Caturday: If Words Could Kill

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News stories about cats being killers last week turned tabloid tawdry. The headlines begin benignly enough:  Behaviour of House Cats Under Scanner but quickly escalated to The Kitty Cam Shows Your Outdoor Cat Could be a Killer or Kittycam Study Shows Cats Are Virtual Killing Machines But then it ramped up a notch to Kitty Surveillance Cams Show Cats Are Total Murderers and the sensationalistic Cats Are Killing Everyone And Everything

All covered the same story with various degrees of journalistic skill or lack there of. Words whether spoken or written have the power to injure or influence. Cats have been maligned for centuries. Yes, of course cats are hardwired to hunt and always have been. The last thing we need is to give uninformed idiots reasons to dislike cats or worse, suffer the consequences of bad publicity.

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This article Not All Cats Are Killers explains the kitty cam experiment and found 44% of cats didn’t kill prey. Sure they might have nibbled on bugs or lapped up puddle water. So what? This is no revelation. These were ordinary well fed house cats who probably weren’t hungry. My only takeaway was a curiosity at what my cat Odin would do with a kitty cam. Under safe supervised conditions cats can and do thrive being indoor/outdoor cat as our four are.

And that’s my rant for the year and a slightly different Cat Saturday or Caturday post. Merlin says to turn a blind eye.

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He’s had a good week except for one hissy fit late one night. Some days he likes Odin and other days Merlin turns into a caterwauling horror out of the Exorcist when Odin jumps into bed for some cuddling with me. Odin slinks off and if the poor boy wants his cuddles, we have to coordinate it when Merlin nods off. My arms are reserved for the rest of the night for Merlin and all is well. Gris Gris and Domino spent much of the week snoopervising from a safe distance the neighbor’s noisy excavation for a swimming pool. Their project (happily for us) originally planned to complete in June ran into a permit snag and we enjoyed a relatively quiet summer.

Breaking news: Gris Gris who never sits on anyone’s lap was seen on his cat daddy’s lap. I think it had something to do with treats but still…

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On a much lighter note, I came across the most delightfully zany cat crazy blogger called Cute in Korea. A post about this cat cafe will make you smile.

27 thoughts on “Caturday: If Words Could Kill”

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  2. My cats always have been and always will be indoor cats.

    Beyond the media sometimes being dumb about what and how they report (I’m a citizen journalist, so I can say that!) there are still HUGE biases against cats in our society. To some, they are subtle, but to those of us who are cat people, it’s really obvious that cats are second-class kittizens.

    I tend to be very protective of my cats, so I keep them indoors, but I always make sure they have plenty of window access for “hunting.” 🙂

  3. It is sad that “journalists” can take a simple study and turn it into mass murder. I mean heck – my house cats (who don’t go outside) give the occasional bird the eye but don’t even bother to catch flies that get in. For all those that freak out about cats killing birds/lizards/whatever – consider how many creatures and plants had to die to put up your house….and then leave the cat population alone. Thank you for posting this…..

  4. I hope Odin gets some cuddling time, too. It’s sometimes hard to please both of my boys at the same time when they both want my attention in a different way. It must have been very happy surprise to see Gris Gris on his daddy’s lap 🙂

  5. Your husband sure has the cat whisperer vibe – love the photo of Gris Gris on his lap. I’m smiling about Odin having to sneak in his cuddles, but it’s a bittersweet smile. It can’t be easy meeting everyone’s needs.

  6. Yay! Three cheers for Gris Gris! I have one who won’t come near my lap; although, if the truth be told, I think she wants to get in on the love. Gris Gris gives me new hope. Maybe, one day, Misha will hop up on Mama’s lap.

  7. This is especially irresponsible since, unfortunately, many people only read article headlines these days. Not to mention they hardly check sources and the results of a quoted research.
    Sigh.
    Better go back to cuddling our lovely kitties. The papers that published such “stories” deserve to stay where they belong, in the litter box.
    Have a nice Caturday! Gris Gris, Merlin and Odin are adorable on these pics!

  8. Some people just love to sensationalize! Of course cats kill. It’s what they are hard wired to do. Why is that a surprise? Because pet cats are well fed, they don’t often eat what they catch and that can seem unnecessary and a bit cruel, but it’s what makes them what they are!

  9. Those headlines are a DISGRACE and I’m appalled that any so-called “journalist” would write them. You are right that they will give people who already hate cats even more “ammunition.”

  10. Our mom got REAL hot under the collar at the irresponsible, sensationalist journalism that was going on here. SERIOUSLY?!? And of course no one really pointed out the other results of the study, like MOST of the “kills” were worms and insects. And how many times the unsupervised outdoor cat crossed busy roads. *sigh*…. Now we gotta go calm her down again….

    But seeing Merlin’s picture helped. She thought it was BEEYOOTIFUL!

  11. Alas, tis true, some of us are true hunters in the modern jungle. I am a merciless hunter that mostly kills voles and mice and the occasional rat that may intrude into the neighborhood.My momma doesn’t like my killer ways but she understands them perfectly. Other than the occasional bird kill (momma says I should take down the over-abundant,screeching Starlings instead of the pretty song bird)I take care of possible rodent overpopulation around my house and neighborhood.If my momma sees me with something she can rescue she does but mostly she accepts my instincts as a survivor.
    My little sisfur only hunts bugs and butterflies and the occasional wee mouse that I bring in live to try to teach her my skills. The good thing is that unlike some of our canine friends that have gone amok we have never been known to harm livestock…..only the creatures that nature herself created us to hunt as prey.
    There ,I have bared my killer soul and I am still the beautiful,sweet,loving,gentle big brother to my sisfur and momma’s protector (as I will chase dog,cat or any other from my yard) Luvs to all Skeeter >^..^<

  12. We loved Janea’s column on the cat’s as killers too. I think she had some good information as far as actual numbers. Given that the numbers were so low, it is potentially too small to be a statistically significant study–I know if acupuncturists did a study like that, “real” medicine would laugh at them…

  13. It’s a known fact the cats are the cause of all the ails in this world – unemployment, war, poverty, illiteracy…. you name it!! All joking aside, you are right, cats have been maligned for centuries and all we can do is try to continue to dispel the myths with intelligent commentary.

    Regarding Merlin yowling at Odin… boy, that is my Jazz to a tee at night when one of the other cats tries to cuddle with me!

  14. Cats are just baby lions. They are the king of the small prey night jungle. Our boys finally caught the mouse under the stove last year; they bopped it and played with it, until I flushed it.

    Some people are just prejudiced against cats for no reason.

    Love the cat cafe. I’ve heard from Korean friends that cats are popular now – after centuries of disliking cats.

    Such a great photo of Gris and cat daddy.

    Merlin and Odin are always adorable.

    Going back to sleep. Time to snuggle with Ched. Again.

  15. I’ll never understand why so many vile misconceptions about cats continue into the 21st Century. I’d like to see programs in schools where young children are exposed to cats at an early age. Then, maybe, a whole new generation would come of age who would know the truth about cats and this nonsense would end.

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