Cat Project Archives for August 15-19,
15, 2016 - "Cats may, indeed, be the thinking man's
pet--because living with cats certainly keeps you on your
toes!" - Barbara L. Diamond
Gratuitous Kute Kittiness: Lugosi and Spider, celebrating their 17th
Mewvie: Motorcycle meow-ma.
Street Art: Giant cat mask, made in Japan.
hundreds of cats at this Hawaiian cat sanctuary
By Arielle Kaplan
They say all dogs go to heaven — and apparently all cats go to
Hawaii. Well, almost all of them.
If you venture to the small island of Lanai you’ll find a cat sanctuary
scattered with nearly 500 cats, according to the Huffington Post. These “Hawaiian
Lions” have the freedom to roam around the 25,000-square-foot property
filled with large huts, trees to climb and human visitors to scratch
The Lainai Cat Sanctuary opens its doors to the public to play with the
uncaged cats for just a few hours every day, between 10 a.m and 3 p.m.
Can’t afford to schlep all the way to Hawaii? No problem — the
sanctuary offers an “adopt in place” program that lets feline
lovers sponsor or adopt any cat of their choosing.
Executive director Keoni Vaughn calls the nonprofit community service
organization the “Furr Seasons” which he opened in 2008 with
the aim of giving homeless Hawaiian cats a safe place to live, according
to the Huffington Post.
Although primarily a cat haven, the feline friendly grounds has a dual
purpose of protecting endangered indigenous birds.
“We started on the premise of saving our native birds on the island,” Vaughn
told the Huffington Post. “We focus on trapping stray and feral cats from
bird-sensitive areas and then bring them into the sanctuary, so it’s a
win-win for both native birds and the cats."
All cats receive a health exam, a microchip, and are sprayed and neutered
before entering the main population, and if they’re never adopted
they can live in the sanctuary until they’ve exhausted all nine
One man flew all the way from Japan to Lanai to get his daily dose of
furry cuteness. If traveling all the way to Hawaii isn’t in the
cards for you, at least you can virtually enjoy the sanctuary via Instagram.
16, 2016 - "You may own a cat, but cannot govern one." -
Gratuitous Kittiness: "I'm helping."
Mewvie: "Meow shall not pass!"
Feline Art: "Cat with
Bell" by Shotei Takahashi.
17, 2016 - "Cats, no less liquid than their shadows,
offer no angles to the wind. They slip, diminished, neat,
through loopholes less than themselves."
- A. S. J. Tessimond
Gratuitous Kittiness: "I didn't think this through."
Mewvie: "So say we all!"
Art: "Cat" by Silvio Ribeiro.
17th is Black Cat Appreciation Day
By Meghan Gionotta
It turns out, black cats don’t find homes as easily as pets with
lighter colored fur. That’s why shelters across the nation are
celebrating Black Cat Appreciation Day on Wednesday, Aug. 17.
Old myths, dating back to the superstition stemming from Halloween that
black cats are unlucky, have kept adopters away from these dark-furred
felines, according to an ASPCA shelter.
Those people are seriously missing out.
Here are just six of the countless reasons why a black cat would make
the perfect addition to your family.
1. Black is one of the chicest colors, so your cat will always match
your outfit. Hello, perfect selflie.
2. You’ll be able to find your cat easily, especially if her favorite
hiding spot is between your white throw pillows.
3. Black cats are basically the star of their own holiday. You’ll
be ready for Halloween without the hassle of decorating.
4. Throw away that lint brush! A black dress will hide any loose cat
5. Your luck could (possibly) improve after adopting a black cat. In
Japanese and Chinese cultures, the black cat is a sign of good luck.
There are even black fortune cat dolls, known as Maneki Neko, that wave
their arms bringing good wishes your way.
6. You know that feeling you had when you were picked last for a group
game in school? That’s how a rescued black cat must feel every
time another cat finds a forever home.
18, 2016 - "There is no snooze button on a cat who
wants breakfast." - Unknown
Gratuitous Kittiness: "Sorry, I don't have a square to spare."
Mewvie: Everyone loves those sliders.
Feline Art: Cheesey cat consumer goods. Get Yours Now!
19, 2016 - "If the claws didn't retract, cats would
be like Velcro." - Dr. Bruce Fogle
Gratuitous Kittiness: "Yay! It's the big cat with
Mewvie: Cat hates Donald Trump.
Art: "Cat" by Florian Nicolle.
will never be a cat person."
By Julia Bayly
FORT KENT, Maine — There are two kinds of people in the world.
OK, so there are an endless variety of people in the world, but for the
purposes of this week’s column, I am distilling it down to two:
Dog people and cat people.
While both dogs and cats do reside in relative peace and harmony together
here on Rusty Metal Farm, I have no problem admitting I am a fan of the
former and just tolerate the latter.
I am not now, never have been and doubt I ever will be a cat person.
That’s not to say cats have not played a part in my life, and growing
up there were always one or two felines around the house. But even as
a child, I was drawn far more to the dogs we had.
Once I moved to Maine to attend college, there were a few pet-free years,
but those ended when my late husband, Patrick, and I moved into a house
near the St. John River and adopted an orange tiger-stripe kitten we
Darwin was, shall we say, special. He was a nice cat, but he was not
the brightest kitty and seemed to go out of his way to prove his namesake’s
evolutionary theories of natural selection.
If ever there was a cat destined to not evolve, it was Darwin.
Sadly, this proved out when we moved to Rusty Metal Farm, and within
a week, something higher up the evolutionary food chain than Darwin selected
Since then, there have been a series of cats here on the farm, all acquired
with one job assignment — keeping down the rodent population.
The most recent feline additions to Rusty Metal Farm happen to be the
Boris and Natasha — brother and sister — arrived as kittens
15 summers ago and have been hanging tough and — working as a team — driving
me crazy ever since.
One of their favorite hobbies is driving the Rusty Metal sled dogs insane,
especially if they can do so in the predawn hours and wake me up — it’s
sort of a two-fer for them.
Starting at sunrise, which is very early in the summer, either Boris
or Natasha will slowly and casually stroll up the driveway and plunk
down in front of the kennel, sending all the dogs into a barking, howling
About 20 minutes later, the cat moves along, the dogs settle back down
and up the driveway comes the sibling to start the whole kennel cacophony
over again, by which time I am wide and grumpily awake.
That suits Boris and Natasha just fine, as they are more than ready to
come inside for their breakfast.
Sometimes they bring “gifts.” I’ve lost count of the
squirrel, chipmunk, mole, mice and rat body parts left on the deck, usually
in the path of my heading-to-get-the-newspaper bare feet.
Every so often they like to make things a bit more interactive by delivering
their prey while it’s still very much alive.
One of the darkest times on Rusty Metal Farm was the last week of Patrick’s
life when he was under hospice care here after losing his battle with
One night, as a friend and I sat quietly near his hospital bed in the
living room, the cats — who frankly seemed oblivious to the tragedy
that was taking place — began scratching at the door to be let
I opened the door, and in rushed Boris and Natasha, the later of which
was carrying a very live field mouse that she proceeded to drop under
the hospital bed.
While the two cats stood back and watched, you would have thought my
friend and I were trying to defuse a live bomb considering the speed
with which we went after that mouse.
We actually caught it pretty quickly and returned it to the wild, and
afterward my friend turned to me and said, “When hospice calls
in the morning and asks if you need anything, tell them you need a mousetrap.”
Even in the darkest hour on the darkest day on the farm — that
was damn funny.
Just last week, after months of being lulled into a false sense of security,
Natasha again surprised me with a live critter — this time a chipmunk
that I swear to God she was looking to keep as her own pet.
I quickly vetoed that plan and was luckily able to “herd” the
chipmunk out an open door and back into the woods where it belonged.
My friend Julie, who spent some time on the farm last winter, is very
much a cat person and told me on several occasions, I just don’t
understand cats and treat them like dogs.
Well, sure — dogs are cool. Dogs are loyal and, unlike cats, do
not spend every waking hour trying to thwart your will.
I mean, come on — was it a team of cats or the brave and strong
Rusty Metal sled dogs who got me through the 30-mile Can Am Crown sled
Julie had been somewhat taken aback by my consistent dispensing of treats
to all canine residents on the farm, and my far more sporadic handouts
to the cats.
When she discovered an unopened container of kitty treats that had been
a Christmas gift to them from a friend months earlier, she immediately
set about proving exactly how appreciative cats could be.
Looking on with great skepticism, I told Julie there was no way Boris
and Natasha were going to do anything in return for a tasty morsel — other
than perhaps claw her hands to ribbons to get at them.
Within two treats each, however, she had them proving me wrong as they
were standing up on their hind legs and gently pulling individual morsels
from her fingers.
By the smug looks on their faces, I just knew they were doing it to make
me look bad.
But, maybe Julie’s right. Maybe I do expect too much dog-like behavior
from cats, creatures who are their own unique and perplexing species.
Still, I doubt there are enough treats in the world to get a team of
them to pull a sled.