We all know that cats have more than one dedicated corner in the many realms of pop culture. Whether it is famous cartoon cats, internet cats or famous cats throughout history, they have a superstar brand that’s among the biggest in the animal kingdom.
In this post, however, we dig a little deeper and show you more interesting ways cats have inspired ideas in fiction. From trusty animal sidekicks to cat-eared races in fantasy, you’re going to see just how many of these popular tropes are distinctively feline!
The resident snarky housemate.
Whether it’s Garfield, Grumpy Cat or Salem Saberhagen, wit and sarcasm seem to be a thing for a lot of famous cats. It’s not just the fact that they happen to be snarky either. Many people love them because this type of personality trait just goes pretty damn well with being a cat!
A very plausible reason for this is that real-life cats do have all the traits that complement a smart and witty personality. Cats are reserved, aloof and have a silent, independent streak. If they could talk, it won’t be surprising that half of them will have the occasional biting (yet insightful) remark about our life choices.
Cats as magical companions.
Speaking of Salem, however, another popular cat trope is their affinity for being magical companions and knack for spellcraft in general. Other examples include Luna from Sailor Moon, the Cheshire Cat from Alice in Wonderland, and Crookshanks from the Harry Potter series.
Cats are also a popular choice of pet in many fantasy role-playing games, including Dungeons & Dragons and World of Warcraft.
The connection between cats and magic is also not surprising because it has been an association that has existed long before medieval times. Whether it was their association with goddesses, witchcraft or luck, cats are an ideal companion when you have a thing for mysticism.
Cats as super villain sidekicks.
Mwahahahahaha! And of course, we can’t forget another famous trope that we mentioned in one of our previous blogs! There is just something truly empowering when you hold a cat like the classic villain of superhero and spy stories.
Because much like wit and sarcasm, the traits of a supervillain are just the right match for cats. Like Blofeld, Corleone and Dr. Evil, cats have an air of superiority and the cunning to go with it. They like being pampered and are not afraid to deceive wannabe do-gooders by hiding their deadliest weapons within their paws.
The rise of the cat people.
Last, but certainly not the least, you have the increasingly popular cat people. This is most often prevalent in anime and manga but characters sporting kitty ears and tails is an idea that can be found in other works of fiction as well.
Examples include the animated cult classic Rock & Rule as well as the adoption of this trope in games like Shadowrun and Final Fantasy XIV. It’s also not necessarily an anthro thing (as some might think). However, it’s certainly a fun idea to play around if you have an artistic or literary gift. Imagine what it’d be like to actually have the ears of the cat, the sharpness of its eyes and all the stealthy grace that comes with it. And naturally, it’s a cool way to imagine yourself when you also have some decidedly feline personality traits.
When you look at these tropes, is it really so surprising that cats are as celebrated as they are? They are such abundant bundles of creative ideas, both in terms of their cuteness and their coolness. What about you? What fun ideas do you have that were inspired by your feline friend?
If you’re feeling crafty, and it so happens that you have kittens and cats under your care, you can make for them any of the following toys highlighted below so that you no longer need to spend so much on commercially available playthings.
Cardboard Cat Playhouse: Kitties, regardless of age and size, will love to wander around places they know they can explore. This is what makes the cardboard playhouse one of the best feline playthings.
You will need:
Window and door templates
Three sturdy cardboard boxes of the same size
Utility knife or razor blade
1. Print the window and door templates and cut them out. Position window and door templates on a box, using your ruler for placement. With a pencil, trace the templates to the box. Slide into the box a self-healing mat, making sure it is positioned behind the cardboard door; cut the top edge, the bottom edge, and the centre. Fold open along the straight parts. Repeat the tracing and cutting process on the second box, this time with the window template.
2. Put together the bottom part of the first box: fold in flaps, making sure they are coated with glue, then fold the other flaps over the first flaps. Hold flaps together until such time that the glue has settled. One the open portion of the box, cut off the flap of every long side. Then cut half the flap from a short side off, then fold it in. Get hot glue and use it to secure flaps to box side. Hold in place the flaps until the glue has settled.
3. Start creating the roof. At the top part of the second box, get a pencil and ruler and use it to create a line from top centre of a short-side flap to a bottom corner; draw another line from top centre to another bottom corner. Repeat at the opposite flap. Cut a long-side flap off; set aside. Proceed to remove a triangular shaped part from a short-side flap by cutting along a penciled line; cut along second line. Do the same with the other short-side flap–cut along a line and score the other.
4. Cut the long-side flaps of the bottom portion of box number two. Cut a short-flap so once you have assembled and stacked this box to the one at the bottom, all holes are aligned. Secure flaps to side of box using an application of glue. Hold these flaps until such time that the glue has set. Coat top portion of bottom box with hot glue. Position bottom of second box over top portion of bottom box, and hold until the glue has dried. Use a short side flap you have reserved and apply glue to one side. Set this flap, coated side down, to top box floor to serve as reinforcement.
5. Cut roof piece from box number three with crease down centre when it is folded from one short end to another. To attach the roof, you need to fold along scored lines on all short-side flaps located at the topmost section of the house. Glue the long flap to folded triangles from short sides. Coat pieces you have folded in with glue generously, and then set the roof on top of them. When doing this, make sure to hold pieces until the glue has settled. (Note: Do not glue shut the opposite side of the roof, as kitty will love to peek his head out from under there.)
Feather Cat Toy: Feather toys resemble birds, which kitties also love to hunt. Here’s how you can make your own wool felt feather toy.
1. Using a template as your guide, cut one big feather and one smaller feather from differently-coloured wool felt.
2. Use a hot iron and crease down the middle parts of every feather.
3. Get a jump ring and add it to the jingle bell.
4. Slip the end of a yard-long length of cord through the jump ring. At the bell, tie the feather stems to a cord, making sure that a square knot is used to secure the cord. Aside from securing the cord, knotting can also help prevent it from fraying.
Ring Ball A ring ball is a ball made of cardboard rings. A treat can be placed inside this ball to serve as an incentive to the feline pet. You only need a cardboard toilet paper tube to create this toy.
1. Cut four rings out of the entire cardboard tube, making sure that scissors are used to do so.
2. Insert a ring to another ring. Insert the third ring, then the fourth ring, until a ball is formed.
As proven by the many toys that you can get from a pet shop, cats love to play with so many things. But there’s no need to spend so much on cat toys as long as you take time to learn to create your own kitty playthings from recycled materials.
When the Fourth of July comes around, it usually means one thing: a big nationwide celebration. Prepare yourself for lots of food, people, and fireworks. For your cats, however, it means chaos and a host of terrifying things. As a cat owner, you may already know that domesticated felines are sensitive creatures. Thus, this busy and exciting time is almost certain to overload their delicate senses.
While you shouldn’t forget about enjoying yourself on this annual holiday, you should also consider the well-being of your feline friend. Keep him safe during this time by following these tips:
Keep him inside.
This applies even to a cat that is used to exploring the outdoors. There are a lot of firecrackers going off during this time, and the sudden noise, as well as the burning smell of the firecrackers, can easily frighten and disorient him. Also, take note that there might be some pranksters around who delight in frightening and terrorizing small animals on purpose. Keep your cat away from all the chaos and the people who might possibly harm him by keeping him indoors.
Keep an eye on the doors.
If you’re having some people over for your own Fourth of July party, remind your family members and your guests to be careful as they go in and out the doors to ensure that your cat doesn’t escape unnoticed. Check the doors and windows for any gaps, holes, or tears through which your pet might escape.
Update his information.
Just in case you do lose your pet during this busy time, make sure you’ve updated his information in the registry, if he has been microchipped. Collars with identifying information and a contact number can also be used. This way, the person who finds your pet will be able to get in touch with you and return him to you.
Hire a sitter.
While you and your family are busy viewing the fireworks, have a sitter look after your cat. This way, if your pet reacts negatively to all the chaotic noise, he will have someone nearby to console him as well as to supervise him.
Create a sanctuary.
Designate a quiet room in your house as your cat’s sanctuary. This should be far away from all the hustle and bustle of the holiday festivities. Keep the room’s door locked and set it up with your pet’s food, water, toys, bedding, and litter box so he has everything he needs.
Distract him with familiar noise.
Drown out the noise of fireworks and other Fourth of July noises by turning on devices that emit sounds familiar to him, such as a TV or a radio. The noises of these devices are things that your cat will certainly be familiar to and thus won’t be bothered by.
If your pet has an extremely sensitive or anxious personality, you can consider giving him some calming medication. However, you should first talk to your veterinarian about this as such medication often brings about certain side effects.
However busy you are with the Fourth of July celebrations, don’t forget to spend time with your cat. Look in on him every now and then and see to it that all his needs are attended to. More than anything else, your presence is sure to be the most reassuring thing for him.
These days, there is a steadily increasing interest in health drinks, particularly green tea. Although not a lot of people like the taste of green tea, this beverage is still considered as a good choice of health drink. After all, it contains a high level of antioxidants and does not have much in the way of caffeine content.
The above could be why many people want their pets to indulge in this drink. But is it really a good idea?
Answer: Not all green tea is recommended for cats. If the tea blend you regularly indulge in contains even the slightest trace of caffeine, it should never be given to a feline. But if your favourite tea blend is uncaffeinated and unsweetened, you may share it to your kitty, but only in moderation. Many components of green tea can help in improving feline health.
What exactly are the benefits of giving green tea to your cat?
Tea has antioxidant benefits due to the presence of chemicals known as polyphenols. The most notable polyphenol in green tea, Epigallocatechin-3-gallate, is very effective in destroying the body’s free radicals, which are harmful to one’s body.
What exactly are free radicals?
Free radicals are charged particles formed in the body through numerous means such as metabolic processes, dietary factors, exercise, pollution, and stress. These upset all bonds in our cells, leading to cell damage, which can lead to numerous mutations. While many of these cellular mutations are relatively harmless, others accelerate aging and even trigger cancer development.
Most domestic cats are subject to the same things their human owners are subject to. They are as susceptible to the harmful effects of secondhand smoke, household cleaners, and stress (one of which is the development of free radicals) as their human owners. As such, they can also suffer from tumors, cancers, and UV radiation damage. So if you give your felines moderate amounts of green tea, you help in stopping the development of free radicals, and hence prevent cancers and tumors from developing in their bodies.
Some cancers that moderate consumption of green tea can help prevent include colorectal, stomach, lung, and ovarian cancers.
Why only decaffeinated green tea? What happens when a cat consumes caffeinated green tea?
Cats are more sensitive to caffeine than humans. While humans only feel jittery after consuming a cup of coffee, cats can suffer from numerous harmful side effects, which include: laboured or accelerated breathing, anxiety, severe palpitations, and seizures after caffeine consumption. Left untreated, the pet cat will go into a comatose and eventually die.
Other things to know before you give kitty a cup of decaffeinated tea
Certain blends of caffeine-free tea can do harm to a cat’s health. These harmful blends have herbs which can be poisonous to cats. So before getting tea bags for your kitty, consult your vet first.
Green tea, as long as it is caffeine-free and does not contain artificial sweeteners or herbs harmful to cats, is a great addition to your pet cat’s regular diet. It helps prevent the development of harmful free radicals, which cause tumor and cancer development, without triggering any side effects on him or her.
When people talk about their pets protecting them or pets for protection, the first thing that usually comes to mind are dogs. Of course, dogs are amazing and lovely animals capable of guarding their owners from harm. They would even jump in the fray and risk their lives whenever necessary.
Dogs have a distinct reaction when humans are fighting as well. But what about cats? Well, cats are just as capable of protecting humans from danger, be it from other animals or from our own kind. Here are some of the things they do when they see their favorite humans fighting.
Attack the Alleged Aggressor
The most common reaction a cat would make to protect his/her human is to attack the aggressor. You see this a lot in the wild and when an intruder enters their territory. This same tactic is applied during moments when humans are fighting and your cat is in the same room.
Cats would often retaliate and protect who they think needs it. People have reported experiencing and witnessing such occurrences. They would describe their sweet and docile cats going berserk towards the aggressor. This could also be triggered by the stress they feel in an environment where people frequently argues.
Do Things to Distract Humans
Like humans, cats react differently to certain situations. During a fight between you and your partner, sibling, or parent, not all cats will jump in the fray. Some would hide, others wouldn’t give much care and a few opt to get physical. However, there are cats who prefer the more subtle approach. An approach that would not entail violence, but would result to laughter, melting hearts and cuddle time.
Cats are reported to do silly things to distract their humans when fighting. A man reports that whenever he and his wife would have an argument, their cat would chase its tail. He said “It wasn’t so much that he would chase the tail as it was where he would chase his tail. It was typically in a chair in the living room or, even better, in the bathtub. In the bathtub, chasing his tail would make such a ruckus that it was impossible to ignore.”
Be the Great Comforter
Sometimes they would just simply hide during heated arguments. They’d just wait until their humans have calmed down. Then they’d all come out and be there to comfort them. Sitting on their laps, kneading on them, purring like they’ve never purred before.
Cats are very good detectors when it comes to what their humans are feeling. They are sympathetic creatures who would always comfort those closest to them. After human fights or arguments, cats would go where their humans are and comfort them in any way that they can.
See, cats aren’t just protectors, they’re companions. They are there for us through thick and thin. Through good and bad. Through fights and peaceful moments. Although they may have different approaches in dealing with it, all of them do this out of love for us
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