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5 Ways to Stimulate Your Stay-at-Home Cat: Try These Cheap & Easy Feline Boredom Busters!

The lifestyle magazine for modern cats and their companions

SPRING· SUMMER 2017

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How To Entertain Your Cat

Publications Agreement Number 42496543 Return Mail Dept, 202–343 Railway St., Vancouver, BC V6A 1A4

YOUR NEW KITTEN SURVIVAL GUIDE Have Your Cats Unfriended Each Other? SOCIAL HIERARCHY & YOUR MULTI-CAT HOUSEHOLD moderncat.com DISPLAY UNTIL JULY 31 ‘17

p66

6 Things You Are Doing That Annoy Your Cat p74

It's Instagram star White Coffee Cat!

Meet This Sweet Survivor

PLUS: APPS FOR CATS! DIY WAND TOY! ADOPT THESE CATS! KITTEN EMOJIS!

p40

$5.95

Toys! Toys! Toys!

Think Your Cat Would Make a Wonderful Therapy Animal? Here's How To Get Started! p60


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FEATURES 26 Have Your Cats Unfriended Each Other? The importance of the social hierarchy in your multi-cat household. BY MIESHELLE NAGELSCHNEIDER

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PHOTOS MICHELLE FURBACHER

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PHOTOS KITTEN EMOJIS TANIA HENNESSY

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VOL 6

Kitten Emojis Pop culture symbolism meets the stars of the Internet.

70 THE GOODS

BY JENNIFER NOSEK

5 Ways to Stimulate Your Stay-at-Home Cat Try these cheap and easy feline boredom busters!

24

Cat-tastic Décor Finds to thrill both your cat and your inner interior designer.

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Let’s Play! Toys to totally delight your cat.

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Look What We Found! The Modern Cat team’s current obsessions.

BY LAUREN CHEAL

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Holy Guacamole! Talking cats and books with Skippyjon Jones creator Judy Schachner.

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How To Prep For A Kitten Follow these steps to seamlessly welcome your new kitten into your home!

BY JEN REEDER

BY ROSE FROSEK

58 Apps For Cats You're not the only one in your household who can be entertained by a tablet! We give three apps for cats a try. BY LAURA DENNIS 60

Sweet Therapy Therapy cats are making a big difference—in hospitals, nursing homes, and in the lives of their handlers.

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6 Things That Are Offending Your Cat Are you guilty of these feline faux pas? Turn to page 66 to find out! BY LAUREN CHEAL

BY NOA NICHOL

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BODY & SOUL 50

Good Karma Handcrafted cat caves are doing a world of good.

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Feeling Groovy; We Tried It!; Modern Cat Poll

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Know Your Cats Impress your friends with this cat trivia!

Want it!

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In USA: MODERNCAT (ISSN 1929-3933) Volume 6, Issue 1. Published semi annually by Modern Cat Inc. at 142 Churchill Drive, Newington, CT 061114003. Periodicals postage paid at Hartford, CT and additional offices. POSTMASTER: send address changes to Modern Dog, PO Box 310402, Newington, CT 06131-0402.


rt Kittens stnga at dreami one about age week of

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54 LIVING 22

Let Us Brighten Your Day Our most popular (read: cutest) social media posts from the last 12 months.

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DIY Craft: Wonderful Cat Wand Toy Making a wand toy is easier than you think! Here’s the how-to for this deceptively simple, super-cute, cat-approved toy!

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Tricia Helfer Knows Cats—and She Wants to Help You Understand Them Too. Your most pressing cat questions answered.

BY JENNIFER NOSEK

REGULAR FEATURES 6 Editor’s Letter 8 Contributors 10 Stuff We Love 12 The Scoop 20 Photo Contest 78 Marketplace

80 COVER CAT It's Instagram star White Coffee Cat! Flip to page 46 for everything you ever wanted to know about this feline social media star. Photographed by Jack Dixon.

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46

The Cat With 1.4 Million Followers Blue eyes, fluffy cheeks, and a great personality: White Coffee Cat, a crazy-adorable, cancer-surviving cat, is way more popular than pretty much everyone you know.

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Where Lattés Meet Cat Cuddles Cat cafés—magical places where you can drink coffee, eat baked goods, and play with cats—are spreading across North America. BY ELISABETH FILLMORE

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Adopt Me! These adoptable cats are in search of a forever home. Could your new best friend be featured in these pages? Turn to page 72 to find out!

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True Heart Meet our Star Cat contest winner and the remarkable woman behind his rescue. BY ROSE FROSEK

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Remarkable Cat Facts Rumours abound where our feline friends are concerned. These cat facts, however, are all entirely true and nonetheless remarkable for it!

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Last Lick: More Cats in Boxes Because we can't get enough of these cuties!

BY ROSE FROSEK

Too cute!

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LEILA SUBMITTED BY JJ

OUR R E ADE R S WR IT E

ILLUSTRATION BY MICHELLE SIMPSON

CONNIE WILSON WITH DAO DAO, PHOTO TANYA KING

EDITOR'S LETTER

I

’d like to start this issue with a note of gratitude to our amazing readers. Together we’ve created a super-fun and inspiring community of cat lovers. Our tribe is the coolest! A big thank you for being part of it. When we set about creating this issue we thought about two things: your happiness and your cats’, and so we packed this issue with things that will improve both of your lives. From the best engaging cat toys (p 40) to behavioural advice from none other than Mieshelle Nagelschneider (aka The Cat Whisperer), we’ve got you covered. Think your cat would make a wonderful therapy animal? We tell you how to get started on page 60! There are tons of crazy-cute cat photos, of course, as well as giveaways, cat furniture that actually looks great, covetable cat caves, your cat questions answered (p 42), adoptable cats, and so much more! And if you like all that, we’d love to invite you to join us online. You can get even more Modern Cat daily by following us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Think indispensible cat advice, Tummy Tuesdays, exclusive giveaways and contests, and, of course, lots of funny and adorable photos and videos. Cat lovers unite!

Shhhh! How To Stop Pesky Nighttime Meowing! “I did all these things when my cat was a kitten. Made sure she had a lot of playtime in the evening (the hunt) then right before I went to bed I'd feed her (the kill). When she's done she comes to bed to clean herself and pretty much sleeps with me the rest of the night.” —D.Michelle Swarts

In gratitude,

Read the article at: >> moderncat.com/night-meowing

Connie Wilson, Founder, Publisher, and Editor-in-Chief

I have lived with several Zen masters — all of them cats. — Eckhart Tolle

All the feels... “I love your magazine. It has great articles and I love all the advice you offer. It helps me with my cats and helping the strays.”—Debbie Brown

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We’re thrilled to have Casey Elise Christopher contribute to this issue! Casey is a cat advocate and photographer best known for The Black Cat Project and The Beauty of Blind Cats. She lives in Los Angeles with her cat Imogen and two dogs Sherlock and Molly and volunteers with several rescues and shelters and uses photography to help animals get adopted. Turn to page 74 to see Casey’s photos of our inspiring Star Cat contest winner Thomas! Find more photos or book a photo shoot on Instagram (@ImogenTheKitten) or at CaseyElise.com.

Publisher

Modern Cat Inc. Editor-in-Chief

Connie Wilson Editor & Creative Director

Jennifer Nosek Social Media & Events Coordinator, Subscription Services

Nav Nagra Design & Production

Clara To Sales & Marketing

Julia Pineda, Elisabeth Fillmore Manager, Accounting Services

Celine Benipayo Copywriter & Administrative Assistant

Laura Dennis Subscriptions & Social Media Assistant

Kaeleigh Evans, Eleanor Munk Controller

Cecilia de Roca Chan, CPA, CGA Honourary Editor-at-Large

Jytte Wilson

Modern Cat staffer Lauren Cheal is a long-time feline fanatic who loves to spend time with her two cats—one fluffy shy guy (Lincoln) and one high needs buddy (the sociable Lyle). Lauren loves creating inspiring and adorable content and sharing it with our outstanding fans. She really wants people to know that cats aren’t jerks (they’re just bored!), and that older cats make awesome pets. Check out her insightful articles “6 Things That Are Offending Your Cat” and "5 Ways to Stimulate a Stay-at-Home Cat" on pages 66 and 34!

INTERESTED IN SUBSCRIBING? Give us a call at 1-800-417-6289 or subscribe online at moderncat.com/subscribe Advertising inquiries call (866) 734-3131 In Canada: MODERNCAT (ISSN 1929-3933) Volume 6, Issue 1. Published semi annually by Modern Cat Inc. at Suite 202–343 Railway St, Vancouver, BC Canada V6A 1A4 POSTMASTER: send address changes to Modern Cat, Suite 202–343 Railway St, Vancouver, BC Canada V6A 1A4 In USA: MODERNCAT (ISSN 1929-3933) Volume 6, Issue 1. Published semi annually by Modern Cat Inc. at 142 Churchill Drive, Newington, CT 06111-4003. Periodicals postage paid at Hartford, CT and additional offices. POSTMASTER: send address changes to Modern Dog, PO Box 310402, Newington, CT 06131-0402. PHONE

This issue marks the talented illustrator Martha Pluto's first contribution to Modern Cat. Martha is a quirky and outgoing Torontobased illustrator. She experiments with different traditional mediums and bases her work heavily on lines, shapes, and space. Her favourite colours to use in her work are reds and blues. When Martha isn't creating artwork, she cares for her plants and dreams about the day she can rescue a Bull Terrier and/or help foster animals so they can find their forever homes. Check out Martha's awesome illustrations on page 26.

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The publisher is not responsible for unsolicited manuscripts, images, photographs or other materials. By accepting and publishing advertising the publisher in no way recommends, guarantees or endorses the quality of services or products within those advertisements. Copyright 2017 by Modern Cat Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced by any means, electronic or mechanical, including the Internet or photocopying without the written permission of the Publisher. Modern Cat and its logotype are the trademarks of Modern Cat Inc. Subscription orders and customer service inquiries should be sent to Modern Cat Subscription Services, Suite 202–343 Railway St, Vancouver, BC Canada V6A 1A4

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STUFF WE LOVE Modern Cat staffers’ picks of the litter 1 Read the ingredient list for Primal’s freeze-dried formulas and you’ll be sold. It’s all natural, organic, and whole foods. Their ingredients, all human-grade, are sourced from natural, sustainable ranches and farms throughout the U.S. and New Zealand for a wholesome, delectable diet your cat will thrive on. A wholesome raw-food diet paired with convenience? We dig it!—Jennifer (From $7, primalpetfoods.com)

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2 My furry friends absolutely refuse to lie on a bare surface, so I love Critter Crafting’s adorable handmade “cat mats” for pet lounging. Made with animal-safe yarn, they’re machine washable and come in lots of beautiful colours and patterns so you can find the perfect one to fit your kitty’s preferred colour scheme. I love the summery pastels! —Kaaleigh ($11-$17, etsy.com/shop/CritterCrafting)

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3 My cat friend Samson adores his Kitty Cat Condo. Not only does it provide him with vertical space and a place to get his exercise (when he’s in the mood) but it also gives him a comfortable spot to retreat to and rest while he takes a break from being the social fluffy-cat he is. Handcrafted in a range of sizes and colours, the Kitty Cat Condo is the purrfect addition to your cat’s living space. —Nav (From $260, hoodlumproducts.com)

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4 No one loves Grizzly Super Foods like Lavinia, my small black cat. Made with wild Alaskan salmon, organic coconut meal, and sprouted organic quinoa, even the pickiest feline eaters can find joy in this incredible grain-free food! We’re big fans. —Elisabeth ($28 for 3 pounds, grizzlypetproducts.com) 5 Worried about your cat’s joint health? Who isn’t? Healthy Coat to the rescue! This bacon-flavoured, omega-rich supplement is designed to prevent and treat any joint inflammation or strain. It’s also super easy to give your cat—just add a bit of this tasty food to her dinner. Bonus: it also promotes a better coat!—Mariah ($9, healthycoat.net/dogcat) 6 High-performance clumping from a natural cat litter? You bet! World’s Best Cat Litter is pet, people, and planet friendly, combining corn with super-absorbent plant fibers to quickly trap liquids in tight clumps—no scraping the box necessary! This low-dust litter lasts a long time, is super at odour control, and is ideal for multi-cat households. Yippee!—Connie ($11 for 6 pounds, worldsbestcatlitter.com)

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7 As a multi-cat household, we are always looking for ways to control the odour and mess from the litter box. The high sides of the NVR Miss Litter Box keep litter contained and the easy-access entrance is perfect for my senior cat!—Laura ($21, nvrmiss.com) 8 My elderly cat, Allegra, is still a big climber. The wall-mounted Vertical 3-Step Cat Stair makes it easy for her to clamber up high, as she loves to do, without hurting herself.—Julia ($82, theverticalcat.com)

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9 My cat looks so stylish and chic in this Star Gazer collar from Made By Cleo! Not only does it look good, but it has an auto-release buckle to keep my cat from getting caught on anything. Add on a matching bow tie or coordinating flower for extra cuteness! Love it!—Clara ($16, madebycleo.com) 10 My Happy Little Rascals wooden cat tunnel keeps my cat Betsy busy! With it’s sturdy construction and carpeting inside and out, it’s the ultimate two-inone hideaway, perfect for either drifting off to sleep or scratching and playing! —Celine ($149, happylittlerascals.com)

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11 I can’t wait to see The Amazing Acro-Cats show! This travelling acrobatic extravaganza for cat lovers features trained cats that amazingly ride skateboards, walk high wires, jump through hoops, and more! This adorable and entertaining program, as featured on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, is great for all ages and supports feline adoption and rescue across the country! Check their website for upcoming dates near you!—Eleanor (Tickets from $21, circuscats.com)

&

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CAT CARD GAME SET TO ENLIVEN YOUR FRIDAY NIGHT Gather your friends and family and get ready to make some mischief with this smart, fun, and beautiful game for cat lovers!

A

re you ready to fill your Friday night with “cunning, mischief, and schadenfreude?” We sure are, at least in the form of Cantankerous Cats, a feline card game created by game and graphic designer Al Gonzalez and artist and illustrator Elise Spacek. Designed for play by two to six humans, or “Hoomins,” as Al and Elise would have it, this may well be the ultimate game for cat lovers. It’s certainly a ton of fun. “Al asked me, if we were to make a game, what kind of game should we make? Elise recollects. “Naturally, I said ‘a game Al and Elise about cats!’ It just popped into my head, an obvious answer.” Thus, the project that would become Cantankerous Cats was born. In the game, you are a cat (yes!) and the aim is to cause heaps of trouble for your human servants without getting thrown out of your house. “At every turn, we wanted the player to FEEL like they were a cat toying with their

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nameless Hoomin ‘pets,’” Al explains. All of the game's artwork is drawn and painted from a cat’s perspective—human faces are never seen; all dogs and children look the same. For artistic inspiration, Elise referenced the turn of the last century, secreting cat elements in the busy art style of the late 1800s. “If you look closely, you will find mice, paws, hearts, tails, whiskers, catnip, and many other small touches,” she says. “Elise is the one who came up with the core mechanics of gathering affection points with your Hoomin then turning around to terrorize them (mischief points) without getting thrown out of


THE SCOOP

WANT TO WIN AWESOME CAT STUFF EVERY WEEK? Follow us on Facebook! Every Friday we give away all sorts of nifty stuff for cats and the people who love them. You can win simply by commenting and telling us why you want it!

facebook.com/moderncatmagazine the house,” Al explains. “After that, we jotted down an extensive list of adorable and troublesome things cats have been known to do and gave each of them a ‘weight.’ How much affection was something as common as a catnap worth compared to, say, cuddling in your lap or squeezing into a box? Exactly how angry does one get when a cat scratches someone, coughs up a hairball, or leave a surprise in your favourite shoes?”

The game took three and a half years to complete, with the duo raising over $22,000 on Kickstarter to see their project to fruition. Al kids that his favourite part of working on the game was “finishing it!” “Joking aside,” he continues, “my favourite part of this whole project has been seeing the community on Kickstarter respond.”

SQUEAKY SUBMITTED BY KAREN

As you play the game, you strategically build up affection points in order to shield yourself from the consequences of all the mischief you’re trying to cause. But if you cause too much mischief, you risk being thrown out of your house as a feral cat! Though you can be temporarily halted from scoring, there is always a means to con your way into another unsuspecting house where you may create more mischief. Tread lightly, though—the other cats in your neighborhood will be doing their best to thwart your mischievous machinations!

oll MC Pults s e R

True Love!

The online community’s commitment and enthusiasm definitely helped the duo stay the course and see the project to completion. Its finished form is something Al and Elise are understandably proud of. “A lot of love, talent, and care from dozens of people over three years went into this box,” Al says. “At the end of the day, I hope people see that when they open a copy of Cantankerous Cats. This is a game we made because we wanted to share our love of cats with the world in a way that can be fun for anyone, but still respects the player’s time and intellect. I think we’ve created something interesting, witty, and adorable with just the right amount of sinister humor and aggressive posturing— ‘purrfectly’ appropriate for the complex predators that have shared our homes for thousands of years.” n This beautifully designed game promises a rollicking good time. Get yours for $20 at cantankerous-cats.com!

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95%

of Modern Cat readers would have a cat even if they were allergic


THE SCOOP

CAPTION THIS! Test your "funny." Create a caption for this cartoon and submit your entry at moderncat.com/cartooncaption. The most comic captions will be published in the next issue.

Prepare to be completely charmed by the Berkley Bestiary. Portland, Oregonbased husband and wife duo Ryan and Lucy Berkley are behind the collection, combining his brilliant, detailed animal portraits with her accompanying whimsical back stories to create a cast of animal characters you’ll fall head over heels for. Illustrations of each animal are paired with winningly weird biographies to conjure a world of wonder you’ll want to inhabit. Share a little piece of it via their new notecard series featuring four of their illustrations ($15 at galison.com) and delight a friend.

And the winning captions from last issue are…

Good Reads Nobody’s Cat By Valerie Ingram & Alistair Schroff Follow a young boy on a mission to save abandoned cats struggling to survive the cold of winter in this wonderful kid’s book. With a little bit of help and a lot of heart, he shows the community that these cats are a part of what makes his town great. Thanks to his efforts, the cats are no longer “nobody’s cats” but cared-for community cats! Based on true events, this moving story will inspire and empower the young animal lovers in your life.

Laddie: A Cat’s Tale

“Ooh a new flavour! I will buy a whole bunch and then suddenly stop liking it.” SUBMITTED BY ERIN WIGHT

By Allison Snyder & Lucretia Herring Readers of all ages will love the tale of Laddie, an upper crust British aristo-cat whose pampered, lap-of-luxury existence is unexpectedly upended. Faced with an abrupt change of lifestyle, Laddie is forced to adapt to the mean streets of New York. His (mis)adventures are related with humour and a unique cat-like point of view that will truly delight!

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RUNNER-UP CAPTIONS “Finding Nemo cat food, well that just seems both wrong and delicious.” SUBMITTED BY JOSEPH A. DEWAN

“Decisions, decisions! I can be so finicky at times!” SUBMITTED BY KAREN HUDZIK

"Felix was so happy with his tax return that he was going for top shelf tuna." SUBMITTED BY JAMES NEEDHAM

C A R T O O N S © 2017 B Y D A V I D J A C O B S O N

FANTASTIC BEASTS this!


ENTER TO WIN

We’re giving it away! Enter to win fabulous giveaways April through September. Go to moderncat.com/giveaways to enter! Lucky readers will win every two weeks.

april

may

1st-14th

Win a COSY AND DOZY Chill DeLuxe cat shelf! This wallmounted, stylish wooden shelf is designed for the most demanding cats. More than a plain old cat bed, it's top quality pet furniture!

15th-30th

Win a Litter-Robot, the selfcleaning litter box for cats! It automatically cleans itself, leaving a clean bed of litter after each use. Never scoop again!

june

1st-14th

Win 1 of 3 SureFeed Sealed Pet Bowls! This motion-activated pet bowl locks in 99.8% of moisture, keeping food fresher for longer while also preventing bad pet food odours and flies!

july

1st-14th

Win 1 of 5 WISP cleaning sets! These ultra-modern tools with smart design make cleaning more efficient. Features the one-hand WISPbroom, foot-controlled WISPpan, WISPaway hanger, and miniWISP set.

15th-30th

Win 1 of 3 Made By Cleo premium pet collar combos! Each winner will receive 2 breakaway cat collars, 2 custom engraved I.D. tags, and 2 collar accessories (bowtie or flower). Winner picks the styles!

august

1st-14th

Win 1 of 6 Suitical recovery suits in sizes XXXS to small. This full body protective apparel is a comfortable alternative to the “cone of shame” for post-op, skin conditions, and more!

15th-31st

Win a Wet Whiskers handmade stoneware ceramic cat water fountain and food dish! These beautiful, functional works of art are 100% food and water safe and easy to maintain. Cats love them and their humans do too!

15th-31st

Win 1 of 4 Cosequin for Cats gift baskets, filled with their #1 veterinarian recommended retail joint health supplements to help your cat jump and play!

september

1st-14th

Win a beautiful Coiled Rope Pet Bed from Siamese Social Club! Individually handcrafted of cotton and linen, it includes a removable cushion and cover in your choice of lavender, charcoal or shell.

15th-31st

Win a Happy Little Rascals wooden cat tunnel! Handcrafted from wood and nylon carpeting, they’re purrfect for rest, play, and scratching, inside and out! Cats love ‘em!

1st-14th

Win 1 of 7 bottles of Vetericyn Plus Wound & Skin Care and Antimicrobial Hydrogel! These topical treatments for cuts, scratches, irritations, rashes or other minor wounds are non-toxic, safe, and easy to use!

15th-30th

Win 1 of 25 special three-packs of Fruitables Wildly Natural Cat Treats (Chicken, Salmon & Tuna). They offer a unique crunch with a light, airy texture inside that cats love!

No purchase necessary to enter or win. Beginning April 1, 2017 at 12:01 AM (PST) through September 30, 2017 at 11:59 PM (PST), enter each day at moderncat.com/giveaways. Each biweekly giveaway ends at 11:59 PM (PST). Every two weeks, the specified number of winners for that giveaway will win the prize featured in the giveaway calendar (ARV: $200). Odds of winning depend on the number of entries received. Contest is open to legal Canadian and US residents 18 and older as of date of entry. Void in Puerto Rico and where prohibited by law. Giveaway subject to complete official rules available at moderncat.com/giveaways.

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INSET PHOTO: ARTHUR SUBMITTED BY DAWN

s y a w a e v i G t a Gre


R E P cat SU PHOTO CONTEST WINNERS ! E T CU Rey & Leah Hendrix Lula Bell Molly Snickelfritz Josh

Louie Kala

Oliver 20 moderncat

Skye SPRING · S UMMER 2017

Nala

Charlie


Mimmi Rey

Leo

Jack E. Butters

Oliver

Tank

Tux

Tallulah Eliza

Lovey

Tabby Tuna Think your cat ought to grace the pages of Modern Cat? Upload your cat's photo at moderncat.com/photocontest. Not only will he or she be entered to be our Cat of the Week, but a selection of the photos entered will appear on these pages!

Leopold Kiki moderncat.com

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{Editor’s Choice} We want absolutely everything Siamese Social Club makes, including this beautiful coiled rope bed fitted with an equally soft cotton and linen covered cushion for inspired catnaps. Part of their intertidal collection, it comes in colours inspired by the sea. Love it! $240, siamesesocialclub.com

These modern cat perches from Square Cat Habitat are perfection! They provide the vertical space cats need, supporting up to 50 pounds and mounting easily to walls or under windowsills with a beautifully minimal design that hides all hardware. $85, squarecathabitat.com

Elevated design. These solid wood, upholstered cubes are designed to stack into each other to create a modern climbing tower cats totally love! $330 for five stacking cubes, bowsers.com

P.L.A.Y.’s new Leeloo cat scratcher is simply the cat’s pajamas! With its organic, minimal infinity shape and neutral colour palette, it’s like a beautifully designed piece of sculpture you can place in your living room—one that your cat will adore both scratching and lounging on! $39, petplay.com

too cute!

CatTastic Décor Finds to thrill both you and your cat

An irresistible refuge for your cat! Cat Ball beds offer a cave for playing, hiding, sleeping or just hanging, and feature two openings, one smaller than the other, for your cat to come and go through. Pictured is their limited edition Blue Whale Cat Ball, featuring turtle-patterned lining, watercolour stripes, and baleen fringe! $89, thecatball.com

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Square Paws custom cat towers are a statementmaking work of art both you and your cat will love. Artist and craftsman Mario Arbore will work with you to design the cat tower of your dreams. He’s constructed everything from Eiffel Tower-inspired towers to Ferris Wheels. From $575, squarepaws.com


BEHAVIOUR

HAVE YOUR CATS UNFRIENDED EACH OTHER? The importance of social hierarchy in your multi-cat household By Mieshelle Nagelschneider, aka the Cat Whisperer | Illustration by Martha Pluto 26 moderncat

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Cats who were the best of friends may suddenly, on the occasion of their second birthdays, log into Facebook and unfriend each other. —excerpt from The Cat Whisperer

or establishing the hierarchy, very difficult. Bullying behaviour and hostility among your cats may surface. In extreme cases, some cats will begin urine spray-marking around the home to convey to other cats who gets what area and when. “For cats, issues of rank and territory are inextricably entwined so cats look for ways to move up in rank in order gain more territory and vice versa.”—excerpt from The Cat Whisperer

Examples of How it Works

M

any cat owners I work with at The Cat Behavior Clinic often refer to one of their cats as the “alpha cat.” But as mentioned in my cat behaviour book, The Cat Whisperer, the truth is, there is no such thing as an “alpha cat.” Instead, cats have a very flexible social hierarchy and their ranking system is based on taking turns using different resource locations in their environment. Cat behaviourists often refer to this ranking system as a spatio-temporal dominance hierarchy. If there are not enough resource locations around your home for food, water, litter boxes, cat toys, cat scratchers, and perching and resting areas, it will make time sharing,

When a particular cat is using a food location, say in the kitchen at 9:00 a.m., they are the high-ranking cat in the kitchen at that particular time of day. A different cat will then come along and use that same food location at noon and they are the high-ranking cat at that location at that time. This day-to-day activity is called time sharing. Beginning at about two years of age, cats move into adulthood and start thinking territorially about important resource locations because they want to begin structuring the social hierarchy. To do this, they will take turns using all the different resource locations (food and water areas, perching and resting areas, litter boxes, cat toys, and cat scratchers) in the environment to show who is highranking and when in specific locations. Interesting fact: Claiming resource locations to structure the social hierarchy explains why cats are more territorial than dogs.

Another example: You have one water bowl in the kitchen for your fivecat household. This will make it difficult for cats to work out a time sharing arrangement for that single water bowl location. Even if you have five water bowls in the kitchen a few feet apart, this is still only ONE territory location in your environment for the water. Your cats will still have to figure out a way to filter in at different times of the day to claim that area and drink the water. This not only causes competitiveness and potential hostility between your cats, but certain cats in your household may not be drinking enough water because you’ve created this difficult time sharing situation for them. This can lead to health issues. Dr. Brad Krohn, DVM, Professor of Veterinary Technology at Portland Community College says, “Helping maintain your cat’s hydration is critical to their overall health. Cats can quickly become dehydrated, especially kittens and geriatric cats. Common diseases such as feline lower urinary tract disease, urinary tract infections, and chronic renal failure can be exacerbated by seemingly mild levels of dehydration.” Our domestic cats still have wildcat instincts thanks to their predecessor, the African wildcat. The wildcat’s environmental landscape did not have all their resources consolidated in just a few areas. Food and hunting grounds were in many areas as opposed to just one area. Trees to perch in were not all located in one corner of the forest; they were located all over. Mimic this moderncat.com

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ILLUSTRATION BY MARTHA PLUTO

by placing all of your cats’ important resources North, East, South, and West throughout the home in multiple locations. This will decrease territorial thinking and help your cats get along better and think less competitively.

How To Do It: • Food: Feed your cats in very separate locations throughout your home. It goes against a cat’s instincts to eat together with all the other cats on 5th and Maple. Just like the African wildcat, our cats are solitary hunters and want to eat on their own and feel as if they own that particular territory. Your cats may appear to get along while eating near each other, but you might see friction and bullying behaviour later on in the day because you have given them the sense that the food location is scarce and have made time sharing (aka establishing the hierarchy) nearly impossible. • Water: Whenever possible, have multiple water locations for your multicat household. If you have three cats, have three water locations in very separate areas throughout the home. • Litter boxes: Have at least one litter box for each cat and then add one more to the total. A four cat household should

have five boxes, but in at least three locations and preferably five locations if possible. Again, where in nature do all cats visit just one latrine site? This doesn’t happen. Having all your litter boxes in the laundry room can actually be causing hierarchy structuring issues and hostility between your cats. It can also cause them to carve out new litter box locations on your sofa or dining room carpet. • Perching and resting areas: Be sure to have multiple perching and resting areas (cat trees, cat beds) for your cats, but have them in very separate locations around the home. • Cat Scratchers: Have multiple cat scratching areas in different areas of the home instead of just one area. • Cat Toys: Replicate the feeling of plentiful “prey” for your cats by having cat toys located in several areas around the home as opposed to only one basket of cat toys in the living room. Also, be sure to never play with your cats at the same time using just one wand toy and expect them to take turns. Again, cats are solitary hunters and this kind of activity goes against their instincts. It can create competitive thinking leading them to unfriend each other. And we certainly don't want that! n

Mieshelle Nagelschneider performs phone and video cat behaviour consultations nationally and internationally. You can contact her at thecatbehaviorclinic.com.

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KITTEN EMOJIS! By Jennifer Nosek

>> TANIA’S #1 TIP FOR PEOPLE AT HOME TRYING TO TAKE BETTER PHOTOS OF THEIR CATS: "Using a flash can give cats evil glowing eyes, so try to take your pictures during the day when there's lots of natural light."

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I

n a stroke of inspiration guaranteed to put a smile on your face, Vancouver, BC-based cat photographer Tania Hennessy has gone ahead and combined two of pretty much everyone’s very favourite things—kittens and emojis. The results are every bit as awesome as one would expect. Tania has been “a cat lover as long as I can remember. I'm that person who points out every cat I see on a walk!” she says, laughing. Her specialty is kittens, and she has lots of opportunity to photograph them, being a longtime volunteer for VOKRA, Vancouver Orphan Kitten Rescue Association. Tania and her husband, Mark Telfer, have a rotating cast of kittens come stay with them, many needing bottle-feeding in the early weeks of their stay. To date they’ve fostered over 150 cats and kittens. This naturally led to Tania training her lens on her foster cats. “Photographing cats and kittens is part of your role as a foster, because amazing photos help them find their forever homes,” Tania explains. Her Emoji Kittens project proved a logical leap. “Emojis are the ultimate piece of pop culture symbolism, and kittens are the stars of the Internet. I couldn't believe that the two had never been paired in digital art.”

KITTEN EMOJI PHOTOS TANIA HENNESSY

Pop culture symbolism meets the stars of the Internet


Photographer Tania Hennessy and her foster Long John Silver.

Another part of it was a desire to imbue the genre with “something fresh and new,” an antidote to the same cat images you see everywhere. “A lot of the kitten calendars you see feel as outdated as the mall kiosks that they're sold at,” she continues. Her resultant Emoji Kittens “turn those classic kitten poses loose in today's world, juxtaposing soft minimal pastel scenes with two-dimensional emojis.” The process is necessarily slow, a pace Tania savours: “I love that cats are so challenging to photograph because they don't pose, sit or stay on command, and really just do what they want. Studio sessions typically include snacks and nap breaks when a kitty drifts off to sleep mid-pose.” Her most popular emoji to date is—no surprise—the one of a kitten clutching her nose in wide-eyed surprise when confronted with the poop emoji. Tania’s personal favourite, however, remains the pairing of a girl-kitten with the doughnut emoji. Doughnut Kitten, as she's appropriately called, even has her own site, doughnutkitten.com, at which she simply travels across the screen, tracing pastel rainbows. (Get out your tablet and show doughnutkitten.com to your cat; Tania reports it’s a hit with her fosters who loving trying to catch Doughnut Kitten as she moves across the screen.) And, great news, there are yet more Emoji Kittens on their way! “I still have so many more Emoji Kittens images that I can't wait to edit and release,” Tania enthuses. “We've also been holding the cutest auditions for 2017's Doughnut Kitten, who will be announced June 2nd.” Stay tuned!

For more kitten-related awesomeness, follow Tania on Instagram and Facebook at @hellotaniahennessy or at taniahennessy.com.

TANIA’S TOP 5 CAT-RELATED INSTAGRAM ACCOUNTS TO FOLLOW @VOKRA For the cutest adoptable cats in Vancouver, BC

@KITTENXLADY Life saving information for saving orphan kittens’ lives

@CHANDOHACATS The Grandfather of cat photography

@PRINCESSCHEETO The most aesthetically pleasing cat on Instagram

@IHAVECAT Tamar introduces me to so many inspiring cat woman moderncat.com

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PET PROJECT

craft D.I.Y.

Wonderful Cat Wand Toy

MAKE IT!

Making a wand toy is easier than you think! Here’s the how-to for this deceptively simple, super-cute, cat-approved toy! By Jennifer Nosek

STUFF YOU’LL NEED:

ÆÆFelt (50 cents a square) ÆÆLeather Cording ($1.49 for 40 inches) ÆÆWooden Dowel ($1.15) ÆÆGlue and a Glue Gun ÆÆScissors

HOW-TO: First, get a wooden dowel. A diameter of ¼ inch is ideal but anything will work providing it won’t snap during play. We got ours at Home Depot for $1.15. Have them cut it for you (for free!) to about 30 inches in length. (You can cut it shorter or longer if you wish.)

1

Next we’re going to glue the leather cording to the dowel. Cut around 40 inches of cording. (You can make the length shorter if you wish.) Then get out your glue gun and spread some hot glue around the top inch or so of your dowel. Working quickly, tightly wrap a couple inches of your leather cording around the glued end of your dowel, starting at the bottom on the glue and working towards the top end of the dowel, so that when you finish the rest of the leather cord hangs off the tip of the dowel.

2

3 Now, cut your felt strips. We made ours a ½ inch wide and 12 inches long and used a total of 16 strips. Use as many or as few strips as you’d like!

Modern Cat testers Lincoln and Lyle give this homemade wand toy four paws up!

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4 Fold each strip in half and cut/poke a tiny hole in the middle of each strip. Thread each strip onto the leather cording, fanning them out like a star as you go. Tie a double knot at the end of the leather cording and you’re done—it’s playtime!

5


ENRICHMENT

Bored cat?

5

WAYS TO

Stimulate YOUR STAY-AT HOME CAT

Try these cheap and easy feline boredom busters! By Lauren Cheal smartphone, what your cat is up to while you’re away, it also lets you remotely play laser pointer games with her! Plus, you can record videos or take pictures of your cat, and the camera has a microphone and speaker so you can talk to your cat too. (Goodbye office productivity!)

Bored cats can act out with destructive behaviour like chewing, scratching where they aren’t supposed to, waking their humans in the middle of the night, and fighting with their feline housemates. If your cat isn’t getting the stimulation she needs, try these cheap and easy boredom busters for the stay-at-home cat!

1

Hide treats or kibble around your home. Or make

an interactive DIY treat puzzle! Grab an empty paper towel roll, securely duct tape a piece of paper over one end (make sure your cat can't eat the tape: use this toy supervised), and then drop the treats down the tube. You’ve got an instant treat puzzle that your cat can spend hours attempting to defeat!

2 3

Move your cat’s food to a new location. Cats in the wild hunt for their food, and your cat’s instincts are the very same. By simply moving the food dishes to another room, you are encouraging her to hunt for her dinner! Or try the NoBowl Feeding System ($60, nobowlcat. com). This unique indoor hunting system replaces your cat's food dish with a set of five NoBowls that allow your cat to stalk, trap, and play with her food in a natural and healthy way!

Try out an interactive camera to check in on your cat while you're at work! The Petcube Interactive Wi-Fi Pet Camera ($98 on Amazon) not only allows you see, via your

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4

Solo play toys are a great way to

add excitement to your cat's alone time. We love P.L.A.Y.’s Peek-aBoo Mouse Interactive Toy ($20, petplay. com). The mouse pops up, hides, and even reverse direction to stimulate your cat’s curiosity and keep your kitty engaged and playing for ages! Pro tip: Keep it fresh. Put your cat’s toy in a drawer while you are home, and then take it out for them just before you leave. Hiding it from them will add extra intrigue and excitement for your cat, and they’ll be more likely to engage with it. Also be sure to rotate the toys your cat has access to, keeping things fresh and interesting!

5

Brush up on grooming. Grooming is an

essential social function for cats, so add to your bond by brushing your cat. Most cats will like some kind of brushing, but you may have to try out a few different grooming tools to find the right one for you and your cat. We’ve had good results on lots of cats with the Wahl Grooming Glove. Bonding time plus it’s good for your cat’s skin and coat!


Holy Guacamole! Talking cats and books with Skippyjon Jones creator Judy Schachner By Jen Reeder

J

udy Schachner shares a special connection with cats— especially Siamese cats. It started when she was just 11 years old and her mother was dying of cancer. During an already difficult time, her striped Tabby was hit and killed by a car. So Judy’s older brother gave her a Siamese kitten named Frankie. The tiny kitty stayed by their mother’s side while she was bedridden and comforted Judy by licking tears from her face whenever she’d cry. “That little Siamese cat just meant everything to me,” she said. Because of that experience, Judy, her husband, and daughters have “had different adopted dogs and all kinds

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of stray cats, but I’ve always had to have a Siamese cat in the mixture.” One of them, Skippyjon Jones, was a funny feline with huge ears reminiscent of a Chihuahua’s. Each night, he would run upstairs and jump on the bed, waiting for a tummy tickle or the chance to chase after a feather toy. “So many times, he would leap in the air and do a triple flip and land upside-down in my pillows with his legs sticking straight up—or miss the bed completely,” Judy recalled. “He was like an Olympic champ of leaping and jumping.” Of course, Skippyjon Jones is now one of the most famous Siamese cats in children’s literature. In 2003, Judy wrote and

PHOTO ©XXXXX

P H OTO BY B O B S CH ACH N E R

OR & AU TH ATOR R STR ILLU HACHNE E C S N I Y L JUD HER FE N WITH PIRATIO INS O CHIC


I work really hard to get that feeling of total, drooling adoration I have for my fur babies across in art.

illustrated a picture book featuring him as a Siamese kitten bouncing on his “big-boy bed” who glimpses his reflection in a mirror and sees a Chihuahua. Skippyjon Jones enters a make-believe world in which he becomes “El Skippito” and meets a band of Chihuahuas called the Chimichangos. The tongue-twisting dialogue is hilarious: “Why the maskito, dude?” asked Poquito Tito. “I go incognito,” said Skippito. “Do you like rice and beans?” asked Pintolito. “Sí, I love mice and beans,” said Skippito. Skippyjon Jones quickly became a New York Times bestseller and won numerous awards, including the E.B. White Read Aloud Award. Judy went on to write and illustrate many more books of Skippy’s adventures, and the series is currently being developed for television. Judy said she didn’t set out to create a hit children’s book— she just wrote a whimsical story for the eight-year-old child inside her. She loves getting mail from kids and meeting readers at bookstore signings. “I’ll be busy signing away and then I look up and see a fan standing there with a Siamese cat draped over their shoulder,” she said with a laugh. “There are so many cats that have been named Skippyjon Jones.” People also bring Chihuahuas to events—she was particularly tickled by the one wearing hot pink goggles—or send her pictures of their pups. In the Skippyjon Jones books, Schachner uses actual photos of Chihuahuas sent by fans—it makes her laugh that whenever Skippy looks in a mirror, the Chihuahua he sees staring back at him is always a different dog. moderncat.com

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ILLUSTRATION BY JUDY SCHACHNER

“Each time, it’s a different Chihuahua and that doesn’t bother him. It’s just, ‘Am I a Chihuahua?’” Judy is incredibly grateful to her readers as well as her cats. She immortalized her 21-year-old Siamese cat Simon in The Grannyman, a touching picture book about an elderly cat revitalized by caring for a kitten. That kitten, Tink, a beloved feline with a “brain the size of a frozen pea,” stars as an indoor cat who sneaks outside for adventure in Bits & Pieces. “I work really hard to get that feeling of total, drooling adoration I have for my fur babies across in art,” Schachner said. “Maybe the way they hold their little paw curled up, or the way they stretch their toes, or the way they look at you with either such sincerity in their eyes, or in the case of Tinky in Bits & Pieces, there’s nothing going on in his head whatsoever…I work very hard with expressions.” Her pets can affect her work in other ways as well. She’s had to work in her studio with a cat strapped to her chest in a baby carrier because he needed to be close to her—this

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has happened with several kitties. And she currently can’t leave out tracing paper because her Siamese cat Chicopee is “obsessed” with eating it. He’s even munched on drawings of Skippyjon Jones! But these quirks that might cause frustration in some pet owners create story fodder for Judy. She jokes that her books are “nonfiction” because her cats give her so many ideas. In fact, her advice to anyone who dreams of writing or illustrating children’s books—aside from joining the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators—is to draw inspiration from their cats and dogs. “Just take notes, and let your pets do all the talking, sock eating, face sleeping, and inappropriate pooping they want. This is how they create great stories just for us, the ones they love.” n For more from Judy, visit skippyjonjones.com or judithbyronschachner.com.


9

$

How cute is this? This catnip filled Donut toy will delight both you and your cat. It’s made in the U.S. from eco-friendly recycled materials and stuffed with certified 100% organic and USA grown catnip to stoke your cat! mythreecats.com

11

$

Your cat will go crazy for this natural mouse toy. Made of real sheepskin, stuffed with wool, and finished with leather ears and tail, your cat will delight in tossing around and sinking her teeth into this big mouse! Customize it with optional catnip or silver vine and a rattle for a toy guaranteed tailor-made to thrill your cat. Each mouse is made to order so it’s one of a kind, just like your cat! primalpetshop.com

Let's Play! Unleash your cat’s inner hunter with these engaging toys!

30

$

Flip, rotate, and restack the corrugated cardboard discs to change up this scratcher’s shape and meet your cat’s particular preferences! The Catit Senses 2.0 Scratcher lets your cat satisfy his natural scratching instincts in a fun, eco-friendly way that saves your furniture! catit.com

16

$

We may have found the ultimate interactive cat toy! The Eco Cat Fisher has it all: organic catnip, a removable bell, and a durable natural hemp fish attached with natural hemp twine to a bamboo pole for tons of playtime fun. And it's made by disabled adults in Green Bay, Wisconsin, to boot! honestpetproducts.com

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$ 40 moderncat

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Glam sweet potato! This twill kicker toy is the cat’s pajamas. Filled with USDA organic catnip and perfectly sized for kicking, rubbing, and cuddling, your cat is going to love this toy. www.sugarboysfibercreations.com


BEHAVIOUR

Tricia Helfer Knows Cats

—and she wants to help you understand them too

Tricia Helfer—actress, supermodel, and serious cat person—answers your most pressing cat questions My cat is super affectionate with my partner and me, but whenever someone comes over, he runs straight under the bed and doesn’t come out until they’re gone. Is there anything I can do to help him feel more comfortable and be more social with new people around?

Some cats are just wired to be warier of strangers than others. I have a couple cats that my friends joke don't actually exist. Make sure you don't pressure your cats. Don't, for example, keep going back to the bedroom and pulling them out into the living room with everyone. With friends that visit often, you can have your friend bring your cat’s food bowl in at dinnertime and put it under the bed. With luck, the cat will come to associate the friend with being “safe.” You can also try luring the cat out with a feather toy after the people have

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been over for a while. If your cat does decide to play, you can have your friend try using the toy and see if the cat continues playing. But if there’s a large group of people or anyone with a big booming voice, the chances of your cat relaxing enough to come out are slim. Don't get annoyed with the cat—it's just his safety mechanism. Don't push, just let him venture out at his pace.

Hi Tricia! My cat has recently gained some weight and I really want to help him get back to a healthier size. What can I do to get him moving?

As long as you’ve ruled out that a medical issue is not causing the weight gain, there are a few ways to try and help your cat lose a little weight. Firstly, if you leave dry food out all day, instead try leaving it out only around his feeding times, removing it for the better part of the day and picking


it up overnight. And leave out only what your cat should be eating and not a whole bowl. Some cats self-moderate and only eat what they need, but some will just keep eating and become overweight. Also try mixing a bit of water in with your cat’s wet food. This not only helps your cat get sufficient water, which can be an issue for cats, but it also fills them up a little bit more so they eat less. To get your cat moving, try a dry food feeder toy like the PetSafe SlimCat Interactive Cat Feeder that drops the food out piece by piece when your cat bats it around playing with it. Use this feeder some of the time so your cat is encouraged to play and be active while eating dinner. And, of course, you should make sure that you are playing with your cat with toys that get him moving, like a feather on a string or a laser pointer toy.

I’m adopting a new cat and I want to be sure that she gets along with my current cat who has been an only cat up until now. Any suggestions for a smooth transition? Integrating cats can be easy or tricky and everywhere in between—it really just depends on the individual cats. But seeing that your current cat has only ever been an “only cat,” chances are that your integration will be on the difficult side. This is not necessarily certain, but do not be surprised if it is. There are certainly a few tricks to help it go more smoothly though! The big thing to remember is that for cats, smell is incredibly important and the sooner they get used to each other’s scent, the less they'll be threatened by each other. Those of you with more than one cat may have noticed that if you take one to the vet, the other will often hiss and growl when you get home. This is because the cat who was at the vet has “vet office smells” on him, and the other cat isn't sure what to make of it, which makes him a little snippy. Here are a few ways to help them get used to each other’s smell: Have a separate room set up for your new cat when you bring him home. Provide a kitty bed or a towel for your new cat to lie

on. Alternate this bed with one your other cat uses, trading the beds so the cats can get used to each other's scent in advance of a face to face meeting. If the cats don’t use the beds, you can place it under or beside their food bowls so that they will smell it when they are eating. You can also temporarily interchange the rooms they are in too. You don’t want to keep your first cat locked up too long when he’s used to the run of the house but you can give him a bit of alone time in the new cat’s room in order to suss out all the new smells. A brief room swap also gives the new cat a chance to roam and check out the new digs on his own. Cats are routine creatures and a change of location can be upsetting for them, so allowing the new cat a bit of time to figure out his surroundings without fear of the other cat present is a good thing. Once you think they’ve made progress, put your new cat in her carrier and bring her out to “hang out” with you guys. This way your original cat can approach the other without fear or the need to attack because there is no threat when the new cat is securely in the carrier. Do this a few times and then, if you think they are ready, you can formally introduce them. Don’t use a carrier at this juncture because the new cat may feel trapped if she is in the carrier with the door open and the other cat is blocking the entrance. Instead, simply leave the door to your new cat’s temporary room open and let them figure out that there is no barrier between them. Once they do so, if they like treats, offer them both a morsel. If they eat the treats, they are likely more relaxed and might be ready to be friendly. If they are not interested in the treats at all (and you know they love treats), then they are not relaxed yet and it will take a little longer. This whole process might take half a day, or it could take weeks or months. There is no hard or fast rule as to when they'll get along. The first time I integrated cats, it took four months before I could leave them alone together unsupervised. However, I've also had an experience where, after just a few hours, the new cat was part of the group. Remember that the worst thing you can do is to just come in with the new cat and let him loose immediately. That will put both cats on their guard from the beginning. One last thing—it's easy to pay a lot of attention to the new cat and slightly ignore the other cat, especially if the new cat is a kitty (aren't they sooo cute?). Sort of like a toddler when a baby comes home, cats can get jealous. Make sure you're not ignoring the first cat too much in the beginning. n moderncat.com

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COVER CAT

PHOTOS @WHITE_COFFEE_CAT_

hi There!

The Cat With 1.4 Million Followers

Blue eyes, fluffy cheeks, and a great personality: White Coffee Cat, a crazy-adorable, cancer-surviving cat, is way more popular than pretty much everyone you know By Rose Frosek

T

hough we’ve introduced you to Pookie Methachittiphan before, it’s her cat, Nala, you’re likely familiar with. Nala has even appeared on the cover of this magazine. Well, it seems super-cuteness and Instagram stardom run in the family—Pookie’s second cat, White Coffee Cat, is now taking Instagram by storm, too, and landed this issue’s cover. Get ready for a double dose of adorableness. An inauspicious beginning… Pookie adopted Coffee, then five months old, from a friend who was no longer able to keep him. It was to prove a fortuitous move for them both. When Coffee joined the family, Pookie and her sister Ping started an Instagram account for him, too, and being feline-roommates with Nala, he quickly built a huge following. It was this online community that would ultimately help save him, contributing funds to cover his medical expenses when he was soon diagnosed with cancer. Pookie and Ping found two symmetrical lumps on Coffee’s body while brushing him. They took him t0 the vet the very

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next morning, where x-rays showed evidence of two enlarged kidneys. Further testing and an ultrasound indicated that Coffee was positive for kidney lymphoma. “The beginning of this journey was extremely heartbreaking,” Pookie recounts. “Coffee became very sick just one day after the diagnosis. He didn't show too many signs prior as we received a diagnosis quickly. We took him to see an oncologist immediately and started his first round of chemotherapy that same day.” His first two chemotherapy sessions made him nauseous and “it was very hard to see him so sick,” Pookie shares. They considered quality of life over quantity, and made a family agreement to continue with the chemo and do whatever they could to make him as comfortable as possible. They gave him fluids and anti-nausea medications regularly. Then he lost his appetite so they gave him a medication to increase his appetite. The medications helped so they continued weekly chemotherapy for three months before transitioning to every


Above: Pookie and Nala and Ping and Coffee (with his eyes closed—so cute!).

A Day In The Life of a Celebrity Cat

those paws!

other week. Coffee’s final rounds of chemotherapy were given to him once a month. And then the moment of truth… after completing the chemotherapy program, his oncologists informed them that there were no signs of cancer! “The amazing staff at California Veterinary Specialist held a graduation ceremony for Coffee to celebrate his remission. We beat cancer because we didn't give up, we put full trust in CVS, and we remained positive even when our hearts ached,” Pookie says. “Early detection saved Coffee's life,” she continues. “Always take your furry friends to the vet regularly for wellness examinations. You have to get to know your furry friend's body— brush them regularly so you can feel if something has changed. Try your best to stay positive and reach out for support.” For Pookie and Ping, their support group included Coffee's many fans. “They’ve been so good to our family. Without his fans we don't think we would be able to save him,” Pookie says, acknowledging the outpouring of positive messages and financial contributions that helped make Coffee’s cancer treatment possible. To pay it forward, Pookie and Coffee work with Kitten Rescue and Milo's Sanctuary and Pookie hopes “to someday start a non-profit to assist other kitties in need of chemotherapy.” “Coffee has taught us about strength and unity,” she continues. “He showed us how social media can bring the world together for a common purpose and taught us how love can break down barriers.”

"We are lucky that we work from home so we get to spend time with our cats all day," Pookie shares. "We feed them breakfast at 6 a.m. then they get to have treats around 10 a.m., lunchtime at noon, afternoon snack around 3 p.m. then dinner around 6 p.m. They get their playtime and cuddle time all day. Sometimes we think we spoiled them too much!" And now for the important stuff…

White Coffee Cat’s Favourite Toy: The Cat Catcher

Favourite place to sleep: In bed with mom or up high on his Kitty Mansion.

Motto: I loaf you!

Anything else you’d like to add? → He's very good at catching a fly. → When people come visit Coffee at home, he always hides. But if we go out to see people, Coffee will be very nice and will let other people hold him. → Coffee likes to see himself in a mirror. moderncat.com

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#1

Kiss me please! ð&#x;˜˜ I'm doing fine... Meowing all night just to get pet by my hooman ð&#x;¤—

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#2

#3

Happy #nationalhugday

When I was a kitten

#4

#5

Ready to attack!

How do you like my big cotton paws? #throwback

PHOTOS @WHITE_COFFEE_CAT_

White Coffee Cat's Top 5 Most Popular Instagram Posts!


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BODY & SOUL

GOOD KARMA Handcrafted cat caves are doing a world of good

H

usband-and-wife team Jamyang Lodoe and Jennifer Neufeld are all about good karma. They make absolutely beautiful, handcrafted pet baskets and toys under the name Dharma Dog Karma Cat, partnering directly with socially conscious artisans, women’s collectives, and family run businesses throughout Tibet, India, and Nepal. In doing so they provide reliable income for hundreds of families. We can’t get enough of their socially conscious company ethics and the beautiful ombré tones of their cat caves, which are simply a dream, providing a soft, comfortable place for cats to hide, play, and sleep. Handcrafted by women’s collectives high in Nepal, the cat caves are made using traditional techniques and a blend of Tibetan and New Zealand wools. The hand-felted wool is odour-resistant and anti-microbial, and, thanks to the high lanolin content, which cats love, it has the added benefit of keeping paws and fur soft. In short, cats love the natural fiber and every cat cave supports the female artisans and their families, helping to keep traditions alive. "We're committed to providing good income and using environmentally friendly production so there’s no bad stuff going back into the water," Jennifer says. "We really put so much thought into every step of what we do, from making sure the cave mouth is wide enough for cats to be comfortable to making sure the women are able to send their kids to school." Right on. Check them out at karmacat.com.

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BODY & SOUL

We Tried It! Upgrade your cat’s dinner

Feeling Groovy Our sweet herb picks for discerning cats Island Time Meowi-Waui Leaf and Flake is just one of Meowijuana’s awesome varieties of USA-sourced 100% natural catnip. Your cat will love this nip and you’ll love watching your cat enjoy it! $16, shop.meowijuana.com

Feel good about what you’re feeding your cat. Cats are true or obligate carnivores meaning they must eat meat to survive. Fussie Cat’s meatfirst premium food for cats is potato and grain-free and rich in complete protein and essential amino acids for a delicious meal your cat will love. $1.30/can, fussiecat.com

If your cat doesn’t respond to catnip, try silver vine! Koop Brand’s Katmint Silver Vine Blend will keep your cat happy and entertained while you're away at work or out with friends! This all-natural organically grown Silver Vine blend offers a euphoric sensation that cats absolutely adore. Great for cats that don’t respond to catnip! $16, koopbrand.com

Litter Love

We tested it out! My cat Lavinia is a fussy kitty, so I was curious to see what she would think of the test bag of Cats Incredible Litter we received from Lucy Pet Products. Verdict? She loved it—and so did I. The easy pour bag made it a breeze to fill the litter box and it was noticeably less smelly than her previous litter, thanks to the patentpending ammonia-blocking technology and American-sourced sodium bentonite clay it’s made of. Plus, every purchase supports the Lucy Pet Foundation’s efforts to help homeless pets. Dig it!—EF

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MODERN CAT POLL QUESTION

Who's in charge, you or your cat? CAST YOUR VOTE AT MODERNCAT.COM


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BODY & SOUL

Know Your

Cats

1

Cats of the opposite gender tend to make better housemates, making for a more harmonious multi-cat home.

2

Closed eyes can mean your cat is happy or pleased.

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3

Cats greet each other by rubbing their noses together.

4

A third of cats' awake-time is usually spent grooming themselves.

5

A cat’s whiskers are actually touch receptors. These important navigational tools allow cats to gage the width of openings and detect and respond to changes in their environment. Cats not only have whiskers around their nose and upper facial lip, but also shorter whiskers above each eye, kind of like eyebrows, as well as on their jaw line and on the back of their front legs. Never trim or cut your cat’s whiskers!


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Help your cat live her best life with these wellness products! Meowijuana’s Purrple Passion 100% organic Catnip Buds are made from the finest and most fragrant catnip blossoms! These all-natural catnip buds are harvested at the peak of the plant’s essential oil production to give your cat a far out experience without anyone turning into a total airhead! shop.meowijuana.com

HealthyCoat works for your cat from the inside out, filling the nutritional gaps left by processed, commercial cat food. The natural omega 3 & 6 supplement is formulated to help prevent excessive hairballs, shedding, and itching while strengthening the immune system and improving digestion! healthycoat.net/dogcat

The EZ-Groomer Undercoat Rake utilizes a breakthrough in grooming tooth design! It effectively removes the undercoat, reducing shedding, while the rounded bottom of the teeth provides a massage that cats love! ez-groomer.com

The modern design of the Acacia Cat Tree pleases cats and their people. The branches are for climbing and playing, while the treetop is the perfect spot to rest, observe, or scratch. At three feet high, it fits in front of most windows and accommodates cats of all ages, sizes, and abilities! squarecathabitat.com

Vet bills? Covered. Protect your pet—and your pocketbook—with nose-to-tail coverage for unexpected accidents and illnesses from Embrace Pet Insurance. Never let expensive vet bills come between you and the best care for your favorite feline. Get a free quote from Embrace today. EmbraceYourPet.com moderncat.com

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BEHAVIOUR & TRAINING

IT'S N TE KIT E! TIM

YOUR NEW KITTEN SURVIVAL GUIDE

KITTEN PREP 101

T

hinking about adopting a kitten? We consulted VOKRA, Vancouver Orphan Kitten Rescue Association, for the advice they give to their new adopters. Here’s what you need to do when you bring home your new kitten: Put your new kitten in the bathroom for the first 48 hours. The smaller the space, the more confident the kitty. When cats are stressed from being relocated they will want to be in a tiny space—it's the kindest thing you can do for them. It builds their confidence and curiosity. Hang out with them in there so you can socialize them and bond. Your goal is to help make your new family member feel comfortable and safe as quickly as possible.

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Allow kitty access to the rest of the house only once he has met all four criteria: is eating all his food, is being proactively social, has peed at least twice in the litter box, and has pooped at least twice in the litter box. After these criteria have been met, you can then gradually introduce your kitten to the rest of your home. Kitten-proof your home. Things to watch out for: Plants. Research all plants in your home and dispose of any that may be poisonous, including bouquets of flowers that can be highly toxic. (Lilies, chrysanthemum, amaryllis, and more are all toxic to cats.) Cords that dangle and swing are big temptations to kittens. Try to tape or hook them away.

MAX SUBMITTED BY DEBBIE

Follow these steps to seamlessly welcome your new kitten into your home! (This goes for newly adopted adult cats too)


String, elastic, hair elastics, thread, needles, tacks, buttons, bells, tinsel, coins, and small children's toys are all happily ingested by kittens as they play. Toilet Bowls and buckets should be kept closed as kittens can easily drown if they jump in. Windows. Be sure that all windows have screens or are locked open with a very small gap. Playtime! Playing with your kitten is not only super-fun, it’s quality bonding time. A toy that really works and lasts is the Cat Dancer (catdancer. com). This is bouncy nirvana for a Cat Charmer from kitten. A wand with a strip of fleece catdancer.com or felt also works well and lasts a very long time. Turn to page 32 for how to make your own wand toy! Also remember some of the most successful toys are free! Cats and kittens love toilet paper rolls, scrunched paper balls, and paper bags (not plastic). Cat Scratch Fever. Cardboard scratchers are low-cost and cats love them (though they can be messy). Of course be sure to have a good scratch post, preferably something your kitten can climb up high on. Modern Cat loves Armarkat's classic cat trees that provide both climbing platforms and scratching areas to delight your cat (from $63, armarkat.com), as well as Pet Tree Houses' cat trees (from $129, pettreehouses.com). Handcrafted from real trees and embellished with silk foliage to provide a life-like audible and visual experience, they encourage your cat to scratch on the gnarled branches and bark. Have a ball with your new kitten! n

From left: Pet Tree Houses; Armarkat

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Apps for Cats

You’re not the only one in your household who can be entertained by a tablet! We give three apps for cats a try.  By Laura Dennis

PAW ME

CAT FISHING 2

TO F F E E S U B M I TT E D BY YO L A N DA L E E

PLAY

PAINTS FOR CATS

Available: For Apple and Android Price: Free

Available: For Apple (iPad) Price: $1.99

Do your cats have a case of sibling rivalry? Settle the score with this online, multiplayer game for cats (and their humans)! With four different game modes— single player, cat vs. cat, human vs. cat, and human vs. human—everyone can get in on the fun. The digital prey (choose from a mouse, bird, laser, and more) have realistic movements and sounds to tempt even the most standoffish of feline players. And you can even customize the game settings to best suit your cat’s interests. My cat Bandito loved the rainbow mouse so much that he drooled all over the screen!

Give your goldfish a break from hungry feline eyes with this easy to play fishing game for cats. Cats love stalking the brightly coloured fish as they “swim” across the screen, as well as the realistic ripples, bubbles, and sounds. If your cats do lose interest, the game lets out a “meow” that is sure to capture their attention. My boys Harry and Bandito, while enthralled, preferred watching to fishing but if your cat is more into actively trying to catch the fish, beware the back button! It’s easy for over excited fisher-cats to accidentally close the game.

Is your cat the next Paw-casso? With this fun app you can put your cat’s artistic prowess to the test! The Paint for Cats app features a mouse with an enticingly twitchy tail scampering around the screen. Wherever a paw lands, paint appears! Your cat can create a true masterpiece just by batting at the mouse on the screen, causing a smear, spot or splash to appear. My cat Harry, a true artist, enjoyed painting but ignored the mouse. The best part is, after playtime is over, you can share your cat’s art on social media or print it out and stick it on the fridge like the proud pet-parent you are.

P H OTO : © G U D LY F

Available: For Apple and Android Price: Free

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INSPIRE

SWEET Therapy cats are making a big difference—in hospitals, nursing homes, and in the lives of their handlers By Noa Nichol

F

A Love On A Leash therapy cat works his magic.

or most people, the term “therapy animal” conjures up “Cats are a much-more newly domesticated species, which visions of a dog—maybe a Lab or Golden Retriever— simply means dog owners may be more accustomed to going visiting facilities like hospitals, nursing homes, and out and doing things, such as lessons, activities or volunteer schools to interact with patients, residents or students. work, with their pets,” she says. “It can also be slightly It’s a bias that Natalie Pond, marketing and strategic harder to find and identify a cat with the type of personality partnerships coordinator for needed to do this work, which Bellevue, Washington-based Pet involves wearing a harness—but Partners, is very familiar with. But not necessarily having to walk while dogs are definitely the most on a leash—and going out of the common therapy animal, cats are home to various environments and gaining ground. interacting with strangers. But, as In 2016, Pet Partners had “15,500more cat owners learn that they can plus volunteer therapy animal teams volunteer with their pet as a therapy in 50 states providing what we animal team, we’re definitely seeing call animal-assisted interventions an uptick in feline teams registering or AAIs. Of those, about 94 percent with our organization.” did, in fact, include dogs,” she says. And that, she says, is a good thing, “However, we pride ourselves on as Pet Partners does get specific registering many species other than requests for visits from cats. Pet Partners therapy cat dogs—horses, birds, rabbits and, of “There’s truth behind that notion of Junior cuddles up. course, cats.” cat versus dog people—some people Currently, Pet Partners has a total just have a natural affinity toward of 213 registered cat teams across the U.S.—a number that, cats,” she explains. “Say, a resident in a nursing home; Natalie says, can only grow. She can also think of a few maybe they had positive associations with cats in childhood, reasons why felines are still playing catch-up to their canine or fond memories of a pet that passed or that they had to counterparts in the realm of animal therapy. give up. For that reason, I’m really glad that we have our

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PHOTOS LYNNE KURTZ

THERAPY


cat teams, with such attentive handlers that are every bit as devoted to the work as those with dogs. They make great ambassadors for our program.” Two such ambassadors, from Spring Bank, Texas, are Beverly Oakes and her cat, Junior. Though Junior passed away last October after a valiant battle with cancer, he served as a Pet Partners therapy cat for 16 of his 17 years. “I rescued Junior in a rural area where we used to farm—he was one of several kittens dumped at a home of some folks who couldn’t care for them financially,” Beverly says. “The little girl who lived there begged me to take him but, as I already had several cats, I declined. However, each time I saw him, I was aware he held something special for me.” The bond between Beverly and Junior grew quickly—she often took him out with her and enjoyed “sharing” him with others. She also noticed a “special sensitivity” in the orange Tabby—one incident in particular stands out. “One day as my husband and I rode along in the car with him between us, we got into a bit of a debate over something and our voices rose,” she recalls. “ Junior reached up and put his paw on my lips as if to say, ‘calm down.’ It melted me.” At a year old, Junior became registered with Pet Partners, called the Delta Society at the time. Actually, he and Beverly became a registered team, as, Natalie explains, the process very much includes cat and handler alike. “It’s actually a process that starts at home, with a pet owner assessing and identifying if their cat will be suited to and enjoy the work, as Beverly did with Junior,” she says. “We don’t want the cat to just tolerate these interactions but to actually thrive off them and, the fact is, some cats would simply prefer to be left alone or stay at home. They may be fearful of being taken to strange places or hate traveling in a carrier and, obviously, would not likely enjoy the experience of being involved in AAI.” A highly social cat like Junior, however, is an excellent candidate for therapy cat work. According to Beverly, “His incredibly laid-back personality and sensitivity to people enabled him to interact with all sorts of populations,” and that’s exactly the kind of feline that, as Natalie says, will “thrive” as part of a therapy animal team. “The main thing is that they need to be amenable to interacting with strangers— that they are friendly and tolerant. I think that most people can really successfully gage this with their own animal,” she says. With that squared away, the next step to registration with Pet Partners, on the

I notice, especially with residents and patients who may also have disabilities, the interaction with Frog, who has his own limitations, is special. And I get a lot of joy out of it, too.

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Above: Pet Partners therapy cats provide comfort and cheer. 62 moderncat

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“feline end of the leash,” is a health screening that is signed off on by a veterinarian. On the human side, a handler’s course covers topics around volunteering with therapy animals, such as policies, procedures, and safe interactions during visits. “We go through all the different ways in which you can support your cat on a visit; how to be safe and responsible when you are volunteering as an animal therapy team,” Natalie outlines. There is also a skills and aptitude screening that involves a team evaluation of both handler and cat. This screening basically emulates what an actual visit would look like. “For cats we may do an ‘interacting with a friendly stranger’ exercise or an ‘accepting petting’ exercise,” Natalie continues. For cats who will walk on a harness—and not every cat will, nor do they need to—we could do an ‘out for a walk’ exercise. Another option is a ‘reaction to distraction’ exercise, where we’d play audio of, say, an object falling. It’s OK if the cat startles, but what we’re looking for is to see how they recover— and, perhaps most importantly, how the handler proceeds. We’re looking for handlers who are proactive in the way that they interact with their cat, who are reassuring when something out of the ordinary occurs.” A “yelling” exercise, she continues, will demonstrate how a cat reacts to raised voices, while a “passing between three strangers” exercise rotates an animal from lap to lap to assess whether the cat will “stay in place.” “The exercises are tweaked to what we imagine most commonly takes place on a visit, with the idea being to test the core skills and aptitudes so that when things happen, the handler has the proactive skills to deal with them and the animal remains comfortable and well.” Junior, for his part, passed all of these components with flying colours, and went on to be a prolific therapy cat within the Pet Partners family, visiting, along with Beverly, nursing homes and hospital pediatric wards. In fact, Junior was the impetus for San Antonio’s University Hospital starting its Paws Up Pet Therapy program in 2014. When Junior retired from therapy cat work in 2016, the hospital held a retirement party for him. “In addition to pediatrics, Junior visited two different libraries where children read to him, participated in numerous college de-stressors, visited nursing homes, and participated in many presentations through the years, including a conference that brought in children with a rare illness from all over the world. He also worked some with military patients,” Beverly says. “He eased people’s fears, took away some of the pain, made people smile, and we even watched blood pressures drop during and after interacting with him.” “Animal-assisted interactions are thought, anecdotally and, increasingly, through actual scientific research and studies, to have a broad range of benefits, both physical and emotional,” Natalie


confirms. “One thing we’ve heard a lot from care facilities, where patients may be isolated from family and friends, is that the social benefits are huge. With cats in particular, who are small enough to sit in a lap or with a patient on a hospital bed, the interaction can be very special.” Another Pet Partners volunteer, Janet Freehling of Norwalk, Ohio, agrees. After all, she’s seen the tremendous impact a therapy animal can have first hand. Both of her cats, Cosmo and Tux, were registered to do the work and, though both have since passed, experienced many positive interactions with clients. “Though Cosmo’s had many visits worth sharing, my favourite is a hospice story,” Janet says, smiling. “Walking into the unit, I asked a nurse who would enjoy a visit and who would not. Pointing at one of the doors, she cautioned us to stay away from a room because the patient was angry and could be unpleasant. Cosmo, wearing his harness and leash, pulled me toward that room, stopped in the doorway and waited. I tried to redirect him, but he wouldn’t budge, so I asked the man if he’d like a visit with Cosmo. He turned over and gave me a turn and leave, until he looked down at my white cat. The change in his expression was immediate. He smiled and invited us in. Soon, Cosmo was in bed with him and we were chatting like old friends!” As man and cat got acquainted, the phone rang. The man answered and, Janet recalls, told the caller to ring back later because “Cosmo, the cat, is here.” “It was amazing to me to see the difference a cat could make,” she says, adding that such incidents occurred time and time again over the many years she volunteered with her therapy cats. “Both Cosmo and Tux enjoyed their work,” she recalls. “They were both very people oriented. Cosmo was always calm—even with loud, tearful or agitated people. Medical equipment, sick, agitated or dying people never upset him.

Tux’s attitude was very different. He seemed to expect people to pay attention to him. He’d often interrupt patients trying to shoot pool by lying in the middle of the table. It made me smile when no one seemed upset at the delay in game.” A second American organization, Love on a Leash, also provides a framework and certification for people to provide pet therapy to others. Founded in the early 1980s in San Diego, the non-profit boasts chapters in nearly every state and more than 2000 members working as therapy teams with their dog, rabbit or cat. Two of those volunteers are Kokomo, Indiana-based Jaetta Ferguson, with her cats Flash and Frog, and her sister, Paula Blunt, with Harley and Davidson. “A lot of people don’t realize Pet Partners cats can do this,” Jaetta says. therapy cat Cosmo. “The key is they need to really like people and enjoy going out and being touched and talked to by strangers, and remain calm in those situations. Basically, a very social cat that likes everyone and anyone could be certified as a therapy cat.” In fact, social cats with disabilities can do therapy work, too—a topic that’s very close to Jaetta’s heart. Her Frog was born with a condition called cerebellar hypoplasia, comparable to cerebral palsy in humans. Though it took Frog a bit longer than Flash to become Love on a Leash certified, he enjoys the work just a much as his fur brother—and makes just as much of a positive impact. “We mainly visit nursing homes, and Frog is a regular cuddle bug with the residents,” she says. “While Flash is a social butterfly who wants to spend a few minutes with one person and then move on to the next, Frog will just lay happily in a lap forever. I notice, especially with residents and patients who may also have disabilities, the interaction with Frog, who has his own limitations, is special. And I get a lot of joy out of it, too.” That, in fact, is another remarkable outcome of the work done by therapy cats: the positive impact on the handler. “Just seeing someone’s face light up when the cats are moderncat.com

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there—it’s the most heartsame benefits is priceless. warming feeling imaginable,” To think I may have helped Jaetta says. “And to share that someway, even for a brief with my cats, who are my world. moment, makes it all worth it.” There’s nothing better.” For Janet, being part of a therapy Her sister agrees. Pet Partners team with both Cosmo and Tux has “You see, laughter, you see tears— therapy cat Tux. impacted her life profoundly. it’s very emotional in the best way,” says “My therapy pets have changed my life Paula. “I often hear, ‘Oh, I used to have a for the better,” she explains. “I tend to be shy cat when I was growing up … ’ and it’s nice and quiet but, when my therapy partner is with me, knowing that it may be helping that person to relive a I can comfortably talk to anyone and have given many talks happier time in their life. I go home feeling good every time.” promoting rescue and therapy animals. The first time I took The sentiments are similar for Beverly, who is now hoping Cosmo to visit the nursing home was an ‘aha’ moment for me. that her new kitten, Zane Grey, will follow in Junior’s paw Residents, staff and visitors wanted to meet the cat. It’s funny— prints and become a therapy cat. they often forget my name, but never Cosmo’s! I feel blessed to “There is nothing quite like being able to share your animal, have had him and Tux in my life, and hope to find another cat that has so many therapeutic benefits for you, with other who can enjoy therapy work with me.” n people,” she says. “To witness others reaping some of those

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BEHAVIOUR

6

THINGS THAT ARE OFFENDING YOUR CAT you Areertently g v inadotherin b your cat?

4. Lazy Litter Box Cleaning

Direct eye contact is perceived as a sign of aggression between cats, and they can read your loving stare as a similar threat. Instead, give your cat a long slow blink to show your affection.

2. Over-petting Petting stimulates a cat’s nervous system, and while some cats can’t get enough pets, others have a definite limit. It’s not that they don’t like you; it’s just that they feel stimulusoverloaded. If your cat walks away after one or two pets, give them that space and let them come back to you when they are ready. Sensitive cats would prefer to be pet on their sides, instead of down their spine.

3. Poor Litter Box Placement You want the litter box in the basement; your cat wants it in the kitchen. We wish we were joking—your cat wants his litter box right beside you, like in the kitchen or beside the couch. Find a middle ground. Hiding your cat’s litter box away will only increase the chance of improper elimination behaviours, so think carefully about where you put the box. For your cat, the higher traffic area, the better. Find a compromise you can both live with.

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We all get lazy sometimes, but keeping the litter box clean is an important part of being a cat owner. Clean the boxes once a day, regularly change out and refresh the litter, and keep the area around the box unobstructed, and you’ll have a happy cat.

5. Cutting Off Playtime at the Wrong Moment When you play with your cat using a wand toy or mouse, you are helping her satisfy her hunting instincts. If you dangle the toy in front of your cat, but don’t let her complete a “kill,” she’ll be frustrated and unsatisfied. Read more about how to play with your cat properly in Cat Whisperer Mieshelle Nagelschneider’s article “The All Important Play Sequence.” Find this must-read at moderncat.com/play-sequence.

6. When Your House is Too Dull (for them) Cats are natural climbers—they not only hunt in trees, but also use them to view their domain from on high and to evade predators. Give your cats vertical spaces designed especially for them and encourage them to use them. Whether they like climbing or surveying their territory, your cats will definitely appreciate it!

GEORGE WASHINGTON SUBMITTED BY CASEY

1. Staring

Are you guilty of these feline faux pas? Read on to find out…


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$

  Cosy and Dozy’s Chill gorgeously minimal cat shelf provides cats with the vertical space they desire—and it looks great! The curved shape of the wooden surface is designed to cradle your cat, the tweed blue cushion is snapped on so it won’t budge, and the brackets are spaced to attach to the wall studs so it’s super secure. etsy.com/shop/CosyAndDozy

8

$

  Next stop, Miami! We’re crazy about this limited edition cat bow tie with its Miami-inspired flamingo print! Handcrafted in Portland, Sweet Pickles Design’s removable bow ties for cats come in an array of wonderful, fun prints and easily attach to your cat’s collar for an instant style update, smiles guaranteed! sweetpicklesdesigns.com

Look

WHAT WE FOUND!

8

$

  This award-winning, revolutionary clumping cat litter is made of corn! Environmentally minded kitties will love that it’s biodegradable, flushable, and offers great odour control! A litter win! weekittylitter.com

Cool finds for cats & the people who love them FROM

19

$

This is it, the perfect toy for the playful yet sophisticated cat—Munchie Cat’s Sushi Set! These beautifully designed plush cat toys are perfectly sized for batting and carrying around and come infused with catnip or with internal bells for extra fun. An awesome gift idea! munchiecat.com

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FROM

74

$

Safely and comfortably transport your cat with a SturdiBag pet carrier. These in-cabin airline travel friendly carriers feature a patented, award-winning flex-height design that allows the carrier to fit into smaller spaces when necessary but expands to it’s full height when not constricted. sturdiproducts.com


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PHOTO CATCAFE.CA

SOCIALIZE

An adoptable cat at Café des Chats Montréal.

Where Lattés Meet Cat Cuddles By Elisabeth Fillmore

Cat cafés. You've likely heard of them. Probably wondered A latté at Vancouver's Cat about them. Well, we're here fe. to tell you to get yourself to your nearest cat café pronto! For the uninitiated, a cat cafe is just what the name suggests: a place to drink coffee and eat banana bread, like any ordinary café, but with one notable, added super-bonus: there are cats. The cats, of course, are the cat café's main attraction. They can be watched, played with, and, in some cases, even adopted. The concept of adding adoption to the cafés is a new one, and largely unique to North America. In 1998, when the world’s first cat café, Cat Flower Garden, opened in Taipei, Taiwan, it was less for adoption, and more to play with cats. In metropolitan Asian cities, many apartments aren’t pet friendly so a cat café fills a real need for quality kitty time desired by cat lovers unable to have pets of their own. Cat Flower Garden inspired a boom of cat cafés in Japan in the early 2000s, with the idea spreading to Europe, and, more recently North America. The first cat café in North America, Café des Chats Montréal (Cat Café Montreal), opened in 2014. Located in Montreal's trendy Plateau area, this quiet and warm café is a cocoon of comfort for feline aficionados. Yes, there are fancy snacks and cat-themed drinks, but house rules prioritize cat welfare—patrons leave their shoes at the entrance and sanitize their hands before entering. The cats’ independence and privacy is respected; patrons are

Inset from top: Vancouver's Catfe, Orlando's Cat Café, and Vancouver's Catfe.

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INSET PHOTOS MICHELLE FURBACHER

Cat Cafés—magical places where you can drink coffee, eat baked goods, and play with cats—are spreading across North America.


The scene at Oakland's cat cafe, Cat Town.

requested to watch the cats and quietly communicate with them before encouraging interaction. And all of the cats are adoptable, so if you fall in love, you could potentially bring your café buddy home. Now, it seems the cat café has officially arrived. In 2015, the phrase “cat café” was recognized by the online edition of the Oxford English Dictionary. Need further proof? Last July, Adele stopped by Vancouver, BC's Catfe, a cat-themed café that doubles as an adoption center for felines. The staff were understandably thrilled—and surprised. “Adele showed up, last night,” reported Leona Morrison, a purrista at Catfe. “We had no idea she was coming.” The Grammy-winning singer was with her son and they apparently fell for Larry, one of the cafés cats. Catfe, which has been open 15 months, has facilitated 304 adoptions to date. Along with adoptions, beverages with a cat twist are a common theme among North American cat cafés. The latté art at Orlando's Cat Café is a cute cat face rather than the leaf-like swirl that usually adorns the top of your caffeinated beverage, and other fun snacks and food are on offer. Due to US food regulations and hygiene laws, the café portion and the cat portion of the café are separated, but you can bring your coffees and cakes next door to the cats if you want to. In order to interact with the cats, patrons make reservations online so the cats are never overwhelmed with too many people, and pay a nominal fee (recommended donation of $8) to spend an hour with the cats. The café has also organized special events, such as screenings of TV shows, which allows patrons to watch TV while hanging out with cats. Ideal? We think so too. Purringtons Cat Lounge, a cat café in Portland, Oregon, goes even further with its cat programming. Once a month, Purringtons offers Purr Yoga. According to Purringtons, “yoga with cats is about joy, mixing energy, and making it easier to light the fire of compassion.” During each one-and-half hour yoga class, the asana, or active part of practice, spans the first hour and the remaining 30 minutes are spent allowing practitioners to “find their meditative seat and/or spend time to simply enjoy sharing space and playing with the cats.” Purr Yoga is $20 per session, and patrons rave about it, citing the welcoming atmosphere for all yogis, from novice to experts, as well as the joy of the 30 minutes of downtime with the cats, many of who come out to play after the session is finished. With their community-building element, cat cafés are definitely unique. They provide an opportunity to spend time with cats, socialize with fellow cats lovers, and perhaps even make new friends. And best of all, most offer a very cool, homey way for adoptable cats to find forever homes outside of the shelter system. Add to that a possible Adele sighting and what could be better? n moderncat.com

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! E M T P ADO Want more love in your life? Who doesn't! These cats are adoptable and ready to be your BFF, true love forever guaranteed!

Thes Cats Nee a Homee! d

Tina LOCATION: Nashville, IN—Brown County Humane Society BIO: A beautiful Russian Blue, Tina has the bearing and demeanor of old world royalty. Whether she's wearing her jewels while posing for an adoption promotion or relaxing in her kitty condo, she has the calm and welcoming personality of a true princess. When she bestows her affections, which she does readily, you feel as though you've been given a special gift. But Tina saves her real self for when you're alone, showing off her very playful and silly side. She may be royalty, but she's also just a girl having fun. This princess would love to be the queen of your heart! IS IT A LOVE MATCH? Call 812-988-7362 or email shelter@bchumane.org.

Tyler LOCATION: Raleigh, NC— Safe Haven For Cats

Meet Tizzy Bean!

LOCATION: Mission Hills, CA—Best Friends Pet Adoption & Spay/ Neuter Center BIO: Handsome orange boy Tizzy Bean is sure to make you smile! Once he’s acclimated to a new home, Tizzy Bean is playful and likes to snuggle up in bed. He loves being pet, especially when you rub his face, and will run right up to people whenever he hears laughter. Tizzy Bean would thrive with a patient, cat savvy adopter. Would that be you? IS IT A LOVE MATCH? Call 818-643-3989 or email adoptla@bestfriends.org.

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BIO: Tyler is a handsome young adult ready for fun! This active guy is as happy as orange Tabbies come. Tyler was pulled from a county shelter and brought to SAFE Haven, where he’s being loved and cared for but he’s ready to find his forever family. Do you have a cat-sized space in your house for Tyler? One of his favourite activities is looking out the window at birds and chirping back at them. This chatty cat can be very affectionate, but also likes to have adventures on his own and can often be found questing for catnip mice, jingle balls, and other fun toys. IS IT A LOVE MATCH? Call 919-341-4128 or email adoptions@safehavenforcats.org.


Avani LOCATION: Kauai, HI—Kauai Humane Society BIO: Avani is a beautiful two-year-old gray short hair with a lush velvety coat. She may seem shy when you first meet her, but once she’s had a few minutes to get to know you, her confident side comes out. Avani enjoys being petted and having her chin scratched and will reward you with a soft purr. And at two, she’s the perfect age because she’s past a lot of the kitten mischief but still a young girl. She currently has a roommate so would be fine living with another cat and would adjust best in a quiet home where she can get to know you at her own pace. She’s ready to really blossom in her forever home. Mahalo for giving Avani a chance! IS IT A LOVE MATCH? Call 808-632-0610 or email esther@kauaihumane.org.

Oprah LOCATION: Sarasota, FL— Cat Depot BIO: Right before Oprah and her four kittens were about to be euthanized at an overwhelmed highkill shelter, a Good Samaritan swooped them up and brought them to a vet. There it was discovered that Oprah was not only FIV positive but had been shot multiple times—by both a BB gun and a 22-caliber pistol. Amazingly, she had only suffered leg fractures. In late January, five-year-old Oprah arrived at Cat Depot, a nonprofit, no-kill, free-roaming center located in Sarasota, Florida dedicated to improving the destiny of homeless cats. During her initial exam it was found that she had been shot two additional times—once in the upper leg and once under her left eye. The bullets were removed and Oprah is now relaxing on the Adoption Floor waiting for her forever home. Could Oprah be your feline soul mate? This girl definitely deserves a loving forever home! IS IT A LOVE MATCH? Call 941.366.2404 or email info@catdepot.org.

Tavia

LOCATION: Buhl, Idaho— Magicats

BIO: Tavia was born on an Idaho farm in early 2014. She was a great farm cat—caught mice, helped around the place, and raised healthy kids. Life was good until her main human got very sick. He sent Tavia to Magicats, a consortium of foster homes run by what the Magicats team likes to call “nine old ladies who think something should be better for cats.” Magicats works with about 350 cats a year, many requiring a great deal of medical work. They’re all unpaid volunteers and need to raise about $60,000 every year, about half of which comes from a strong core group of people who quietly write the cheques. Yay team rescue! But back to Tavia... She has since learned that she loves being an inside-only kitty. She doesn't care much for overly familiar adult cats, so she’s been interviewing folks who'd like to have an only cat companion. A window seat from which to guard the yard would be nice, and so would a human to watch television with. If someone like Tavia is on your short list, she’d love to hear from you! IS IT A LOVE MATCH? Call 208-543-6193 or email magicats@filertel.com.

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STAR CAT

Star NCaEtR WIN

Thanks to our awesome Star Cat Contest sponsor GUND!

TRUE HEART

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By Rose Frosek | Photographed by Casey Christopher

S

ir Thomas Trueheart—or Tommy, for short—was living as a stray in a small community in the high Californian desert, living off whatever he could catch or dig out of trash cans and relying on the kindness of people who would sometimes feed him. It wasn’t great, but he was surviving, as they say. Then, dogs in the area started showing up with severe acid burns, the result of someone deliberately pouring acid on them. It wasn’t long before Thomas was seen in the backyard of a woman who was feeding him, half his face was melted away. He wandered for days with these horrific, infected wounds before the woman was able to scoop him up and take him to a vet. There it was recommended that Thomas, in terrible shape and also FIV positive, be euthanized, but the woman refused and instead reached out to a Los Angeles area-based group called Milo’s Sanctuary & Special Needs Cats Rescue. The all-volunteer team at Milo’s stepped in and had Thomas rushed immediately to their vet’s where he started treatment immediately. It was two days later that Michele Hoffman, president and co-founder of the non-profit, met Thomas and “fell madly in love with him at first sight,” she reports. “Even bandaged and on IV's he purred and wanted to be loved. I knew then we would fight for him and, no matter what, give him the chance he so deserved.” Thomas is now fully recovered and living the good life, residing with Michele and her four other personal cats. “He’s such a noble soul,” Michele says, and she would know. She

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started fostering 19 years ago when there was “no such thing as a ‘special needs cat’—the cats that had birth defects, illness, injuries, or were seniors were simply euthanized for being different or unwanted,” she recalls. It was these cats, the ones “falling through the cracks” that led Michele to create Milo's Sanctuary. She’s been filling that void for almost 13 years. She even went to vet tech school to learn all she could so that she “had the knowledge to make sure the cats got all the medical care they needed.” She is, as you may imagine, a well-informed and tireless cheerleader for adopting a special needs or senior cat. “The blind cats are the most loving and amazing cats I've ever met,” she enthuses. “They do everything any cat can do—they climb cat trees, they play, and their sense of smell and hearing are incredible. A senior cat is perfect in every way. They know their manners, they are sweet, and maybe spend a little more time sleeping but they play, groom, and are so beyond appreciative of a human to love them. I love the seniors because all they want is a warm lap, someone to love them, and they aren't full of kitten energy!” She does recommend that you make sure you have the time and

PHOTO CASEY CHRISTOPHER

Meet this sweet survivor and the remarkable woman behind his rescue


< Michele and Sir Thomas Trueheart

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finances to care for your adopted cat for the long term, saying, “remember, any animal you take into your home is a lifetime commitment and we all get old and need extra care!” But overall, Michele’s over arching message is this: “In my many years of doing this type of rescue, one of the many things I've learned is that ‘special needs’ doesn't mean a thing. Cats that are specially-abled don't know they are any different from any other cat. They are simply cats who might need a little extra care and patience but in return you'll have the greatest friend you could ever wish for!” n

> Get involved! You can help Milo’s Sanctuary by donating, sponsoring one of the cats in their Lifetime Care Program, volunteering, or doing a fundraiser—they've had people all over the world help raise funds. Just send them an email (miloscats@gmail.com) or reach out through social media (MilossSanctuary on Facebook). And if you're wanting to volunteer but aren't local, find a shelter or rescue in your area. There are lots of small groups all over the world that need help.

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KNOW YOUR CATS Just like people, cats dream. They start dreaming at about one week of age.

A cat can reach up to five times its own height per jump.

In relation to body size, cats have the largest eyes of any mammal.

A cat’s heart beats at almost double the rate of a human’s.

Cats are cognitively able to sense a human's feelings and overall mood.

Cats have over 100 sounds in their vocal repertoire. Dogs only have 10.

Cats are not native to North America. They were imported to the Americas from Europe as pest controllers in the 1750s.

Rumours abound where our feline friends are concerned: cats have nine lives, purr only when happy, and always land on their feet? All distinctly false. The following cat facts, however, are all entirely true but no less remarkable for it!

A cat’s nose print is like a human’s fingerprint—entirely unique to the individual.

Cats are unable to taste sweetness.

The Peterbald cat has webbed feet, making it extra easy for this breed to grip things.

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Cats have five toes on each front paw and four on each back paw. Cats can hear much higher pitched sounds than humans and can even hear sounds up to one octave higher than dogs can detect.

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The Ragdoll cat is well named. They will literally go limp, relaxing their muscles, when picked up by a person.


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Must-haves for you & your cat

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Advertise in moderncat! Call 1-866-734-3131 or email advertising@moderncat.com

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LAST LICK

Goof

llin' J ust chi Asia

Cooper

more cats in boxes!

Moon Pie

Don' t min d me...

Because we can't get enough of these cuties

Captain Scribble

Rumplestiltskin 80 moderncat

Squeaky SPRING · S UMMER 2017


Modern Cat Spring/Summer 2017  

Get yours paws on the Spring/Summer ‘17 issue of Modern Cat! We’ve packed the issue with everything dedicated cat moms and cat dads want and...

Modern Cat Spring/Summer 2017  

Get yours paws on the Spring/Summer ‘17 issue of Modern Cat! We’ve packed the issue with everything dedicated cat moms and cat dads want and...