Growing up, my parents were never really big cat people. I knew that I loved them from a young age- but in all reality animals were never a big part of my life. We had a few dogs here and there but I never truly connected with any of them.
When I moved in with my boyfriend and started being around my two cats, Mimi and Tula, more- I quickly had to learn what it meant to "grant beingness". I typically have a higher energy level 95% of the time and I would get so excited to see the girls that I just wanted to pick them up and cuddle love into them. However- being around two cats taught me that there is nothing wrong with wanting to love someone- but you have to be aware and respectful when doing it (and it also taught me that it really hurts when you get clawed in the face). If you are new to being around cats like I was- check out these pointers about granting beingness.
1. Keep your energy levels low- cats, especially rescued ones, can be very skittish. One moment they can be happy and the next moment they can feel threatened. If you are loud and displaying very chaotic behavior they can easily be set off. It's okay to be happy to see them- just try to withstand from screaming, heavy petting and wild moments in front of them.
2. Gain their trust- in order to successfully grant your cat beingness- there needs to be trust between the two of you. They need to know that you would never harm them. I started off building trust with Mimi and Tula by watching energy levels as previously mentioned and by getting them used to my touch. I would pet them lightly a few times or give them a quick kiss on the head and then let them be. They become used to the affection with the expectation that you will not take it too far or take away their personal space for too long. Practice this every day.
3. Watch their tail- if you are granting your cat beingness you should not see any swishing side to side with their tail. Yes- they may become agitated with you if you do not give them treats when they want them but normal frustrations like that are common. If you are petting your cat or trying to love on them watch their tail and body language to know when to stop.
I hope these tips have helped you learn more about granting beingness! If you remember to respect your cat and it's boundaries at all times you both will live very happily together.