Tag: cat stories

SUNDAY CATS: Mountain Lion Scared Off By Buddy Look-Alike, Bodega Cat ‘Bridget Moynahan’ Goes Missing

A mountain lion got more than it bargained for when it found itself face to face with a ferocious furball last week.

The puma was taking a breather near a home on Jan. 5 when it turned, realizing there was a pair of eyes watching it. Those eyes belonged to the resident cat, a 13-year-old moggie who was not pleased to see a wild intruder in its territory.

The puma initially squared off on the other side of a sliding glass door as if saying “You want some of this?” but seemed shocked when the domestic cat, rather than backing down, launched into a series of feints and yowls.

The puma flinched a few times, then decided to vacate the premises.

Clearly, the wild cat found itself wondering about the identity of the tabby.

“Is that Buddy the Cat? Oh crap! If it’s him, I’m in trouble! They say he has huge meowscles and is a master of 36 styles of Kung Fu!”

Bridget Moynahan joins the search for Bridget Moynahan

Blue Bloods actress Bridget Moynahan gave a boost to the search for a missing cat bearing her name.

The 51-year-old actress lent her star power to the search by posting about it on Instagram, where she has 345,000 followers.

The missing kitty belongs to the owner of a Manhattan bodega, and spends her days napping on the shelves and being admired by customers.

There are an estimated 10,000 bodegas in New York City, where traditional grocery stores don’t really fit into an urban lifestyle where most people don’t own cars and can’t load up two weeks’ worth of groceries in a minivan.

To keep mice and rats at bay, most of New York’s bodegas have cats. They’re technically illegal, but because having a cat in the store carries the same $300 penalty as having rodents, bodega owners opt for the former. The cats are beloved by New Yorkers, and the city is mostly content to overlook their presence unless there are major health violations.

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Get the Army Corps of Engineers 2023 Cat Calendar for free

If you still haven’t picked up a calendar for the New Year, the Army Corps of Engineers has got you covered.

Their 2023 Cat Calendar features magnificent moggies in giant form, scratching, lounging and napping on ships, jetties, dams and dredges.

Click here to download the printable PDF of the calendar.

London Is Safe With Bella The MI5 Cat On Patrol

About a year after John Graham and his wife, Kathleen Birch, adopted Bella the Cat, they noticed she had an acquaintance — a genial neighborhood stray with a white-cream coat and black fur running from his back to his tail like a cloak.

Although she’s territorial like any member of her species and spends much of her time patrolling Grove Park — a quiet London neighborhood tucked into a winding loop of the Thames — Bella expressed no animosity toward the apparent intruder, and in fact seemed to be on quite friendly terms with him.

Graham and Birch, who like to joke that Bella is a clandestine agent of MI5 — Britain’s version of the FBI — dubbed the stray Bertie, and decided he was her field liaison.

“We think Bertie is her Mi5 contact and visits to get updates [before] returning to HQ to report on her field actions and mission status,” Graham quips.

After checking with the neighbors and bringing Bertie to the veterinarian, who said the stray was not chipped, Graham and Birch believe Bertie was likely abandoned by his previous family and eked out a living zig-zagging between homes in Grove Park, depending on the goodwill of neighbors and his own considerable charm for food. So they had Bertie chipped with their contact details about eight months ago, and now field agent and handler have been united under one safe house roof as they continue in His Majesty’s service.

Bertie and Bella even have their own WhatsApp group comprised of their humans and neighbors, who post to let each other know of the feline duo’s comings and goings.

Both cats are a source of great joy for Graham and Birch, who were looking to adopt again two years ago after the passing of their beloved Bets, who had been with them since kittenhood and lived to the ripe old age of 21.

Bella and John
Bella deciding she needs to be a lap cat for a little while in order to supervise John’s work. Credit: John Graham

After contacting a charity they support in Twickenham, the couple went out to meet a cat named Puss Puss at a foster’s home about three miles away.

“We walked in and sat down, and within literally a few seconds, she came out from under a table. My wife immediately fell in love with her as Puss Puss – now called Bella — rolled over and showed her belly with the loudest purrs ever,” Graham recalled. “She walked over to me and looked up with the most beautiful green eyes, allowing pets and scritches instantly. I was totally smitten. Her secret service training on overcoming any resistance was obvious here.”

Not much is known about Bella’s past, which Graham jokes is classified, but the fosters said Bella likely came from a hoarding situation. She bears some emotional scars from those times, making it clear she didn’t like to be picked up and wouldn’t tolerate head rubs. Graham said he thinks Bella may have been struck on the head by the abusive person or people who had custody of her originally, but with patience “she has grown to trust us and love us the way we love her.”

True to her training, Bella came striding out of her carrier that first day without need for coaxing and set about surveying her new headquarters, exploring while noting promising hideouts and lounging spots.

“She immediately checked out the perimeter as do all good Mi5 agents, looked around and began a sniffing and snooping journey for about an hour,” Graham said, “Then sitting in front of us on a low stool, she started shouting loudly, her default way of demanding food. This prompted me into action, offering her different dishes attempting to find her favourite. It turns out that she basically will eat anything.”

Indeed, Bella’s love of food is one of the few things that cause a bit of tension between her and her doting humans. She’s restricted to carefully measured wet food plus veterinarian-suggested “weight management crunchies” and, like many cats, is not shy about notifying her servants when the yums are low or the auto-feeder isn’t dispensing them. (In those instances, Bella hops up onto the bed and approaches the sleeping Graham: “I will get the gentle paw followed by the sharp claw to ensure I get the message to come and feed her immediately.”)

Bella at the Window
Bella on overwatch duty, making sure Grove Park remains quiet and free of interlopers. Credit: John Graham

Adopting a cat is always a guessing game. Will the cat relax and open up once she realizes she’s safe and has a home? Was he reserved when we met him because he’s been living in a shelter with unfamiliar sights and smells? Will she take to her new home immediately, or will she dive under a couch and remain there for weeks, emerging only to grab a bite from her bowl when no one’s around?

Those questions were immediately settled for Graham and Birch, and Bella’s outgoing personality is one of the things they love most about her, along with her supreme confidence.

“She has it in absolute truckloads,” Graham notes, “and there is pretty much no fear on her part about adventuring anywhere in or out of the house.”

While keeping cats indoors is the norm in the US, as many as nine in 10 caretakers in the UK allow their felines to spend time outdoors unsupervised, encouraging them to establish their territories, explore their gardens (backyards to us Americans) and familiarize themselves with their neighborhoods.

Many US shelters and rescues won’t allow potential adopters to take a cat home if they indicate they’re willing to let the kitty outside, and some even require adopters to sign contracts stating they’ll keep their four-legged friends indoors. UK cat rescues often take the opposite stance. They advise pet parents on how to gradually introduce their cats to the outdoors, offer tips on how to manage their outside time and recommend various pet flap configurations.

The difference is partly cultural and partly practical. While extolling the benefits of allowing cats to roam, UK cat lovers point out that domestic felines rarely stray far from their homes, on average venturing only between 40 and 200 meters (about 130 to 650 feet). They’re curious, which drives them to explore, but also territorial, which keeps them on a figurative leash.

There’s also a marked difference in wild threats to domestic cats. In the US, cats are vulnerable to pumas (also known as mountain lions and cougars), coyotes and a wide variety of birds of prey, from eagles, harriers and hawks to condors, osprey and even some larger species of owl. The UK does not have pumas, despite local legends to the contrary, nor does it have coyotes. Foxes, the smaller cousins of coyotes, and some birds of prey do pose a threat, but not to the extent that the wildlife of the Americas does.

Bertie
“Yes, I’ll just settle down here for a nap whilst I wait on your report to HRH.” Bertie joined Bella about eight months ago and now they both live under one roof. Credit: John Graham

For Graham, allowing his cats outside fosters their independent streak and allows them — or Bella, at least — to exercise their hunting impulses. Bertie isn’t known for his predatory prowess, but Bella is a pro at catching mice.

The local neighborhood is quiet, traffic is strictly limited to 20 mph, and the neighbors know each other well, often using their WhatsApp groups to track their kids in addition to cats.

In fact, if Bella could speak, Graham reckons she’d thank him for providing a home in a tranquil locale — and for never closing doors in their home.

What else would she say?

Graham says it’s obvious: “Glad that you understand the difference between my requests and my orders – you took a while.” She’d also likely chide the couple on their ineptitude as hunters, declaring Graham and Birch “are both rubbish at catching mice and rats despite how many times I show you how to do it.”

For Graham, the managing director of a London brand agency, and Birch, a skin care therapist, sharing their home with cats feels natural, and they cherish the unpredictable nature and playfulness of their feline friends. Cognizant of the fact that black cats are less likely to find homes, they prefer adopting melanistic house panthers like Bets, their previous cat, and Bella.

“I totally love all animals but as residents in our house, cats fit perfectly being clean, highly intelligent and able to manipulate any situation with an expression or display of love,” Graham says. “My favourite thing about Bella is when she surprisingly sits on my lap and the mystery when she hides in unlikely places causing me to rush around desperately trying to find her, not coming out even when I am shaking a treat bag.”

Bella will allow the game to drag out “until she decides to appear with her ‘I win’ look and swagger.”

Feline love is often hard-won, but that makes it worth it. In discussing Bella, it’s clear Graham lives for the moments when the independent-minded kitty decides to let him know how much he means to her by sleeping at the food of the bed, playing her hide-and-seek games and climbing into his lap.

Bella and Bertie may not be regular lap cats, but that’s okay with Graham and Birch.

“So there you have it,” Graham said. “Two cats that come and go as they please with occasional signs of affection, but get nothing apart from permanent love and affection from us.”

 

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year everyone!

While other Asian nations celebrate the year of the goose or the bull or whatever, did you know 2023 is the Year of the Cat in Vietnam and among the Vietnamese diaspora? Yep. Pretty cool!

As we look forward to a 2023 filled with all sorts of awesome stuff, let’s take a moment to fondly recall the highlights of 2022:

  • January: With the humans of North America paralyzed with fear at the impending invasion of the Polar Bear King and his vast army of huge bears, Buddy the Cat heroically traveled on his own to the frozen wastelands — also known as Canada — to confront the belligerent bear. In an act of bravery that will be remembered in songs for centuries, Buddy defeated the Evil Polar Bear King in a dance-off, staving off invasion and saving humankind.
  • February: Buddinese Space Industries, the rocketry and spacecraft company founded by Buddy, announced a goal of putting kitties on Mars by 2030 and establishing a state-of-the-art base there — complete with luxury boxes, scratchers and ample window perches — within two more years. After Elon Meowsk expressed skepticism on Twitter, Buddy replied with a simple “Hold my beer,” garnering a record 11.2 million likes.
  • March: Buddy appeared on the cover of Modern Cat Magazine, looking suave and handsome.
  • April: Celebrating Big Buddy’s birthday and Little Buddy’s adoptaversary, the former enjoyed Impossible Burgers while the latter ate delicious turkey.
  • May: Pumped up by an inspiring pep talk from Buddy the Cat, New York Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge caught fire, putting on a display of power that would ultimately result in an American League record 62 home runs. Judge credits Buddy for his success: “Bud showed me the way. He helped me unlock my potential. Without the confidence he instilled in me, I wouldn’t have hit half as many home runs or looked half as good doing it.”
  • June: More than 50 bands and music acts paid tribute to everyone’s favorite tabby at the 7th annual Festival of the Buddies, a three-day gathering of peace, love and turkey.

Buddy
Buddy the Cat

  • July: Buddy raised more than $2.2 million for various animal charities by auctioning off a dinner date with himself. Thousands of women bid on the prize, but in the end one lucky woman — said to be a princess from an undisclosed European country — was able to secure the company of the charming kitty for an evening of good food and meowversation.
  • August: More than 85 million people tuned in to watch Buddy host Saturday Night Live, registering the show’s highest ratings in decades. Millions more watched the delightful feline’s monologue on YouTube.
  • September: With his city overrun by rats, New York City Mayor Eric Adams begged Buddy to tackle the threat. Buddy magnanimously agreed, and since Sept. 7 not a single rodent has been observed in the five boroughs. Adams and the city council passed a resolution later that month funding the construction of a statue of Buddy, which will be installed in front of City Hall.
  • October: Netflix premiered The Buddy the Cat Mysteries, its most popular show since Squid Game. The streaming giant immediately renewed the feline detective show for three more seasons.
  • November: Buddy the Cat enjoyed turkey on Thanksgiving and every other day of the month.
  • December: Millions of Americans were able to endure record cold temperatures despite losing power when they found they could raise their body temperature by 8.7 degrees just by looking at posters of Buddy.

That’s quite a year Buddy’s had! Not one to rest on his laurels, he’s already looking ahead to 2023 when he’s expected to make his debut as an opera singer and finally stage a long-awaited bout with Mike Tyson.

Little Buddy and Big Buddy wish all of you a happy and healthy New Year, and we thank each and every one of our 27 million monthly readers for making PITB their site of choice!

Buddy The Cat ‘Too Busy’ To Accept Challenge From Feline MMA Phenom

Saying he couldn’t find a way to squeeze it into his schedule over the next year, Buddy the Cat declined a challenge to step into the cage with one of feline MMA’s brightest young stars.

The challenge came courtesy of Sphynxie the Smasher, a four-year-old hairless cat from San Jose, California. The skilled cat uploaded a video in which he pumped iron and ridiculed Buddy for his “completely delusional claim that he’s a badass” and his “hilarious talk about having huge muscles.”

Sphynxie
Sphynxie the Cat taking protein supplements after an intense workout.

“This is what huge meowscles look like,” Sphynxie said, curling a meaty forearm and flexing his bicep. “Not the flab of some chubby tabby hoping we won’t notice how many snacks he devours.”

Sphynxie challenged Buddy to a cage match “any time, any place” and said he’d even tie one paw behind his back “to make it even with the chonkster.”

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Buddy issued a response on Twitter.

“First of all I’m not chubby, so that’s fake news!” Buddy wrote. “I’m 100% pure lean, mean badass.”

“Secondly, I’d be honored to step into the cage with Sphynxie and teach him a lesson that he’ll remember long after the real Sphinx is weathered to dust,” he continued. “Unfortunately my meownager says I can’t squeeze it into my schedule. I’m shooting my new movie, Fowl Play, through mid March, and then I’m going on tour to promote my next album. In between that stuff I really need to nap when I can, get some laser pointer work in, and catch up on eating turkey. Sphynxie should count himself lucky, because he dodged a bullet!”

The viral hashtags #BuddyDucksFights, #BuddyIsADuck and #ScaredBuddy were trending late Sunday night, prompting a long list of others to challenge the gray tabby to elicit increasingly ridiculous excuses from him.

One of them, a challenge from a five-month-old Russian named Oreonov the Putinizer, accumulated more than 20,000 likes in just a few hours.

“I am kitten. He is full grown cat, yet he won’t step into cage with me,” Oreonov wrote. “He knows I crush him for the glory of motherland.”

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Kitten With No Sex Organs Up For Adoption, Plus: Cat Proves The Dog Is HIS Pet (VIDEO)

We all know what it’s like — you’re trying to get something done when your pet, beloved as he or she is, has decided to be really annoying in insisting on treats.

Finn the cat was in this position recently when his pet, Piper the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, had her eye — or more likely her nose — on a small bowl of Cinnamon Toast Crunch on the kitchen counter. Piper couldn’t reach the tasty snack, so Finn climbed up, fished out a piece of cereal one at a time and dropped them for his loyal canine companion. (Finn himself had no interest in the sugary cereal, lacking in meat as it is.)

This should settle any remaining questions about where cats and dogs stand relative to each other:

Homeless kitten from UK has rare condition, is neither male nor female

A kitten rescued by a shelter in Warrington, about 20 miles west of Manchester, was originally listed as female and given the name hope. However, during a routine exam, a veterinarian found Hope does not have reproductive organs, according to The Guardian.

“There’s an outside possibility of some ectopic ovarian tissue hiding away internally but we think this is extremely unlikely … This is so rare that there isn’t really a commonly used term for this condition, but it is effectively sexual organ agenesis,” said Fiona Brockbank, senior veterinarian at Cats Protection in Warrington. “While this means we don’t have any previous cases [on which] to base our knowledge of how this will affect Hope in the future, we spent time monitoring this cat to ensure they can urinate and defecate appropriately before they were considered ready for rehoming.”

Hope’s condition is so rare it doesn’t have a name, but shelter manager Beni Benstead told the newspaper that shouldn’t dissuade potential adopters. Hope is very friendly with other cats at the shelter and “has been a delight to care for.”