Anyone who’s ever had the joy of having a cat knows that the stereotypes just aren’t true. Far from all being aloof miniature super-predators (ok, some actually are exactly that), cats come with as wide a range of personalities as the people who love them.
New research from the University of Lincoln has categorised human/cat friendships into 5 distinct groups. These relationships range from “casual associations” to “co-dependent” and have been studied through observing the way thousands of cats and their owners interact with each other. You can take their quiz here.
Let’s go through the 5 types and see where we all fit:
Some cats just don’t really want to spend much time with you. These relationships are characterised by light emotional bonds. These cats love their owners but they’re just as happy to get attention from whoever. They may also have the same bond with other members of the family.
Like teenagers, they’re quite happy to have you around, just so long as you don’t expect too much from them. The study phrases this as the cat having “little need for owner proximity”.
A casual association with your cat means that they come and go as they please. These relationships are often characterised by low emotional investment on the human side and a busy house with lots of people coming and going.
These cats are quite happy to see you, but they’re also happy to see everyone else or just doing their own thing. If you suspect your moggy is visiting the neighbours, this is your relationship.
You’ll sometimes hang out when you both happen to be in the same place but you don’t really seek each other out. Sometimes cats in this style of relationship might even actually leave when you enter the room and avoid human contact.
It’s likely that you’re a bit more invested in the relationship than your cat but don’t worry- they’re probably the same with everyone else too.
This relationship type is the polar opposite of the others. In a co-dependant relationship both cat and human are incredibly emotionally invested. The cat will follow you around and always try to be close to you. In really extreme cases there can be signs of separation anxiety like crying and not eating when you’re apart.
If your cat comes to you for comfort whenever they’re worried, often licks your hands and face and is weary of others, you might be co-dependant.
This is exactly what it sounds like. You and your feline are friends and you both want to spend time together playing but you’re both fine when you’re apart. From the cat’s point of view, they’ll see you as part of the same social group, snuggle and lick you and generally be friendly but they’ll also want their space from time to time.
Most human/cat relationships probably fit in here. You’re best friends but even the best of friends need a little bit of breathing room.
If you want to invest in the friendship with you cat and start to move up the relationship scale, Barkers and Mittens have Doha’s best range of high quality toys and treats for your miniature tiger. As always, we offer free delivery within the city for any online purchase above QAR 100 and our in-store stock is refreshed regularly.