Me, My Cat And My Mental Health
Updated: Feb 8, 2022
I am a massive animal lover! As a kid we grew up with cats, dogs, birds, hamsters, rabbits, guinea pigs, fish, chipmunks, snakes and even a tarantula! I personally think all kids should grow up having the love and affection a pet can bring into a home. I have many beautiful memories and some funny ones of all our pets over the years.
So when I moved out and got my own home it was inevitable I was going to have a pet and along came "ginge" a ginger female ally cat from the streets that a friend found and couldn't keep so I took her in. She was a little beaut but had clearly had a hard start in life as she was very jumpy, not too trusting and soiled on anything that was laying around even my bed at one point! and yes I was sleeping in it at the time!! Which is pretty funny thinking back now.
I soon learned she was not neutered, let her out and well along came 4 kittens some weeks later. We chose to keep one and had the others sent to good loving homes. To cut a long story short as much love I had for ginge, her constant soiling got worse and I had two young sons running around so I had to make the super hard decision to take her to batter-sea for them to hopefully help her and re-home her to a more suited human.
Meet My Fur Babies
Her kitten we named "willow" who then went on to have a few litters herself before I had her neutered but we again kept one of her kittens who I named "Dust". We did also have a ferret "Minxy" who was a joy to have, my friends would not agree as she had a obsession with peoples socks! Minxy was not with us long as she escaped her cage and sadly we never see her again.
Willow and Dust on the other hand are still going strong to this day as you can see in the pictures, their like 14 & 15 years old now! But two years ago we added a male kitten to the mix "Taz" and the girls were not impressed and to be honest he is still the annoying little brother to them, but he keeps them on their paws and is a right little character. Id say his a little bit dog too coz that cat slobbers and when he shakes his head it flies everywhere!
So now I have introduced you to my three fur babies lets talk about the emotional side of cats.... Willow (on the left) is a more "if I want a stoke or any attention I'l come to you" kinda cat where as Dust (with me in the top pic) will get in bed with me and is pretty much by my side on a daily basis. She is the one that always knows when I was having a "rainy day" and when I need some TLC coz she would be their in my face giving me her undivided attention and I just found it helped me so much to have her their beside me, mentally!
She is my guardian angel in cat form, she is always their when I need someone and sometimes I just don't want the attention I just want to be alone but she knows I NEED it so she gives me what I need even when I don't know it. A cats intuition is amazing.
And then theirs Taz who is very loving! He is my miniature tiger coz he just has the charateristics of a tiger. He will come to me and shove his face under my chin and even try's laying on my chest (he could achieve this as a kitten but not so much now). He walks around the house meowing for someones attention until he finds you and his so happy, purring loudly and pid padding to get comfy.
Dust and Taz are the ones that fight for my attention the most, they even follow me to the bathroom when I bath the girls and when I have a bath myself. They truly are part of the family and I believe having a pet can benefit in helping people with their mental health...
5 Benefits Of Having a Pet
Here are some benefits to having your very own pet:
Can reduce stress levels
Improve ones well-being
Improves your mood
Helps us develop good habits
And its not only cats that can help with your mental health your pet can come in any shape or size, weather that's a snake or a dog its what you feel most connected to! So whats yours?
Crazy Funny Cats
Our pets can not only be companions, loving or give us purpose they can also be extremely entertaining and literally have us in stitches of laughter, which again is so good for our feel good hormones!
I remember my boys loved watching crazy cat videos on YouTube when they were little and now the girls love watching the same videos as well as funny animals. These videos go viral coz we are a nation of animal lovers!
Animals can be so vulnerable they need us to take care of them and so for us as humans being relied on and needed is something that helps us to get up in the morning, gives us a purpose in life especially when you don't have children. This is why most people that don't or can't have children go ahead and get a pet to fill that void.
Animals are also amazing creatures! Who also have jobs like, police dogs, Army horses, and even therapy dogs, I mean wow their not just our lovable pets but also helping us to manage our anxiety or autism. Their is just no end to how incredible animals can be....
In this video it talks about a therapy dog program in Texas. Ruby's school has a therapy dog that visits once a week and I am so happy the school has incorporated such a program.
Your Pet & Depression
FYI your pet can get depression too you know. They have feelings just like us, like separation anxiety which is more common than you think. I think its even more scary for your pet to be having these feelings as your the one they rely on to spot the signs to then get them the help they need as they can't just simply tell you! So here are the sign to look out for.....
Sleeping all the time
Loss of appetite
Loss of interest in going for walks and playing
Hiding and avoiding contact
Chewing or constant licking of the paws
If you do see these signs and are concerned for your pets mental well-being then please take them to the vet to get them the help they need and it may even be something more serious that needs attention so its always best to be safe than sorry.
If you have been debating to get a pet then I would highly suggest to go ahead and give a pet a happy, loving home coz as you have read it will massively benefit you as well as whatever lucky pet you choose.
So the moral of the story is you and your pet can help each other be a happier version of you and live happily ever after! The End! (Cheesy I know I couldn't help myself tho).
That’s all from me today, until next week...
Remember to Keep Smiling & Laugh a little Every day!
Your Mental Mum...
Ps, Share with us your pets and do they help with your mental health? Did this blog post inspire you to go adopt your very own pet?? I would love to hear your stories and experiences....
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