Redditor Says He Hated His Girlfriend’s Cat, So He Switched It With An Identical Feline

Among my three most intense recurring anxiety nightmares there’s the classic where I’m back in college, it’s the end of the semester, there’s a class I haven’t attended in months, and I’m going to fail if I don’t grovel before the pissed-off professor.

Then there’s the recurring dream where I’m walking an endless parking lot — in a mall, in an underground garage, on my old college campus — looking for my car, which refuses to be found. Sometimes I’m looking for the Civic I drive now, sometimes it’s the boxy old Chevy Celebrity that was my first-ever vehicle, and sometimes it’s my beloved black Celica that tragically died on I-95 in the Bronx en route to Long Island.

But the worst, the one that triggers the most anxiety and despair, is a dream in which I realize that Buddy isn’t Buddy. The gray tabby in my apartment looks like him and for the most part acts like him, but in my nightmare someone has swapped him out with a different cat for reasons unknown, and by the time I realize it’s not him, I don’t even know how long I’ve been duped.

My despair turns into overwhelming guilt when I realize my Buddy is still out there somewhere, wondering what happened, probably thinking I abandoned him.

Thankfully when I wake I’m reassured by the snoozing form of Actual Buddy where he always sleeps, right on top of me. And yes, I realize he probably gate crashes my dreams because he’s vocal, he refuses to sleep anywhere else, and he’s got a habit of getting up in the middle of the night to rub his head against my face while he purrs and makes biscuits.

“Oh, so sad! Now give me snacks!”

But for one woman in the UK, the nightmare may be a reality and she just doesn’t know it yet.

The UK’s Mirror has a story about a Redditor who confessed he surrendered his girlfriend’s aggressive cat to a shelter and adopted an identical furball.

In the subreddit “True Off My Chest,” the man says the cat “scratched everyone, hissed at everyone, and didn’t use its litter box half the time,” but his girlfriend “insisted she could get it to behave better.”

She left the cat in her boyfriend’s care when she went out of town for a week to visit relatives, and a nefarious plot began to germinate in his mind.

black cat
Credit: Helena Lopes/ Pexels

“The first night I went over, it scratched the shit out of my arm,” he wrote. “I joked to the cat that it’s not special and I’ll replace it if it scratches again. The joke stuck with me until I had thought about it enough that it wasn’t a joke.”

After looking around, the man says he found an identical-looking cat at a nearby shelter. That cat had been surrendered when its owner died of a heart attack. Kitty was bewildered and skittish when it found itself without a home and in a shelter.

“The cat [was] a lot friendlier and better behaved, and the [skittishness] would help it resemble the original cat,” the man wrote.

The man claims his girlfriend never figured it out, and says she was even pleased that “her cat” had calmed down and was better behaved. The couple eventually got married, and now the Redditor shares a home with the cat too.

After six years, however, he says he can’t forget what he did.

“Every time I see [the cat], I feel like a total piece of shit,” he wrote.

Among dozens of condemnatory comments, there was this amusing one from another Redditor: “Best of luck if y’all have kids. Finding a lookalike child is way harder.”

monochrome photography of black cat
Credit: Crina Doltu/Pexels

And that brings me to my next point. I’m not sure I buy this story. I certainly hope it’s not true.

Perhaps it’s easier to find a lookalike among black cats, but what about behavior? What about the cat’s quirks, its unique vocalizations, its favorite sleeping spots? Every cat has preferences when it comes to where it likes to be scratched, whether it’ll tolerate being held, how long or how often it’ll snuggle with its humans.

Cats are individuals just as humans are, with their own preferences, rituals and habits.

Even after seeing many thousands of images of gray tabby cats, I have never seen one who looks just like Bud. It’s not just his unique bib, that tuft of white hair on his upper chest, nor is it his pronounced muzzle. It’s also the derpy look on his face, the way he tilts his head quizzically, his Buddesian gait, his uniquely lazy method of dribbling down from the couch like a liquid.

Behavior-wise, there’s just no way. You’d have to find a gray tabby who never shuts up, sounds like an over-caffeinated Elmo singing in falsetto, and has a language that consists of 90 percent trills and meows that tilt an octave up so they sound like questions.

And you’d have to find a jerk. A stone-cold Fluff of Doom who Must Swipe Everything off flat surfaces. A feline who has no qualms about destroying things, enjoys walking on your face when you’re sleeping, and will occasionally launch himself at your ankles with a battle cry of “BRRRRRUUUPPPP!” because you didn’t give him his treats quickly enough. Hell, even the way he shrieks at me for snacks and tries to block my path like a goalie is unusual.

Imagine the phone call someone would have to make: “Yes, I’m looking for a gray tabby cat with bright green eyes and a tuft of white on his chest. He has to sound like Elmo on espresso, and he absolutely must be a huge jerk. You don’t have any jerks? Well what about in the back? You must have something!”

Certified OG
“I’m a certified OG, yo! I was swiping fragile objects off shelves and pooping under beds before it was cool.”

Of course Bud has a whole bunch of great qualities too, and I wouldn’t change a hair on his head. No “replacement cat” could ever fool me. There can only be one Buddy.

Do you think the Redditor’s story is real? Could anyone ever fool you by swapping one of your cats for a doppelganger?

18 thoughts on “Redditor Says He Hated His Girlfriend’s Cat, So He Switched It With An Identical Feline”

  1. I too had a horrible dream where my 2 dog’s were taken & somehow. I ran from the Bronx where I lived to LaGuardia Airport (Hey you can do that in dreams…) & I flew into the terminal & my ex rebound garbage bag of a boyfriend was getting airplane tickets for himself, a female & 2 dog’s. I ran to where I saw 2 large crates. Low & behold, my German Shepherd Jake was there dyed blonde with a name tag that said Jaques & next to him was my girl Patti a Basenji Mix, who was dyed black wth a name tag that said SpookyPeenut! I screamed & woke up! After 3 days of this same dream, I didn’t think this idiot would go that far but I left the man & grabbed my dog’s & I ran far away because I honestly thought he’d steal my dog’s.

    Yeah, he was that kinda mistake & that kinda creep. I had Jake since he was 8 months old & he was 16 then. Patti I had just rescued from an animal hoarder on Jane Street in Manhattan,
    before her 4th birthday & I had got her about a year before this situation went sideways & honestly I was terrified.

    This was all a long time ago but this story just made my heart explode for a minute. I don’t know if it’s true & call me what you want but I hope someone in this guy’s life knows if it’s true & that friend tells his wife to read the AITA column on Reddit & if she hasn’t figured it out, I hope she finally does & she throws him out with nowhere to go or any resources. You know, so he’s scared & hungry & needy af.

    Assuming this is true, what if cat #1 was euthanized? If this happened imagine the fear & insanity that poor cat went through. Maybe it misbehaved bcuz it hated that man or bcuz it was sick or needed time to adjust to their flat? 🤷‍♀️

    Idk but my dog’s lived to be 18 & 16. Now Oreo Cat is my only boy & my best friend & my furry kid & unless I’m suffering from dementia or are in some major cognitive decline…well maybe I wouldn’t know? Ehhh, nah, I still think I’d absolutely know my animal’s both present or past 😭😱😭😱😭

    It’s more than a vocal calling, the tilt of a head, or even their own individual quirks, it’s a soul thing… I can’t explain it in any other way. I’m not religious but a spiritual person & there is something that happens to us, that changes inside of anyone that’s ever loved an animal that knows bcuz it’s a feeling!

    Mind you, you said this woman left her cat with a man who she knew didn’t even like her cat so did she have that soul bond? Was she so oblivious? I would never leave Oreo with my mother if she said she didn’t like him! Again idk 🤷‍♀️ but I hate everything about this story & everyone in it except the cat’s, as they’re innocent. 😒

    Let’s just wish it to be a compete fabrication & just a cry for attention. I’ve known ppl who don’t care if it’s good attention they receive or bad, as long as it’s attention.

    Redditors aren’t shy about their feedback so I’m sure he’s getting plenty of feed back from both camps. The idiots who will cheer him & others who will despise him.

    Oreo & I think it’s a lie, because if we thought otherwise it would be just too terrible. 🫣

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I could probably be fooled for a few minutes but not long term. Big Buddy is right. Each cat has hundreds of quirks. There are no duplicates. My kitty attacks my legs when he believes he’s not being treated like royalty. I always have leg bruises. I love him anyway 🥰 I know he had a super traumatic childhood.

    Liked by 4 people

  3. Like you, I don’t think it would be possible to find a cat exactly enough like Cesare to fool me. The way he’s constantly screaming at me like I’m the dumbest human on the planet, the way he likes his belly rubbed, and how he lays on his back with all four paws in the air…. nope, he’s the only one like himself. lol

    Liked by 4 people

  4. Nope, not buying it. In order for this scam to work, the redditor’s wife would have to be – how to put it … – rather unobservant. A calmer demeanor doesn’t account for a change in habit, attitude and so on.
    Also, just because the cats share a similar appearance doesn’t mean they’re identical. Are these people for real? Let’s hope this story is just that, a made-up story.

    Liked by 5 people

  5. Something tells me he did it. People will say it is just a cat. Divorce papers would be served. And yes. I would 99 percent recognize personality of my cats. Each was different.And if cat was all one color i think owner might be fooled. But i do recognize all 3 black cats i take care of. I was tested. Just by looking at shapes of heads in photos.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I forgot about vocals. I could recognize some cats by meows with my eyes closed. One cat, Spooky, has a low raspy meow. Almost like a loud whisper. I was taken aback when i heard her meow.

      Liked by 2 people

  6. I don’t know if the story is real or not, but three of our cats are gold-eyed black shorthairs and all have distinctive faces and behaviors. Two are even siblings. No way I wouldn’t know who is who. Photos of our past black cats show me their looks were so different from the ones we have now. If the story is true, that poor first cat . . .

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I catsit for free for our fosters as a way of volunteering. I took care of an all gray cat named Dusty for a week. Two months later i go back and see a gray cat and i say that’ s not Dusty. It was her sibling she also is fostering. She was surprised i caught that. Dusty was in bedroom. Her feature i noticed was her lower jaw seemed more square than round. So i knew that new gray cat was not Dusty.

      Liked by 2 people

  7. Like the other commentators, I’m sure I would know if my voids had been swapped. They were kittens born a week apart and look alike in every way, so much so that even six years later I can’t tell them apart in photos or when sleeping. (Their tags are the giveaway.) But their personality and behaviour are quite different. Add to that the fact that a new cat wouldn’t know the layout of the home so quickly. Whether this story is true or not, I believe the writer is TA to think of such a thing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. TA = Titus Andronicus? Tori Amos? Terribly American? Totally awful? The asshole? (He posted in “True Off My Chest,” but it sounds like a typical “Am I The Asshole?” subreddit post.)

      Looks like there’s a strong consensus here that the story is implausible.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. There is no way in Heaven or H*ll I would NOT notice if BellaDharma was swapped out for another black cat.
    Seriously! She has unique shaped eyes. And she is a very quirky cat. She jumps up on bed on ‘her’ blanket an suckles it while making biscuits. Total giveaway. And she too has a foot fetish that I am still trying to correct. She is very finicky about food. Refuses to eat Chickhen Pate even if she is starving!
    And her facial expressions are so unique….no other black cat could replace her. So I think guy’s post is rubbish!
    BellaSita Mum an **purrss** BellaDharma

    Liked by 2 people

  9. We can all believe we would never be fooled like this. But it isn’t as easy as we may think!
    I love white cats. I have had many white cats. My previous white cat, Sinatra went missing. I searched every night for him, prowling my small neighborhood until 4 am. I know every single white cat within a two mile radius. Yet, there was one that I suspected was my boy. I just couldn’t be sure. No markings to go by. Sinatra was, as evidenced by his name, quite the crooner. This other cat I couldn’t get to meow, if he would then I would know for sure.
    As time passes, it gets harder to remember those things that make your kitty, your kitty. In the end, I had the cat scanned for a chip which Sinatra had. This one did not.
    This guy could have pulled it off if she hadn’t had the cat for a long time. Because the original was standoffish, she probably hadn’t noticed any distinctive characteristic behaviors yet. Easy enough to do.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m sorry that happened. Did you ever find Sinatra? How did you lose him?

      If the Redditor’s wife only had the cat for a short time, that would be more plausible.

      I had another “not the real Buddy” dream last night. It really is a nightmare.


      1. I understand how awful that nightmare must be. You probably carry it with you all the next day. I have always had horrific nightmares. Recently it was suggested to me that I change my dream, fight back somehow. I was able to alter the dream the next time so the outcome was different. That was the last time (so far, knock wood) I had to dream it. Maybe you can say in the dream, “No. I know this isn’t my little Bud. My kitty is visiting my brother today.” Or something like that. Any change you can make consciously can change the dream.
        Seriously, it’s worth a shot. Nightmares, at least the ones I have create insanity. I don’t want them anymore.
        And no, Sinatra never came back. I believe a family had him. Silver lining though: searching for him at the shelter led me to my lovely little Lana. And she is a dream kitty!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. A couple of times I’ve woken up with tears on my cheeks, but I edited that part out of the story because it sounds pathetic and friends and family sometimes read my site. Including that detail is just asking to get ripped on lol. If they’re reading this far into the comments, well, screw it.

        That’s awful about Sinatra. Truly a nightmare. The worst part is not knowing and wondering what’s happened to him. At least it seems that it would be. And what a great name for a cat.

        I hope it’s true that he found a new family, and I’m glad you have Lana.


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