Nick had been away since his unit’s deployment, but faithful feline Finn was waiting for his return. As he heard noises in the hall, Finn was instantly aware of his owner’s presence. The rolling camera caught every second of the heartwarming moments that followed.
Dogs are traditionally regarded as man’s best friend, but some cats are fighting to win that title for themselves. Despite their reputation for being aloof, felines can actually be very affectionate. However, they’re often much subtler than their tail-wagging canine counterparts.
Occasionally a story pops up on social media that reveals just how loving cats can be. Take this footage uploaded to social media in June 2017, for example. It shone a light on just how much one animal lover’s kitty missed him while he was away.
Not much is known about the people (and felines) featuring in the video. One star of the show is ragdoll cat Finn, who’s been at home with his fellow housepet. The other is a human called Nick, who’s just returning home.
That’s because Nick’s a soldier who’s been away since his superiors deployed his unit elsewhere. Even though the military man hasn’t seen Finn for a while, the cat obviously never forgot Nick. Finn’s reaction to the soldier’s arrival is evidence of that.
The video begins with Finn sitting attentively at the door, waiting impatiently for Nick to come through it. He must have heard the soldier’s arrival, and he can’t wait to see his human again. Nick’s partner, who stays off camera, records his reaction.
As soon as Finn hears someone’s approaching, the cat lets out a meow to tell his partner that Nick’s back. “Who’s coming?” you can hear her ask. Finn just gets even more excited, and runs over to share his enthusiasm.
Finn approaches the woman and from the view in the camera, it looks like he tries to climb in her lap. Furthermore, he continues to mew, telling her how happy he is. But it appears that Finn doesn’t want to be too far from the door.
With this in mind, Finn returns to his vigil at the entrance in preparation for the impending reunion. This time, it doesn’t satisfy the cat to just look at the door, and he tries to open it himself! He does this by reaching up for the handle with his front paws.
Finn fails in his attempt to get at his human, and continues to mewl for him through the door. The woman behind the camera asks him, “Who’s home? Is that daddy?” Finn can’t take his eyes off the door, and he seems to be expecting it to open at any moment.
Throughout his wait, Finn’s tail is thrashing from side to side in anticipation of Nick’s entrance. Just when it looks like the cat can’t stand any more waiting, the door suddenly opens. The army fatigues and boots reveal that the soldier is finally home.
When Nick sees who’s come to greet him at the door, he’s equally pleased to see his furbaby. He greets the cat using the pet name “Ners,” which is short for Finners. Then he sets the box he’s carrying down on the floor to pet Finn.
After circling the box and inspecting it carefully, Finn goes to meet the owner he’s missed for so long. “What’s going on?” Nick asks the cat as he does so. “Buddy, it’s me!” He opens his arms for Finn, who knows exactly what to do.
Finn leaps straight up into his daddy’s embrace and climbs onto his shoulder as if they’ve been apart forever. And Finn’s not the only one who missed Nick, either. The camera pans to reveal a second cat, called Boo, also meowing a welcome.
Meanwhile, Finn is happy in his owner’s arms, absorbing all the love that Nick can give him. It’s heart-warming to see the pair reunited, and they’re so happy to see each other. Nick even kisses his furbaby’s face.
You can tell that Finn is as content as can be reclining back in his owner’s arms. The video ends there, but presumably Nick later showered Boo with just as much affection afterwards. Naturally, social media users couldn’t get enough of the footage.
In fact, The Dodo’s upload alone has received 35,914 views and 1,400 likes. The comments also revealed just how much the video tugged at viewers’ heartstrings. “So cute,” one person commented. “And for people that say cats don’t show affection, here is living proof that they do!”
An Oregon State University study into feline behavior and cognition, called Behavioural Processes, backs up this view. It involved separating cats from humans, food and toys over a few hours, then reintroducing each of those elements at the same time. The majority of the cats showed a first preference for human contact.
So how can you tell if your cat loves you? One of the key indicators is bunting. Pet website Vet Street quotes expert Dr Allen Schoen, a vet and author of Kindred Spirits, as saying that when cats rub their faces or chins on you, they’re using scent marks to establish a bond. And if they stare at you and blink slowly, they’re basically sending cat kisses your way.
Moreover, even if they’re not sitting on your lap, a cat choosing to lie nearby is a token of its deep trust. It means they prefer your company to their own, perhaps even at the cost of their own comfort. Remember, cats are subtle, but they do care – they just show their love in unique ways.