Damn, that cat is crazy!
March 24, 2010 12:37 PM Subscribe
Can animals go insane?
posted by WolfDaddy to Pets & Animals (39 answers total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
My mom performs a lot of cat rescues in rural New Mexico. Nearly all of these cats are rescued from conditions that I find just absolutely horrifying. Some of these cats need to be put to sleep out of mercy, but most of them get adopted out and go on to lead happy lives. How these cats manage to reintegrate amongst humans is beyond me.
Then I am reminded of a roommate's cat who was very nearly hit by a car. Before the incident the cat had a perfect long coat of fur. After, it went all wiry and ungroomed. Before, the cat was behaviorally normal, after it ... well, the only thing I can think of to describe the behavior is "suicidal": it would jump from very high places for no reason at all, often injuring itself. It became fascinated by fire and would often try to stick its paw into the flame from a gas stove, sometimes succeeding. It refused to have any kind of contact with humans besides its owner whereas before it loved all humans. But after the incident, the cat attacked several familiar people quite violently.
I've often thought that if a creature can think, it can go insane but, really, does this apply to animals besides ourselves?