal welfare laws in Russia but it is said that the culture is not attuned to animal welfare and their laws are limited by the standards of the West. They receive an ‘F’ from the World Animal Protection’s Animal Protection Index (lowest grade).

A guy on quora.com, Jack Halewood, writes that animal rights and welfare is all but non-existent in Russia. I can believe it judging by the stories that come out of Russia and some domestic cats will lead hard lives in an apartment. But it is clear that they have an affinity for cats and in general I am sure that they treat them well.

Here is a table of cat ownership by country. Surprisingly Russia is not mentioned!

SOME MORE ON MAINE COONS:

How healthy are the human-faced Maine Coons of this Russian breeder?

These Maine Coons with human faces keep resurfacing on the internet. I reported on them quite a while ago and ...
Read More

Selective breeding and smaller cats would help to resolve the problem of hip dysplasia in large cat breeds

The Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences has done a study into hereditary hip dysplasia in Maine Coon cats. They concluded ...
Read More

Do Maine Coon cats make good pets?

This article is for people who are new to caring for a domestic cat. I say that because the title ...
Read More

People love huge Maine Coon cats so what are the downsides?

In terms of status symbol and pure delight the huge Maine Coon, an example of which is seen in the ...
Read More

Polish breeder in China creates world’s most outstanding looking Maine Coon

They are called Oticami. They are a Maine Coon cattery (breeders) owned and managed by a Polish family. They are ...
Read More

Are Maine Coon cats smart?

Although you'll find a lot of articles on the Internet explaining why Maine Coon cats are smart - one of ...
Read More

Take another look at the mesmerising human face on this Maine Coon

This is the most mesmerising cat face that I have seen ever. It is amazing. You genuinely can see a ...
Read More
Please comment here using either Facebook or WordPress (when available).
Michael Broad

Hi, I am 70-years-of-age at 2019. For 14 years before I retired at 57, I worked as a solicitor in general law specialising in family law. Before that I worked in a number of different jobs including professional photography. I have a longstanding girlfriend, Michelle. We like to walk in Richmond Park which is near my home because I love nature and the landscape (as well as cats and all animals).

Recent Posts

Top ten cat breeds CFA 2019

This is the current ranking of the most popular cat breeds recognised by the Cat…

5 hours ago

Mystery cat picture. What is it?

It took me a little while to figure what was happening in this photograph. The…

12 hours ago

Woman combs and cuddles an enormous Eurasian lynx (video)

We are not told what species of cat this is so I'll speculate. I believe…

13 hours ago

Massive muzzle on Maine Coon (picture)

This is another extraordinary looking Maine Coon. I have described the cat's muzzle as massive.…

19 hours ago

Picture of black Sphynx ‘alien’ kitten and false pink nails

THIS IS AN OPINION ARTICLE. IT IS NEITHER RIGHT NOR WRONG: The power of human…

19 hours ago

Quiz on the origin of the Persian cat

Please follow the instructions. There is one question and ten possible answers one of which…

1 day ago