AfterEllen.com Huddle: Lesbian’s best friend

 
 

Lesbians are animal lovers but it was time for us to settle an age-old argument over which animal is a lesbian’s best friend: Cat or dog?

The Linster: I never much cared for cats, since I grew up with dogs. In fact, I said no every time my GF asked if we could get one. Then one day, on her birthday, she just brought a kitten home — a sickly looking little tortoiseshell with her hair sticking straight up all over. Within a few months, Freckles the cat and I bonded and our relationship lasted 17 years (seven more than the one with the GF). Brittany would have approved of her diet and physique.

Now I have two cats that I got of my own free will and I love them with all my heart. But I can’t honestly say that I like cats better than dogs. I have them for the same reason that I have a messy house — I am lazy. I guess that when it comes to domestic animal orientation, I am bi.

Karman Kregloe: I love all animals (though birds and monkeys have always struck me as a little dodgy), but I will always love cats the best. My wife is a dog person, so now my cat, Shelby, and I live with two adorable pups. We’re both learning how to make that work. Since they cuddle me and chase her, I think I’m making better progress.

I will say that dogs are really good at being loving, predictable and good-natured team players. I appreciate the whole “comes when called” thing, I really do. But I respect the fact that cats must be invoked, not called, and that they have their own agendas. Self-sufficient, dignified, sensitive and they can do this:

Mia Jones: I am an animal lover to the extreme. I’ve been known to cry while walking through the Humane Society because I knew that not every cat or dog would eventually be rescued. In fact, I need to stop thinking about it right now otherwise Sarah McLachlan will haunt my dreams tonight.

We’ve got a bit of a Noah’s Ark thing going on in our household: Two dogs, two cats, two small lesbians and I wouldn’t have it any other way (unless I could be an animal hoarder on a gigantic urban farm with maximum security so no one could steal my babies). I hate having to choose between the two species, but if I’m being honest, dogs will always be my favorite. Our cats, Saffy and Mr. Lacroix are very cuddly and dog-like, but they don’t have as many of the human qualities Bubble and Marshall possess. Bubble acts just like a teenage girl and even though she’s fixed, she totally PMSes when we do. We call Marshall Jolie-Pitt our boy with no pants because he acts like a 7-year-old boy who is either on a sugar-high or is completely exhausted and just needs cuddling. They really are two of the best parts of my life.

I feel guilty leaving out a picture of Saffy and Lacroix so here you are.

Courtney Gillette: If lesbianism were a country, cats would be the national pet. Or at least in my neck of lesbianism, where a quick count of 20 of my queer friends found that only five of them didn’t have a cat (but my bff does happily own two rabbits). We might be dog owners if we lived in a city where your 400 square foot, overpriced studio apartment could contain the scamper and yowls of a feline, let alone a canine pal.

I avoided the cat-lesbian stereotype for as long as I could, until someone told me of a black and white tuxedo rescue cat who had FeLV and was living inside of a bass drum in someone’s music studio. His name was Professor, and I adopted him in a gay heartbeat. But I will confess: my ultimate dream is to own a dachshund named Macchiato. I feel like Macchiato and Prof and I would make the grandest lesbian of families.

Heather Hogan: In the whole entire history of my whole entire life, I have always had both a cat and a dog, something I didn’t realize until Trish Bendix asked me which one was better. I was born into a family with a cat and a dog, and I grew up in a family with about six hundred thousand cats and a dog, and now that I’m (supposedly) a grown-up, I have a cat and two dogs.

My pets are seriously a part of my family. Like I should probably be embarrassed by how much I love them. I take my German Shepherd mix out every Saturday morning for Mommy & Me breakfast. I get totally offended when someone passes me on the hiking trail without stopping to say how my beagle is the cutest thing in this wide world. And my cat, well, she’s obviously hatching a plan for global domination — as cats do — and I’m still letting her sleep in my bed. So, you know, pushover adoration.

I’m a big believer in pet destiny. All of my pets came to me at exactly the correct time. And you know what else? They match!

Ali Davis: I’m a fan of both. I don’t like it when people try to divide the world into “cat people” and “dog people.” (Hmm. Spot the bi girl…) Having owned both, I will say that cats are much better practice for dating. You have to be interested but not too interested, able to read subtle signals, and ready to deal with some major quirks.

Bridget McManus: Dog, hands down! (Or should I say paws down.) As a mother to one cat and two dogs, I do love both species. But cats are too moody and temperamental for my taste. Being with a cat is like having a one night stand with a straight girl. They are fun when they feel like being fun, and they can turn on you in a instant. Dogs are consistent with their love. I’m a fan of consistency.

Grace Chu: I’m a lesbian who treats animals like babies: I like other people’s animals and babies, preferably at least two feet away from me. That way I can appreciate their cuteness, I don’t get slobbered on or bitten, so I avoid cooties, and I don’t have to take care of them.

Here are two animals who do not belong to me. On the left is Coop, a cat who owns my friend Lauren. He is dressed in a hoodie two sizes too small for him, because he lives in Williamsburg. On the right is Scarlett, who is the rambunctious companion of my friends Emily and Chips. They live in Astoria, but no one in Astoria actually dresses like that. (Hey if any of the three of you actually spawn, I just want to offer myself to dress your kids, so they have a chance. Just sayin’.)

Between cats and dogs, cats are the more independent of the two. You can leave them at home for the weekend with a pile of food, and they won’t go mental. But they are passive aggressive and kind of evil. When upset, they will do things like pee on your bed, and you have to figure out what the hell you did to piss them off. Eventually, they end up training you, and you are under their control.

Dogs are needy when it comes to more immediate concerns, and they’ll tell you exactly what they want. But they have so many immediate needs. They want attention. Now. Now. Now. If you leave them alone, they will get sad, and they will destroy all of your shoes.

Want something cuddly and low maintenance? Get stuffed animals. Or a huge collection of pillows. That’s my secret.

Dara Nai: A lesbian’s best friend is neither cat, nor dog. It’s cow; in the form of a leather jacket. No lesbian should be without one.

Drummerdeeds: I was never allowed a pet growing up, so I think as a defense mechanism, I’ve since resented all pets. I just really don’t like them and am also a germ-o-phobe, so the few times I’m forced to touch one, I immediately have to wash my hands/clothes/take a shower.

Here’s the thing, though: I’m a vegetarian. I don’t eat animals, so that gives me a leg up on most animal-owners. But just because I don’t eat animals doesn’t mean I want to snuggle with them. I know it makes me the worst lesbian/human in the world, and you guys will probably judge me for my lack of baby talk and affection towards cats and dogs and ferrets and whatever else people keep in their homes, but I would much rather live with a lovely lady than a furry animal. Go lesbians!

Trish Bendix: I have had a handful of cats throughout my life, including the two that my wife has had for more than 10 years, but I have never loved a kitty like I love my pug. And I’m pretty sure lesbians love pugs because I know several others who own them. So in the cat vs. dog debate, my answer is: Pug.

Lola will be a pumpkin for Halloween, thanks for asking.

Emily Hartl: I’m automatically inclined to say “cat” because of the traditional and somewhat negative association of lesbians and cats, but I suppose it depends on what type of lesbian you’re trying to be. If you want to be more of the mysterious/reclusive/potentially has a really interesting collection or hobby of some kind, your answer might be cat. If you’re more inclined to have drinks at a bar on a Wednesday your answer might be dog. I have one of each, take that as you will.

What is the ultimate lesbian companion? Are we destined to be old cat ladies or old dog women?

 
 

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