The Blog (archived)

Category: Cats

More Amazing Cats

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Buffy, no relation to any of the cats in this postHere are some more examples of cats who have shown that they are capable of more than we usually expect.

Sky News reports of a two-year-old male cat called Kuzya who crossed Siberia by himself. Kuzya was on a summer holiday in Yakutsk, eastern Russia, when he ran away from his family. After weeks of searching, the Efremov family returned home to Olenyok without him. Three months later, Kuzya arrived tired and thin at his family’s house, having trekked 1300 miles across Siberian woods, hills, rivers and lakes. My earlier post on "Amazing Stories of Cats Coming Back" has more examples.

In Columbus, Ohio, according to USA Today, Gary Rosheisen fell out of his wheelchair and was unable to get up or call for help. Police received a 911 emergency call from Rosheisen’s phone, but with nobody on the line. After calling back and getting no answer they went to the apartment to check things out. Gary Rosheisen was found on his bedroom floor, but in the lounge room police found his cat Tommy lying next to the phone. Their only plausible explanation is that Tommy the amazing cat dialled 911, probably using the speed dial button next to the speakerphone button. This didn’t surprise his owner, who’d once attempted to train Tommy to dial 911.

Many people still think animals operate purely by conditioning and are incapable of conscious thought. That Ohio man and Russian family, and anyone else who has owned cats, would know there is more to our furry friends than meets the eye!

Links: Cat Crosses Siberia from Sky News and Cat Called 911 To Help Ill Owner from USA Today


Amazing Stories of Cats Coming Back

Friday, March 2, 2007

Once again a delightful cat story has made the news, reminding us of the incredible abilities of cats to find their way home over long distances.

Molly the cat, from Waikato TimesThe cat is Molly (pictured), and her amazing journey was reported here in New Zealand’s Waikato Times the other day. When Molly’s mother and son owners took her away with them on a long weekend visit to the Coromandel Peninsula, Molly went missing. After two days of fruitless searching it was assumed that Molly had gone bush to become a wildcat, and her owners returned home cat-less.

Last Sunday, after a journey of 150 km over four months, Molly delighted everyone by turning up at her Hamilton home - a home she had only lived in for three weeks prior to going missing.

As impressive as this was, other cats have travelled much further in finding their way home. The top 10 longest distances travelled by lost cats are:

  1. “Sugar” - 1,500 Miles in 14 months. Anderson, California to Gage, Oklahoma, USA
  2. “Minosch” -1,485 miles in 61 days. Turkey to northern Germany, 1981
  3. “Silky” - 1,472 miles in one year. near Brisbane to Melbourne, Australia, 1977-78
  4. “Howie” - 1,200 miles in one year. Gold Coast to Adelaide, Australia, 1978
  5. “Rusty” - 950 miles in 83 days. Boston to Chicago, USA, 1949
  6. “Gringo” - 480 miles. Lamarche-sur-Seine to the Riviera, France, 1982-83
  7. “Muddy Water White” - 450 miles in three years. Ohio to Pennsylvania, USA, 1985-88
  8. “Murka” - 400 miles in one year. Voronezh to Moscow, Russia, 1988-89
  9. “ChiChi” - 300 miles in three weeks. New Orleans to Blanchard, Louisiana, USA
  10. “Pooh” - 200 miles in two years. Long Island to South Carolina, USA, 1973-75

Their stories can be found here. Two of these cats managed to find their owners in places they had never been to before, which to me suggests that cats are at least as clever as dogs.



Monday, January 1, 2007

Last week my parents cat, Oliver, was accidentally shut inside my dad’s van - he must have sneaked in un-noticed for a nap. Soon afterwards the vans horn sounded continuously, and Oliver was found standing on the driver’s seat with his paws resting on the steering wheel, making the horn sound. If he hadn’t attracted attention in this way, he could have literally roasted inside the vehicle as it was a hot day.

razletterbox.jpgThis behaviour is on a par with our previous cat, Rastus (pictured). She was known to occasionally knock on a closed glass door to be let in - her claws tapping the glass made just enough noise to be noticed.

Also last week, in Cairns, Queensland, a kitten named Tinny saved a family from a house fire (see news story). By clawing on the face of the son whose room was on fire, and meowing loudly, the kitten alerted the family to the fire and enabled them all to escape. His early intervention not only saved the family but also spared the home from major damage. The family dog didn’t start barking until the fire engine arrived.

When people talk about clever attributes in animals, dogs get most of the glory. But as these few examples show, cats should never be underestimated!