Hi all! I was happy to note you seemed to approve of my post about working cats. So I decided to explore this topic further. I did some digging around and managed to unearth some incredible stories about cats with jobs for you. Enjoy!
When you think about jobs for cats, the most obvious line of work for them would be rodent control. And indeed, there have been many famous mouse-catchers in history. The cat currently holding the title of World’s Best Mouser is Towser, who was the resident cat of the Famous Grouse distillery in Scotland. She is listed in the Guinness Book of Records with an impressive number of 28,899 mice caught in her lifetime of 24 years.
As a nation of animal-lovers, of course the UK has officially appointed a Chief Mouser to the Cabinet. The cat currently in charge of rodent control at Downing Street is Larry, a tabby and white rescue cat. Larry has also had a postive influence on international relations by getting on well with President Obama. 🙂
But there’s something else cats are good at. They are great company. They are warm, furry and loving. Maybe they aren’t very suitable for being trained as physical assistance animals, but therapy cats are on the rise. There are some amazing stories out there about the emotional support a cat can give people.
Take for example Oscar, a cat who lives in an American nursing home. When a terminally ill patient is about to die, Oscar jumps on their bed and lies with them until they have passed away. This kitty provides invaluable, quiet comfort in the final hours of these people. Oscar’s sixth sense is so accurate, that the nursing home staff call the patient’s family as soon as they see the cat lying on somebody’s bed. I don’t know about you, but to me that sounds like a very peaceful way to go, with a purring kitty next to you…
Then there is Bodacious, the Irish sheep herding cat. He is right out there in the fields with his farmer human, watching over the sheep, comforting ewes giving birth, warming chilled lambs and generally being supportive. His human says she couldn’t do the job without him.
My own pet zoo cats do a lot of emotional support, too. They come right up to people, purring and wanting to be petted. Children adore them, some come especially to visit the cats. As for me – I love all my animals, but the cats are special to me. They are like co-workers. They catch mice, chase off crows and snakes, but never touch the pet zoo animals. They guard against other, feral cats who might try to snack on chicks. They are members of my team.
Where cats go, they bring joy. Therapy cats bring love and healing power to hospitals, nursing homes, schools, war veterans and so on. Cats literally have healing properties. Stroking a cat lowers heart rate and blood pressure, relieves anxiety and depression and even heals physical problems. The vibration of a cat’s purring has been shown to promote bone density and reduce joint inflammation.
No wonder snuggling with a cat is so blissfull. My 9 year old son does not go to sleep without a cat in his bed. Now I know why! 🙂
Apart from mousers and therapy cats, there are some cats with very unusual jobs indeed. There have been several cats in politics, like Stubbs, who has been mayor of Alaskan town Talkeetna since 1997, and Catmando, the official leader of a UK political party (the Official Monster Raving Loony Party, admittedly). Right now, a cat called Limberbutt is running for US president, with the slogan “Meow is the time.” Go Limberbutt!!
One more thing cats are good at: massage! The kneading movements they like to make with their front paws makes for a great massage, as many pet owners have found out. Recently, I learned in the Catington Post of the existence of Cat Massage Parlors in Japan, where people can opt to have a cat help massaging them, by sitting on their backs and kneading with their kitty paws. How fun and relaxing would that be!! (Although to be honest, when my own cats do this, their nails kind of bother me…)
Cats can do anything. There are cats who are station masters, police officers, hotel hosts and security guards. Cats can be movie stars, artists and internet celebrities. They can even be deities. There is nothing cats can’t do!
We hope you enjoyed this post! My pet zoo cats, Tseli and Stav, and my three house cats invite you all to visit my pet zoo blog: Pet Zoo Kibbutz Shiller. Thanks and see you soon!
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Dutch expatriate, mother of 3 boys, freelance translator and pet zoo keeper in a kibbutz in Israel.