CatConLA The Return!

I just got back from a short vacation in LA and CatCon! Last year, the first year of Cat Con, was an experience not soon to be forgotten and completely overwhelming in the best possible way. This year I was better prepared – with a plan of how to calmly and productively make my way through the two floors of everything cat.

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The event was held again in downtown LA at The Reef but the set up was much better, more vendors spread out over two floors (last year it was on one!) which made it much easier to navigate. I found you could actually see the tables and the merchandise better as well as have plenty of room to stop and chat with friends both new and old. I made sure to arrive at the venue before noon, thankfully the line up around the building moved fast however, by late afternoon the Fire Marshall barred people from entering for a time due to capacity issues. The attendance was at about 15,000 up from last years 10,000.

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Stopping by Polydactyl Cats to pick up some fun catnip toys!

Meet and greets with some famous internet cats were available with LiL Bub, Nala Cat and Pudge the Cat. Portions from the sale of these special tickets went to support FIxNation, Kitten Rescue or Lil Bub’s Big Fund, and a $1 from the sale of all regular CatCon tickets also went to FixNation.

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Lil Bub so cool you have to wear shades

For the person who loves to shop for themselves or their cat, it was a dream come true. Many vendors from last year returned and there were quit a few new ones.

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Cat beds – are all the rage and this one came with hand made cat quilts! You could purchase single or bunk style for your cats.

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One piece cat suit by Pretty Snake

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Picked up this bright colored pouch by Olive & Rye Cat Art

Many famous internet cats also have their own merchandise, like Cheese and Olive two Abyssinian cats who are featured in clothing, home decor and accessories.

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Cheese and Olive Catzilla shall destroy your city!

There were many cat themed items for home and human use like like the classic pillow cases of Xenotees, which I picked up, or these Japanese tattoo inspired creations by Momon Cats.

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Beautiful cat shaped pillows by Monmon Cats

Of course there were plenty of options in the cool for your cat and looks great in the house category, like these colorful and modular Kitty Kasa designs by Arni Says. 100% of profits go back into the ARNI foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to the rescue of animals at local kill shelters in Daytona Beach, Florida.

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Kitty Modular design by ArniSays

On the really tiny side, there were these delicate cat figurines by Long Live Porcelain, who also make items such as ring bowls and cat adorned salt and pepper shakers.

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Cat figurines by Long Live Porcelain

If you wanted cat beds there were lots of styles to choose from, including these whimsical and colorful designs by Dharma Dog Karma Cat.

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Super fun and cozy hide outs for your cat

Once you were all shopped out just walking around to admire the many of the cat costumed humans was a great way to spend your time.

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Amazing Calico Cat – fully detailed with claws and moving mouth by Dragon Squared

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Fierce looking Stabby Tabby

Among the extravagant outfits one couple stood out for having subtle yet detailed matching cat printed Kimonos. They had purchased the fabric in Japan and had the outfits made to order.

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By end of CatCon on Sunday, people went home with cool cat stuff and some went home with a new family member courtesy of the SPCA LA’s cat adoption center. About 90 + cats and kittens found homes and, since they were only allowing serious and potential adopters in the cat cuddling areas, which was a good thing, I had to snap a few pictures through the glass.

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A view into the cat adoption rooms where potential adopter got to meet the cats.

Actress and original cat woman Julie Newmar met with fans, signed books and autographs and, Kat Von D showcased her make-up line providing free cat eye make up applications. There were speakers on various topics and even the first Furr-ocious Fashion Face of contest. Once again there was something for everyone and then some!

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Saying hello to I Have Cat’s Tamar Arslanian

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A visit with SauerKraut in the RV

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Sauerkraut’s Humom and Pops

It was another fun year at Cat Con, with lots of like minded people sharing their passion for all things cat and if you missed it, not to worry the event is guaranteed to be back again for a third year.

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Roadside Rescue

In the middle of a thunderstorm while driving his five ton semi-truck in Burnaby BC last week, trucker Dennis McDonald decided to make a stop that wasn’t planned. Dennis had noticed what he thought was a dead cat on the road, except something told him the cat was still alive, so he turned his truck around and stopped to check. Dennis tells Burnabynow that once he approached the black cat he could see that he “was a mess…he couldn’t even hold himself up. It was one of the worst things I’ve seen.”  Dennis’s quick thinking and roadside rescue got the cat, now named Kevin, to the Burnaby SPCA where he urged staff to skip the paper work and get the injured cat treated first.

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Kevin the three-year-old feline had been hit by a car and suffered injuries to his top and bottom jaw. – Image BC SPCA

Dennis who is a cat lover already has two of his own and plans to adopt Kevin into his family once he is ready to go home. The SPCA had tracked down the cats original owner who was unable to pay for the surgery and had given the cat away to a neighbor. Kevin the cat was considered abandoned so the original owner decided to surrender him to the SPCA. Dennis said that “broke him in about a million pieces…I can’t do a lot on this planet, … but no being deserves to die anonymously in the corner.”

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Dennis, who has visited Kevin at the SPCA, plans to change the cats name to BB-8 a nod to Star Wars and the cats original name BB.

The SPCA say that Kevin’s recovery has been touch and go but luckily none of his injuries are life threatening. “He might have some mild asymmetry in his face and decreased hearing because his left eardrum ruptured, but I think his life will be pretty good,” says Burnaby Hospital veterinarian Dr. Claudia Richter, who notes the necessary surgery was generously donated by our friends at West Coast Veterinary Dental Services.

Dennis who can be seen in this video with Kevin says that the cat is “amazing…and knows people are looking after him”.

Truck Stop Cat

This wonderful rescue story demonstrates that acts of kindness can come from anyone, anywhere.

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Meet Party Cat rescued by biker and sheetmetal worker Pat Doody. All images via Boredpanda

Pat Doody rescued the kitten, who he named Party Cat, while riding cross-country from Nevada to New Jersey. Doody said he spotted the kitten, who appeared badly burned, at a truck stop while getting gas.

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Doody with Party Cat

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Once Party Cat got on a regular feeding schedule he improved and his burns healed up. The kitten then lived on the road with Doody until they got home.

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Party Cat enjoyed hanging out inside Doody’s vest when they were traveling on the road.

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Doody tells Boredpanda that he has never met such a calm cat.

This lucky orange tabby has since seen a vet, is doing well and now lives permanently with Doody.

Stevie The Blind Cat

Stevie the blind cat was adopted three years ago from a local cat vet hospital in Cork Ireland. Stevie had been there for months until Patrick Corr saw her, she had been originally placed at the hospital by the Animal Care Society of Cork Ireland in an attempt to find her a home. Patrick put together this video after adopting her and says that up until meeting Stevie he wasn’t a cat person, but she changed his life. He has to ensure that he keeps everything at home in the same place but other than that Stevie adapted fast.

Patrick recently posted a video of one their favorite activities, walking outside. Here he takes Stevie for a hike…up a mountain. The video has a great message and shows us that special needs cats make excellent companions and should not be overlooked when adopting.

LA Graffiti – Cat Style

In anticipation of my trip to CatConLA later this week I will be featuring all things cat from California. While doing research, I came across an older news story featuring awesome cat graffiti that started appearing all over Los Angeles freeways and streets a number of years back. I don’t know if any of this still exists, but you can bet I will be keeping an eye out. What can I say, cats really do make everything better, even if only for a brief time.

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All images from Graffhead.com unless otherwise noted

Sometime in late 2009 people noticed cat images popping up all over the city, including freeway underpasses and the streets. According to GraffHead.com cats would appear and nobody, including city officials, could figure out who was painting them. By the looks of some of the locations the talented individual took some big risks to get his worked noticed.

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This is pretty insane, right in the middle of the freeway.

It February of 2010 it seems that there must have been some sort of graffiti war which resulted in some of the cats being painted over, but Graff Head reported the cats came back with a vengeance.

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The Cats Strike Back. Why would anyone paint over the cats?!

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It seems every cat has their day and sadly the graffiti stopped appearing and was removed from the streets and freeways. No new cats were reported but a few never before seen photos  appeared.

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Police finally caught up with and booked Rick Ordonez, the man suspected of the cat tagging spree. A graphic designer and former skateboard shop owner who went by the name Atlas. No surprise he kept cats as pets as was a cat lover. After being sentenced to 90 days for felony vandalism, LA’s Mid-City Arts approached him to do an art show, which he agreed to do while remaining out of the spotlight. When asked Why Cats? He simply answered “I love cats.”

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Vidoe of Cat Tagger – Kitty Litter – Los Angeles Graffiti

 

 

Japans Cat Man

Japan is well-known for its love of cats and cat culture. They were the first to pioneer cat cafes, which have since popped up all over the world, and they even have their very own island where cats dominate and outnumber people 6 to 1.

Japan also has Masahiko Suga, a 53-year-old retired electronics company worker who has become the countries first official cat man.

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Masahiko can been seen walking his nine cats around Kitakyushu’s central shopping district area in south-west Japan. His daily walks have earned him the name of ‘Cat Man of Kyushu”, or Cat Uncle.

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Image – The Happy Lab

Masahiko rescued his first stray cat in 1999 and he said that they relieved his work stress but started taking them outside when they began to damage his furniture. Masahiko tells The Asahi Shimbun that he is happy if he “can give an opportunity for cat lovers unable to have one as a pet to feel comforted by playing with his cats.

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His little pride of well groomed cats includes Himalayan and Chinchilla Golden who are known for their laid back nature.

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Image – Rocket News 24

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Image – Rocket News 24

Normally taking cats outside without being safely supervised is not something I would suggest, however from all accounts and comments by people who have actually met him the cats seems to be cozy and content.

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Image – Rocket News 24

So what exactly motivates Masahiko to walk his cats? Besides not being something you would see everyday, he says “I hope society will eventually give cats the status it gives to dogs” and, in a world where our feline friends often seem to get the short end of the stick, asking for cat equality sounds pretty good to me.

You can check out a short video of Masahiko on his walks or friend him on Facebook where he posts more pictures of his cats.

What do you think cat equality or cat-ploitation?

You Can Be A Crazy Cat Lover

In reality having a house full of cats may not be an option for most of us but maybe we could settle for a room full? Andréanne Lupien a photographer from Montreal has made that idea a reality for a few lucky cat parents with the use of clone photography and Photoshop. The idea for the series called Crazy Cat Lovers came about when Andréanne took  photos of herself and her cat, placing her cat in various places and poses around a room, the final picture resulted in her cat appearing multiple times in the photo.

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“We can see that the phenomenon of ”Cat lovers” gets bigger everyday and cats are becoming more and more popular…It took me a little more than a year to complete the project. It was a great adventure! I would visit unknown people or I would go to a friend’s house.” via BoredPanda

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 “For the love of photography. For the happiness of meeting new people. For the love of cats.”

To see more from the Crazy Cat Lovers series visit andreannelupien.com