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Tuesday, January 15, 2013

5 Reasons it's Better to be a Pregnant Cat

As this is my first pregnancy, it might shock you to know that I don't really know a whole lot about human pregnancies and human babies. 

What I do know is cats. 

My mother, being the irresponsible pet owner that she is, was constantly bringing un-spayed cats into our home, and then letting them roam about the neighborhood, resulting in a constant stream of pregnancies and kittens.

Irresponsible, but adorable. 

Comparing my current situation with the many cat pregnancies I lived through growing up, I can also tell you that it's a lot better to be a pregnant cat than a pregnant human.

Human gestation: 38 weeks (plus those first 2 weeks they tack on when you're totally NOT pregnant).
Cat gestation: 9 weeks. 

It's practically over before it starts! I know, I know, we could have it as bad as elephants and be pregnant for 2 years, but that actually brings me to my next point, something elephants and cats have in common.

Humans: 2 legs
Cats (and elephants): 4 legs

Being bipedal means all the pressure from the baby is exerted on a very sensitive area. Four legs = less pressure on the groin area. So probably none of those shooting inner thigh pains where it feels like your leg is going to collapse under you.

Human nutrition: Obnoxious dietary restrictions
Cat nutrition: Regular diet

Cats can consume whatever they usually consume, and spoiled house pets will probably get some treats, like milk. I've spent the last 8 months staring longingly at people's wine glasses, second-guessing most foods, and have now entered a phase where the only thing that sounds edible on a regular basis is cereal.
Human interactions: Barrage of unsolicited advice.
Cat interactions: Don't speak English.

Not only do cats not have mother-in-laws to annoy them with endless commentary about their gestational decisions, even if my mother-in-law attempted to advise a cat about her pregnancy, she'd just meow and wander off because she wouldn't understand a word of it. And also, it's standard, acceptable cat behavior to ignore anyone who annoys them. Lucky ducks.

Human partner: husband always nosing about, getting the way.
Cat partner: baby daddy who?

Cats are the love 'em and leave 'em sort. Humans are arguably a bit more bonded, which is generally considered a good thing. And yet . . . am I the only one irrationally irritated by my husband's perfectly normal behavior? He's actually been amazing; I'm just  . . . 8 months pregnant.

Bonus point:

Human babies: Need to wait a while for a return on your investment.
Kittens: Adorable and fun to play with by 4 weeks old.

We all love our children, but let's face it: newborns don't do much. They eat and sleep and poo and cry, and generally require a lot of help from mom and dad before they really start being fun. Kittens, on the other hand, are kinda blob-like for a few weeks, but by 4 weeks old are running around, playing, tripping over each other, chasing their tails and being adorable little fluff balls. 

I guess you can argue that the long term rewards of human babies are greater, but I'm willing to bet that during those first few weeks, I'll be thinking wistfully of kittens on more than one occasion.

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