5 Signs Your Date Hates Cats

When I’m asked why I paid to upgrade my OKCupid account for additional features, I usually tell them it’s just so I can have access to the list of people who highly rated my profile in order to message them.

The real story is that one of the questions asked of OKCupid users is whether or not they dislike cats, and I wanted to be able to filter out those men who don’t like cats. The fact of the matter is, I am looking for a long-term partner at this point in my life, and that partner also loving my cat, Keith, is going to be hugely important to me. Some may say that it is this kind of behavior that makes cat ladies die alone. But cat ladies never die alone, they die with their cats!

For those dates who don’t come from OKCupid, of which I have a relatively decent amount, figuring out if my date is a cat person is a bit trickier. There are some people who throw themselves out of the running right away by admitting that they hate cats. But others might attempt to disguise their cat contempt and play along that they are fine with cats. Here are five ways to spot them.

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1. He uses the line “I like cats, but dogs are just SO much better”

This statement seems benign at first — they simply have a preference for dogs. As a huge dog lover, I understand their appeal and hold nothing against those that prefer dogs. My first and only love was unapologetically more of a dog person but he still cared about our cat deeply. So when I think of what I would do if told by a date that he had a dog or loved dogs, my response would be, “Oh, me too!” and some further attempt to connect on the topic. It isn’t like comparing favorite football teams where the competitive banter can be flirtatious — this statement is a totally unnecessary degradation of your animal companion, when there are plenty of other affirming ways of acknowledging your cat love. The “Oh, I’m just a dog person” excuse doesn’t have to be offensive in the way that the above statement is, by unnecessarily comparing one to the other to make your animal preference seem inferior.

2. He doesn’t immediately attempt to win your cat’s favor on his first visit to your home

In the same way that I would see it is a huge red flag if a date did not introduce himself and acknowledge a roommate (if I had one), if there is a living, breathing creature in the room with you and he doesn’t say hello or attempt to make some kind of connection, it indicates not mere ambivalence but strong dislike. Cats are living things and while they aren’t going to have a chat with your date about the latest in local politics, they deserve acknowledgement and wooing from a potential partner. If he doesn’t make the attempt, it indicates a level of disinterest, which can be a deal-breaker for people whose cats are tremendously important in their lives.

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3. He calls your cat “it” when he has been informed of the cat’s name

Again, your cat is a living creature, which you have clearly deigned to share living space with. Your cat has a name. If he can’t be bothered to remember it and use it, chances are he doesn’t have any intentions of caring about the cat’s well-being or respecting the value of you and your cat’s relationship. Your cat is not a piece of furniture or head of lettuce. No one calls your cat “it,” period.

4. He delivers the “Yeah, you can definitely tell you have a cat” line upon entering your home

As someone who obsessively cleans my cat’s litter, I still get self-conscious when bringing a guy over because of the possibility that Keith has just dropped something serious in the litter box. The reality is that cat facilities are indoors and without proper diligence it can smell a bit like, well, you know. But bringing up this fact is not only an insult to you and your home, it is a snide reminder that many who dislike cats like to make: that cats are gross because they go inside. As a dog-lover, I won’t go too far into the (non) merits of a species that defecates in THE STREET, which then has to be cleaned up after in the freshest state, but can we all just agree that taking care of pet business is all equally unpleasant in different ways? Your home’s vague smell of cat is fine, don’t let a hater tell you otherwise.

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5. He EVER utters the words “It’s just a cat”

I can’t count the number of times I have heard this, whether it is in regard to me needing to pick up cat food or the prospect of just “upgrading” to a dog when I have the time, money, and real estate. Yes, sir, I do need to leave (or at least detour) from our date to pick up food for my cat because even though she is JUST a cat, she is (surprise surprise!) capable of hunger, malnutrition, and even starvation! No, sir, I do not wish to abandon my “starter” pet for a dog when I live in a building that allows it and I have the disposable income for a dog walker. Once I got this line when asked about moving out of the country at some point, and I said it would depend on the quarantine regulations of the country. He couldn’t conceive of that playing a role in whether or not one might pursue a job or an extended stay in another country. After all, it’s JUST a cat to them.

So what do you think? Are these fair? Any other helpful tips for spotting the stealth feline haters that we should look out for? Let us know in the comments.

Photo: Young woman with cat by Shutterstock

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This post was written by Alana Massey, regular contributor to Catster Magazine.


Carrie-Anne Brown

thanks for sharing :)

Debbie Crowe
Debbie Crowe4 years ago

My husband had a cat and a bird when we met. I knew he was good people from the start.

Now, we have 5 cats and I love it when I walk in the living room and at least 1 of them are laying on him and another at his feet (more room to stretch out - lol)!!

Elena T.
Elena Poensgen4 years ago

Thank you :)

Michael A.
Michael A4 years ago


Deb Ryan
Deb Ryan4 years ago

If the cats don't like him,Bye-Bye they're quicker studies than I am!

Judy Yurchuk
Judy Yurchuk4 years ago

Don't trust a person who hates ANY animal

Barbara V.
Barbara V4 years ago

Shelly P: Why in the name of common sense are you letting your cat have kittens all over the place? Why haven't you spayed her? Don't you realize this kind of carelessness is one of the reasons so many cats end up in shelters, many of whom are euthanized? This tragedy is always caused by humans who haven't the sense to spay and neuter.

Barbara V.
Barbara V4 years ago

They also tend to push cats away from them. In my experience, they were shown the door. I always said that a guy who hates cats hates women. That might be incorrect, but I want nothing to do with any guy who balks at the sight of an animal.

JL A4 years ago

yup--all clues

PrimaSICK B.
PrimaAWAY B4 years ago

. Donna M.
9:30AM PDT on Oct 22, 2013
I think your rules are fair. My neighbor has to keep her cats in the garage because her 'boyfriend', doesn't like cats. That is so uncool. I'd like to say to her, keep the cats, get rid of the boyfriend.
OMG, Donna that is terrible. That is a woman who feels she cannot live without a man. VERY VERY SAD!! It angers me that too many will do that.

There's is nothing that comes before my animals. I actually lived with my husband without even knowing him due to his love of animals and how much I saw they loved him.That's including toads /frogs that leaned into his hand for attention... It actually took me 3 good years before I truly loved my husband and before I married him. It was 18 years and the animals always came first and thankfully he was in agreement with that.

TY for the article.