"The Love Cats" is a 1983 single by The Cure. It was the band's first Top 10 hit in the UK, peaking at number seven, and also hit number six in Australia. It later appeared on the compilation album Japanese Whispers. The original UK-only single appears to list the title as "The Lovecats", as do various compilations.
At the time the song was written, Robert Smith was very interested in the work of Australian author, Patrick White. According to a number of his fans, Smith was inspired to write "The Love Cats" after reading White's novel, The Vivisector (1970), although this claim is difficult to verify.
In the novel, the protagonist, Hurtle, is appalled when his lover's husband drowns a sack of stray cats. White draws a parallel between the way in which the cats are discarded, and the treatment of certain characters in the book; by extension, the cats symbolize the most innocent and vulnerable members of society, and the casual cruelty with which they sometimes meet their fate.
- UK 7"
- "The Love Cats" (3:33)
- "Speak My Language" (2:39)
- UK 12" / US 12"
- "The Love Cats" (Extended Version) (4:37)
- "Speak My Language" (2:39)
- "Mr. Pink Eyes" (2:45)
- Robert Smith - Voice, Guitar, Keyboards
- Lol Tolhurst - Vibes
- Phil Thornalley - Bass
- Andy Anderson - Drums
- Indie musicians Tanya Donelly and Dylan In The Movies teamed up to record a cover of "The Lovecats" for the 2008 American Laundromat Records tribute album Just Like Heaven - a tribute to The Cure.
- Luke Doucet covered the song on his album Blood's Too Rich.
- OK Go released a cover on the Do What You Want (EP).
- The Futureheads recorded a cover for the NME CD Pictures of You – a tribute to Godlike Geniuses The Cure. "The Cure are one of my favourite bands," remarked guitarist Ross Millard in an accompanying feature (NME, 28 February 2009). "We played with them on a TV show years ago, and I thought Robert hated us. I can't explain how excited I was to hear he liked our cover!"
- Tricky covers the song on the album Vulnerable.
- Jamie Cullum and Katie Melua performed a cover version of it at the 2004 BRIT Awards.
- Paul Anka covers the song on his 2005 album of covers, Rock Swings.
- Patchwork Grace covered the song on their debut album Milk Teeth in 2007 and released the track as a single in 2008.
- Cursive recently recorded a cover of the song, featured on the website www.daytrotter.com.
- The Hot Rats covered the song on their 2010 debut album Turn Ons.
- A portion of the song is sung by the character of The Moon in the BBC television show The Mighty Boosh.
- Finalist Lucas Francis Claver sang a jazz version of the song on Series 2 of The X Factor 
- The Sharp cover the song on their EP Yeah I Want You.
- Kinny covers the song on her album Can't Kill a Dame With Soul.
- Tiya covers the song on the album Oggy et les Cafards: Le Show du Chat.