I was recently speaking with a friend who, semi-jokingly, suggested that cats don't feel love and affection. She felt that cats are self-serving and do not care about humans as long as their own needs are fulfilled.
That is so NOT my experience! Cats, and indeed all animals, feel many of the same emotions as humans, albeit in a different way. Certainly a pet will act on instinct to ensure its own needs are met, however they create a strong bond of love with their human companions who can likewise feel that bond,
Recently I did a Reiki session on a cat who expressed such love for his human family. He chose to take on the role of "guardian of health," providing comfort and attention to anyone who was ill. Unfortunately, that sometimes meant he also took on some of the symptoms!
As I allowed the energy to flow, I felt his love. The best way I can explain the un-explainable is to say that he didn't intellectualize that love the way we do. He didn't label it, explain it, or analyze it...it just WAS.
I've understood from many other sources, from intuitives and the expert communicators with whom I trained, that this is the main difference between emotions of animals and humans. They certainly feel love and fear, but it is not as nuanced as human emotion. They may feel safe and secure, or frightened and stressed. They may love or dislike individuals. But they simply feel what they feel without judgment.
I strive to emulate that...no judgment!