From the time I became pregnant til now, I’ve wanted my three cats (Animal, Gizzie, and Reaper) to know that they are still just as important to me as they were before the babies existed. I was nervous that they wouldn’t feel loved and hate the babies because they were taking all of my attention. My cats proved me wrong.
Before I get into my story, let me give you some insight to each of their personalities. I know you’re thinking, “this woman is a crazy cat lady!” You’re partially right. Yes, I feed some stray cats in the neighborhood, but that’s because I’m a crazy animal person. Just last month I insisted we bring home a dying hummingbird we found at the park so he could either get better or die in peace. Anyways, back to my cats. Animal is the oldest at 4 years old and he’s a lover, but also a rough-housing grump. Gizzie is his little sister from another litter. She is very shy when it comes to other people, but she is the biggest snuggle bug. Reaper is the baby at 2 years old and has a crazy amount of energy. Now that you have some insight, back to the story.
While I was pregnant, Gizzie would kneed my belly and snuggle on it, which gave me hope that she would be the cat to love the babies. The day we came home from the hospital with the girls, Animal surprised me and decided that he needed to snuggle with us on the couch.
Since that day he has been the girls babysitter; think Nana from Peter Pan. All of the cats have their own relationships with the girls; Reaper hangs around but doesn’t really interact with them, but he’s still very young. Animal has surprised me the most. As I said before, he is a major rough-houser. He has been around my girls a lot lately and the girls have taken interest in him and are reaching and pulling on him. He lets out a quick meow to let them know he doesn’t like that. If anyone else were to pull on him like the girls do, he would hiss or even swat a paw. In return for being so good with the girls, he gets tons of attention.
The cats also look out for the girls. Whenever I step away from the girls and they start crying, the cats run to me to let me know that something isn’t right and lead me to the girls.
One day I decided to google and see if there are a lot of cats that become guardians of babies, I found quite the opposite of what I was looking for. Instead of finding happy and cute stories, I found extremely troubling stories of people putting their cats in shelters before their baby has even arrived in fear of what will happen or what they have read has happened. I understand that there are some crazy stories of animals acting like their primal relatives, but I’m sure that majority of the time that doesn’t happen. An important thing to note is that animals do have feelings. They should be treated the same as they were before the baby. Yes, you may not have as much time for them, but they should still know that they’re important. I made sure to introduce my cats to the babies and pet them while doing so. I also make sure that I still play with all of them and let them know that they’re being good with the babies. Your pets are part of your family and you should treat them as such. It makes me sad to think that people didn’t even give their pets a chance to love their babies. When you think of getting a pet, remember they need your time and they need your love and they’ll give that love right back to you. They aren’t just something to have for a while and discard of.