A Cat Walks Into The Dojo …

It’s Adopt-A-Shelter-Cat month!

I know—I tend to focus on dogs. That’s only because I have dogs—dogs who think cats are among the best toys ever. Really, I’m more interested in sharing how I practice mindfulness and how that impacts my relationship with my current pack. It’s healthier for me, and I assume them. A lot of it could just as easily apply to cats, too.

Cats inherently have a Zen-like quality about them. This one certainly did. How else could he tolerate the clumsy attempts at affection from a baby?

Me as a baby petting a scruffy, grey cat.

Yep, that’s me.

This wasn’t my kitty, but I did grow up with one starting in the second grade. We took in a freebie from a friend, which is how most cats join families – a sad fact when some 70% of cats in shelters are killed every year. So many purrfect (sorry, had to do it) mindfulness teachers lost. Because cats can be just as beneficial to a mindfulness practice as dogs.

Our cat when she was young.

Our family cat, Muffin.

For example, the other day, I had a meltdown while working. By the time I finally shut the computer off, I was shaky, sweaty, and itching for an argument.

To calm my nerves, I reached for my phone intending to listen to a guided meditation. Mid-reach, however, Rico dove under my hand. I petted him for a little bit and noticed how soft he felt. It felt good. My fingers disappeared into his thick, black coat. I squished the excess folds of his big neck up to his face – which he loves. He lazily looked up into my eyes and all but asked me, “What do you need technology for? I’m right here.”

I petted him for about 10 minutes. And during those glorious 10 minutes, all thoughts about the horrible day rolled out like an afternoon storm cloud. Afterward, I felt as refreshed as the evening earth after a good rain.

That kind of mindful petting could absolutely be practiced with a beloved cat…or a rabbit, hamster, or any other pet that enjoys physical affection.

So adopt a cat this month – if the dog allows it.

Av ery young me and Grandma's cat

Another feline friend

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About Christie Green

A student of martial arts since 1995, a writer since 1999, and an animal-lover for all of time
This entry was posted in A Mindful Life with Dogs, Odds and Ends and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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