Why would an unsociable cat allow me to pet it?
Is it normal for an unsociable cat to allow someone it doesn't know pet it?
Back in 2011, my mother was visiting with one of her friends in my home town and I had tagged along with her. While they talked, I had decided to wait out on the curb for them to catch up when a orange male tabby cat decided to come up to me and try to rub my hand.
Since my family had a cat of its own, it was a welcome distraction for me so I sat there petting him. My mother's friend had seen the cat do this and was shocked.
The cat, I don't remember his name unfortunately, was notorious for biting children and only allowed adults to pet him despite me petting him.
While I was not a 'child' but a teenager, this still made me nervous and thought "I'm going to get bit by this cat and he decided NOW to migrate to my LAP?!"
Luckily the cat was calm despite, I believe, being 'middle-aged' of six years and the myth I believed at the time that older cats are evil and pretend to be your friend just to bite you anyway. I know now that isn't the case but a series of factors due to age, social history, diet, etc.
But why would a cat with such a bad reputation allow me to pet him?