Independent, inquisitive, adventurous, curious, intelligent, elegant, mysterious. All cats have such wonderfully unique personalities, partly why they are such a popular choice of pet around the world. They can often be misunderstood and come across as aloof, but whilst cats do enjoy some alone time, they can also be very loving and playful, as well as have a calming effect on their human companions and overall are great animals to be around. That’s why August 8th they have their own day dedicated to celebrating all things cats, as well as providing an opportunity to raise awareness for cats welfare and learn more about ways to help and protect them.
Cats have been an important part of life since ancient Egyptian times. It’s well known that the Egyptians had an adoration and god-like worship of cats, but after the Egyptian Dynasty collapsed, cats grew in popularity around the world, not just as pets but for other reasons like pest-control too.
International Cat Day was created in 2002 by the International Fund for Animal Welfare and quickly caught on, such is the love for our feline friends in this country and has since expanded with many organisations, individuals and nations now participating. Organisations and charities take part by advocating for the well-being and safety of cats (locally and worldwide), including hosting fundraising events. You can take part on an individual level by attending such events, taking time to connect with your furry friends or even considering adopting a cat from a local shelter if you would like to enhance your life with a new best friend in the house.
If you already own a cat, International Cat Care are running a #becatcurious theme this year and are focusing on training for cats and their humans, as according to a survey 95% of cat owners want more advice on training their cat, with at least half saying they struggle to get their cat in a carrier. They offer free online events, Q&As, podcasts and easy to follow short training videos with cat behaviour expert Linda Ryan and her cat Olive. They are also asking cat companions to post photos and stories on social media using the hashtags #BeCatCurious for #InternationalCatDay, a fun way to participate in the day, and join in with the rest of the cat community!
Not only will taking the time to train your cat properly be beneficial to you (no more scratches on vet day, hooray!) but it will also strengthen the bond between you and your cat. Furthermore, cats have been proven to improve mental health, help relieve stress, anxiety and depression and reduce feelings of loneliness, so spending time with them on International Cat Day will benefit the both of you! If your cat is playful, here are some ideas for activities you can do with them on this day:
- Play hide and seek with them
- Buy a toy mouse to play with
- Blow bubbles (make sure they are non-toxic and suitable for cats)
- Set up a food treasure hunt or food toys… they will definitely appreciate this one!
- Teach them a trick
- Use your phone and try out a range of cat entertainment apps
The bond between human and cat is like no other and this day is a way of commemorating that bond, as well as strengthening it. Make sure to check out the amazing cat charities and organisations on this day and participate however you and your cat wish to, make this day all about them and I’m sure they’ll appreciate it in their own way!
Chloe is a content creator with a passion for writing, photography, graphic design and making music. She loves experimenting with creative media and has a desire to work in the music and media industries in the future.