Don’t Pet the Cats

Photo Credit: Andshewas

In my Top Ten Things post, I mentioned that it’s worth your time to visit the cats in Parque Carlos Thays in Palermo.

It’s surprising how tame the cats are. They are used to cat lovers who arrive daily to set out little dishes of food at set locations. They are also used to Argentines willing to sit on a park bench and pet them. Some of them used to be in loving homes, so it’s natural that they enjoy human company.

Despite my best intentions, I could not walk past the park on Friday night without petting one. Despite the large sign that says, “Do not pet the feral cats.” I admit to having a weakness–combined with bad cat allergies.

I found the sweetest cat. When I bent down to greet her, she came through the fence, climbed up on my knees, and hoisted herself on my shoulder. She was really chatty and purred loudly. I was disappointed that I couldn’t take her home because I’ve always wanted a talkative cat who likes being held.

When we left, she cried as she watched us hurry down the sidewalk. I sneezed a couple of times before I got home, but I didn’t think much about it.

Saturday I woke up with a sore throat. Sunday I woke with a sore throat, nonstop sneezing, and chills. I am absolutely miserable. That is the last time I pet a cat at Carlos Thays.



Filed under Animals

9 responses to “Don’t Pet the Cats

  1. Alan Crabtree

    I always go to the park to get my cat fix when I am in BA. I once spent a pleasant summer afternoon reading a book with a very content cat sleeping in my lap. After three hours I had to get up, and she wasn’t happy at all. But a little boy, inspired by watching me, was happy to take over.

    Wonderful photo too.

    It’s nice to know someone else enjoys the cats there, too.

  2. John Foval

    Cats are dangerous, they are known to carry disease. For example when you have an immune problem, your not allowed to be near cats. This is why cats are bad pets and you should keep your distance.

  3. I have stayed away from this garden because I’m afraid I’ll fall in love with the cats and want to take them home! I love kitties 🙂

  4. Id love to see that park in BA. im more a dog person really but enjoy the presence of cats, its heartwarming

  5. What a lovely sore throat and lively sneezes…It is such a pleasure to be adored and the consequences who cares?

    It’s true I was adored. 🙂

  6. Aunt Debbie


    Sorry to hear you’re not feeling well. I can’t find “chills” as a reactive symptom to being allergic to cats. If you’re not getting better soon, go see a medical provider. There might be something else going on.

    (BTW, people can catch all types of diseases from any animal. Those of us who love them just have to be careful when handling them)

    Hope you feel better.

    Thanks for the note. My body is sorting it all out and I’m better now. I sound pretty bad when I talk, but that’s about it. 😛

  7. i would love to visit the cats! and there is NO WAY i could resist petting them!

  8. Mom

    It’s interesting to note that there seems to be more ‘respect’ for the felines than the poor people who collect the recyclables?! At least the people are earning a living (of sorts).

    I guess the felines are easier to take care of. People here look at the cartoneros as workers rather than the poor.

  9. Pingback: Toronto, Canada « Still Life in Southeast Asia

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