As the saying goes, a dog is man’s best friend.
Or is it? It seems that more and more 20-something urban-dwelling guys are getting cats—rather than dogs, as their pets.
Ted has Charlie, Jeff has Sammy, Zach has Shadow Marie, and Nick has his Boba Fett.
I recently started noticing how many guys I knew owned cats instead of dogs—and this caught me by surprise. Weren’t cats for girls, and dogs for guys? I never heard of a cat being “man’s best friend.” There are “cat ladies”—with households of cats numbering in the double-digits, but who ever heard of a guy with a cat obsession? Wasn’t the world filled with “dog people” (guys) and “cat people” (girls)?
Apparently this not the case among the post-macho, sensitive-but-masculine generation of urban guys I know.
Arnold has Alexis, Jeff has Aoi, Garret has Aida May, and Alex has Climax.
Yep, guys-with-cats is a phenomenon of the urban-dwelling, sensitive Gen Y dude. It seems that cats as pets rule, and it’s “a guy thing.”
Far more loving than a pet snake or goldfish, and far less maintenance and expense than a dog, cats provide companionship, playful fun, and a relationship for countless guys who are in the pre-marriage, and post-living-at-home stage of their lives.
While it is true that cats hold grudges, demand attention, act like kings, and steal the most comfortable seat in the house—doesn’t that sound just like the rest of the housemates in a post-college “brochelor” pad? They also will purr upon touch, snuggle up close to keep warm, and provide a sense of companionship that roomies may not always provide.
Many guys say that cats afford a sense of “home” to a house full of roomies; deliver a sense of obligation; and provide a constant stream of love—feelings often missing during that post-family, and pre-marriage time of our lives.
“Cats create a ‘pride’ in our house of roommates,” says Nick of his cat Boba Fett (named after the Star Wars character), “We all have our roles in the house and the cats recognize that. It's intimate and definitely a family atmosphere."
And, there are some more practical reasons cats are becoming the pet de rigueur of urban guys. It’s not just that dogs drink out of the toilet, need to be bathed and groomed regularly, and need an escort and an outdoor area to relieve themselves, if you’re a dog lover you need to:
1). Find Dog Friendly Apartments. Most urban landlords avoid renting to dog owners, while cats are easier to sneak into a lease.
2). Sign up for a big Obligation. Dogs need to be cared for throughout the day, while cats can be left unattended for great lengths of time
3). Be able to afford the Cost. From $500 a month dog walkers, to $60 a day dog sitters, licenses, vaccinations, flea and tick meds, collars, leashes, kennels and carriers; dogs can cost a ton.
Cats on the other hand, are pretty plug and play. There’s no 6 months of potty-training, or worrying if the house will be destroyed if you leave them alone too long. You don’t need to “train” a cat to “sit, stay, heel, wait, walk” or even eat. In fact, one could argue that cats are less trouble than most 20-something urban roommates.
I guess it is that cats can’t stand the silliness of being taken care of. As they say dogs have masters, and cats have staff.
So it is no wonder that Guys with Cats is now “a thing” among urban Gen Y dudes. They’re a purrfect lifestyle fit.