Reigning Cats: Why Felines have Ruled the Pet World for so Long

Despite the dominance of man’s best friend as the UK’s domestic pet of choice at 24% of households, cats come a close second with our feline friends occupying 18% of the country’s homes. In fact, according to the PFMA, cats and dogs leave the competition standing, with the next most popular pet being fish kept in tanks with just 9% of household.

The popularity of dogs can easily be explained by their historical role as working animals used to hunt. But our continuing love affair with cats throughout the centuries is more nuanced and has less obvious utilitarian roots. So what is it that makes cats so special to us, given all the other potentially domesticated animals out there?

Long Traditions

The relationship between humans and cats spans recorded history, with DNA evidence suggesting that cats were domesticated in the Middle East between 10,000 and 15,000 years ago. At this point in history, the rise of grain production would have meant that people began to be experience problems with mice, for which cats were – and still remain – the perfect predators. It’s likely that these early communities encouraged wild cats to stay around their grain stores by offering food or other attention, beginning the process of domestication which has created the cats we know and love today.

Behavioural Profile

Cats are fiercely independent and it was long believed that they cannot be easily trained. Though this has since be proven wrong through studies and books such as The Trainable Cat Book. They are certainly not suited to wearing a lead or accompanying their owner on long walks. Whilst dog’s loyalty seems to be their main appeal, it is this very independence that attracts so many people to cats. A pet cat requires very little training, beyond the basics of toilet habits, and are perfectly able to groom themselves. They are happy to be left alone for extended periods of time throughout the day, but will also offer affection and attention when in the company of the family. This makes them a suitably low maintenance pet for our busy modern lives.

Combine this with their innate cuteness and it’s not hard to understand why cats are so popular. In contrast to most other domestic animals, cats are able to retain a huge amount of their independence and to exhibit clear personalities of their own.

Thinking of Getting a Cat?

Before bringing a cat home, make sure the whole family are on board with the idea and are prepared to make the appropriate changes. It is essential that the cat feels safe and content. Although cats are independent, owners are responsible for providing food and water and for taking care of the litter tray.

Cats may not appreciate toys and playthings as much as dogs unless of course you get the right toys but they lap up attention. It’s important to make sure that all of the requisite supplies are acquired before bringing the cat home. Essentials include a litter box and the same brand of litter as the cat is already accustomed to using, a bed, food and water bowls, as well as plenty of cat food and a scratching post (to save your upholstery).

Once these items are in place, check the home for any escape points or hazardous materials that the cat might ingest. Some common plants are poisonous to animals to be sure to check if any decorative plants need to be moved to higher shelves or different rooms. You definitely look into taking out cat insurance in advance of the cat’s arrival, given the high potential cost of any veterinary attention during the lifespan of your new feline friend. Kittens need to have vaccinations at an early age, plus annual boosters, whilst accidents and emergencies can occur at any point in a cat’s life.

Cats are a rewarding companion to have at home, suitable for people of varying lifestyles who want the combination of comfort, beauty and independence that only cats can offer.

Oh and please don’t forget to subscribe to our Newsletter by clicking here.

Thanks,

Marc

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Book Mews: Shop Cats of New York

Hi everyone,

Today we are looking at the book Shop Cats of New York by Tamar Arslanian.

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SHOP CATS OF NEW YORK  blends the introspective eye of Humans of New York with the visual intelligence of The French Cat to depict the Big Apple from the perspective of their diverse and enchanting rulers: felines. Combined with lively photography, this book gives voices to the creatures beloved for their mystique, independence, and vitality.

Depicting the character of New York and its shops through their cat counterparts, the author and photographer capture distinctive cats such as:

  • a camping store cat whose official title is “customer therapist, assistant buyer and HR”
  • a wine store cat with his own chiropractor—he has a bad back
  • a cat in an occult shop who casts spells at night carrying a magic wand in her mouth
  • a cat who is a the mascot at a dog boutique
  • a bookstore cat who almost killed a live chicken during toddler story time

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Beyond the clever stories these cats offer, they are legends inside New York institutions like the Algonquin Hotel, Bleecker Street Records, Kings County Distillery, and many more. From the amusing to the benevolent, this book uncovers these 40 cats’ different personalities and the shops they deem home. Celebrated cat blogger Tamar Arslanian and popular Instagram pet photographer Andrew Marttila illustrate the love and warmth these felines elicit in their urban kingdom.

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SHOP CATS OF NEW YORK is the perfect holiday gift book for those who venerate the species, city life, and the creatures who keep their celebrated shops lively. It can be nearly impossible to deduce what is stirring inside these majestic animals’ brains, but Arslanian and Marttila get as close as humanly possible.

Our over-all verdict: This book is simply purrfect! Having been to the big apple earlier this year we recognised many of the cats in the book as we met them on our adventures in New York! But it also gave us insights on how many we missed and whom we will have to meet on a future trip!

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If you enjoy great cat photos but also learn more about their history and the history of the area / place they live in when this is your PERFECT book!

If you would like to get the book yourself it is available from:

Paperback directly from the Publisher here for the USA
Amazon UK by clicking here.
Amazon US by clicking here or through Barnes & Nobles here.
Amazon DE by clicking here.

More about the author:

Tamar Arslanian
is the author of the blog IHaveCat.com, and has served as Vice President of Account Management at numerous high profile New York City advertising agencies. She currently consults pet brands on marketing and social media, writes for numerous pet outlets and shares her home with three rescue cats Kip, Petie and Haddie.

shop cats Andrew Marttila
shop cats
Andrew Marttila

P.S. Don’t forget to sign up for our new Newsletter here.

Thanks,

Marc

Book Mews: The Cats Who Crossed Over From Paris

Hi everyone,

Today we are looking at the book The Cats Who Crossed Over From Paris by R.F. Kristi.

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The Cats Who Crossed Over from Paris: Enchanting New Book for Kids & Animal Lovers; Hailed “Fantastic!” by Critics.

Out of all pets, cats have a distinct personality and aura of seriousness that makes them some of the most fascinating creatures on the planet. According to many cat owners, their pets always appear to be plotting something, including the leading felines in R.F. Kristi’s enthralling new book.

‘The Cats Who Crossed Over from Paris’ is part one of Kristi’s new ‘Inca Cat Series’. Forget simple meowing – these cats have a crime to solve!

Synopsis:

Inca, a Siberian puss, tells the story about her furry family – her brother Fromage, who is addicted to cheese and considers himself a cheese monger, and her sister, Cara, a gorgeous but timid Siamese. Inca, an avid fan of Dr. House, considers herself the leader of the troupe and responsible for the well-being of the family. They own, according to Inca, Missy, a young humanoid who has a well-established cheese shop in Paris. The story revolves around how Missy decides to move to London with her co-partners, Jacques and Genevieve, to run their new cheese shop and café. Can Fromage leave his pal, Charlotte, behind? Soon after arriving in London, the three cats accompany Missy to their neighbor’s house where they meet Monk, a blue Russian cat and Terrance, a golden retriever owned by their famous neighbor, a detective named Solo, living in the same compound in Kensington.

Things start to get interesting when Monk tries to help their neighbor, Polo, a sad little Pekinese whose mistress, a formerly well-known opera singer who is pining for her lost husband, has her valuable diamond necklace stolen. Can Inca and her family assist Monk and Terrance to recover the diamond necklace and resolve Polo’s problems

Our over-all verdict: Animal lovers young or old will love this book and the adventures of the furry main characters! The fun stories that will keep you in their grip until the end are accompanied by brilliant illustrations such as the one shown below:

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We highly recommend this book for animal lovers of all ages. 🙂

If you would like to get the book yourself it is available from:

Paperback directly from the Publisher here for the UK (eBook) and here for Australia (paperback).
Amazon UK by clicking here.
Amazon US by clicking here.
Amazon DE by clicking here.

More about the author:
David St John Thomas was a well-known writer and publisher. He established and ran David & Charles, the UK publishing house, for 30 years. David wrote over 25 books on a variety of subjects and well over a million copies of his books are in print. He also ran a charitable trust with the aim of assisting writers in their careers. And, naturally, a passionate cat lover!

P.S. Don’t forget to sign up for our new Newsletter here.

Thanks,

Marc

Charity Mews: An update from Bella

Hi everyone,

Some of you may remember our story from last year about Bella the cat that managed to eat a whole kebab stick!

We are pleased to be back with an update today to let everyone know that she is doing just fine and living happily ever after at her forever home with her Human and Feline family.

Bella was found by Cats Protection’s Birmingham Adoption Centre and after a full recovery was re-homed to her forever home! 🙂

Of course we too once had a scary incident with one of our little ones eating something that they shouldn’t have… It’s important that we all remember that something that seems harmless could cause much suffering to a vulnerable animal. 🙁

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On this picture you can see that she has settled in just fine with the other resident cat, Blue, who are together on the trampoline on a warm summer day. 🙂

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Can you guess where Bella is sleeping on this picture? Let us know! 😀

Never want to miss a story again? Sign up for our Newsletter here!

Thanks,

Marc

Book Mews: Catopedia – A Fascinating Collection of Feline Curiosties

Hi everyone,

Today we are looking at the book Catopedia – A Fascinating Collection of Feline Curiosties.

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Why do cats cry to come in and then cry to go out again? Why do they chatter silently at the window? Why can’t they be trained to fetch your slippers? Where are the most unusual places they’ve been employed as mousers? Why are there so many cat superstitions?
This cat compendium educates and entertains with facts about everything from wild cat ancestry and cat physiology to cat worship and cat movie stars. Investigate how cats experience the world and what they think of their human companions and explore just how significant cats have been in society throughout the ages.
Drawing on the vast body of knowledge belonging to the world’s most famous dogs and cats home, the book contains numerous snippets that readers can dip into as well as longer essays and stories that can be enjoyed at leisure.

Our over-all verdict: This book is simply amazing! In a fun and entertaining way it teaches us about cats through history and how for example they kept the mail depots free of vermin! But it also gives you insights on various breeds and cat behaviour.

If you are a catlover or are looking for a gift for a catlover when this is your purrfect choice! Whats even better profits of this book go to Battersea Dogs & Cats home to help them with their re-homing projects and the general welfare projects conducted by them.

If you would like to get the book yourself it is available from:

Paperback directly from the charity here for the UK.
Amazon UK by clicking here.
Amazon US by clicking here.
Amazon DE by clicking here.

P.S. Don’t forget to sign up for our new Newsletter here.

Thanks,

Marc

Book Mews: All Black Cats Are Not Alike

Hi everyone,

Today we are looking at the book All Black Cats Are Not Alike by Amy Goldwasser and Peter Arkle:

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Every cat owner knows that no two cats are alike. This pitch-perfect illustrated book proves this simple fact by diving whiskers first into the unique personality, charisma and character of 50 real all-black cats. From Alfie, who “has no tolerance for wet humans or being ignored,” to Sashi, who “enjoys freeze-dried chicken by candlelight and full-on body rubs,” each cat comes to life through a lovingly hand-drawn portrait and quickwitted profile. Delightfully quirky and utterly charming, this motley crew of black cats will win over anyone with a dry sense of humour.

Our over-all verdict? We LOVE it! This book is filled with fun little stories of the various personalities of black cats around the world! It proofs that all cats are different (not that we all didn’t know this yet!) 🙂

And of course at times it’s just absolutely hilarious. 😀

If you would like to get the book yourself it is available from:

Paperback directly from the Publisher here for the UK
Amazon UK by clicking here.
Amazon US by clicking here.
Amazon DE by clicking here.

More about the authors:
Amy Goldwasser
and Peter Arkle share a home, an office (Studio Goldsparkle) and two cats in New York’s East Village. Amy Goldwasser is an editor, writer and brand strategist. Her clients include Vogue, The New Yorker, The New York Times, Conde Nast Traveler, New York (where she created the award-winning Strategist section), Yahoo News, Salon and other publications. Her national media appearances include CNN, The Today Show and documentary film The September Issue. Peter Arkle is a freelance illustrator, frequently for magazines and newspapers (The New York Times, New York, The New Yorker, Time, Canadian Business, The Wall Street Journal, Men’s Health, Every Day With Rachael Ray, Bon Appetit, Conde Nast Traveler, Esquire, Le Monde, The Guardian, The Boston Globe, The Washington Post). His illustrations for books include the textbooks Speak Up! and Let’s Communicate.

P.S. Don’t forget to sign up for our new Newsletter here.

Thanks,

Marc

Book Mews & Giveaway: Adorable Animal Stories to Brighten Your Day

Hi everyone,

Today we are looking at the book Adorable Animal Stories to Brighten Your Day

adorable animal stories

Amazing animal tales are reported on the television and in newspapers every day, entertaining, thrilling and delighting us all, and this is the most comprehensive collection of these joyous animal stories ever published. From the moving and miraculous, heart-warming and hilarious to the cute and courageous, 1001 Irresistible Animal Stories is the ultimate celebration of amazing animal-related antics.

Humans can learn a thing or two from the animal world about bravery, fortitude, survival and sheer zest for life. Inspired by the wonderful courage, and cleverness of our animal friends, this entertaining book is an uplifting collection of amazing but true animal tales!

Our verdict: When we first received the book we were intrigued by its title. What was it going to be about? What would it be like?
Once we started reading we just couldn’t put it down. 😀 The book is packed full with a variety of animal stories. From the funny ones to the unbelievable ones!
If you are an animal lover or know someone that is you’ve found the right book for some well needed distortion from every day life! The stories would be great for a train journey home or a lunch break. 🙂
Don’t believe us? Check out the sample page from the book below to get a small taster
adorable animal stories part 2

If you would like to get the book yourself it is available from the publisher’s website and will be available from the 8th of September onwards.
Amazon UK by clicking here.
Amazon US by clicking here.
Amazon DE by clicking here.

More about the author:
Robert Lodge
is a devoted animal lover and an experienced journalist and author, who has worked for a range of influential publications, including The Sunday Times and The Daily Telegraph. His recent book credits include 1001 Great Football Moments and 1001 Bizarre Football Stories.

But now on to the giveaway! 😀

To be in it for a chance to win one of five copies of this book click here and complete any of the options below to gain chances!

Chances can be gained by the following methods:
1. For Tweeting about the event through the Giveaway Tool – 4 Entries
2. Sign up for our new newsletter via mail chimp – 5 Entries
3. Follow us or the Publisher on Twitter – 2 Entries
4. Visit us or the Publisher on Facebook – 1 Entry
6. Follow us on Pinterest – 2 Entries
7. Follow us on Bloglovin – 2 Entries
8. Make a comment stating you would like to enter and your email address on this post (for those that don’t use social media) – 4 Entries

Now for those of you in the UK that would like to enter don’t forget to click here. Giveaway ends on the 04th of October at 23.59 UK time.

P.S. Don’t forget to sign up for our new Newsletter here.

Thanks,

Marc