Meet Brenna. She is absolutely gorgeous, and at times she is sweet as can be. Then there are the other moments of the day, when her every whim must be met — and if it is not, you will surely pay the price.
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I am allowed to complain about Brenna, but you are not.
I am the one who frequently stays up all night with her when she is upset and crying for no apparent reason. I am the one she takes her anger out on most often. I am the one who cleans her litter box, feeds and waters her, buys her food, toys and medicine and often has the task of cleaning the tears out of her eyes, even though I am practically mauled while doing so.
I am the one who takes her to the vet every year to make certain that she is healthy and will live a long life, even though the trip to the vet alone is almost enough to kill us both. I am the one who knows when she is sad, happy, under the weather or just upset that it is raining and the sun will not be coming out. I am the one who knows there is a bug in the house by the way she flits from one corner of the room to the other and must therefore drop everything in order to save my house from almost certain destruction.
In short, I am the one responsible for her needs, her health and her overall happiness.
You, on the other hand, are a visitor in our house. You do not live here. You are not allowed to complain that she is not a lovable kitty cat. You are not allowed to make her feel as if her home is being invaded and she is unsafe in your presence. You are not allowed to get too close to her, cornering her into a situation in which she is not comfortable and then complaining because she lashed out at you.
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Upon entering our house, you are most assuredly warned to keep your distance, but if confronted, keep still until she has smelled you and then left the area. Keep your hands off the kitty. She does not want to be petted by you, no matter how much you think she does. The hands-off rule is for her safety and yours. Please also understand that your gentle baby talk has no effect on her other than to make her think you are strange and not right in the head, and calling her a bad kitty will only make her hate you even more than she already does.
She knows what those words mean, and nine times out of 10 they make her violently angry. Show the cat some respect. Say hello, move slowly and allow her space to maneuver around you. Chances are she wants nothing to do with you. She just wants to make sure you aren’t here to steal her toys.
Instead of complaining about Brenna and her ever-present cattitude, think about all of the moments you don’t see or hear about: the five seconds of pure happiness she has every day when I walk in the front door from work, in which she is content to lay her head on my shoulder and submit to any and all cuddling; the meow of warning she screams whenever an alarm goes off in our house, which leads us to think that if indeed our house were on fire, she might actually rescue us; the chirp she emits when seeing birds outside, which one can’t help but simply smile at because it is adorable beyond belief.
Then there are the rare occasions when she chooses to curl up on my lap, despite the fact that it’s not her thing; and the many times she kisses me on my forehead because she knows it is the thing in this world that makes me the happiest. Those are the moments you don’t see. Those are the things she does that make me appreciate her despite her many flaws. While I may complain about that little psycho ball of fur as much as I want to, you may not. You don’t love her. I do.
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