We tell our kids we love them. We love them, kiss them, cuddle them, let them come to us when they have nightmares, we play with them and we care for them. We show our love to our kids about 1,000,000 times on any given day in a variety of manners, and that’s what parenting is all about. Anyone will tell you that hearing the phrase, “I love you,” is beautiful, but seeing it through the actions of others is far better. I love it when my kids tell me they love me, but I love it even more when they show me that they love me. It makes me happy, and it brings me so much joy. And then there is the cat. The cat loves to show me he loves me – in the middle of the night. Or in the middle of a meal. Or when I’m sipping coffee and he wants to get all up in my face and purr, rub himself against me and cause me to give myself third degree burns with his ‘love.’
But how do I show my cat I love him? Well, I don’t kill him when he jumps on the counters and I don’t feed him to the alligators in the pond down the street when he steals food off the babies high chairs. That’s love, right? Yes; so much love. There are so many ways that we show our cats we love them, and sometimes it helps to understand what they are so that we feel like better kitty parents.
Let them play outside
Our cat loves to be outside. The problem is that he is not an outdoor cat. He has always lived inside with us. When we bought our new home, made of glass and doors, he decided that he could not handle being inside all the time anymore. The expansive view of the yard at every corner was too much for him and he made it his business to escape whenever possible. We learned very quickly that he never strayed far, however. Just along the porches so he could sit, sun and stare. And now we allow this all the time and he loves us forever.
Let them have fresh water daily
Our cat seems to really love us when we change out the water in his dish. Who knew that cats like fresh, clean water? I mean, I love when I have to drink dirty, filthy water at home so I didn’t think my cat would mind dirty, filthy water, too. Kidding. But seriously, why don’t people get that? If you wouldn’t drink it, why assume the cat will?
Let them have fresh food daily
Here’s another one of those things that really shows cats that you love them. There is something about fresh food and the good health and good ownership skill that this is that makes cats feel so loved and appreciated and cared for. And the good news is that this takes all of three seconds and then you can go about your day.
Get with the cat nip
Oh yeah; cats love cat nip. We don’t give it to ours all that often because it makes him go insanely crazy, but sometimes we cave and sit back to enjoy the show. The cat really, honestly goes nuts. It’s hilarious. And then he becomes so loving and friendly afterward that it makes it totally worth the crazed behavior he exhibits in the meantime.
Cuddle the cat
It’s simple, really. Just a little attention and cuddling is sometimes all it takes to show the cat some love. After all, you don’t feel all that loved when your spouse and kids refuse to come close to you at all, right?
Let the cat have your blanket even though you don’t want to
My cat loves my blanket, and it’s annoying. I don’t always want him all up on me at night when I’m sitting on the couch with my husband, enjoying some quality time and a glass of wine. The cat just can’t sit still, and that’s irritating. But he loves it, so I give in. This is how we bond.
Clean the litter box regularly
I’ll tell you this; I hate cleaning anything that has to do with feces. But I hate using anything that has to do with feces if it’s dirty. When my husband takes it upon himself to clean the toilets in our house, I feel so loved and treasured, and that’s not even a joke (clearly I need to get a life). So imagine how the cat feels considering he is unable to clean his own litter box? Do this and receive ample love.
Let the cat have something to scratch
Cats need something they can scratch, not just lectures about why the couch is not an acceptable scratching post. Get the cat a scratching post and watch him go to town. This is real love, you know. They adore this, and your cat will see that you love him when you take the time to provide him with something of this nature.
Use a friendly tone
It’s simple, and it’s overlooked on a regular basis. Cats are very aware of tone. If you constantly speak to your cat with a mean tone, an impatient tone or one that does not convey love and affection, your cat is going to feel stressed around you. Change your tone and see how much of a difference it makes when you are around the cat. It will show him or her that you really do love him or her.
Be nice to the cat
What a novel idea, right? If we are nicer to our cats, they will see that we love them. Sometimes we can take our cats for granted, giving them the what for when they don’t want to come near us or when they give us that judgy cat glare. Instead of giving it right back, just show the cat some love and be nice. It makes a difference.
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