Human-Feline Bond Quiz

Does your cat help make up your personal identity?

By Brad Kollus

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The Feline-Human Bonding Quiz is a good test of how close you and your cat are
How tight is the bond between you and your cat?
A new theory about the human-feline bond developed by Sue-Ellen Brown, Psy.D., a clinical psychologist at the Tuskegee University School of Veterinary Medicine in Alabama, is based on the field of self-psychology.

The theory states that a person or pet can act as a self-object (someone or something that gives a person’s life meaning) if it makes up a part of that person’s identity or personality. The test to determine whether a pet is a self-object is that if a person would lose that pet, they would fall apart to some extent. The loss would be so great that it would feel as though the person lost part of themselves.

Self-objects can play up to three different roles for a person:
1. Mirroring occurs when taking care of your cat makes you see yourself as a good person.
2. Idealizing occurs when a person looks up to or idealizes a pet for its qualities.
3. Twinship occurs when an owner feels so connected to the cat that they are one with each other on a spiritual level.

For each of the statements below, choose the number that best corresponds with your feelings about your cat. 

How does caring for your cat make you feel?
1.      2.      3.      4.      5.      6.      7.     8.       9.     10.
Somewhat good         Good                  Very good
How much do you look up to or idealize your cats for their beauty, independence, etc.?
1.      2.      3.      4.      5.      6.      7.      8.      9.     10.
No much                   Some                       A great deal
How close do you feel to your cat or that you are soul mates?
1.      2.      3.      4.      5.      6.      7.      8.      9.      10.
Not that close         Close        Only my cat understands me.        
Answering eight or higher on any question is a good indicator that your cat is a self-object for you and helps to make up a part of your personal identity.

Brad Kollus is a freelance writer specializing in the human-feline bond. He lives on the East Coast with his wife Elizabeth, son Dylan and their four cats.

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Human-Feline Bond Quiz

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Reader Comments

darlene    Charles City, VA

9/21/2011 7:15:43 PM

All of my babies r part of me! Best decision ive made was keeping all 5 of the kitties & their mama too! They will never have to wonder where their furline fambly is.I wnt ever have to wonder if they miss them! All of hem have unique qualities tht make us one together!

Pattie    Grand Junction, CO

8/10/2010 4:31:48 PM

My cat is a healthy and beautiful 12 year old Maine Coon. She was born the day my mother passed away in 1998. (Same day, same year) I feel a special closeness with her and sometimes I feel like she is my mother looking at me with those eyes. She is my best friend in the world. I had my cat when I met my husband and he's as close to her as I am. My cat is his best friend too. She's there when I need her even for a hug and I repay the favor. I wish my cat could be around forever.

Laurie    Pacolet, SC

6/3/2010 12:56:09 PM

Very Imformative.
My Cat Is My Baby

Mary    Riverton, UT

4/21/2010 2:01:25 PM

Live and Learn.

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