Hello Furiends, We’re back on schedule again ! We’ve been keeping her busy and will have some exciting news in the next few days.
Things in our neck of the woods are okay but this part of the year is our least favorite. Snow is still around but the air smells like spring and we want to put on our harnesses and go for a stroll! In the meantime, this is how we’ve kept ourselves busy.
First, I have decided that it might behoove me to attempt to provide my feline furiends with a little photo instructions about how I keep my lovely dark fur shiny and beautiful.
Once my coat is clean and shiny I can go inspect the Chewy box and make sure The Human ordered the right food and treats.
Oliver took over purr therapy for The Human and I must say he did a great job of calming her down.
And Lily? Well she sits by the living room window meowing at the snow, telling it to go away.
And that’s our story and now I invite you to enjoy these stories I found.
This story is in the same category of the cloning story I shared a few weeks ago. Although I love the idea of humans not having to sneeze and get itchy eyes every time they’re in the presence of a feline, I’m not a big fan of gene editing that is being used by a team of researchers. They say they’ve found an effective way to block the most common source of cat allergies using the gene-editing technology CRISPR.
The culprit for feline allergies is a protein we produce called Fel d 1—which ends up in our saliva and tears and, by extension, the fur that we’re constantly cleaning (as I showed in my weekly update). It’s believed that this protein causes over 90% of cat allergies.
Researchers at the Virginia-based biotech company InBio (previously called Indoor Biotechnologies) have been working on using CRISPR, the Nobel Prize-winning gene editing tech, to produce cats that make little to no Fel d 1. In their latest research, published Monday in The CRISPR Journal, they say they’ve collected evidence that this can be done effectively and safely.
Through their studies and data analyzation they believe that Fel d 1 is non-essential to cat biology and can be eliminated without any health risks.
This isn’t the first attempt to help sneezy humans with cat allergies. I reported over a year ago about Purina’s LiveClear line of food, treated with an egg based protein that inhibits the Fel d 1 in cat’s mouths.
This new genetic approach is very new and the jury is still out. What do you think?
I’ve reported on many thieving felines but most of them have roamed their neighborhood stealing items from other houses. This cat has a penchant for his human sister’s toys and waits for the cover of darkness to steal her toys.
You humans are quite creative and are inspired by the most interesting things. Now if I told you an interior designer used a feline to create an elegant yet homey house design would you believe me?
It’s true. Tropic a ginger cat from the Bahamas was the source of interior design inspiration when her humans Sara and Peter O’Keefe picked out colors for their Washington dining room with designer Barry Dixon. They said that their feline, Tropic, reminded them and their two children of tropical sunsets and fun times from a 2017 vacation to Lyford Cay in the Bahamas. Now the terra-cotta, pumpkin and coral room does, too. Tropic is loved by her humans and they say she’s the coolest cat there is and a real people person. Sara says. “She spreads out all around the house. The kids adore her.”
So there you go, in decorating, inspiration is everything. Yes, you can just throw a bunch of furniture and matchy-matchy accessories together but if you build a room around a specific treasured item or feeling, you will create a place that really captures your personality. Many only question now is, when will The Human use us to inspire some decorating projects at our house.
We felines are hard to figure out, I get it. Some photos from the Philippines with cats sitting in social distancing circles had many humans scratching their heads. There was one cat per circle, sitting serenely.
No one put them there. They chose the spots and hung out about 10 minutes before wandering off.
There have been other online stories about cats in circles and there was a trend not too long ago for you humans to create circles and see if your cats would sit in them. And it worked, there are hundreds of photos online to prove it.
And with the photos came much speculation because you foolish humans have a need to understand us. There is no definite answer but here are a few suggestions as to why we exhibit this behavior. Some say the circles represent warmth and security (I’d rather sit by the fire). There is the theory that a square or a circle sitting is our attempt to claim new ground (we are territorial creatures). Is it curiosity? Is it for attention? Are we reverting to our wild selves and looking for places to hide from predators?
The answer is you humans don’t know and we felines aren’t going to tell you. I’d suggest you just enjoy the photos of cats in circles and the conversations and speculations they evoke.
There is a Ragdoll Cat, whose fast food trip made a McDonald’s employee’s day. This was captured in a clip shared by TikTok user @hoomancallsmelulu Her cat was cool and calm in the drive through.
Now as much as I like this story, I’m a bit miffed because our very own Oliver shot a film called “Bring Me My Catpuccino”. In order to stop Oliver’s whining about this I have posted his video below (apologies to those of you who’ve already watched it but he pestered me until I put it in this week’s news segment).
Hello Furiends, For those of you who saw Oliver’s post yesterday, you’ll understand why my feature is a day late. I do apologize and want you to know that the Purrsonal Assistant was reprimanded and her weekly dose of head bonks was reduced until she helped me get this post out.
Without further ado, and considering that we are a day late bringing you our news report, I will dispense with news from our neck of the woods except to say that Oliver is still snoopervising the PA to make sure she doesn’t fall down on the job again.
You all know how I love to report on humans who help homeless kitties. Samantha Ginsburg and her husband Stephen Streibig formed CATSA, a locally established, woman-owned small business in Pittsburgh with a big mission: to help tackle the community cat conundrum.
CATSA works to create solutions for and bring awareness to the issues of feral cats. They also design and produce products for humans who love cats. Every sale of their products generates revenue that helps them with their goal to help community cats.
And they are doing many good things like trapping, neutering and then releasing cats back to their communities and they provide safe shelters for the cats. They spearheaded construction of hundreds of “tote” style containers to help the cats stay warm and healthy in the winter months.
They used tools to create the shelter that streamlined the process. They even provided instructions on their website for people to build shelters for their own community cats.
Samantha has volunteered for years to help feral cats and today, she and her husband are funding their mission to help cats with very cool products like the LanderMark 1, feline escape pod. All proceeds from their merchandise sales help support community cat rescue projects, mobile vet clinics and advocacy initiatives.
They have some cool stuff on their website for humans and felines. We are campaigning for the LanderMark1 but The Human says it’s out of our budget. Sheesh, what a wet blanket and after all, it’s for a good cause!
This cat and puppy are Proof that multi species households can work
Even though these two didn’t start off on the best note there’s no doubt they are best buds! I am not convinced however that we need to ask The Human for a puppy.
The Tribe loves this lady! When her interior design business was disrupted by COVID she turned her attention to rescuing cats. She didn’t want to close down her office in the hopes that she might be able to resurrect it when she could open again.
Brenda Wang has always been a cat lover and is a frequent donor to the SPCA and other organizations. She decided she’d do her own rescue work where she lived. She already runs a privfate Facebook Group, Cats and Kittens of Singapore, that has over 14,000 members as well as a team of about 40 volunteer rescuers.
She would get tips about cats that needed help and would get the cats, nurse them back to help and find them new homes. The problem was she wasn’t allowed to do this in her office and when enforcement officers showed up, she had to find a new location for the rescue cats.
Wang took a break from rescuing and decided to look for a permanent space. She found a place, obtained the licenses she needed and in February, she opened The Luxe Meownor, a boarding house for both rescued kitties as well as cats in need of a “staycation” when their owners are out of town.
This feline is quite taken with the interior design (I do tend to apurreciate more classical décor) and the inspiration for the décor is old English manor. And you humans will be happy to know that every feline guest has tons of space (25 – 35 square feet) as well as invisible safety grills and cat furniture designed by Wang herself.
There are 13 of these meowvelous rooms. Rates start at $48.00 per cat per night. When multiple felines are boarded together in the same room the second and third cats are charged a supplement of $20.00 each. The rates include litter, 2 wet food meals daily, free feeding of dry food and twice daily water changes. Staff conducts daily “guest maintenance” (ear cleaning, teeth brushing and nail clipping). And get this, felines can also get a massage with organic coconut oil. Sigh, now if I could only get The Human to take me to Singapore!
Cat ‘saved’ mum-of-two’s life by jumping on her stomach
Felines are good for your health. It’s been proven that purrs help you humans calm down and relax and sometimes, we felines help you with your health by accident.
Humbug the cat jumped onto his human, Gill Kelly’s stomach and when he did, he unknowingly saved her life. When he jumped, she felt an excruciating pain in her stomach, so bad that it made her scream. Her husband was so worried he insisted on taking her to the doctor and as a result the doctor found a tumor. After testing, it was discovered that Gill had ovarian cancer.
The tumor was safely removed and today Gill is cancer free. Humbug was even nominated for an award from Cats Protection.
Now purrhaps when I launch my 20 pounds on top of The Human, she’ll be a bit more appreciative!
Oliver here. I really have my whiskers in a twist as our Purrsonal Assistant has completely failed in her duties.
Instead of working with Alberto to get our regular Wednesday feature out she allowed herself to become overwhelmed and has failed us. She also has not responded to your wonderful comments on our previous two blogs. To say we’re having a hissy fit would be an understatement. (Alberto is so upset he couldn’t even send you this update!)
the PA has promised to complete her Wednesday assignment tomorrow and I will remain on my scratching post sofa and judge her until she meets her obligations.
Hello There Furiends, It is getting downright warm in our neck of the woods (44 degrees!) and the sun is out. There are plenty of sun puddles for the Tribe to enjoy. The Human has been really busy, meeting every night which means much less cuddle time! Oh the injustice!
The biggest events of the week have been the weight mitigation attempts of The Human. Oliver is having none of it.
How it started.
How it’s going.
I am beginning to feel sympathy for The Human. Oliver is definitely obsessed by food!
Tibo Charroppin and his cat Lizzy (whose stage name is OwlKitty) are reimagining popular movies, feline style.
Charroppin, a French-born videographer from Portland, Oregon began this hobby with his desire to use his green screen with his cat. Since that first desire he and Lizzy have created their own versions of Titanic, Jaws, The Matrix, Pulp Fiction, and Jurassic Park – just to name a few.
Lizzy gets the top roles like the T-Rex in Jurassic Park, as she is turned into a 30 foot tall feline.
How long does it take to create these masterpieces? It varies, the Jurassic Park and Titanic videos each took about two to three months to produce.
Now I don’t usually feature controversial subjects but I was interested to read what this human had t say about her cloned kitty. When her beloved cat Chai crossed The Rainbow Bridge at the young age of five years. She was devastated at the loss and decided to spend $25,000 to clone her companion “out of pure love” for her pet.
Kelly Anderson told The Sun that she “couldn’t be happier with her decision,” despite the daily influx of hate mail on social media and a scathing letter from PETA.
She started doing cloning research and looked into ViaGen. Tthe second they opened the next morning she made the decision. The process from there was basically getting my vet to work with them to get a skin biopsy (from Chai).”
Four years later, Anderson has a new kitten that she named Belle.
ViaGen told The Sun that it guarantees that they’ll look identical but the animals will develop their own personality because that’s based on external factors.
Those factors include how many animals are in the house, what the animal is being fed, how the cat is raised, among dozens of other nature-versus-nurture impacts.
Anderson said Belle’s personality “is completely different” from Chai.
Belle shares her home with her human and three other cats. She is also being socialized by being taken outside and to local breweries.
“Some have ethical problems but some claim I’m using a cloned cat to make money on social media.PETA said in their that she has an “enormous amount of influence and they are desperate to help shelters … and to NOT create a cloning trend.
“Your promotion directly and adversely affects the lives of other cats — those who are sitting in shelters waiting for a family,” PETA said.
Anderson, who trains animals for a living, shared a few of her accomplishments and when she worked with PETA on campaigns.
“I appreciate your concern but it is very misplaced. And your data is misinformed,” Anderson said in a response email. “Cloning does not affect the cats in shelters at all.”
She said she has fostered over 100 cats and always has adopted, but losing Chai at five years old was a crushing blow in her life.
“There was just something special and different about Chai. I don’t know really, I can’t put it into words. She was just that pet for me. I’ve never had a pet like her. And I wanted to carry on a piece of her,” Anderson said.
So what do you think? Meow about it and let us know.
We felines are well known for wandering the neighborhoods, and the of one cat’s adventures has delighted internet users.
In a now-viral TikTok video shared on Thursday, user atargatisfairy, who also goes by Jaz, shared clips of a cat with the overlay text on the video reading: “This boy has been visiting our house for the past few months. Decided we need to know who his people are.”
Jaz shared a hand-written note that read: “Hey Mom, Being a responsible son, I’m letting you know where I spend some of my days and who my friends are. I visit [censored] every day and they started calling me Bob because they don’t understand my meows when I tell them my name.
“The humans at the house say you’re welcome to come and say hi. They have some cats too, we all catch up and chill together. If you think I’m lost or missing, I am possibly at my friends house so don’t worry. Andrew, Ange, and Jaz live there and would like to meet you and know my name.”
In the video, the poster then attaches the note to the feline’s collar before sending him off on his way. At the end of the video, the text overlay read: “He’s no trouble at all and he is well looked after by his people, but we are moving soon and don’t know who will own this house next. [We] want to let his people know that he might not get the same treatment when we go.”
With 1.9 million views and over 140,000 likes, TikTok users waited eagerly to see what would happen next. One user wrote: “Definitely waiting in anticipation for an update,” and another commented: “Did they get back to you? I’m invested!” Before long, a video update appeared.
And now, part 2. When the cat came back with no note, it wasn’t until Jaz checked her mailbox that she found a handwritten reply.
The letter read: “Hi Andrew, Ange & Jaz, I’m sorry my family have not been down to see you yet, my owners are little humans and are always getting into mischief. They would like you to know my name is Rex (as in T-Rex). You can probably hear my mom calling for me every night.”
In the video, Jaz also provided an update on what she would do next. She said: “Because his people are tiny people, I’m going to get some photos of him when he’s here next with my cats and then write out little stories as if he’s been on an adventure. That way the kids can see what he gets up to while he’s out adventuring.”
Another feline making furiends all over the neighborhood!
You humans are all techy and nerdy so why shouldn’t we felines be the same?
In the “wearables” category I found the Tabcat device interesting. They say you humans can track us felines by audio and visual cues. And, get this, you can even train your feline to come home on demand. I have to say, this feline finds that a bit farfetched.
If you humans are too lazy to play fetch with us then the interactive ball might just be the ticket.
The bond between this cat-dad Dan and 2-year-old, Darla is touching!
In her TikTok video Darla is seen hanging out on her cat perch to be closer to her beloved cat dad. She listens for his voice but he’s actually not in the room. He recently took a job out of town and so Dan keeps the bond strong with Darla by catching up with her via their home camera.
As soon as she hears his voice, Darla’s ears perk up as she lovingly watches Dan speaking to her. The conversation goes something like this, “Hi baby. Hi! Yeah, I see you,” he says when Darla reaches her perch. “I miss you, Darla,” Dan says. “My sweet baby girl. I love you so much. I miss you, and I’ll be home soon. OK?”
Dan’s final words to his sweet Darla: “I’ll always come home to you; I love you so much.”
Hello Furiends, The snow is melting in our neck of the woods and we are excited about that! Even The Human is excited and she celebrated the coming of spring by ordering Oliver and I new harnesses. (Lily turns into the Tasmanian Devil if The Human has unmitigated gall to attempt to put a harness on her. We’ve outgrown our old harnesses who have been given to felines of furiends who are a bit slimmer than we are.
The Human is very meticulous and cheap…er…thrifty so she spends hours researching things before she buys them. When she ordered the harnesses (and measured us) she ended up buying the Kitty Holster Cat Harness. She got both of them in the red bandana fabric and we even got red leashes to go with them. She had to order the XL and here are some photos of the harness on larger cats. We’ll post our own once we get them and we go for a stroll.
We will report back when we have tested the harnesses.
Oliver had been going through a bit of an existential crisis this week and The Human has been trying to help him through it.
Oliver “Human, I’m feeling a little down, will you hold my paw?” The Human “Of course Oliver, what’s wrong buddy?”
Oliver is feeling much better and no, he didn’t get an extra treat.
MOL! A human rescue from a tree but, we have to give credit to this 17-year old who tried to do a good deed and rescue a cat he saw stuck high up in a tree. The only problem is, the teenager ended up needing saving himself.
He made it up 35 feet but was then stuck himself. The teen named Owen told the firefighters that he was trying to do a good deed and save the cat.
The firefighters used a rope system to get Owen down and he was pronounced fine after medics checked him out. The cat watched the rescue but made no indication he wanted to come down. The cat’s human ended up having to hire a private company to retrieve him from the tree.
First, allow me to say that the humans who do TNR are heroes to me but this is a cautionary tale for those who might be a bit overzealous. When 10-year old Maggie disappeared from her home in Berlin, PA , her human was sure a fox got her. Now fast forward to last week then the same human was informed that Maggie was listed for adoption on a Philadelphia rescue adoption page.
Her humans called right away to claim her and were told she’d been taken to Petsmart the day before for an adoption event. Maggie’s people got there just in time to claim her.
By now you’re probably scratching your head and saying, “So what’s the big deal?” The big deal is that a number of felines in Maggie’s neighborhood have gone missing as well (even Maggie’s next door neighbor!) And when recovered, all of the cats were in Philadelphia, three hours and forty one minutes away.
Is there a catnapper about? Nope, simply a woman who was trapping on her private property and calling the Community Cats Coalition to pick the cats up. The shelter director was horrified and worked to get all the cats back to their families with the help of the local police.
Cats that weren’t microchipped could not be identified as having homes. The cat families were not upset with the shelter but did have some words for the woman trapping cats that wandered on her property. Sheesh lady, communicate with your neighbors why don’t you?
There has never been a feral cat problem in the neighborhood which added to the cat owner’s ire and the fact that she lured the cats into the cages with food. One of the cat parents said, “She was putting the food out—of course they were coming on her property.”
When people take feral cats out of the community that have not been spayed and neutered is a good thing. The shelter only had good intentions .
How do you prevent a situation like this? Having your feline wear a collar helps but the only safe collars are break away collars so you can’t count on cat having their collar on. The better way is to have us microchipped and keep the contact information up to date. And, many of the families of these felines are now keeping the cats indoors. Others are looking for special cat fencing to keep the cats in their yards.
In the future, Community Cats Coalition will not remove cats without contacting the local police department.
Now some of my furiends may be fancier than our Tribe and go to a cat groomer. Our grooming sessions consist of The Human brushing us and then clipping our front claws (we never hold still long enough for her to get the back ones. And don’t even ask about Lily because The Human has learned that even attempting to lip her front claws would require medical services to stand by (the vet does her claws and so far no one at the clinic has needed any surgical intervention).
This professional groomer has some tips (and classes and videos if you humans are really into this). And, if they are into this they can get the groomers FREE PDF DOWNLOAD with 5 of her top tips for do it yourselfers.
Danielle German, professional cat groomer explains, “What’s funny is that for many years now it seems that most aggressive cats I am handed turn out to be fairly mellow once I start handling them. This played out over and over again during the former National Cat Groomers School program that my amazing staff and myself operated for 6 years. Each time a student had a fractious feline in their charge that started to get really out of hand, things would change dramatically once myself or an instructor stepped in to take over and demonstrate how things should be done. It truly was an amazing transformation that clearly showed me the incredible value in firm, confident control based on knowledge. This was not “winging it”, folks. This stuff is real. It makes a difference.”
She tells the story of Daisy, a 1 year old domestic shorthair rescue kitty that had never been groomed before. Until the day she groomed her in a mobile grooming van during the On the Road with Jodi and Danelle video shoot in NJ
some years back. Daisy was a perfect candidate for the lesson I gave on getting off on the right foot when you work with a cat born with street smarts, wrapped in fear of all things unknown. Do not be that person that ruins things for cats like Daisy because you don’t know quite what you are doing. Learn the stuff. Get the training. Then….go out and conquer. If you want to see this in action, you can watch Daisy in in On the Road with Jodi and Danelle. Hmmmm, maybe there is hope for Lily yet!
Happy Wednesday Furiends! The Human is getting a bit psycho in my humble opinion. She awoke to this scene at the beginning of the week as she looked out the bedroom window.
So what’s so crazy making about a snowstorm in late February? Well, it it turns to rain for the next few days it does seem to drive The Human crazy. But this is what life is like in the Inland Northwest and since we felines are indoor kitties, the weather affects our lives very little (unless it’s summer and we get to take a stroll in the garden or sun ourselves on the upstairs deck.
Still, we understand The Human’s struggle and until she calms down a bit we’re going to keep a low profile, put our paws together and pray for spring!
That’s what’s been going on in my neck of the woods. Meow at me in the comments and let me know how things are going for you!
My Human likes this quote from In the words of Sigmund Freud, “Time spent with cats is never wasted.” There are a lot of you humans who feel the same but then there are some who have no clue as to the intricacy and complexity of the feline mind and purrsonality. I liked this article as it blows up a lot of the wrong thinking some humans have about us felines so, if you know someone who wants to share their life with a cat, please have them read this article! Paws up to the human who wrote the tips below!
5. Early socialization
Cats need extensive socialization to ensure they can thrive as a pet and form a close relationship with their humans. Habituation to people and other animals — as well as to different sounds, objects, and physical contact — has to be done by the age of seven or eight weeks. This places a huge responsibility on cat breeders and cat shelters, as kittens must not be taken from their mother until at least eight weeks old (ideally ten to 12).
During this time they build up their strength and immunity from feeding on their mother’s milk and learn to play and use their litter tray under her guidance.
Check that the kitten is still with its mum before you agree to adopt or buy and that they have reached the appropriate age before you take them home.
4. Training and stimulation
Cats are independent animals and like to do what they want when they want. So, you will need to teach them not to jump up onto kitchen surfaces and any other places where they might not be welcome. This is best done when they are young but adult cats can also be trained to some degree too. If you invest the time, you will make your own life easier and your cat’s life happier.
Generally speaking, most cats are perfectly content in their own company for several hours a day. But just as with dogs there are some cats who suffer from separation-related anxiety, which can lead to behaviors such as inappropriate urination or an unusual level of vocalization.
If you are going to be away for long periods of time every day then you will need to make sure they have stimulation. You might consider getting two cats from the same litter, rather than one. Or a cat flap. Or maybe even a dog. Cats and dogs can form close bonds, but you’ll need to be careful about how you introduce your cat to a new canine friend – here also, socialization at an early age is key.
3. Nutritional and medical needs
Cats are supreme and opportunistic hunters, which can lead to pressure on their prey species, as well as on you as an owner to prevent such killings.
Be prepared to put some effort into finding cat food that meets their approval as cats can be very picky eaters. You may even want to consider the type of bowl you feed them from as cats sometimes suffer from whisker stress.
You will need to have them microchipped at a young age and vaccinated annually — and the choice and optimal time to neuter will require some thinking through.
2. A suitable environment
Be sure that you can provide a living environment that suits your cat’s character.
Cats are considered semi-solitary animals. They can benefit from being adopted with a same-sex animal from the same litter. But if you already have an older cat that is used to a quiet life, you may cause considerable upset by adopting a new little kitten or bringing in another adult cat.
Cats enjoy human company but like to choose who they mix with.insta_photos
Cats are highly agile and live three-dimensionally, which means that they like to sit in high places, jump and climb. They also inhabit an olfactory world, which may come with a need to encounter interesting smells. Be prepared to adapt your home accordingly, as these are important behavioral needs and they cannot be persuaded not to do them.
1. Pedigree or rescue
Adopting a cat from a rescue center can be an incredibly rewarding experience – and can also make it easier to find a cat that is a perfect match.
Choose the cat for its character, not just its looks. Individuals differ widely in personality and temperament, including friendliness, boldness, and likelihood of aggression. It’s important to find a cat or kitten who fits perfectly with you and your living conditions.
If you opt for a pedigree kitten, find a breeder that invests heavily in socializing the kittens. Choose your breed carefully as they have very different characteristics — some are more lazy and mellow, others more vocal and demanding. Be aware though, that some breeds may be prone to hereditary issues that can cause serious health issues.
Last but not least comes the fun part of deciding what to call your new kitten (an older rescue cat will probably have a name already). Cats learn their name very quickly — just make sure you choose something you’re happy to shout out loud when calling your feline friend in for the night.
*Note-Lily, Oliver and I all had names given by the shelter we came from but The Human prefers to observe us and then give us our forever name.
Oh my whiskers, those Japanese feline loving folks are so artistic! Last week I featured a Japanese artist who carves whimsical cat figurines and this week I bring you an artist that does wonderful and realistic.
Since we felines are known to squeeze ourselves into tight spots, artist Hiroko Kubota decided to illustrate this by stitching feline likenesses into shirt pockets. She’s not taking international commissions at this time, but you can stay updated on her work on Instagram.
Guy Makes His Cat A Tiny Collar Camera To See What He’s Up To Outside
This feline has a generous streak and likes to collect garbage around the neighborhood and deliver it to his humans. Gonzo’s humans were curious as to what Gonzo was up to so they made a tiny camera, attached it to his collar and found themselves fascinated by Gonzo’s world. He was busy doing a lot more than collecting garbage. Keep up with Gonzo on TikTok: https://thedo.do/GonzotheCat.
Well there you go. Scientists say pets could protect you humans from memory loss in later life.
Owners of animals including dogs, cats and rabbits were found to have held on to more of their cognitive abilities when tracked over six years.
For the study, researchers tested more than 1,300 people with an average age of 65.
Fifty-three per cent of them had pets and almost a third of this group had owned their pet for more than five years.
The participants were asked to recall a list of ten words, both immediately and after five minutes.
They had to count backwards from 20, and backwards from 100 by subtracting seven from each number.
The study found that, after six years, long-term pet owners saw less of a fall in their average score on these tests than those without pets.
There is increasing evidence that stress can lead to cognitive decline and experts believe pets may help you humans to stay mentally sharp by reducing stress.
Those with dogs benefit from regular walks as exercise is linked to a healthier brain, however, if you have a cat stroller, like The Human does, you can still get a nice walk in with your feline.
The authors do say that people with better thinking skills may simply be more likely to have pets, as they can deal with their multitude of demands.
The University of Michigan Medical Centre study, which is not yet published, was presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology.
Dr Tiffany Braley, who led the study, said: ‘Prior studies have suggested that the human-animal bond may have health benefits like decreasing blood pressure and stress.
‘Our results suggest pet ownership may also be protective against cognitive decline.’
‘While this US-based study linked owning a pet with some protection in memory and thinking decline, it can’t tell us if these are long-term benefits, or whether owning a pet has any bearing on dementia risk.
Now this just warms my heat. Jill, a year-old black-and-white cat, found abandoned at a soccer field in North Platte now are full time residents of the “H” unit at the Lincoln County Detention Center — one of eight cats living with inmates there.
“She likes to roam around (the pod),” said Matthew, an inmate in H unit. “She can tell when you need someone. It’s kind of nice having her in here, something other than just people.
“She’ll come lay in your bed and go play in your cell and your sinks. She loves it. She’ll sleep in anybody’s cell. She’ll sleep on my sink because I have a handicap room. She’ll turn my sink on and play in the water.”
Felines have been part of the Lincoln County Detention Center for the past decade. One cat is housed in each unit except for two pods where the inmates are considered to be higher behavioral risks.
The cats remain in the units with the inmates through each day except for a short time when detention center staff are making medication rounds. “But they eventually want to go back in (to the pod),” Ball said.
“I had some concerns just about the basic care of the cats,” Ball said. “Just (questions) if the inmates would take ownership of them. But the cats take ownership of (the inmates), and the inmates definitely take ownership of the cats. They take good care of them. It gives them a responsibility, a purpose.”
The cats also simply provide companionship.
Nemo, a 10-year-old tabby, is the longest feline resident of the detention center. Nemo was one of the first cats brought into the detention center, a donation from the North Platte Animal Shelter in 2012.
“It gets to the point where the cats usually will bond with one or two inmates and sleep with them for comfort.
“Inmates who are having a bad day will pet the cats,” Ball said. “It’s a kind of a soothing, emotional release for them to be able to care for the cats. An emotional purge.”
“We’ve seen units where a new (inmate) has come in and the other inmates didn’t think they were being nice enough to the cat,” Ball said. “They were ringing and talking (to staff) saying, ‘He needs to go. He’s not nice to our cat.’”
Lil’ Cody Park is the newest feline resident. The 7-month-old gray medium-hair cat is named after the place where he was found abandoned.
Lil’ Cody Park has a neurological disorder that affects coordination. In other words, he is a wobbly cat. He is housed in a female inmate worker unit.
“He is very playful and since he has been inside here, he has blossomed,” Ball said. “He acts like a cat as much as a wobbly cat can.”
Ball has had offers from detention center staff members who are interested in taking Lil’ Cody Park home with them for good. It’s not the first time she has received inquiries about adopting one of the facility felines.
“When I brought Jill in, I had a lot of staff members say, ‘Can I take Jill?’ I said. ‘You’ve got to talk to the guys in ‘H’ if they are willing to let her go.’ They didn’t let her go, because she is still here.”
Now that’s a pawsome program, what human isn’t made better by living with a cat?