Musings Isa

Published on April 14th, 2014 | by Kelsey Beier

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What’s your cat voice?

Cat owners all do it. Even if they may not admit it, it’s a well-known and unrecorded fact that all cat owners have conversations with their furry friends. In order to successfully carry out these cat-versations, cat owners take it upon themselves to answer back for their feline in the voice that they have assigned to best accommodate their cat’s personality.

Once a voice is assigned, it doesn’t take long until the cat owner is conditioned to actually believe whole-heartedly that their cat actually possesses said voice. What starts off as a fun-loving conversation between an owner and their pet grows into the personification of an animal in the human world.

cardOnce again, I am forced to pick on my husband, a.k.a. the cat whisperer, who has somehow managed to convince me that our cat (which was formerly his cat) possesses the deep, raspy voice of an 80-year-old smoker. He has even gone so far as to give me holiday cards that have been signed by Isa the cat. She doesn’t have the steadiest of paws with a pen, so these cards will always come to me written in her scratchy printing and they are narrated in my head with the same smoker’s voice that she would have when speaking orally.

I have recently started imitating Isa’s voice when talking about her in public, trying to convince whomever it is that I’m talking to that my cat is quite real and actually possesses a defined personality.

Because my husband understands Isa on a much deeper level than I do, I often get him to narrate her voice in front of our friends and family but, alas, he is always too embarrassed to do so. As mentioned above, not all cat owners will admit that they have reciprocated conversations with their cats.

Like many cats, Isa is the type that doesn’t take any crap from anyone. She is petted and adored on her own terms and she simply cannot be bothered to give a damn a lot of the time. She lays where she wants, when she wants, and she gets quite peeved when we leave her home alone for more than a day.

Upon our return, Isa might say something like, “Where the hell were you? It’s just nonsensical. You didn’t even bring back any hunt. I can’t think of any other reasons that you would need to leave the house.” Presently, Isa has even come up with her own jingles about my husband and I.

Maybe it’s their low-maintenance, self-sufficient nature. Or their feisty undertones.

The best part about personifying your cat is that you can use him or her as a mediator or third party when having an argument or discussion with your significant other. For example, my husband and I will often say things using Isa’s voice such as:

“What is that god-awful smell? What is that? Ryan, how unnecessary of you!”

or

“Kelsey, are you really sure that you want to wear that jacket to the party? Isn’t it a little much?”

On many occasions, my husband will use Isa’s voice as a way to say the sweet things that he may perhaps feel too bashful to say using his own masculine demeanor, such as:

“How did a beautiful woman such as yourself end up with a ghastly man like Ryan?”

or

“You’re the one who really understands me Kelsey; you just get me. You just do.”

What I’m curious about is whether or not dog owners have this same relationship with their canines. Do dogs have voices too, or are they too easily read as animals and, therefore, not open to any personification on a deeper, humanistic level?

Having never been a dog lover, I find myself impartial to the species in general. I’m not extremely fond of cats either, but somehow they have managed to find me at the different stages in my life from infancy to adulthood and I developed a sort of unconditional love and understanding for the species. Maybe it’s their low-maintenance, self-sufficient nature. Or their feisty undertones. Or maybe it’s just the fact that you can have a conversation with an 80-year-old smoker without the inconvenience of smoke or people, with only the occasional fur ball.

conspiracy-cat-meme

Cat lovers, fret no more! The Edmonton International Cat Festival is set for June 7th at NAIT’s Shaw Theatre. With a cat photo beauty pageant, internet cat videos, and presentations by local writer (who’s so hot right meow) Omar Mouallem, viral cat video aficionado Hilary Darrah, and local playwright, author, and friend of felines, Marty Chan, it’s sure to be a purr-fect event! (Sorry…we had to do it!)

Find out how to get your paws on tickets here.

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About the Author

| Lover of music, writing, traveling and working with kids. Teacher by day; unpublished author by night (and sometimes on the weekends).



2 Responses to What’s your cat voice?

  1. Breanne says:

    Some deep thoughts here Kelsey! I am sure there is a brilliant Master’s thesis on this somewhere out there….and if not, there should be! As a long time, avid dog lover, I will give my side of the story. Dogs communicate in many ways…via body language with an entire body shake, a stretch, and most importantly a tail wag! They also bark, sneeze (especially my Shih-tzu’s), and howl! I merely have to use the correct intonation of voice (i.e. extremely excited), and in turn, both dogs will be at my feet wagging there tails and sneezing (I have summed this sneezing up to be, “yes, I am excited!”). I occasionally will answer for them, and its typically in the voice of a scooby doo character…but this method of answering back on their behalf is few and far between! And I guess I can only link that to the fact that they have so many other ways of communicating back, and its always a positive “I miss you” or “Yes WALK!” “Yay food!” “OMG treat or bone!”….where as cat’s….a lot more can be alluded to how their personality is!

  2. Melissa L says:

    This article made me laugh! When we visited john’s uncle in the States they have a fat, cross eyed cat who always looked grumpy and would run away from you. One day john looked at the cat, who was staring at the boys, and voiced for the cat in a deep, growly smoker-esque voice; “I don’t think you’re funny”. It made us howl with laughter! Ask little Seamus to do the voice for you on Monday!

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