Cat adopts stuffed animal. Weird?
January 19, 2010 1:43 PM Subscribe
My cat has grown attached to a stuffed animal. Specifically, a raccoon. What instincts are at work here?
posted by inkytea to Pets & Animals (55 answers total) 62 users marked this as a favorite
My awesome cat decided to make herself at home in my life 5 years ago. Before then, she was my roommate's cat and didn't adjust well to the living arrangements (2 other, more dominant cats and a generally neglectful owner). When she was lonely / depressed at night, she wailed. We discovered that she had adopted this raccoon stuffed animal that was laying around. We determined this when we noticed that the raccoon's ears were wet with saliva. It also eerily moved from place to place.
When I moved out, I took the cat and her raccoon with me since she chose me as her rightful slave (oh god crazy cat person language coming out. Apologies all around). We've lived a happy life together since. She gets bounds of attention and doesn't wail at night.
She still carries her raccoon around from room to room, choosing her favorite spots to deposit this thing. I once found it perfectly balanced on her water cup, but I've only ever seen it in her mouth once in 5 years. The funny thing is she seems to get embarrassed about it when I try to interact with it. She refuses to look at it. (I no longer try and just allow her her oddities as she so kindly does mine).
This question pretty much exposes both me and my cat as crazy, but I'm curious. Has anybody else out there seen this kind of behavior in a cat? Are her maternal instincts coming out or is it loneliness? I've thought about introducing her to a playmate, but she's so submissive when it comes to other cats that it's always ended in sheer terror for her. Those with eccentric cat behavior stories, out with it!