are cats the perfect pet for men?

are cats the perfect pet for men?
Posted by Dr. Kim Smyth on Mar 10 2015

If the internet is an expert at anything, it’s images of cats. From Grumpy Cat to Maru to cats simply sitting in boxes, the internet is where cats reign supreme. I love seeing anything that might charm more people into adopting a cat, and just this morning I came across some images that really made me happy. I’m going crazy over photographer David Williams’ project depicting men and their cats. His images make me sigh, smile and chuckle, all while dispelling an age old stereotype.

Being a cat owner is a tricky business. If you’re a woman and you’re single and you have more than two cats, you’re a crazy cat lady. If you’re a man and you’re single and you have even one cat, there’s something wrong with you. If you’re married with no kids and you have cats, you’re turning your pets into your children. It seems the only way you can have cats without being judged is to be happily married with kids.

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Back in the day when we were just starting our veterinary careers, Jules Benson (Petplan Chief Veterinary Medical Officer) and I shared the rent on a three bedroom duplex—a room for me, a room for him and a room for the 6 cats (4 of which were his!). We may have gotten more than our fair share of looks from the neighbors for having a cat perched in every window, but we were confident that the menagerie of cats made the house a happier place to live. Despite being utterly outnumbered by cats, we were both quite “normal” and turned out just fine!

Though they have the reputation of being aloof (often for good reason), cats do bring quite a bit to the table. First and foremost, they are usually WAY more low maintenance than a dog. Though their litter box needs regular tending, you can do that indoors in your pajamas, even! That beats walking a dog in sub-zero temperatures in every way!

And cats are independent—you don’t have to coddle them or worry about hurting their feelings as much as you do with dogs. You can go away for a week and they’re perfectly content (in fact, they probably prefer having the house to themselves!). Try pulling that on a dog.

And they ARE affectionate. Just on their own terms. Don’t go looking for love from them, because you likely won’t find it. But make a comfy lap on the couch and they’ll turn up in seconds, especially on a cold day.

So, really, when it comes down to it, cats might just be the perfect pet, especially for men. That’s why I was so excited to see David Williams’ project Men & Cats. By depicting men of all kinds with their beloved pets, he shatters the image that some may have of men with cats being ‘weird’.

I almost always try to incorporate pet health into these blogs, but today, I simply want you to enjoy these photographs as much as I have. And maybe, just maybe, if you have the means and the room in your heart, they’ll inspire you to add another cat (or two) to your family, no matter who you are.

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