By All Means, Let's Make Cats Our Equals

By Bill Hall

I just wish my companion animal would think of me as his companion animal instead of thinking of me as his butler.

A "companion animal" is what used to be called "a pet." But I see in an animal rights magazine that all of the former pets are now referred to as "companion animals."

I would love to have companion animals in our house but none of them will stop treating me like a servant long enough to be a companion.

I gather that we are no longer to call our pets pets because that suggests that they are our property, our toys, our slaves placed on this earth to serve us, their cruel, demanding masters.

I am all for that kind of thinking because I am tired of being Sterling's property, his toy, his slave his butler.

I don't know where I fell into these lousy habits of doing the bidding of a cat, especially in a democratic country where all companion animals are equal, regardless of race, creed, sex or the amount of hair on their bodies.

But the truth is, when it comes to Sterling, I do what I'm told. If Emperor Sterling, wants out, he yells at me and I let him out. If he wants in usually 20 seconds later I let him in.

The companion animal who is my wife is equally humiliated. We fetch his food (and pay for it because the deadbeat won't work). We vacuum the mysterious piles of feathers which we suspect are crumbs from his companion dinners. We clean up after his every violation of basic, civilized hygiene.

We put up with one hell of a lot from that companion ingrate. And he still treats us like dogs.

So, yes, we would be glad to have a little less of the attitude in this country that the other animal in the house is property. We would be glad to have the kind of animal rights that make the hairy crab in our house treat his companion people with a little more respect.

The companion hysterics who run these animal rights outfits have apparently achieved some measure of equality with the bossy brutes who own them. And more power to them if they can pull it off. But it is pretty tough, when you get right down to it, to achieve any measure of equality with a companion beast that is 10 percent brains and 90 percent appetite.

After all, cats have no morals. They are born killers and, I might add, disqualified from membership in the animal rights church by their taste for meat. They tend to be dirtier than you've heard. And when it comes to sex, they all behave like alley cats.

And just because cats are generally served by people so stupid they equate slavery with companionship doesn't make them companions. People who tell you Sterling is my companion will tell you that your old boot camp sergeant was your friend.

If a politician or a boss ever tried to treat me with so little respect, I would hire a lawyer. Nonetheless, I stand there at the door like the servile fool I am opening and closing it for my master, Sterling, begging him to let me serve him one more morsel of smelly food, tolerating his sloppiness, hiding the evidence of his murders.

How did I ever reach this humiliating stage in my life?

I guess I'm like one of those older housewives who got started in the housewife game in a simpler era when men brought home the paycheck and women stayed home and looked after the house.

But now women must also work outside the home and yet somehow the whole arrangement never got readjusted in a few families. The man and woman both work all day outside the home. And then the woman alone comes home and does the housework.

My situation is somewhat the opposite. I have always worked outside the home and that bum Sterling has never lifted a paw inside or out. Worse the two new kittens are falling into his footsteps, the little deadbeats. I am suddenly butler to three bums, not just one.

So I'll tell you true: I take it a little hard when some sanctimonious sap starts coining cutesy terms like ''animal companion'' in a witless effort to make Sterling my equal on the premise that he is being treated like an inferior.

One of us is, that's for sure. One of us is being treated like a companion fool.



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