My name is Rob and I own a cat. But wait, I also have a dog!
Look, I usually go my own way with head held high, but the matter of cats and dogs stirs some uneasy feelings. There’s a subtle prejudice in our culture about men with cats that’s cut with sexism and old stereotypes. In a nutshell, it’s the idea that cats are feminine, dogs are masculine and a guy with a cat — particularly a single guy — is not a manly man.
Don’t get mad at me, I’m just telling you what I’ve observed. And if you don’t believe it, read what Kristi Gustafson Barlette wrote on the topic. She stopped just shy of calling it “creepy,” for God’s sake.
You might think that as a married man with a dog none of this would phase me, but the cat stigma has affected my behavior. Here’s the thing: when I go to the pet store and buy two dozen cans of cat food, I’m always sure to throw in a dog item so the clerk doesn’t judge me over my pet proclivity.
Dog treats, dog toys, various dog accessories and dog chewy things — as long as it’s clearly for a dog. I’ve even held up an item and said to the cashier, “My DOG is going to love this!”
Yes, that’s nuts.
What can I say? Blame society for this cruel view of men and cats. It benefits no one — except maybe for my dog. She loves it.