Lennie, as a mentally challenged person, relies on the soft fur of the mice to soothe him. He admits that he likes to ‘ pet sof’ things.’
He has a passion for materials that stimulate his skin. He shares a love of velvet, which he later reveals to Curley’s wife and, fatally for her, the feel of ladies’ hair.
Lennie also has little control in his life. George makes all the decisions for the both of them. Lennie still has a desire to love and be loved, as we all do, and his dream is to have the pleasure and responsibility to care for some rabbits of his own. This is so strong a desire that George uses it as a tool to discipline and reward Lennie. Lennie knows that if he does ‘bad things’ he won’t get to ‘tend the rabbits.’