Most cat owners can easily understand the needs and desires of their pets because unlike dogs, cats actually believe they are humans’ intellectual equals.
To quibble about this is insane because cats clearly are highly intelligent individuals, and they will only ignore those arguments that they do not wish to hear anyway. First of all, cats have many different sounds that they make when trying to impress their desires upon humans. A meow preceded by a prrrrup sound (ex: Prrrrow) is the cat’s way of saying, “hello there. How good to see you again. I do believe it is time for my breakfast. Get it now.” This greeting is also used to announce the cat’s desire to use you as a chew toy.
Cats will converse with you roughly whenever they feel like it. I have conversations with my cats all the time. They usually go something like this: Me: “Hi there Sammy.” Sammy: “Merowp” Me: “How are you, huh?” Sammy: (pause to consider) “me…..row” Me: “That’s good. hey, where you going?” Sammy: (over his shoulder as he saunters away) “mrrrrrp.” Translated, the whole conversation goes like this:
“Hi there Sammy.”
“How are you, huh?”
“That’s good. Hey, where you going?”
Okay, so perhaps he doesn’t call me a loser, but you get the drift. Cats do seem to have attitude at times, but most often they are in a reasonable frame of mind, just as long as you don’t do anything they consider offensive–such as hugging, nibbling, toe tickling or tail touching. Tummy rubs are okay if you know what you are doing, and back scratches are definitely worth keeping us around for. Cats use body language to ask for these things, so you’d better darn well pay attention.
When a cat is rolling around on his back with all his toes curled up tight, looking at you like you were Moses on the Mount, he is clearly telling you to drop what you are doing immediately and put your hands to good use for a change. He wants a tummy rub and right this second please or he may have to scratch you. When a cat is lying on his tummy with all of his paws tucked underneath and eyes squinched shut, with a peaceful expression on his face, he is in what the experts call, the “meatloaf position” and he is thinking extremely profound thoughts, which usually center around inhaling and exhaling.
Cats use purring as a form of communication as well. They purr when they are happy, excited, sick, hurt, scared…..okay, so it’s a limited vocabulary and they have to make do. They also communicate with their tails a lot. When frightened, the cat’s tail will poof up three times its normal size. When contented and happy, the tail will slowly sway back and forth like a pendulum on a clock. When he’s excited or angry that tail will twitch spasmodically. The cat’s tail definitely tells the tale so to speak, and if it’s telling you to buzz off, you’d better leave town.
Different cats tell you they are hungry in different ways. Some cats will just wait patiently at your feet for you to get with the program and feed them, while others will pace back and forth, repeatedly rubbing against your legs until you stumble and drop the cat food all over the floor, at which point he will stop pacing and rubbing and go ahead and help himself. Just don’t expect him to clean up the crumbs, thank you. A crumb is anything smaller than a cockroach. The cat will shove those pieces of food under the furniture so the vermin will not go hungry. Cats are generous that way.
By the way, as long as we are on the topic of cat food, most cats will not eat people food of any kind. Not even if it once had fins, scales and a tail and swam in the ocean. They will not eat tuna unless it comes out of a cat food can, (trust me, they can tell the difference) and chicken is not chicken unless it is shaped like brown mush that resembles nothing resembling actual chicken. It genuinely concerns me to see cats developing this hatred of human food, because I can’t help but wonder what atrocity might be in there that they are rejecting. Cat food is supposedly full of all the worst meat parts, yet they absorb the stuff like it’s a gourmet dinner at the Ritz. Something tells me our feline friends know something we don’t.
Cats will not drink water that has been lapped by a visiting d-o-g. This water is contaminated by d-o-g cooties and cats will abhor it until you have dumped the nasty water, thoroughly scrubbed and disinfected the bowl, and filled it with fresh,clean tap water. They would rather die of thirst than drink from a contaminated water dish, and will glare at you with suspicious eyes for the rest of the day because you allowed the evil d-o-g to enter their domain. You really should be ashamed of yourself. I don’t even want to tell you what they will do if you go so far as to pet the intruder….you really do not want to go there.