How is your December going? Things are fine in our neck of the woods. The raccons are still shimmying up the tree that reaches to the upstairs deck, looking for a handout, the deer are still finding apples from the tree on our property and the neighborhood cats are still trying to sneak into our garage now that the weather is colder.
I received my wonderful gifts from my Basepaws Secret Santa furiend (more about that later in another post). It was really fun to purrticipate and I loved the information my secret furiend sent about themselves.
Even though it’s been very cold here, we’ve had quite a bit of sun and finding sun puddles has been easy.
And, if the sun can’t be found, my brother Oliver and I like to have a nice, cozy snuggle.
Stay warm and cozy my furiends and I hope you enjoy this week’s feline stories.
Meowza, paws up for this guy, a French philanthropist who left a sum of money for the cats living in the basement of the State Hermitage Museum in Russia.
Around 50 cats live in the famous St. Petersburg museum and it has been a home to cats since the time of Empress Elizabeth, who reigned from 1741 to 1761.
Catherine the Great, the founder of the Hermitage, gave the cats the status of guardians of the art galleries and their job is to keep the treasures safe from rodents.
Today, the felines are taken care of by volunteers and museum staff, and receive support from donations which have allowed the cats to have their own washing machine and the services of a local veterinarian.
The windfall will likely be used to repair the museum’s basements, where the cats live. The folks who care for the Hermitage cats also adopt them out and refer to the adoptees as “graduates”.
Oh my whiskers, this is something the Tribe and The Human can get excited about. This Washington based coffee roaster, Cool Cats Coffee Co. opened its doors in September and since then, the business has donated enough to feed 1,500 cats living in animal shelters across the country.
The co-owner of Cool Cats Coffee Co., Jordan Swofford says, “Good coffee should feel a greater purpose,”
Cool Cats Coffee Company employs a “Chief Meow Officer”, Jameson and “Chief Feline Officer” Gus who both have their own Instagram accounts.
Cool Cats Coffee’s mission is to let the world know how amazing felines are and to support the hard-working organizations and volunteers who fight for felines every day.
When a customer buys coffee or merchandise from the company, a percentage of the profits are donated to Greater Good Charities, which then distributes the funds to animal shelters across the country that are in need of financial assistance.
“Every purchase is feeding 20 homeless cats,” Swofford said.
The small-batch coffee roastery currently offers four different roasts: “The Cat’s Meow” dark roast, “Death Mittens” medium roast, “Colombian Supremo” light roast and their holiday special, “Santa Claws.”
Cool Cats Coffee Co. also offers a series of pun-filled, feline-themed merchandise, as well as sunglasses and bandanas for cats to wear.
Our Human travels from our neck of the woods to Seattle often and she checked the map and Selah is a short side trip on her way there so hopefully, businesses will open up again there and she can do an interview with the good folks at Cool Cats Coffee this summer.
While you humans are looking for great places to move, we felines would like to make an argument for considering a place that’s #1 for cats according to a study by PetListed.com. The #1 feline friendly city is Birmingham, Alabama.
The study looked at data sets covering the most 100 populous cities in America to discover which were the most feline friendly and used the following criteria:
Amount of cat-friendly housing in a city
Number of AAFP certified cat veterinary practices
Abundance of local animal shelters + welfare groups
Number of pet stores selling cat products
What are some of the reasons Birmingham was #1? Their housing market is ideal for owning a cat. With 81% of all available rental properties across the city allowing felines, this makes Birmingham the 6th highest cat-friendly housing market in the U.S.
Birmingham has numerous fantastic shelters and cat sanctuaries as well as cat cafes. If you want to get an idea about how much Birmingham loves felines, check out Magic City Kitties.
Now as much as we love the idea of this list, we are staunch country kitties so we won’t be moving to any city anytime soon but you feline city dwellers might want to take a look at all the cities on the list.
I’ve meowed about The Human Animal Bond Research Institute (HABRI) before. They do amazing work and this study, released today is only one example of the excellent work they do.
We kitties are more than just pretty faces and that’s been verified in a new study published in the Journal of Pediatric Nursing titled, “Exploratory study of cat adoption in families of children with autism: Impact on children’s social skills and anxiety,” The study states that children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) may experience increases in empathy and decreases in problem behaviors after adoption of a shelter cat into their families.
Meowza! What a win-win situation, kids get help with ASD and kitties find furever homes! This is the first scientific research that shows these claims to be true.
Findings of the Feline Friends study, led by researchers at the University of Missouri, demonstrated that children with an adopted shelter cat had better empathy and less separation anxiety, as well as fewer problem behaviors exhibited by less externalizing, bullying and hyperactivity/inattention. Children and parents also felt strong bonds with their new cat almost immediately after adoption and despite the responsibilities involved in care for a cat; these bonds did not decrease over time. The researchers conclude that shelter cats may be beneficial for some children with ASD while not necessarily creating a burden for their parents.
Well there you go, science proves again how beneficial we shelter kitties are in the lives of humans! You can read the full paper in the Journal of Pediatric Nursing.
I have written about cats that stowed away on busses, trains, cars and other modes of transportation finding themselves many, many miles away from home.
This cat went from Russia to a shelter on the Isle of Wight. The cat, dubbed Ivan was taken first to the Southampton Cats Protection when his microchip was scanned; the number showed it originated in Russia. He was then transferred to the Isle of Wight Animal Shelter.
But there was no registered address or any other details. Ivan is believed to be about 3 years old is now at the shelter on the Isle of Wight where he is in quarantine. The shelter director says he’s very friendly.
The mystery of Ivan’s travel from Russia has everyone baffl3d. Some speculate that he was brought to the UK as a kitten.
The center is appealing for information from anyone who may know his owner. If they are unable to find them, they will rehome him but they would to reunite him with his family for Christmas.
Humans, this is a cautionary tale to remind you that you need to keep your cat’s microchip details up to date!