How our feline friends have an inspiring connection with others.
I have the good fortune of having gregarious cats. They embrace visitors with complete trust and without fear. There is no hesitation, either. The second someone new walks in the door, Sal and Dean are there to investigate.
Sometimes their uninhibited curiosity of strangers becomes a problem, and my fiancé and I have to take action.
We shut them in the bedroom when the superintendent comes to fix something (Sal fancies herself a feline plumber’s apprentice), and we have a veritable pharmacy of antihistamines for our visitors who are may have cat allergies (Dean will rub up against your leg whether you’re allergic or not).
As curious as Sal and Dean are about visitors, they are just as likely to completely forget them as soon as they step out the door.
Except for Andrew.
Andrew is my younger brother. He lives in Chicago and comes to New York City for a visit occasionally, usually around holidays. He has never had cats, and isn’t regularly around them. But he has a gentle, loving way with Sal and Dean.
And they LOVE him. They can’t get enough, especially Sal.
As soon as Andrew walks through the door, she’s at his heels. And as soon as he sits on the couch, she jumps into his lap and curls up. When he sleeps on the fold-out futon, instead of sleeping in the other room with me as she usually does, she’s curled up in the nook of Andrew’s knee. Dean is perched similarly nearby.
I don’t understand it! He visits maybe twice a year. He doesn’t feed or care for them.
Yet somehow he has formed a unique bond with my cats. They seem to remember his scent when he comes back after a long time away, and delight in his presence within our home.
After Andrew’s most recent visit, he left behind a towel and a pair of exercise pants in a pile next to my hamper. I came home after work later that day to find Sal nestled in that heap, snoozing away.
She stayed there all night and all of the following day. Then, when Sal finally got up, Dean took her place! They both carried on for three days like they'd lost a friend, moping about the apartment.
Despite their moping and crawling around in our dirty laundry, I am thrilled that my cats have bonded with my brother.
It reminds me how inspiring and beautiful a connection we can have with our feline friends.
How do your cats act around visitors? We’d love to know!
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