To Kill a Mockingbird?

Did you know that one of the greatest menaces to birds is our cats? In fact, “our beloved cats are killing machines that take down some 200 million birds a year in Canada” and have even become the number one killer of birds in Canada.

Cats take down 200 million birds in Canada a year, making them the leading human-linked cause of death for birds, a 2013 Environment Canada report found.
A tragic example of this age-old phenomenon. Source: cbc.ca

Finally, we can relate to this guy.

As a result, Nature Canada has launched a new initiative: Cats and Birds, in an attempt to save the lives of these precious creatures.

They provide a wonderful resource for cat owners who want to ensure their cat is both safe and happy (stay tuned for an exciting advice column on our sister blog, Cat-O-Log!).

World-renowned Canadian author and activist Margaret Atwood has joined the cause and has written what appears to be an extremely epic graphic novel, Angel Catbird, in support of the movement.

Apparently, predation is no longer an acceptable form of feline expression/existence…

Read the full article here.

Do you have a story about a cat-bird confrontation? We’d love to hear from you, comment below!

Return of the Kitty

The age-old song about the cat coming back (the very next day), it would seem, holds some truth. Recently, an article in the UK publication The Mirror, featured the remarkable story of Dizzie, a cheeky calico who miraculously reappeared six years after vanishing. His owners must have thought he was a goner. Yet thanks to microchip technology, Dizzie was reunited with his family, when he turned up half a mile (approximately 1km) from home. Apparently, he just couldn’t stay away.

Coming from a publication with a less-than-savory reputation, one cannot fault the article’s lack of depth or research. It reads as a straightforward and simple telling of the 5 golden Ws of journalism, without looking at a possible broader context or any potential thought-provoking ideas (e.g. Statistics on stray cats in Britain, microchip technology, the odds of this incredible event occurring etc…). However, this heartwarming tale fills the reader with hope and optimism for a brighter future for kitties everywhere.

The word cat appears five times in the article (including captions and title)  and the title even contains a mildly clever play on words: paws for thought. The only other cat-related terms of note are stray and moggy (which appears to be a British term of endearment for cat). The less cat-specific term pet is also used. 

Surprisingly (or unsurprisingly, depending upon your purrspective), The Mirror website has dedicated an entire page to cats, featuring local news articles, entertaining videos and cat-related posts trending on the Internet. The Mirror should be applauded for this trendsetting subsection on its website, as it provides ease of access for cat enthusiasts.

Read the full article here.

Kitty Beats

Kitties made news in November in The Toronto Star when they inspired a composer to create music he thinks will revolutionize the meowsic world. David Teie has stumbled upon what he believes to be music to cats’ ears.

A composite photo of David Teie, who is composing music that he believes cats will actually enjoy.
Photo source: thestar.com

The article references such notable historical figures as Beethoven, Leonardo Da Vinci and Barry White, which speaks to the majestic magnitude of these cat-targeted compositions.

Cat appears 19 times throughout the article, including in the words “communicate” and “replicate”. Disappointingly, feline, appears only twice. Other cat terms of note that are featured include Burmese, meowpurr, and tail.

This lighthearted, yet factual article leaves readers (and their kitty companions) yearning to hear the sweet sounds of “Music for Cats“.

Read the full article here.

Lexicon

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Here you will find a useful list of terms to help you decipher the kitty code found throughout this page. Comment below with your suggestions for kitty terms!

cat [kæt] – a formidable beast which dwells inside the homes of poor suckers and feasts upon all manner of prey contained therein, enslaving its inhabitants through various means of manipulation and operant conditioning. Found inherently within some words (1), but can also be used as an affix (2) to enhance meaning.

Ex.

(1) Communication is very important in human – feline interactions.

(2)
a. Catmas is the most wonderful time of the year.
b. The rebel forces attempted an unsuccessful coup d’écat.

claw [kla] – a sharp, retractable implement used by cats to climb trees/legs, destroy newly reupholstered furniture and slice open their unsuspecting prey. Can be used as a standalone (1), or as an affix (2) to enhance meaning.

Ex.

(1) The corporation was threatened with a clawss-action lawsuit.

(2)
a. The school play was a complete clawtastrophe.
b. The town recently passed a new byclaw prohibiting dog ownership.

feline [filajn– referring to the species in question. Can also be used to describe someone who is pro-cats (felinist). Also often seen in pun form.

Ex.
(1) I’m feline fine today. [I’m feeling fine today]

fur [fər] – A thick, luscious and often soft coat which ends up covering all furniture, clothing and can even make its way into soups, salads and hot meals. It has been called the “glitter of lonely people”. Can be used as a standalone (1) or in a word to enhance meaning (2a), often in adjective form (2b).

Ex.
(1) I slept fur 8 hours last night.

(2)
a. The player was called off the ice for interfurence.
b. I finished reading William Faulkner’s The Sound and the Furry.

hiss [hIs] – The warning sound made by cats when they have been subjected to force-cuddles to the point of losing their cool. Can be used as a standalone (1) or as an affix to enhance meaning (2)

Ex.

(1) I really like hiss new collar.

(2) Now don’t go into hissterics!

kitty [kIti] –

litter [lItər] –

Ex.

I have litterally 25 cats.

meow [miao] –

Ex.

(1) Meow, class, we will watch a short video.

(2)That’s simply ameowzing!

paw [pɑ] –

Ex.

The pawsecutor rests his case.

pounce [paowns] –

purr [pər] –

Ex.

It was a simply purrfect evening.

pussy [pəsi] –

tail [tajl] –

whisker [wIskər] –

to be clawntinued…