Kittypets by Ospreymist

Art by Ospreymist

Ospreymist defends kittypets – do you agree?

Code 15 states – “A warrior rejects the soft life of a kittypet.”

Warriors have forever shunned the kittypet’s way of life, eating dry food, being stroked lovingly by their owners, staying inside to sleep, being protected, not knowing the battles that the Clans must face daily.
We’ve only seen kittypets through the eyes of warriors. Warriors who have been raised to hate the life of kittypets.

Through the eyes of warriors, being a kittypet is the worst possible outcome, and for some, even worse than going to the Dark Forest.

Can this way of thinking be justified?


Is it the correct way to think about kittypets?

Absolutely not.

I think now comes the time when it is time to pick apart the life of a kittypet, and really ask, ‘why do warriors reject the life of a kittypet?’ ‘Why can’t warriors take a bit of time to learn about the real role of a kittypet?’ ‘If the code is revised, will Code 15 be scrapped?’

This will likely be a pretty long article, since I think there’s a lot about kittypets that needs to be talked about that has barely been talked about yet.

I want to put this statement out there – kittypets are the cats that live in your home.
Think about that, if you have a cat, or a dog, or any pet, or you know someone who has a pet.
Do you think the overarching term ‘soft’ is a suitable word for every single pet’s lifestyle?
While I know plenty of pets that really suck up to people and are a bit lazy, I also know adventurous pets, pets that are a bit cheeky and mischievous, pets that have a habit of annoying their owners to no end, pets that think they can hunt and chase birds everywhere. Warriors have a habit of assuming all kittypets fit into this category of being ‘lazy,’ unless they’ve joined a Clan. When a warrior sees a kittypet, they just assume, ‘oh, that cat is lazy and fat. I’m staying away from them.’
Even the manner in which kittypets are referred to, even though it may be a bit of a subconscious thing, shows that Warrior Cats think of their lifestyle as superior, an issue that could have an entire article to itself, but let’s stick with talking about kittypets for now.
Let’s have a look at a couple of depictions of kittypets throughout the series –

“He couldn’t imagine these two cats ever adjusting to the life of a Clan, but in case they were still listening he kept his thoughts to himself.”
Firestar about Rose and Lily in Firestar’s Quest, page 299.
Firestar, who was actually a kittypet himself, still jumped to conclusions about other kittypet’s ability to live in the wild from only 1 encounter with these kittypets. For those who forgot, when Firestar was recruiting cats for the new SkyClan, he came across 2 kittypets who were friends with Cherry, Rose and Lily, who commented that they’d never be able to leave their housefolk and eat fresh-kill. This action was perceived as dishonourable and in the manner that Rose and Lily were very petty, when in reality, they probably just saw the sense in staying in a warm house with their housefolk rather than being attacked from hypothermia, greencough, other cats, rats, dogs, wounds, brambles, etc. on a daily basis.

“We can’t leave her here,” Dovewing whispered. “She’ll starve or freeze. She’s a kittypet; they can’t look after themselves.”
The way Minty was perceived by the other warrior cats as being helpless, whiny and useless, 3 things that she proved that she wasn’t, and if you ask me, she was by far the bravest of the 3 kittypets in Bramblestar’s Storm. Bramblestar, Dovewing and Thornclaw in particular, were being EXTREMELY rude to her, making snarky jokes about her, thinking about her as a burden, saying to her face that she was useless and they were giving up so much just to bring her home with them, and just generally making her feel guilty for being trapped in a flood and nearly drowning, something she couldn’t help. In reality, though, Minty was going through a lot of trauma, as she stated she was separated from her littermates and her housefolk, and that she was absolutely terrified. Greystripe was wise enough to not joke about her situation, but he did nothing to help her. Minty was going through what was likely the most traumatic experience of her life, but no one cared about her situation (apart from Millie) because she was a ‘soft kittypet.’ Throughout all of Bramblestar’s Storm, Stormcloud and Jessy were the centres of Bramblestar’s attention, and he watched on their training proudly and let them participate in major events, likely because they were able to ease into the life of a warrior and fit the mold for being a warrior very well. They gained so much more respect than Minty, who only got consolidation from Millie, a former kittypet herself, and the only cat who even bothered to try to empathise with Minty.

Code 15 –
Pinestar was shunned by his Clanmates so much that a law on discriminating against kittypets was created. A needless law. Pinestar explicitly stated that he did not want to spend his final life as a Clan cat, and that he was under too much pressure as leader, and the life of a Clan Cat wasn’t right for him. His Clanmates stubbornly refused to empathise with him and his wants, and just assumed that any cat who doesn’t choose the life of a Clan cat is a coward. Pinestar discovered the life that was right for him, like Firestar discovered the life that was right for him.

From these 3 examples, it is evident that Clan cats refuse to empathise with kittypets, and leaps to conclusions quickly surrounding the stereotypes. Speaking of stereotypes –

There are plenty of negative stereotypes surrounding kittypets, and I think now is a good time to debunk them and see which ones are really correct.
The biggest and most referred to one –

There are not that many kittypets who are lazy when you truly think about it. Through the lens of Clan cats, who believe that if you don’t go on patrol 3 times a day, do battle training, go for a walk, get into a fight and have lots of drama going on, then you’re lazy. Just because kittypets don’t have the life that warriors do doesn’t mean they’re lazy. Apart from the obvious choices like Jessy and Violet who are constantly referred to as not being like the other kittypets, even cats like Smudge, Minty and Princess, who seem to fit this stereotype, are far from being lazy. None of them are actually explicitly stated as being lazy, but they are still often shuffled into this stereotype anyway, because unless clearly stated, kittypets are automatically lazy.

Kittypets are extremely loyal – to their owners and friends. Clan cats always think that being loyal means being loyal to your Clan, your leader and the rules, but these 3 things aren’t the only things you can be loyal to. For example, Dovewing is an extremely loyal cat, as she’s loyal to her children, her mate, ShadowClan and what she believes is right. Pinestar is loyal to his new housefolk, his friends and the belief that you should be able to live how you want. Jake, a kittypet, is loyal to Tallstar, his friends, his housefolk and the belief that kindness is the answer. You don’t have to be like Firestar to be a loyal cat, much less a Clan cat, and Warriors are unaware that loyalties come in many forms. So yes, Kittypets are loyal, and in some instances, more loyal than Clan cats.

This is extremely incorrect. There has been something along the lines of “Kittypets will never get to know the grass under their feet, the taste of real prey and the joy of being with a Clan.”
Kittypets live an extremely full life, a life where they enjoy every moment, playing with their friends and family, lazing around in the sun, exploring the neighbourhood, talking and playing. The life Clan cats live always links back to honour and chivalry, and they think that you have to be a part of a Clan to have truly lived. Again, Clan cats refuse to empathise with kittypets, and see life from their perspective, automatically thinking that their life is best and they couldn’t bear to live without a Clan.

Why do warriors hate kittypets so much?
Really, I don’t know.
Clan Cats believe that their way of living is best, and they try to force it on others, because, as I’ve stated numerous times before, Clan cats lack empathy and they don’t even try to empathise with non-Clan cats. They have never experienced the calm life of being a kittypet and they don’t understand why kittypets want to be kittypets. This is actually very hypocritical, as they get fed up at kittypets who don’t understand their way of life, and lecture them about how they’re better than everyone else.

Clan cats have gotten to the point where you are breaking the law if you find anything about a kittypet’s life good. I’d say that this rule was only made because of the confusion of a leader being a kittypet, and due to their lack of empathy, something they could barely comprehend. Lionpaw, an apprentice who was obsessed with honour and chivalry, told the story, probably making it sound like Pinestar was a massive traitor and horrible cat, when in reality, he was basically retiring, like you retire as an elder. He was also being told that his son was going to be a killer, and no one else except Goosefeather knew he had been told this, so he was snapping under pressure of these omens. He had his reasons to be a kittypet, reasons Lionheart will never understand.
Despising the life of a kittypet expands to despising kittypets themselves, and kittypets who wish to become Clan cats will often get yelled at with many expectations on their shoulders. Kittypets who are hanging around the borders get beaten up, even though Clan cats know they have never been trained to fight, many are doubtful of them. However horrible Code 15 is, it definitely should not include rejecting kittypets as well as their lifestyle.

That leads to the big question.
Will Code 15 be scrapped?
A revising of the warrior code is due to take place in ALitM (which isn’t out as of me writing this article, so please forgive me if I messed up).
Things like forbidden love, word of leader is code and medicine cats can’t have kits are bound to be removed, since they’re rules that have caused major problems in the past, and in the eyes of many Clan cats, just don’t make sense. What about saying that you should shun the life of a kittypet?
I don’t think it will be.
The truth is, Clan cats don’t see the problem with that rule, and they see no harm in it staying, especially since everyone still seems to believe that Clan cats are better than everyone else and that kittypets are soft and lazy.
It’s one of the code rules that need to be scrapped, and at some point extremely soon, warriors need to realise that being in a Clan is not the only way to live, and to not be a Clan cat is 100% fine. They need to abandon all the stereotypes surrounding kittypets, and even more, they need to abandon Code 15.

And that just about wraps things up! What do you think of kittypets? What about Code 15? See you all next article!

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  • Very interesting article! Man, Clan cats really aren’t very fair when it comes to kitty pets!
    Stay Alive (Reprise)

  • I can agree with some of these.. except, I think that Minty is a very stubborn kittypet. But… I definitely agree that some cats are treated HORRIBLY due to they’re kittypet roots. I mean, look at Firestar. (Although he’s not my fav.) Great article, Osprey!!!!!!!!

    • Great article and art!

      I’ve always felt bad for kittypets. They’re awesome in their own way! My favorite kittypets are Smudge, Jessy, Velvet, Cody, and. Princess! I even have a list.

  • It’s been absolutely heartwarming learning stories of your little kittypets! For how hated on kittypets are, they always will put a smile on the faces of their owners and all around them 😀
    Something I forgot to put in my article is that kittypets have a family, and warrior cats seems to forget that. Their family loves them very very much, and some of the sweetest scenes are the reunion scenes between the owners and the cats. A warrior’s duty is to their Clan, a kittypet’s duty is to their family. Both are equally important, if not the second one more important, and warriors don’t get that 😀

    • Awww that’s awesome to hear! There are probably ones out there that had way more thought put into than this one, which was kind of like ‘I’m sick of hearing people calling kittypets lazy, time to write an article,’ rather than ‘I’ve had this idea for a while, and I’ve refined it, and I’ve planned it, so time to write it,’ which is certainly what most other articles seem to be 😛

  • I think that the hatred for kittypets is rooted in the way Clan cats are taught to be proud of their ancestors – more specifically StarClan and the mythical cats – and culture. (Which alone is okay, you should be proud of your culture, but not completely idealize). Kits and apprentices hear stories about great, powerful cats that also formed Clans, had leaders and – I believe – similar names? They grow up with the idea that they cultivate an ancient, traditional way of living, and this causes that they live in a bubble believing that Clan life was the origin and cats who live differently abandoned their true roots. Another factor impacting this is StarClan, a visible afterlife where dead cats live in somewhat a copy of the Clan world and those who don’t believe in it have no access there. So other cats are automatically worse, and out of those (loners, rogues, kittypets) kittypets aggravate the Clans the most, because of two reasons. First, Clan cats portray Twolegs as the intruders. The events from the legends took place before their arrival, and they, according to Into The Wild, built houses on the places where a legendary herb healing ill kittens grew. And this means kittypets are traitors for interacting with the enemy. Second, Clans take pride in their independence and fighting for survival. Hunting and fighting for the Clan is both a duty and a honour, and dying in battle is heroism. This is – probably – why they look down upon kittypets, who rely on someone else to provide food. That’s a long comment, but I tried to answer why they hate kittypets.

    • Oooh yes I understand
      I guess Clan’s life is around tradition, bravery, chivalry, and there’s nothing wrong with that. This made them think their way of life is superior, and the cats who don’t follow their set of ideals are to be looked down up.

      Actually, I see Clan Cats as being intruders in, well, a bazillion other situations! Before there were Clan Cats, there. Then Grey Wing and his posse came along and changed their way of life. But Clan cats think they were in the forest forever, and when they moved to the lake, again, they were beating up kittypets because they somehow had a better claim to the lake than them?
      Warriors confuddles me

  • Lovely article Osprey! I too, adore Kittypets. Kittypets need WAYYY more spotlight than what they currently have, I find them super interesting.

  • *River Update*

    The rule wasn’t removed, but is now seen as the least important rule

    Improvement I guess

  • This was the first article I ever read, I was Jaguarpaw and it was the day I joined 😛

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