Owning multiple cats does not make you crazy, according to science. Yep, the crazy cat lady stereotype can be put to rest. Cat lovers stand proud, because we have the facts to back you up.
A "cat lady" refers to a woman who owns many cats. Generally, she lives alone, at least when it comes to human companions. The stereotype of a crazy cat lady draws on the idea that she attempts to ease her loneliness by adding more and more furry friends to her household.
Another interpretation is that the cats make the woman crazy. She becomes more interested in them than humans and voluntarily withdraws from human friendships and relationships. Why would this happen? Maybe cats have spiritual powers, but it is more likely that they are just cuter and sweeter than most people.
Regardless, science has proven that cats do not make you crazy and that people who own cats don't have any negative inborn characteristics. Believe it or not, people have studied this.
Researchers at UCLA found that cat owners were no more likely to experience depression, anxiety, or self-isolation that their non-cat-owning counterparts. They also discovered that both cat and dog owners responded more empathetically when they heard cats' or dogs' cries.
The study's authors looked at 500 pet owners' mental health and whether they experienced social difficulties. They also investigated whether owning a pet made a person react differently to hearing recorded animal distress cries.
The crazy cat lady stereotype has been officially debunked. Cat owners are just like everyone else.
You might actually suppose that cat owners were less depressed and anxious, and more empathetic in general. After all, pets have been supposed to reduce anxiety and bring companionship right? According to the study's findings, not really.
As it turns out, people with or without pets suffer from similar levels of depression and anxiety. Cats don't make you a crazy lady, but apparently, they do not make you less crazy either.