We hear it over and over again: Spay or neuter your cats. Better yet, spay or neuter them early. Of course, we’re told that we should do this because it’s the right thing to do in order to control the population of cats and it’s good for cat health overall — but did you ever consider that there are some cats who just wouldn’t make good parents? Parenting, whether feline or human, is not as instinctive as you might think. Here are some reasons why my cat, Siouxsie, is glad she never had to be a mother.
How is a cat supposed to be adored by all if the spotlight is stolen from her by a litter of helpless, mewling kittens?
Mother cats rarely get the 18 hours of “beauty rest” they need. If they’re not hunting for food, they’re keeping their kittens out of trouble, and if they’re not doing either of those things, they’re imprisoned by a litter of hungry young’uns demanding a seat at the milk bar.
Siouxsie has seen kittens in action. They’re always climbing all over their mothers, wrestling with each other, running off to points unknown and frequently needing rescue as a result. And who wants to lick at least three little stinky butts every couple of hours?
How many cats are truly ready for motherhood by the time they have their first litter? An adolescent cat is still growing up and finding her own way in the world: Kittens throw a monkey wrench into the whole business and mama cat is forced to grow up much too soon.
Siouxsie is glad she never had to worry about where her kittens went once she was done feeding and raising them. And she should be glad: We humans know what happens to unwanted kittens!
Well, okay, Siouxsie doesn’t have a girlish figure these days despite the fact that she never had kittens — but at least she can pretend this is a benefit of being kitten-free.
From the moment of conception (yeowch, those barbs!) to the delivery of the last placenta, it’s hard for a mother cat to be comfortable. Mom cats sometimes get morning sickness, and as their bellies get bigger, it becomes harder and harder to do even the most basic grooming chores.
Why is your cat glad she never had kittens? Tell us in the comments!
About JaneA Kelley: Punk-rock cat mom, science nerd, animal shelter volunteer, and all-around geek with a passion for bad puns, intelligent conversation, and role-play adventure games. She gratefully and gracefully accepts her status as chief cat slave for her family of feline bloggers, who have been writing their cat advice column, Paws and Effect, since 2003. JaneA dreams of making a great living out of her love for cats.