1, 2017 - "Sleeping together is a euphemism for people,
but tantamount to marriage with cats." - Marge Percy
Gratuitous Kute Kittiness: Vintage cats.
Mewvie: Every life must have balance.
Feline Art: Cat sculpture
by Laurel Peterson Gregory.
is the proper way to introduce a new cat?
by Jennifer Vandreau
Q: What’s the proper way to introduce cats? We’re
adopting a new cat and already have one.
A: Thank you for pre-planning for your new
addition. I would suggest keeping them separate from each other
in the beginning. Put your new cat in a room with a litterbox,
food and water and allow the two felines to sniff one another
through the bottom of the door to get them used to each other.
I recently talked to a woman who has used an old screen door
that she puts up in a doorway when introducing a new cat and
it works well for her. You may want to rub a towel over your
new cat and then leave the towel in the other room where your
current cat can smell it. If you have time, you could play and
cuddle with one and then allow the other to sniff your hands
and clothing. If all seems to be going well at this point, short
supervised visits to see how they deal with one another face
to face is the next step. Keep in mind I have cats who have
lived together, literally, for more than six years and they
still hiss at each other. Sometimes, felines just don’t
get along. Really, as long as there’s no bloodshed, sometimes
it’s just a cat’s way to not tolerate another. If,
however, the dislike seems serious, you may want to consider
keeping them separate at all times – I also know of folks
who have cats who live in two different sections of the house
because they don’t get along. I think you’ll be
fine, though, especially since you’re considerate enough
to take the necessary steps to make the transition right.
2, 2017 - "Poets generally love cats--because poets
have no delusions about their own superiority."- Marion
Gratuitous Kittiness: Cats at war.
Mewvie: So many kittens.
Feline Art: Egyptian
bronze sculpture "Bast and kittens".
3, 2017 - "A cat doesn't 'roll' well with a change
of someone else's making."
- Carole Wilbourn
Anyone who’s spent time with a cat might agree with filmmaker Peter
Atencio when he says cats are the “15-year-olds of the animal kingdom.”
Dogs are eager to please their owners. Cats couldn’t care less.
But the kittens that play the title tabby in the new action-comedy Keanu
impressed their human co-stars so much, they’ve earned permanent
places in Hollywood.
“ They blew away my expectations,” said Atencio, director of Keanu
and a self-described “crazy cat man” who has three cats, two dogs
and a rabbit at home. “They took direction really well.”
Keanu tells the story of Clarence and Rell (Key & Peele stars Keegan-Michael
Key and Jordan Peele), two mild-mannered guys who pretend to be killer
criminals after a gang of thugs steals Rell’s kitten, Keanu. The
gangsters want to keep the kitten — now wearing gold chains and
a tiny do-rag — but Clarence and Rell will do anything, including
embracing their inner tough-guys, to get him back.
Seven brown tabbies, all rescued from animal shelters, played Keanu.
Trainer Larry Payne said animal roles generally require multiple actors
(or, in this case, cat-ctors), as each has its own personality traits
that contribute to the onscreen character.
Some kittens are better at hitting marks, for example, while others are
particularly skilled at sitting still and being adorable.
“There’s the run guy, there’s the snuggle guy, there’s
the meow guy,” Key said.
“It’s like assembling a team of bank-robbers,” Atencio added.
Payne initially trained three kittens to play Keanu, but they aged out
halfway through production.
“(They) had gotten big and not really kitten-like anymore,” he explained.
He adopted four more kittens to finish the film. All were about eight
weeks old when they began their monthlong training.
Besides learning the skills they’d need for their scenes — sit,
stay, go from one mark to another — the Keanus had to get used
to the noise and commotion of a movie set. Loud sounds typically make
cats run and hide.
“It’s a little bit easier with the kittens, believe it or not, than
with adult cats, because I don’t think they know any better,” said
Payne, who trains all kinds of animals for film and TV roles.
The kittens almost think, ‘This is what all kittens do:
We work on movies!’”
Payne plied the kitties with treats during training. Repetition and positive
reinforcement are key, he said. He uses off-camera buzzers or clickers — which
signify food is coming — to summon the cats to their marks.
He also used treats to get them to tolerate the dozen or so costumes
Keanu wears. Rell dresses his pet in a little fedora, goggles, a leather
jacket, a hoodie and sunglasses, among other things.
When the kittens weren’t on screen, they hung out in miniature
star trailers: deluxe animal carriers decked out with beds, toys and
water. When filming on location in New Orleans, all seven Keanus stayed
with Payne in his hotel suite.
Peele, who co-wrote Keanu, said a cat-napped kitten wasn’t part
of the film’s original premise. He and co-writer Alex Rubens knew
the main characters and their squares-in-gangland dilemma, but “it
didn’t feel like we had something that really justified why we
would put ourselves in danger,” Peele said. “That’s
where the kitten came in.”
Though he has a dog who sometimes wears outfits (“We (Peele and
wife Chelsea Peretti) got a Burberry outfit and we do have a little beach
hoodie. It goes deep.”), Peele said they made Keanu a kitten because “we
realized there’s not a lot of kitten movies.”
Payne, too, said he “never had the pleasure of doing an entire
kitten movie” in his 30-year career.
Atencio would do one again, saying, “I would love to do a kitten-based
horror or thriller.”
Maybe he’ll call on the kittens formerly known as Keanu? All the
film’s feline stars are staying in Hollywood. Though one went home
with Keanu co-star Tiffany Haddish to become a housecat, Payne said the
others will continue to act.
He and his colleague, April Mackin, each took two kittens home, and the
remaining two live at the California ranch where Payne keeps his menagerie
of acting animals.
“The fact that I was able to acclimate them to a movie-set environment
when they were real young, they become valuable for us for the future to do that
work,” he said. “They’re provided a great home. We have on-staff
vets. And they’re very spoiled, much like a normal star would be.”
4, 2017 - "If you would know what a cat is thinking
about, you must hold its paw in your hand for a long time." -
Gratuitous Kittiness: "She's right behind me, isn't she?"
Mewvie: Pepe sings da blues.
Feline Art: "Mia Bella" by Rachel Schlueter.
5, 2017 - "The way to keep a cat is to try to chase
it away." - E. W. Howe
Gratuitous Kittiness: A study in pink and gray.
Mewvie: Kitten rave.
Feline Art: Cat donuts.
cat, the asshole.
by Cari Wade Gervin
My cat is an asshole.
Kingsley is a fucking beautiful specimen of cat. He is a Maine Coon (possibly
not pure-bred), and he is gray and floofy and has an honest-to-God mane
(which inspired his name ... not the lush of an author). Pictures of
him on Instagram get comments like “Majestic AF” and “Sooo
handsome!” and “He’s magnificent!” (Those were
all on the same photo, by the way.)
And Kingsley is a fucking asshole.
If Kingsley were a boyfriend, he’d be the really hot guy who’s
great in bed but kinda dumb and a total jerk. But you keep hanging out
with him when he deigns to call, which is rarely. You know it’s
a kind of abusive situation, but when he stares at you with those soulful
eyes, you say yes to him every time. Except Kingsley does not take me
out to dinner. In fact, I have to pay for his every night. He does like
to curl up at my feet and keep them warm at night, but he refuses to
sit next to me in broad daylight. And while his emotional withholding
may not be intentionally manipulative, his physical abuse most certainly
No food in his bowl? SWAT.
Hungry for the cat drug that is Friskies Party Mix? SWAT.
It’s 4 a.m. and he’s awake and wants me to be too? SWAT.
Kingsley likes to smack me, hard, with one of his giants paws, typically
in my face. Having never owned an asshole cat before — my previous
was the sweetest and kindest cat to ever exist on the planet — I
had no idea that a 13-pound creature could hit me hard enough to leave
a bruise. But he can, and he does.
Kingsley also likes to swat the dog — although the dog probably
deserves it, given the way she chases Kingsley around the house. But
sometimes Kingsley will go berserker out of the blue — there really
is no other way to describe it — clawing and biting whatever gets
in his way, which is usually my leg. You’d think he wasn’t
neutered. You’d think he was feral. But I rescued him when he was
just a tiny ball of fuzz, maybe a month old, abandoned on the side of
Cats are normally smarter than dogs, inquisitive and curious. Not Kingsley.
He didn’t learn he could push open a cracked door until he was
4. Before that, he would just sit on the other side of it and cry. And
Kingsley also likes to talk to himself, walking around the house with
a repeated, “Mrrrow? Mrrow. Mrrow? Mrrow!” It’s not
his complaint cry, it’s just a little chatter. What he finds so
interesting are probably motes of dust floating in the sunshine. Maybe
his balls of fur floating through the air. Like most fluffy cats, Kingsley
sheds a lot. Sometimes he eats the clumps of fur he’s shed. He’s
But, then, Kingsley is such a beautiful cat, I can’t really blame
him for taking advantage of it. He knows that no matter what he does,
I’ll still pick him up and rub his floofy belly, even though he
hates to cuddle. He will do the cross between a hop and a prance around
the house sometimes, and he looks like he’s wearing pantaloons
of fur. It’s the silliest thing, and it makes me laugh every time.
Kingsley knows that no matter how many scars he accidentally gives me
when he affectionately nibbles on my hand — his way of kissing
me, I think — I won’t mind. He knows I’ll still let
him in my bed every night, no matter how much fur he leaves on the duvet.
My cat is an asshole, it is true, but he’s a lovable son of a bitch.
And he looks so great on Instagram — I couldn’t get rid of
him if I wanted to.