Entitled, arrogant, lazy, spoiled, narcissistic. That’s all we hear about young cats today. In the good old days, our cats were happy to hunt for mice and live in the barn. Now they expect to be fed organic freeze-dried turkey treats while they spend all day snapchatting, watching themselves on youtube, and doing things we generally consider to be a “waste of time” (because if you don’t see the value in doing something yourself, naturally it must be a waste of time). In another light, these cats are flexible, self-expressive, risk-taking, and innovative. However you feel about your millennial cat, it would be foolish to try to change them. Accept that this is the way things are now and cater to their needs or don’t even bother having a cat. As you learn to cope with the new normal, these strategies may help you manage your own team of upstart millennials.
Cupcake Schoolbus’ high score in Cat Fishing is 140
Cats today need to enjoy their environment and want constant stimulation except when they want you to f*** off and leave them alone. Give them bright interactive play spaces equipped with cardboard boxes, dedicated cat iPads, and furniture designed with the millennial cat in mind like expensive mod wall shelves and speciality cat hammocks. If you provide them with a variety of new toys and ample places to scratch and nap, you are likely to have happy and productive cats. Leading experts suggest a 5:1 ratio of nap pods to cats.
They don’t take kindly to being ignored. They will meow their fuzzy faces off until you feed them or open whatever door you just closed.
Millennial cats expect loving owners who hang on their every word and whose lives revolve around them. They don’t take kindly to being ignored. They will meow their fuzzy faces off until you feed them or open whatever door you just closed. However if you try to interact with them when they aren’t interested, they will straight up ignore you. They have better things to do. Which is nothing. They have absolutely nothing to do and they want to keep it that way. Forcing your cat into a conversation is counterproductive (and a little sad). Just be available and let them come to you when they need companionship or input on which hashtags to use on their instagram post (let’s be honest, you have no idea).
All millennial cats have been coddled to their emotional incapacitation. They are literally incapable of doing simple things for themselves like their own laundry or cleaning their litter boxes. They expect technology to do these things for them. If the technology doesn’t exist, they will work harder to invent it than they will to do the original thing itself. Some call this lazy, but as we know, the greatest innovations in recent history have all come from cats. Cats today are uniquely motivated by their desire to make the world a better place (for themselves). Use this to your advantage by providing them with projects that pique their personal interests and don’t expect them to waste time on toil.
When the going gets rough, obviously the most effective advice to give your cat is to hang in there.
Hang in There!: Inspirational Art of the 1970s, a must-read by Jennifer McKnight-Trontz
Cats only respond to positive reinforcement. Don’t bother giving them a compliment sandwich (a.k.a. poop sandwich), even if it is vegan and gluten-free. Sprinkle words of encouragement into every interaction and praise them for their accomplishments, no matter how trivial. If you’re concerned your cat is heading for failure, be straightforward and honest with them but know that if you’re overly critical, your words will be met with a blank stare. These cats have been raised to believe that they can do anything. If you try to discourage them with wisdom from your own experience, they simply won’t believe you. They have to learn and experience failure for themselves. When reality does set in and the going gets rough, obviously the most effective advice to give your cat is to hang in there.
If you think your cat is not the leader of your household, you are mistaken. Millennial cats are born leaders. But because of their lax and permissive upbringing, they have no respect for traditional authority, nor do they respond well to rigid protocols or displays of power. Don’t try to be your cat’s boss. Instead, aim to be their mentor. Encourage their self-assured can-do attitude and be approachable as you guide them in their pursuits. These are the most computer literate cats the world has ever seen. As natives to the internet age, they are adept in social media and self promotion. Recognize and leverage their natural ability to build provocative stories from their own experiences that will shape the world of the future.
It’s true that every older generation of cats has looked down upon the young upstarts with disdain since the beginning of cats. That’s because all young cats are universally inferior to those that are older, wiser and more experienced in life. There are no exceptions to this rule. I think we can all agree that it’s always best to apply blanket generalizations to large groups of cats, regardless of individual differences.
If you liked this article, be sure to recommend it and help spread good ideas as far and wide as tufts of cat hair caught in a warm summer’s breeze.