I have a pet cat. He’s called Maple because when I bought him from a pet store as a new born kitten his fur looked to me a little like the color of maple syrup. As he’s aged his fur has taken on a more definitely orange hue than when I got him, but his name was set, so there. He’s a Munchkin cat, a naturally-occurring short-legged breed. His proportions and stature make him look especially cute and appealing. But his adult size is so much smaller than the usual house cats that people keep as pets that it’s almost silly. Letting him outside could be dangerous because it would be very easy for one of the large jungle crows/ravens that inhabit Tokyo to pick him off like an eagle hunting rodents. A veterinarian warned me so in almost exactly those words. I have taken him outside in my arms to look at the bigger world, but it obviously stresses him tremendously, so my Munchkin is a house cat. Munchkin cats have a reputation for a gentle disposition and he is very tolerant of being picked up and handled. But Maple is not a cuddly cat. He sleeps with me, but always at a distance, always in the same spot on the bed. He won’t curl up close to my face or on any part of my body, only close by my side.
I sometimes wonder what he thinks of me. I am certain that he thinks of me just as The Big One, the Food Giver. Certainly he thinks of me as a big cat. Most likely he “felinizes” all the humans he knows just as humans anthropomorphize their animals. People think of their dogs as having human qualities, ignoring the fact that they do not know what life as a dog is like. That’s not even possible. Similarly, it’s not possible for a dog or a cat to imagine life as a human, because they aren’t human. So I’m sure they do what we do, only in reverse. They think of us as members of their species. In the case of dogs the human family that keeps one is the dog’s pack with a definite social order from the dog’s perspective. The dog caninizes his humans.
When I come home at the end of a day Maple is definitely more excited than when I am home all day. I like to think he’s excited because he knows his family is home. Also, I’m pretty sure that animals get bored and that he surely must be bored alone in the apartment all day.