Tag: Liverpool

Family’s Cat Follows Kids To School, Gets His Class Picture Taken

Ziggy the cat must figure school is an interesting place if his two young human siblings walk there every day, so he’s taken it upon himself to go too.

The four-year-old cat is such a common sight at Drury Primary School in Wales, about 30 miles south of Liverpool, that faculty there consider him an “honorary student.” Ziggy makes himself comfortable for naps on the headmaster’s desk, attends school assemblies and likes to run around the playground.

Ziggy, who pops in and out of classrooms as he sees fit, walks 10 minutes to the school every day with his humans, Megan Roberts, 10, and Chloe Roberts, 7.

Mark Bitcliffe, Drury’s head teacher, told local daily The Leader that it’s “impossible” to keep Ziggy out, so the school has accepted him as a “student.” The cat shows up so reliably that Bitcliffe said he’s “an example to other pupils.”

But Ziggy really “took the biscuit” during school picture day during the last week of September, mom Emma Roberts said. The orange and white feline waited until he felt it was his turn to pose for a school photo, then hopped up onto the chair in front of the photographer as if it was the most natural thing in the world. The school sent his photos home along with school portraits of Chloe and Megan.

“Chloe handed the letter to me [after school] and I expected it to be her photos. But then when I looked I was just in floods of laughter and so were the other mums standing by me,” Emma said. “I asked her what had gone on and she said he just jumped on the chair. He didn’t need any encouragement, he just got up there for a photo.”

Bitcliffe, the faculty and the students at Drury love Ziggy’s antics, and they say he’s been educational too, as he’s given kids without pets the opportunity to learn how to interact with animals.

“It’s difficult to keep a cat off the school grounds, even if you wanted to, but thankfully he’s one of the nicest cats I’ve ever come across,” Bitcliffe said. “He thinks he’s a pupil so it’s fitting he’s had his own photo. I think it’ll be put up on the staff noticeboard. One time he was on the top ledge of the shelves in the secretary’s office and he’s been known to sneak into mine, sit on the chair and fall asleep. It’s his second home I think. His attendance is not an issue and he’s actually setting a good example to the other children.”

“We’ve not been looking to have a school cat or dog really, but he chose us.”

Buddy Condemns Scientists Who Claim Cats Are Psychopaths

NEW YORK — Buddy the Cat condemned British scientists who pegged cats as psychopaths in a new study, saying he’d like to “introduce them to my claws,” if not for the fact that he’s too charming to do something so uncouth.

“I was offended when I read that study, frankly,” Buddy said, pausing to spit out the bones of a mouse he’d just killed and sip from his bird blood cocktail. “The very idea is preposterous.”

Psychologistsfrom the University of Liverpool and Liverpool John Moores University developed a questionnaire that asks cat owners servants to rate their felines’ behavior based on 46 different behavioral statements.

Examples of the statements include: “My cat torments their prey rather than killing it straight away”, “my cat vocalises loudly (e.g meows, yowls) for no apparent reason”, and “my cat is very excitable (e.g goes into ‘overdrive’ and becomes uncoordinated).”

Respondents were asked to rate, on a 5-point scale, how closely each statement applied to their cat(s).

“Asking our servants to respond to the survey was the first mistake they made,” Buddy continued, using a claw to dig bits of mouse from between his teeth. “I mean, do you ask Beethoven’s gardener to evaluate the master’s symphonies? Would you ask the overnight office cleaning crew at Apple to gauge the brilliance of Steve Jobs? Would you ask Brian Scalabrine to weigh in on the transcendent talent of Michael Jordan? Of course not. So why would you ask my human to evaluate me? Why would you think such a simple creature could hope to understand the cathedral that is my mind?”

“And furthermore, why should I care? Does the lion concern himself with the opinions of sheep? I’m officially a jaguar, by the way. I don’t know if you knew that. Yeah. They welcomed me into their mystic community and call me Kinich Bajo, which means ‘god of wisdom.'”

Personality traits like delusions of grandeur, charm, lack of empathy and narcissism are typically associated with psychopaths, experts say. A psychopath might, for example, imagine he’s a large, muscular cat when in fact he’s 10 pounds soaking wet.

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Buddy imagines himself as a powerful authoritarian leader

The degree of psychopathy varies widely among felines, lead author Rebecca Evans said.

“We believe that like any other personality trait, psychopathy is on a continuum, where some cats will score more highly than others,” Evans said. “It is likely that all cats have an element of psychopathy as it would have once been helpful for their ancestors in terms of acquiring resources, for example food, territory and mating opportunities.”