Footage of Major the cat snuggling up to a cow called Daisy was first shared to social media by Brian, a 25-year-old student who lives with his mom on an idyllic countryside compound in rural western Kenya.
“A few months ago I was talking to my mom on the phone and she told me how Daisy and Major were buddies and I knew instantly if I got this video it would go viral,” he told Newsweek. “I recorded the video in the morning when I was milking the cow,” he said. “Every morning the cat comes to see the cow and to have a cuddle.”
The clip, which was first uploaded to Reddit under the handle Weekly-Cycle-9405, has proven popular, earning over 20,000 upvotes in the space of a few short days. It adds weight to the theory that cats are more affectionate than many may have thought. In the past, our feline friends were often considered more aloof and standoffish than dogs.
However, a 2019 study from Oregon State University already went some way to dispelling this. Their researchers found cats were capable of forming bonds and feeling affection in much the same way as a canine or human child.
To test the theory, they gathered around 120 cats and their owners. The experiment saw each cat and their owner enter an unfamiliar room and stay inside for two minutes. Once the time elapsed, the owner was asked to exit. They then returned two minutes later with researchers observing the cat’s response.
About two-thirds of the cats tested casually returned to their owners’ side in a show of secure attachment. The rest were found to either immediately cling to their owner or avoid them completely in an indicator of insecure attachment.
The results matched previous experiments involving dogs or infants and suggested cats were more than capable of forming these bonds.
Cat Likes a Cuddle
Major certainly fits into this category. “He is a friendly cat who likes to cuddle everybody,” Brian said. “You can be an animal or human and he will be just as friendly.”
Brian says Major is less than a year old, having first bought her as a kitten 10 months ago. Daisy, by contrast, is seven years olds, having arrived at the compound as a calf in 2017.
As animals go, the two couldn’t be more different. Yet, as the video shows, there is clearly a strong bond between them, something that was not lost on those watching online.
One viewer commented: “They’re so gentle with each other,” with another writing: “This is a Disney movie where the cat is a lil rascal and the cow is a wise motherly figure.”
A third said: “That is so cool. Makes me wish I had a farm with a variety of animals,” while a fourth wrote: “Cat wants milk, cow wants friend. Win win situation.”
While Daisy garnered many plaudits for being so “gentle” around the young cat, Brian reserved special praise for Major’s fearlessness in the face of a larger animal.
“I have had other cats before but Major is different,” he said. “Other cats were super introverted and they would only come to you if you had food. Major is not afraid of anyone.”
Do you have funny and adorable videos or pictures of your pet you want to share? Send them to firstname.lastname@example.org with some details about your best friend and they could appear in our Pet of the Week lineup.