Something about moving to a new apartment seems to have made me really want a cat. There's no logical connection between moving and getting a cat; the pet policy at my new apartment is identical to the pet policy at my current apartment. And I've been living a long time without a cat. I get visited by the neighbors' cats; that's been enough. Well, maybe the connection is that I'm moving away from the neighbors' cats now and I haven't met any of my new feline neighbors yet. Even when I do meet them, I don't know that they'll be friendly. It took me quite a few years of living here before I managed to persuade one of the neighbors' cats to trust me. The other cats still don't. Or, well, actually, the beige kitty finally let me pet him a week or so ago - but that was the very first time he'd ever done so, and I've been trying for years.
(Note that while I was in the process of writing this entry, I heard a loud meowing outside and opened the door to see a five-year-old girl from downstairs coming outside to pet the beige kitty, who was the one meowing. She addressed him, loudly and clearly and at least six times, as "Butthead." So apparently I've now found out what his name is. The poor cat - no wonder he's so afraid of people!)
If I did get a cat, I would want to be very, very careful about what cat to get. I would want one that had been raised in a house full of kids, because I think cats raised with kids get more attention that cats raised with only adults, and cats that get lots of attention when they're babies grow up to be friendlier. I would want one that was at least 8 weeks old before being separated from its mother, because mother cats teach baby cats good manners. I would want one that was younger than 4 months, because if by any chance it hadn't gotten quite sufficient attention growing up in a house full of kids, 4 months is still young enough that I might be able to somewhat increase its willingness to be held. I would want one that didn't look much like any cat I've ever lived with before - I'm not terribly sure why this is important, but I think it would just be more interesting that way, somehow. I especially don't want a cat that looks like multiple cats I've lived with before. When I lived with my parents, they had three separate cats that were short-haired and all black, and four separate cats that were short-haired orange tabbies. So I don't want a short-haired black cat or a short-haired orange tabby. I've had enough of those for a while.
I don't know whether I really want a cat. I absolutely love cats, but I absolutely hate being responsible for extra domestic chores.
Disadvantages to Getting a Cat:
- Vet bills and cat food and flea medicine and apartment pet deposits cost money.
- I would lose the freedom to leave any food sitting unguarded without fear of a cat trying to eat it.
- I wouldn't be able to eat meat in front of the cat without either giving the cat some or feeling sadistic for making the poor cat suffer through watching me eat it. I rarely eat meat anyway, especially at home, but it might still really annoy me to not have the option available.
- No matter whether it was an indoor cat or an outdoor cat (it would probably be an outdoor one because I don't see myself enduring long-term litterbox changing), it might wake me up at unearthly hours and destroy my currently consistently uninterrupted sleep.
- I would sometimes have to clean up cat vomit.
- My tendency to spend all day petting the cat might impede my ability to get anything more important done.
- The cat might end up being one of those incredibly rude ones that doesn't seem to know how to meow at anything but the top of its lungs, in a really angry demanding tone, every two seconds, over and over, constantly, even after it can see you're already in the process of trying to oblige its wishes.
- The cat might end up being one of those unfriendly ones that refuses under any circumstances to ever sit on my lap.
- If I wanted to go traveling, I'd have to get someone to take care of the cat.
- People who are allergic to cats would be allergic to me.
- I shed quite enough hair all over the place on my own; the last thing my apartment will need is a cat to add even more hair all over everything.
- Wherever I went, I would constantly be visibly covered in cat hair.
- Someday the cat would die, and then I would be much sadder than I would be if I had never gotten a cat, and I would have to go get a new cat and subject myself to all the same inconveniences all over again, because by then I would be addicted to cats again and unable to survive without one.
- I would have a warm fluffy thing around, which would probably purr or do other adorable things, at least occasionally when it was in a good mood.
- I would have a cute fluffy thing to take adorable pictures of all the time.
- I would have a crazed feline lunatic to write bizarre LiveJournal entries about like mariness does.
- I would develop a mental image of myself as someone for whom taking care of a small animal is not too much trouble to bother with.
- It would be a cat. Cats are inherently desirable. Right?