As we are sure you are all getting excited for the Rio 2016 Olympics, here we bring you a special installment in honour of the upcoming event!
Throughout the ages, cats have inspired us in an infinite number of ways.
The Egyptians worshipped felines, as depicted in their intricate hieroglyphics.
Later, cats inspired artists with their majestic demeanour.
Today, cats are inspiring countless fashion trends, which enable cat enthusiasts to accessorize all while demonstrating their love of all things feline. Today, we look at just a few that we have found during our travels!
We know nothing about make-up, but here are some ideas: the kitty cat (apparently it is a way of doing your eye make-up that ressembles a cat eye), this tutorial on how to look like a cast member of Cats, the Broadway musical, this over-the-top eye make-up (Fig. 2.1), and this guy (we saw him in person at the Just for Cats Video Festival in Toronto, and believe us, it was an experience…).
No outfit would be complete without matchy-matchy accessories; take your pick from this quirky knit bag (Fig. 5.1), this kitty cat Bic lighter for the smokers out there, this pair of warm-looking earmuffs and mittens, this actually pretty neat infinity scarf, this classy umbrella, these blingy hair pins or this headband, this endearing temporary tattoo, these bandages for those awkward moments when you’re playing with kitty and he goes in for a bite (check out our advice column on what to do if this happens to you!), and of course a CAT phone case for the cat/CAT lovers who are extremely hard on their phones.
The pawssibilities are literally endless, but here is a brief selection: this cat-print patterned blouse, this sweater which we assume is meant to be in the style of “ugly Christmas”, this witty tank, this slightly alarming tea party get-up, your choice of this must-have raver-style cat onesie or this cosplay type onesie, this unbelievably amazing Kitty Kong t-shirt (Fig. 6.1) and this obligatory hipster cat t-shirt, this, whatever this is, these eerily life-like socks (which we own and they are pretty spectacularly cat-tastic), and these playful nylons.
There are so many options, we had a hard time choosing the best ones! Share with us your cat fashion tips in the comments below!
I write this post in honour of Record Store Day, which is today!
I was venturing around the city I call home, checking out the record shops to see what new releases I could find. I happened into City Lights Bookstore, and was sifting through the stacks of albums when I found “The Harmonicats“. I was obviously instantly drawn by the name of the group and their cat-themed album cover, and although I didn’t buy the album, it definitely stuck in my mind.
Photo courtesy of www.harmonicats.com
While mainly popular in the 50’s, in their later years they did a lovely cover version of an old favourite I heard quite a bit in my childhood, Orange Blossom Special:
What a bunch of cuties, am I right?
I happened across a Vice article recently titled, “‘Kitten Rescuer’ Is a Real Career and This Woman Has It“. Well, obviously they have top-notch writers at Vice because that title definitely had me clicking.
Hannah Shaw is the woman behind the name Kitten Lady. She has been able to make a career out of fostering neonatal kittens and preparing them for adoption. Initially I was enthralled with “Awwing” and cooing over her Instagram feed; she has rescued so many sweet little kittens and watching the progression of their recovery and rehabilitation is awesome.
Photo Credit via Kitten Lady
As I got a little more curious and started looking around her website, I found so much useful information to help anyone become a kitten saving expert themselves. There is a plethora of information on what to do if you find a litter of kittens and how to take care of them, along with instructional videos. The accessibility of this information makes what she does really great; giving people the tools and knowledge to help is the most important part.
Her website is a one-stop shop for all things orphaned kittens and I highly recommend reading up on her work, or just perusing the adorable little kittens under her care via her Instagram.
Also, if you want to help, check out her shop and pick up one of her shirts (I picked up one of my own) or donate to her cause.
Have you always wanted to go for walks with your feline friend, but aren’t sure where to start? Do you worry that kitty won’t be terribly enthusiastic about being on the end of a leash? Does your cat go ballistic when you even think about putting a harness on him?
Take heart, wayward traveler, we’re here for you. The internet is filled with a plethora of great advice, and here we will provide you with some of the best resources to get you on your way to strutting in style with kitty in toe!
First, here is a list of materials you will need before you begin this ambitious undertaking:
- a large, if not jumbo baggie of cat treats (since, according to preparewise.com, “rewarding them will be the only way to keep [your cat] from killing you”)
- a durable yet ergonomically designed leash (or better yet, this 3-way leash for those of you who want to maximize on your catwalking excursions)
Having perused a variety of sites, here now, is a summary of the best tips and tricks to help you train your cat to walk on a leash.
From Pam Johnson-Bennet (check out all the books she has written!), Certified Cat Behaviour Consultant at catbehaviorassociates.com:
- “Know your cat: think carefully before you decide that walking outdoors is a good option” (refer to our previous advice columns Help! My Cat is a Jerk and Help! My Cat is a Jerk: Biting. If your cat displays any signs of being a jerk, it is recommended to avoid further provocation).
- Take it slow: “You can’t just slap a harness or jacket and leash on a cat … the training process involves gradual desensitization” (sounds exactly like something your cat will be into).
- “A cat is not a dog: … [it] may bolt, freeze, try to climb up your leg or attempt to hide under the nearest bush” (a walk in the park!)
Wikihow provides a detailed and illustrated step-by-step process; here are some highlights:
- Don’t let go: “be prepared for [your cat] to try to run and hide. Keep a firm hold on the leash and stay close” (I’ll never let you go, I love you so, kitty!)
- Practice with the leash and harness: “try not to yank or drag the cat along as you go” (Come on, kitty! Don’t just lie there, come on!)
The New York Times brings us an insightful video report and accompanying article, featuring Jackson Galaxy, who has become a recurring cat behaviourist celebrity on Cat-O-Log!
Finally, all kidding aside, adventurecats.org provides an extremely detailed and actually quite practical guide on how to leash train your cat, for the adventurous cat enthusiast. We recommend you check out adventurecats.org on Instagram, as they post some pretty pawesome pictures of cats traveling the globe.
Some cats love to bite. But when kitty’s “love bites” leave you bruised and bleeding, it may have you wondering if it is true love. Especially when the bites come unannounced and unprovoked. In fact, your feline may be the type to lure you with purrs and cuddles, only to lash out with teeth and claws from all directions.
We’ve determined a series of steps, with the help of resources from across the internet, to guide you through this cycle of abuse.
Denial and Isolation
Many of us do not want to admit that our dearly beloved pets have become vicious aggressors who, in reality, are taking out their frustrations at being domesticated on their domesticators.
You may say to yourself, “He doesn’t do it that often.” or “He doesn’t bite me that hard.”
Sorry, your cat is a jerk and you’re in denial about it.
Guilt and Avoidance
Once you have subconsciously admitted there is a problem, the next step would be to avoid the issue, by pin-pointing kitty’s biting triggers.
After all, it is your fault that he is biting you.
Behold this extremely detailed and helpful chart for those of us who have trouble interpreting our cats’ body language. It is truly incredible that someone would take the time to painstakingly analyse and score each element of body language postures, and even more incredible that someone would take the time to read it all.
Now you come to the point where you want to find some meaning and regain a perceived sense of control over the situation; Buzzfeed tells us that in fact, our cats are biting us to remove government-implanted tracking devices from our arms.
You may eventually become frustrated and need to resort to more drastic measures. cats.about.com suggests grabbing kitty by the scruff, to tell him “no means no”, while iheartcats.com proposes giving kitty a time out in another room.
Cat shaming is another good option.
Depression and Hopelessness
Finally there comes a point in every biting cat owner’s life when you don’t know where to turn. Many sites across the internet direct you to consult your veterinarian, to help you and kitty through this stage.
Does your cat jump on your lap only to shove his butthole in your face? Or perhaps he comes to be petted and suddenly strikes without warning? Are you constantly replacing broken dishes and glassware that kitty has nimbly knocked off the counter/table? Are you unable to leave a plate of food unattended? Does your shredded sofa look like it belongs at the dump? Are you one of those people who “can’t have nice things”?
If you answered “yes” to one or more of these questions, then your cat is, for all intents and purposes, a jerk. Sorry.
But there is help!
The internet is a treasure trove of resources and advice for cat owners who seek to curb their felines’ behaviour.
This week, we take a look at advice for those of us struggling with cats who can’t keep off the counter.
A. pawesomecats.com suggests some excellent behaviour modification strategies such as hissing like a cat, double-sided tape (check out Sticky Paws scratch control strips!), and making noise such as clapping your hands or shaking a jar full of pebbles or coins.
B. howcast.com provides us with a helpful video, in which board-certified veterinary behaviourist Dr. E’Lise Christensen, DVM tells us that if our cats are jumping on our counters, it is because our kitchens are dirty, and that the rest of our house is less appealing to cats than the counter, and to improve the house by leaving blankets and treats everywhere.
C. lifehacker.com suggests using “environmental punishers” such as sandpaper (ouch!) or poorly placed cookie sheets which will fall when kitty jumps on them (basically, leave your kitchen counter in disarray).
D. Jackson Galaxy, a self-proclaimed cat whisperer, proposes a motion-activated air blaster, such as StayAway, with an infrared sensor that will detect an animal within 3 feet. This seems like the most practical and financially-viable option one could imagine. Read more about Jackson Galaxy’s fantastic ideas here.
E. For the cat enthusiast/bookworm, there is even literature available. Cats on the Counter: Therapy and Training for Your Cat, by Larry Lachman and Frank Mickadeit (I highly recommend perusing the reviews as they give great insight into the value of this book), offers detailed background information, “fascinating stories, excellent advice, and empathy for both misbehaving pets and their long-suffering people” (Amazon.com).
Stay tuned for the next installment of Help! My Cat is a Jerk where we will look at ways to redirect cats that bite and claw the hand that feeds.