Beats me. I love all animals so I can't imagine not liking kitties. I think some people don't like them because they think that kitties can be indifferent to them, unlike a dog who is always trying to please. Or they are afraid of the claws and getting scratched. Cats are so sweet!
My fiance's mother vehemently hates cats. So much that she insists that she's allergic to them (she's not). They get into her garden and tend to destroy some of her more delicate plants.
I had her over for dinner one night and Sabastion was in a particularly playful mood. I was playing with his little stuffed frog with the elasticised legs and he was dodging under a chair to get to it. I happened to look up and notice this strange look on her face. I interpreted it as a shift in her mind set. She will probably never like cats, but she's not as mean to Sabby anymore.
I think it's true that a lot of people find them too independent and maybe a bit snooty. As a general rule (not always true, obviously) they don't feel the need to please their owners like dogs do, so people interpret that as the cat not "loving" them. And let's face it, everyone wants to feel loved by their pets. It's seems clear though (to me at least!) that dogs act in such a way because they're basically pack animals, and being amenable, sociable and friendly to other pack members is to their advantage. Being submissive (and therefore seeming more loving) is the smart way to act if you see your owner as the alpha. I'm not suggesting that dogs don't show genuine affection, because they obviously do, but I just think there's more of an evolutionary reason for it.
Cats on the other hand are less sociable - they're not natural pack animals, and don't need their people as much. Obviously nowadays they rely on us for food, but most cats could fend for themselves pretty well if they had to.
In some ways though I think this makes a close human-cat relationship even more special. It's harder to achieve, and I think cats demand more respect, so a lot of people can't be bothered (hence the not liking cats thing) but once you've developed a true bond with a cat, you know it's the real thing. I kind of think that they don't NEED friends, like a dog does, and if they choose you as their friend, and show real affection, you should be truly honoured.
But........ it could be that my theory is total rubbish!!!
The reasons I hear most often are 'they're unfriendly' and 'they kill things'. As AliH said, many people are put off by the fact that cats are independant animals, and assume that they don't make loving and loyal pets - which is a shame, because if only they'd give it a try then they might find themselves proved wrong! Some people also dislike cats for superstitious reasons.
I agree with Richo... I have known many a cat hater or simply someone indifferent to them change to being a cat lover. After a few times over, they are usually the first ones to bend down and pick the cats up.
My dad hates cats I don't know why. they are wonderful and they each have their own personality it's amazing watching them grow, and they can be quite comical at times also, last night I caught Becky chasing her own tail I still laugh about it now. She was in my laudry basket playing she caught sight of her tail waving and started chasing it. :lol: