Tag: siamese cats

Now There’s A Mail-In DNA Test For Cats

Ever wonder about your cat’s parentage, breed and potential health problems? A mail-in DNA test for cats promises to fill you in on the details.

Basepaws, a Los Angeles company, offers a kit not much different from the human mail-in DNA tests: You swab the inside of your cat’s mouth for a few seconds, secure it according to the provided instructions, and mail it to the company, which processes the results.

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The basepaws kit.

In four to six weeks you’re notified that your cat’s results are ready, and you’ll get a report with a breakdown of genetic identity, associated breeds and potential health issues to watch out for.

This presents a problem for me, of course. Buddy thinks he’s descended from a long line of legendary warrior felids. I took a regular Q-tip, made a big show of swabbing his cheek for his DNA, and told him I was mailing it away for analysis.

Then I cooked this up:

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Buddy’s fake results.

You’ll notice the results don’t come close to adding up to 100 percent. The company’s founder says that’s because the more people test their cats, the more accurate the results will be, with fewer unknowns as the overall database expands.

Each cat’s report is updated indefinitely as the company continues to test. Checking back over subsequent months and years will yield updated information on your cat, the company says.

All jokes aside, it would be interesting to find out more about the Budster’s background. All I know is that his mom was an indoor cat who wasn’t spayed. She went into heat, she got out, she came back and the rest is history.

Because he’s a big talker, I’ve always wondered if Bud might have a bit of Siamese or one of the other chattier breeds in him. His coat is pretty short, extremely soft and all grey/dark grey in a tabby pattern, except for a single white tuft on his chest.

Interestingly, most of his tabby stripes are unbroken, a trait usually seen in hybrid cats.

He’s comically incapable of certain things, but almost frighteningly intelligent in other respects, and he wears his emotions on his sleeve…er, paw? Maybe there really are secrets to unlock in his DNA.

Cat DNA analysis is in its infancy

On the downside, Basepaws DNA tests don’t come cheap — with two packages priced at $129 and $99 — and, as a review in Wired notes, cat ancestry reports are always going to be more vague than reports on human or dog DNA.

That’s because the practice of dog breeding is a lot older and more common than creating pedigree cat lines, and most cats are not a specific breed. Unlike dogs — whose roles range from hunting and shepherding to assisting the blind and pulling sleds — cats have always had one job, and occasionally two. Kill rodents and snuggle with their humans, cuddly killers that they are.

Historically humans haven’t felt a compelling need to interfere with cat procreation. The last century or so has been an exception, but breeds still represent a small minority of cats.

If you’ve had your cat’s DNA analyzed, we’d love to hear from you about your experience.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to tell a certain Tiger-Manticore-Jaguar about his impressive felid lineage.

President Buddy Blames Siamese For Coronavirus Outbreak

WASHINGTON — In a series of tense exchanges with reporters President Buddy blamed Siamese cats for the spread of the novel Coronavirus.

Responding to a question about the Americat veterinary system’s preparedness to deal with a crisis of this magnitude, the president argued the Siamese told the rest of the world the virus was “no big deal, okay.”

“The Siamese have obfuscated from day one,” Buddy said. “They’re Siamese if you please, they’re Siamese if you don’t please. What is that? Sneaky little bastards.”

In particular, the president said, CHOW — Cat Health Organization Worldwide — confused cats across the globe by initially saying they could not become infected with the virus, only to backpedal months later after cats in Austria, Belgium and the United States tested positive.

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Dr. Meowci addresses the media.

Dr. Meowci, director of the Feline Institute for Infectious Diseases, urged cats to practice proper hygiene and social distancing.

“Wash your paws!” Meowci urged. “If you regularly snuggle with another cat, consider keeping your distance. And you guys aren’t gonna like this, but you need to take baths, and not just with your tongues!”

President Buddy took Meowci’s advice a step further, wondering aloud whether antibacterials could be used to purge the virus from the inside out.

“Like, if you put antibacterial on kibble, like a sauce,” Buddy said, “and somehow get that in the body, maybe we could cure the virus? Because you see what it does, it’s very powerful. It’s tremendous, really terrific.”

The suggestion prompted Jimma Costa, a reporter with Cat News Network, to ask the president if he was “suggesting cats should drink or eat antibacterial soap? Because that would be very dangerous, Mr. President. By the way, my question should be trending right now on Meower. Don’t forget to include my name! Cameramen, you should be doing a close-up on me right now.”

An exasperated Buddy shook his paw at Costa.

“Fake meows!” he said. “You’re a hack, Costa.”

Meanwhile, the president proposed catnip as a potential cure for SARS-CoV2. When a reporter asked him why he seems so sure the minty plant has the ability to fight the virus, the president grew visibly annoyed.

“I just have a good feeling, okay?” he said. “Get the high grade stuff, the terrific stuff, none of that illegal shake from the Los Gatos. The tremendous stuff only.”

Cat 1, Parents 0: Heroic Cat Rescues Toddler

A cat in Colombia has been hailed a hero for saving a 1-year-old boy from a potentially nasty fall down a flight of stairs.

The incident happened on Halloween in Bogota. Samuel, the toddler, had escaped his play pen and had nearly made it to the stairs on all fours when Gatubela, a Siamese mix, leaped into action.

The cat dragged little Samuel back from the brink, then put herself between the toddler and the stairs, pushing him to safety:

 

“The cat has been part of our family practically since birth, we had her here when she was a month, a month and a few days old, and she has become familiar with my children,” Samuel’s father, Jesid Leon, told a reporter. “She is two months older than my son.”

As for the rest of it, I have no idea what’s going on here. Why does the floor look like a demilitarized zone? Where are the parents? And does Gatubela — whose name means Catwoman — get paid for babysitting? At the very least she deserves some treats…

Gatubela, Hero Cat
Jesid Leon, father of Samuel, cradles the heroic Gatubela.

Dear Buddy : How Do I Push Kitty Crack On High-Class Felines?

Dear Buddy,

Catnip is incredibly lucrative, and in one year my new operation has expanded to a 20-cat organization slinging six pounds of the green gold per week to kitties in my neighborhood. I control all the colonies and clowders, and I have connections into the shelter system who deal exclusively to cats on the inside.

Now I’m looking to expand, but I don’t know where to go. As an OG niplord who practically invented the game, what do you think?

Respect,

Niplord in New York

Dear Niplord in New York,

I’m glad the youngins know my name and know of the path I blazed slingin’ that funky feline product. My empire was vast, I ate only the finest turkey and my human was none the wiser.

Now, to the matter at paw: You need to find a way into the suburbs. That’s where the real money is, dealing high-grade nip to high-class cats like those Persians, Abyssinians, Russian Blues and Turkish Angoras.

Do not, no matter how much money you think is on the table, ever deal to Siamese. They never shut up, and before you know it they’re blabbing your name to everyone, until officers from animal control are on your tail. Don’t sling to the Siamese!

The best way to get an in to the suburbs is to attend fancy feline soirees, the kind where those dainty Burmillas mix with the Angoras and pâté is served on silver plates, not in bowls.

Notice something about that group? Yep. They’re all white, which means you can jack up the prices and Five-Oh mostly leaves their neighborhoods alone. In the white neighborhoods, the kitty crack is sold in extravagant houses, not street corners.

But remember, you can’t show up at one of those lavish dinner parties talking street, son. Work on an appropriate accent, and give yourself a credible backstory so your new clientele believe you come from meowney. During my day I spoke with a convincing British accent, and told cats I was a British shorthair. They joke’s on them, ’cause they got played by a “common” American domestic shorthair. Fools.

Just remember to play it cool and never sample your own product.

Buddy out.

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Fat Tony, RIP, controlled vast amounts of territory in Queens and Brooklyn before he was taken out in a hit by Los Gatos. The nip trade is lucrative, but it’s also dangerous.