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Saturday, July 25, 2009

Why do these apes think we don't feel pain?

Dear George,
I am a very senior lady cat of 19 years young and despite living all these years there is one particular thing (amongst many) about apes that utterly confounds me. Why do so very many apes (including rather too many vets) come out with nonsense statements such as "they don't feel pain like we do" ? All I know is that pain hurts and makes me miserable.
How else can a mammal feel pain? Do apes have sole rights to both the feeling of pain and its alleviation?
Where does this crazy ape belief come from? After all, felines and simians are still mammalian and have similar nervous systems.
We cats do show our pain and discomfort albeit with more dignity and less fuss than apes, who can't resist screaming, jabbering and yelling about anything and everything in their strange primate world.
I tell my apes when I hurt, I have trained them to be observant, but I really would like to know why so many apes believe that only apes feel pain in a way that deserves attention?
George, where did this insane belief come from?

Kind regards,
Angel of Everycat (

Dear Angel,
Humans are dumb animals - dumb meaning foolish. They are also the most arrogance species in the world. They think they are special and different
, forgetting that they are just mammals like us. So because they think this way, they believe we don't feel pain. All living creatures feel pain. As you say, it is just that we deal with pain in a dignified and silent manner, unlike them.
This is particularly important for older cats who may have painful conditions like arthritis. Cats with arthritis may not even limp. The only sign maybe a reluctance to jump on or off the bed. Or just relative immobility in the cat bed. We are so brave and stoic that we suffer without symptoms but a vet has just published a paper suggesting that older cats sometimes need painkillers even though they are not limping. So, hey you human pets reading this, start doing a bit of simple observation and empathy.
You may be inte
rested in the attached illustration of the tree of life. Traditionally, humans show this with humans at the top, on the grounds, they think, that they are top animal. A friend of mine, evolutionary scientist Charles Purrwin, has reorganised this so show the top species. What is it - cats, of course. Purrwin says I can publish this here. You can see the gorilla on the left and a little below, in his proper place well below cats, a sort of stick man - Homo non sapiens.
Yours ever,

PS. Lovely green eyes and a very good joke on your subsequent comment, Angel.


  1. Thanks George. You tell it like it is, I admire that. I do like that Tree of Life, with us at the top and the spindly apes below us - Charles Purrwin, what a genius! - I wonder if Prof. Pilchard Pawkins (author of The Cod Delusion) is a fan of his? Top marks to the vet who wrote the paper about giving us oldies pain relief - now all we need is someone to develop a pain killer that doesn't wreck our superior organs!

    Saucy purrs

  2. AnonymousJuly 26, 2009

    Like the Tree of Life illustration. It proves what I have always thought - humans are a lower form of life.

  3. Only an idiot, (and unfortunately too many humans fall into that catetory), would think other living things don't feel pain. Hopefully your lessons will change that type of wrong-headed thinking.

    BTW, your chart is quite accurate showing felines as the superior species.

  4. Who said we don't feel pain? I got myself into a lot of trouble over years and I can say that some of my "experiences" were quite painful!

  5. SebastianJuly 31, 2009

    At 19 years old...I'm lucky I don't know what pain is!
    My only "pain" is the two little dogs in my house!

  6. We are lucky we didn't have any pain so far and I really hope that we never will. Anyway, our humans "keep on eye" on us; our "mommy" checks our ears, eyes, nose, etc.
    She can tell the slightest change in our routine.
    I really think she was a cat another life or planet!

  7. Sir WinstonJuly 31, 2009

    I can see "a sea" of wisdom in your beautiful green eyes!
    Sir Winston

    PS. I'm at the cottage right now on a short holiday....but I'll write soon.

  8. We rabbits can get something called BLOAT which is so painful we can die of shock. My people know about this so I am lucky. People who keep bunnies in hutches or let their cats out at night need to know about the Tree of Knowledge as well as the Tree of Life.
    Love to George and William,

  9. I totally agree with this Tree of Life! I'm sure God created man so that cats can be served better :-)
    Love to all of you,

  10. PAIN! I'll tell you what pain is! When a bee stings you on your head, it HURTS, and it HURTS BAD!!! I can tell you, it happened to me and I let everyone know about it. I was screaming to the top of my voice. My head was all swollen and my human grabbed me up and carted me off the the vet. I got shots for the swelling and the pain. It took me a while to recover from all the pain.


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