So, we recently received a comment to one of our video posts on social media… It was in response to a cat tip we posted and mentioned the term “cat parent”.

This person said “Cat owners, NOT parents. It is an animal, not a human.

I remember this being a controversial topic years ago, but we thought everyone refers to their relationship with their cats as either parents or guardians these days. 🤔 So I made a video response and asked the cat community what terms they use in 2024… and oh my goodness, we were not prepared for the responses!!!

THOUSANDS of cat people commented that they are, hands down, cat parents.

In the pet ownership world, terminology sparks debates. “Cat parent” is a hot topic. Some oppose it, others embrace it.

“Cat parent” gains popularity, especially online. Owners identify as “parents” or “guardians,” emphasizing nurturing bonds.

But why has this shift occurred, and what does it say about the evolving nature of our connection to animals?

One of the key factors driving the use of the term “cat parent” is the changing perception of pets within society. Gone are the days when animals were solely regarded as property or possessions. Instead, pets are increasingly seen as valued members of the family, deserving of love, care, and respect. This shift in attitude has led many people to adopt language that reflects the emotional depth of their bond with their pets, acknowledging the role they play in their lives as more than just animals, but as cherished companions.

The term “cat parent” reflects a broader cultural shift toward recognizing the intelligence, emotions, and individuality of animals. Scientific research has provided compelling evidence of the complex social and cognitive abilities of cats. This challenges the traditional view of them as mere instinct-driven creatures.

As we learn more about animals, our language changes to better describe our relationships with them.

The rise of social media and online communities has provided a platform for pet owners to connect and share experiences. This has lead to the widespread adoption of terms like “cat parent” within these digital spaces. Through social media, cat parents from around the world come together to celebrate their shared love for their cats, forming a global cat community.

Of course, it’s important to acknowledge that not everyone embraces the term “cat parent.” Some individuals prefer to stick with more traditional terms like “owner” or “caretaker,” viewing the use of parental language as unnecessary or even inappropriate when referring to animals. Others raise valid concerns about the potential dangers of anthropomorphism, arguing that attributing human characteristics to animals can lead to unrealistic expectations and misunderstandings.

Ultimately, the language we use to describe our relationships with our pets is personal and shaped by our individual experiences. Whether we identify as cat parents, guardians, owners, or something else, what matters most is the love and care we provide our cats. As long as our cats are treated with kindness, respect, and compassion, the terminology we use is just linguistics.

So, whether you proudly proclaim yourself a cat parent or prefer a different label altogether, remember that what truly matters is the joy, companionship, and unconditional love that our feline friends bring into our lives every day. In the end, perhaps the most fitting term of all is simply “family.”

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