I’ll take it that you love your cat but despite that warm emotional feeling towards her do you sometimes swear at her? It would not surprise me. People argue with their loved ones all the time. They have a drink and lose their cool and bingo a red hot row starts incorporating ugly language.
You may even shout at your cat from time to time; I hope rarely and better still never but if it happened it would be a very human thing to do because that is how humans are made and the world we have made is difficult to live in sometimes. And if you do swear at your cat it’s likely that you will raise your voice. It is the harshness of that which can cause the damage.
The sort of situation where you might direct ugly language at your cat may have little to do with your cat. It may be the middle of the night and you have to get up to go to the toilet – old person problem. Your cat gets under your feet and you almost trip over her. You are half asleep and it’s cold. You want to get to bed as soon as possible. You raise your voice and swear at your cat. It is instinctive and futile. You realise the futility and unkindness of it soon afterwards and want to make up.
Your cat looks up at you sheepishly until peace returns to the relationship. She jumps on the bed and you stroke her and she looks relaxed with you again. The moment has passed but it is a failure of domestic cat guardianship and you regret that it happened.
There are countless other instances when a cat owner might direct harsh words at their cat for a silly reason and all the reasons will be to do with human behavior and emotions. The domestic cat will never deserve to be shouted or cussed at because everything she does is natural and not inherently wrong.
I expect that even in the best homes, from the point of view of the domestic cat, the place might feel threatening as there might be times when the owner uses harsh words against her. There will certainly be homes when it never happens and at the other end of the spectrum there’ll be homes which are a slow burning torture for the anxious family pet cat because of crappy pet ownership.
There is even a phrase for taking out your pent up aggression on the family cat: to kick the cat. ‘When I got home I wanted to kick the cat’.
Under these circumstances the cat has done nothing to warrant to criticism. They never do. If they do things that you don’t like that does not make what they do wrong in an absolute sense.
The well-known cat behaviourist, Jackson Galaxy, recognises the possibility of people cursing their cat and has devised a way to try and stop it: The Kitty Curse Jar Concept.
He says that if you are in the habit of directing bad language towards your cat it may help to have a kitty curse jar. Every time you call you cat something like ‘evil’ or ‘devil’ you have to put a dollar in the jar. If you stick to it religiously it may highlight how often you unfairly use bad language towards your cat. This may curb the habit and it will raise some funds for enhancing your cat’s life – a reconciliation.