Children and cats can be a winsome combination and this alliance between kitty cats and kids goes back a long way. The images of children and cats below, and this excerpt from the 1909 edition of “The Children’s Encyclopaedia” edited by Arthur Mee, gives us an insight into the way cats were regarded, and their relationships with children. Vintage cats and children!
”Cats can never be trained quite as dogs are, yet they have wonderful brains and loving natures. There was one which lived in a house where a dog was kept. The cat did not like the dog, until a cruel man struck the dog and injured its eyes. Then the poor dog could not see at all well. As it returned to the house it would sometimes run against the doorpost and hurt itself. The cat watched this several times, then it used to go. out into the garden after the dog and guide it back in safety. The two would trot back to the house together, side by side, and they never quarrelled again as long as they lived.
CATS AND DOGS THAT LIVE TOGETHER – AND BECOME GREAT FRIENDS. When we talk of a “cat-and-dog” life, we mean the lives of people who are always quarrelling. But cats and dogs do not always quarrel. When they live together they generally become the best of friends. There was a naughty little puppy which used to tease a big, stately cat. Puss was too full of dignity to hurt the puppy, hut you could see that she was cross. Well, this cat’s kittens all died, and her grief was dreadful. She mourned and went about the house as if she would never be happy any more. The dog could not understand it. He ran about after her, not teasing, but anxious to know what made her sad. At last he seemed to! understand. He rushed into the garden, scratched up some soil, and found the place where the kittens were buried. He carried these into the house and laid them down before the cat. She saw then that they really were dead, and she saw that the dog was sorry for her. She ceased to fret for the kittens, but then and there made friends with the dog; and, after that, wherever the one went there the other was sure to go.”
Source: CATS AND CAT CARE – A RETROSPECTIVE: THE EARLY 1900s – FEEDING, HEALTH AND GENERAL CARE
Image source: Flickr
- Cheryl Hicks vintage post card collection, ”Happy Birthday” / ”Little girl with kitten and bowl of milk” / ”Girl with glasses and cat”
- James Morley ”Phyllis Carrington and her kitten, June 1903” Desc. Another shot of young Phyllis Carrington, this time with her kitten. Poor thing – it looks like it must be used to be handled! I suspect this is at Orienta Cottage, Mamaroneck, NY