Proof your cat is trying to kill you

Proof your cat is trying to kill you

Falser than faking that a newborn baby is cute, harder than slapping on a smile at a wedding shower. “This Hawaiian shirt is exactly what I wanted for Christmas!” is child’s play compared to pretending to like your friend’s cat. Feline tolerance is an epic struggle, especially for me, a proud cat hater.

So a wave of affirmation came over me as I read the new book “Cat Wars: The Devastating Consequences of a Cuddly Killer” (Princeton University Press, out Tuesday). It’s total catnip for those in my ideological litter box because it confirms everything we anti-catters have long known to be true — cats are the worst. They multiply like a virus, destroy other animal populations and even spread serious diseases to humans.

Co-authors Peter Marra and Chris Santella write about cats like they’re deviant serial killers who murder for snack and sport.

“They are quick and efficient at what they do — otherwise they die.” OMG, so cute! “Once [their] prey is immobilized, cats inflict the kill bite with two sharp canines, usually to the neck, and quickly begin tearing into scales, fur, or feathers.” Awww!“They seem to be stimulated by the chase, and if not hungry will still kill.” Adorable!

While homebound pets pose little risk, the oodles of strays (60 million to 100 million) and felines allowed by their owners to roam freely outdoors are wreaking havoc on the environment.

Cats, the book argues, are an invasive species: Introduced into foreign lands by humans, they rapidly breed, then eradicate vulnerable populations of native birds and small animals — mice, voles, squirrels, rabbits, lizards and more. Next time you spot a bright red cardinal serenely perched on a tree branch, know that there is a cat somewhere dreaming of ripping it to shreds. Cats are responsible for the extinction of 33 bird species so far, particularly those on islands, including the Stephens Island wren and the Socorro dove, according to a University of Nebraska study.

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