Wednesday, 4 November 2015

Is your cat trying to kill you?

I came across this trailer this morning Its from an interview by an American psychologist,  Dr Max Wachtel on BBC3 and I have the feeling that he has been on a different planet for most of his life, or has not talked to any or enough cat owners/lovers.

I quote:
"Don't be fooled by their calm exterior. Research has shown that our beloved domestic cats share the same "killer instincts" as lions and wildcats.

Research? Did he have to use scientific means to reach that conclusion? I suppose that's one (predational) way of earning a living...

Does this guy really think people don't know what makes cats tick? If you've watched a cat catch and play with a mouse, you've seen it all. I doubt whether a lion could be fiercer or more brutal. The only difference is that lions kill because they have to eat. Cats are normally spoilt creatures who get more feeding than they need and are consequently not forced to rely on food they capture. But they still hunt because that is their instinctive purpose as members of the cat family and animal world.

Are humans any different? Watch a farmer lovingly tending his stock then send them to their death or killing them themselves before eating them or having them eaten. Soem of those animals have names like humans. That makes eating them half-way to cannibalism, doesn't it? Humans are only animals, too. I stop at spider sized creatures, but I send them to their death, I have to confess. I think to myself: that if they were bigger than me, they would kill me.

And what about all those boiled eggs? Aren't we depriving hens of their offspring?

I suppose I could mention the spiders who kill their husbands after sex. Or the bees who feed one chosen bee up so that she is super fat and becomes the queen, then lays the eggs to produce the next generation. Or the polar bears who eat their offpring....

What about the other end of the scale? Religious celibacy, for example, though the purpose of any animal is to make sure there is a next generation. Those celibates actually preach that marriage's only purpose is to provide that next generation, so millions who for reasons best know to them selves or something called "culture" are forced into poverty, including the 15 million or so children who have no access to clean water. I read this morning that the Vatican is under scrutiny because some of those celebrated celibates are spending too much money on their luxury apartments. That along with the clandestine gay or heterosexual activity in which most of them indulge is surely not what is intended in "men of God" who preach the opposite. You need to suspend reality to believe in fairy tales, don't you?

Talking of God in the Christian sense, didn't He (note the capital H) make all the cats of this world? If you believe in God or a god, you have to accept cruelty, death, starvation, war and all the other evils around WHILE KNOWING that your god could prevent all those if he wanted to. So why doesn't he want to, and why is it not just cats who are predators - and presumably blessed as well?

More of Max's words words of wisdom:
.....Whilst domestic cats might be cute, "they could turn at any time, so be careful."

Of course you should be careful. They don't have those claws for fun. If cats are tame and just plain pretty, it's because they are not hungry and generally accept their surroundings as non-volatile. The moment they are startled out come those claws and it's wise not to be in the way of them. You might not want to be in the way of half the population of the most powerful nation, either. After all, that half is armed to the teeth!

Max says cats are "little aggressive predators". Like lions they are "neurotic, impulsive and dominant."

Not all of them, Max. I once had a lovely Persian cat who was terrified of my female cat of no elegant origin who was absolutely in charge and really cruel to him. He bore it all with great fortitude and was never, ever aggressive, though he had reason to be.

I once taught a guy English. He was 2 meters 8 tall and by no means a light-weight. He was OK until a cat put in an appearance. Then he became a shivering, miserable creature, sorely afraid and desperate to leave. In that guy's case, he was frightened off by a cat. "She won't hurt you," I would say, and he did not believe me. But cats also have respect. If they think they can't win, they skiddaddle. That does not apply to big cats who have never had the experience of losing and always believe they can win, though they can be shot, of course, by humans. But a big cat does not carry a memory of something beyond his experience and they are difficult to train to do things, though it is possible if they think it is in their interest.

Cats are only human, after all!

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