For millennia, cats have been considered “loners” and “aloof.” But it’s absolutely not true. Recent research shows that cats can be just as affectionate and social as dogs; they just have different ways of showing it.
One human behavior often provoked by the cat’s theoretical loner-ness is leaving the cat alone for a weekend or holiday, with a big bowl of food and a bowl of water.
That’s not okay according to our friend Layla Morgan Wilde, who wrote a thought-provoking article, “Cat Myths: Home Alone.” Folks who think it’s okay to abandon their cats to their own devices need to read it.
In the article, Layla also shares a poem written from the perspective of a cat whose human has died. And this brings up another important point.
If you haven’t made plans for your cat in case of your death, you’d better do so. Cats are legally considered property, no different from toasters or books. If you haven’t made arrangements, your cat could be impounded during the 6 months it takes to probate a will; or shuffled off to some next-of-kin who doesn’t want her. And who knows what that relative will do with her?
Fortunately, there’s a remedy for this: a terrific book by my good friend Dave Congalton, When Your Pet Outlives You: Protecting Animal Companions After You Die. I highly recommend it!
And while you’re still alive, please get a reliable pet-sitter for your cat if you’re going to be away from home!