ThrowBack Thursday – IKEA Cats Happy Inside

Video

Today I was doing a cat visit and noticed my clients had some cool cat bowls from IKEA…which made me think of the feline infused commercial they did a number of years back filmed in their Wembley UK flagship store. The humans, aka cat herders, worked behind the scenes to ensure all the cats, none were specially trained, enjoyed their massive playground.

The behind the scenes video is pretty neat – no cats were harmed and apart from probably being the largest space they ever had to explore, they all seemed to have a grand old time.

Of course after the all the editing, not that cats need to be edited, we are left with adorable feline curiosity and grace. Yes IKEA, we are still Happy Inside 🐱

 

 

 

 

Kittens or Lattes? How About Both!

I couldn’t think of a better way to spend a Caturday afternoon then at the cool pop-up event held by Toronto’s first soon to be cat cafe.

Toronto has been waiting anxiously and has been a little envious that cities in Japan, the UK and US already have theirs. Like most cat lovers in Toronto I have been following the progress of the indiegogo campaign for Pet Me Meow – Toronto’s First Cat Cafe, co-founded by Ashkan Rahimi and Jeff Ro.

Cats, Cat Cafe, Toronto, Pet Me Meow, Indiegogo campaing, cat adoptionWhile the actual cafe is slated to open fall 2014 they did something brilliant and had a Cat Cafe pop-up. The event was held over 3 days this weekend and tickets could be purchased in advance or at the door. I clearly wasn’t taking any chances so I got mine in advance, never underestimate the number of ailurophiles present in the city!

A path of chalk paw prints marked the way to the location where you were greeted and registered. You could purchase snacks, lattes, t-shirts emblazoned with the Pet Me Meow logo or other cat themed merchandise supplied by Toronto Cat Rescue (TCR) who the cafe is partnering with to ensure lots of cats are given a chance at being adopted into their forever home.

Groups of people who booked a time slot were taken upstairs to the kitten room and I think we were all like kids in a candy shop. It was a very happy place, not just for the myriad of kitties running, playing, cuddling or sleeping, but also for the people, many of whom were sporting a pair of cat ears.

Kittens, Cats, Cat Cafe, Toronto, Pet Me Meow

Kittens taking a brief rest before playing again

I chatted with one of the co-founders Jeff Ro about the cafe and it was really great to see the first priority of the pop-up was the well-being of the cats. I had no concerns as each of the kittens were literally having the time of their lives. All the people there were really respectful and were more than happy to serve whatever needs a particular kitten had – if they wanted more play they got it, if they wanted cuddles – no problem, and if they wanted a cozy place to sleep away the afternoon? Many laps were more than happy to accommodate.

kittens, cats, cat cafe, Toronto, Pet Me Meow

Giving some lap time to a sleepy little fellow

TCR handles the adoptions and it was clear from talking with Jeff that the cafe was also going to be a place to educate potential pet parents on the responsibility of cat adoption. This got a big thumbs up from me as the city while feline friendly, has a huge issue with stray/homeless cats. Pet Me Meow shares the same vision as TCR and their partnership will hopefully be another vehicle for making Toronto an even better place for cats.

During the 3 day event only kittens were brought in, and many were adopted, but the actual cafe when open will also include older cats, this gets another thumbs up.

cats, kittens, black cats, pet me meow, cat cafe, toronto, adoption

Gorgeous black kitten gets a leg up in the cat tunnel

My hour time slot with the cats flew by quickly and I asked if anyone has been forced to leave because they didn’t want to (I remarked that I may have been the first), but was reassured everyone had been really cooperative 🐱

cats, kittens, tortieshell, pet me meow, cat cafe

Sweet & sleepy kitten enjoying the view from the window

If you missed the event not to worry, fall is not that far off and you can check out their campaign online, help contribute and score yourself some cool swag while ensuring you get a spot at the pre-opening. Whether you plan to visit the cafe to play with cats or adopt, Pet Me Meow is sure to be one of the best places in the city for cat lovers.

For more cat cafe pics check out my cat-stagram and Facebook page

MeowMonday…Cat-Zilla

I always said I would love cats (domestic cats) to be larger than life… Imagine…But then I realized this might very well happen, and not everyone would be as thrilled about it as me.

Cat Toys and Playtime on whole new level

Cat, cars, Cat eat cars, Giant Cat, Godzilla CatCatZilla takes the town

Giant Cat, attacks City, Cat, Godzilla Cat, Tabby cat “In a cat’s eye, all things belong to cats.” – English proverb

Cats, Boxes, Tanks

Cats and boxes….how about cats and Tanks? Of course, cats strictly use Tanks for peace-keeping purposes. Cats, boxes, Tank, peace keepingSpinner and Simon check out the cool Tank I eagerly purchased for them.          No brown cardboard boxes for my boys!

Cats, boxes, Simon wont go near it but Spinner looks like he will give it a try.

Cats, boxes, SUCK UK, successSuccess!? Spinner jumps in but the turret has been removed as it got stuck around his middle when he jumped out. Fail.

This cool Cat Playhouse is by SUCK UK,  I was more excited than my cats when I brought it home. According to their site all cats love it, they have testimonial pictures to prove it, all cats but mine. 😦

Now here is a cat who knows how to use his Tank for World Domination fun Cats in Tanks

Using Play to Bond With Shy Cats

I have been cat sitting for well over a decade now and during this time I have met many cats all with individual personalities. As a rule of thumb, especially for cats I am meeting for the first time, I like to take the “no pressure” approach, which means never forcing contact with a cat that doesn’t want it. I let them come to me.

This is Jack enjoying ear rubs

Jack 1Jack  has a very outgoing sister named Ginger who is calm, self-assured and relaxed, Jack is the type of cat that takes a little more time to get to know, but when you do he becomes a cuddle bug!

He loves to play and decides when he wants to interact with you. He gives me the look and a little chirp that says, “Get me my mouse toy!”  A favorite game involves me tossing the toy and Jack doing acrobatic moves and laps up and down the hall to retrieve it. Playtime has noticeably made him feel comfortable enough around me to now enjoy closer contact like ear and under arm rubs, chin scratches and even gentle brushing. I noticed he is less tense, he seeks me out and I can pick him up without any struggle.

Other signs of his confidence came when Jack started rubbing against my legs, he would look me directly in the eyes while gently blinking (doing the slow eye blink back to cats also helps). I found that getting down to floor or cats level, is also less intimidating.

The big breakthrough came when I quietly sat with Jack just after playtime and I saw his paws making biscuits. I stayed a short distance away so he wouldn’t feel overwhelmed and he responded by walking over and laying down in the crook of my arm while purring – I didn’t dare move. This would be the first time he did this.

He then decided to perch on my leg, eyes soft, relaxed ears, tail and body – this was a cat at ease, It was priceless. I was just as happy as Jack, actually maybe more.

Patience, paying attention to body language and importantly play (in Jacks case) has helped me bond with this shy sweet cat. I know he is having a fun and positive experience just like his sister Ginger.

Remember every cat and situation is unique but understanding the basics and using positive reinforcement such as play helps.

Looking for other tips on how to bond with a shy cat?