Catterbox – A Smart Collar That Translates Cat Meows into Human Speech

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Cat lovers of the world, rejoice! You finally have the chance to understand what your pet is saying thanks to a smart collar that can interpret feline meows and translate it into human speech. Aptly named ‘Catterbox’, the collar supposedly has a digital sensor that detects meows, and uses a special program to decipher the meaning behind them.

Developed by London ad agency adam&eveDDB, for Temptations cat treats, the invention comes preloaded with a dictionary of cat purrs, meows, and several other sounds to make the interpretation as accurate as possible. “We’re fascinated by cats, so we set out on a mission to get to know them better,” said Pete Simmons, global brand director of Temptations.

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Feline Hachiko Has Been Waiting for Its Owners in the Same Spot for Over a Year

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Cats are generally perceived as independent, but they’re also capable of displaying undying loyalty, a quality that is usually characteristic of dogs. Proving the point is this poor Russian cat that has been waiting for its owners for over a year at the exact spot where they abandoned him.

The cat was first photographed sitting on a manhole cover in Belgorod city, in the summer of 2015, by a man named Ostap Zadunayski. He then noticed the cat sitting at the same spot day after day, and curious to know more about this unusual behavior, he asked local residents for more information.

That’s when he discovered that the cat’s owners used to live nearby, but they sold their apartment last year and moved away, leaving the poor creature behind . Eyewitnesses told Ostap that they actually saw the cat run after the car as the owners drove away. Since then, it has been patiently waiting at the same spot for their return, living off the food offered to him by kind locals.

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Animal Lover Offers $30,000 Reward for Information on His Six Missing Cats

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Steve Rosen, a cat lover from Davie, Florida, is prepared to do whatever it takes to recover his six missing pet cats. Seven of his feline have mysteriously disappeared in the last year and only one has returned to him so far. Despite hiring a private investigator and offering a hefty reward of $30,000, he has been unable to find out what happened to them.

Rosen, a retired dentist and skin care entrepreneur, claims that his cats first started disappearing in March 2015, one at a time. “They’re like my children,” he said, speaking to NBC 6. “Imagine one of your children disappears and then a month or two later, another one disappears. Granted, I know they’re not human beings, a lot of people can’t relate to it, but those of us in animal rescue would know what I mean.”

All the cats were microchipped and had radio collars, so Rosen tried looking for them himself. When that didn’t work, he hired a private investigator and also set up a $10,000 camera system to catch the thief. Those options didn’t generate any leads either, so out of sheer desperation, he decided to announce a reward to anyone who could bring his cats back or supply information to their whereabouts. At first he offered a $20,000 prize, but later increased the amount to $30,000. “I’m relying on greed,” he said.  

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The Cat Boat – Amsterdam’s Floating Sanctuary for Cats

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The Cat Boat is one of Amsterdam’s most peculiar attractions. It’s essentially a sanctuary for cats, but what makes it special is that the rescued cats all live aboard a quaint little houseboat that bobs along the Herengracht canal. Although it wasn’t intended to be a tourist attraction, Cat Boat regularly receives about 4,500 visitors a year, most of whom are tourists missing their own cats while on vacation!

The origins of the Cat Boat can be traced back to 1966, when a kind woman named Henriette van Weelde took pity on a stray feline and her kittens and allowed them into her own home. Henriette soon became well known in the neighborhood for her kindness; people would regularly drop off rescued cats at her doorstep and she wouldn’t hesitate to take them all in.

This went on for about two years, after which Henriette simply didn’t have enough room to house more cats. So she came up with a solution – she put them all on an unused houseboat on the nearby Herengracht canal. The feline sanctuary was something of a ‘pirate’ ship for about two decades, operating without the knowledge of the authorities. But in 1987, it finally got a permit and was officially christened ‘de Poezenboot’ (the Cat Boat).

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Swedish Scientists Want to Find Out if Cats Meow with an Accent Based on Where They Live

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A cat with an accent sounds like a character in a whimsical children’s tale, but Swedish scientists are trying to figure out if domestic cats actually do have differing ‘dialects’ based on their geographical location. They also want to understand if the owner’s voice might have a role to play in the way cats’ meow. If they’re successful, the team of scientists from Lund University hope to put together a ‘dictionary’ of cat sounds.

“It seems that cats can consciously vary their intonation or melody constantly, perhaps to convey a certain message, perhaps to alter or increase the urgency of a message, or emotions,” said Susanne Schötz, a reader in phonetics and head of the project. “We want to find out to what extent domestic cats are influenced by the language and dialect that humans use to speak to them, because it seems that cats use slightly different dialects in the sounds they produce.”

The project, titled ‘Meowsic’ (short for ‘Melody in Human-Cat Communication’), will be carried out over the next five years. Schötz explained that she and her team will use phonetic analysis to compare cat sounds from two parts of Sweden – Stockholm and Lund – with differing human dialects, and figure out if the cats from these regions also have different dialects. They will focus on intonation, voice, and speaking style in the human speech that is addressed to cats, and also cat sounds that are addressed to humans.

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The Epic Tale of a Refugee Cat from Iraq That Got Lost in Greece and Reunited with His Family in Norway

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In a miraculous turn of events, a refugee cat that got separated from his family while fleeing Iraq has not only survived the treacherous sea voyage to Lesbos, but has also been reunited with his owners, now living in Norway.

Kindness towards animals is not new to the people of Lesbos – we’d previously written about a café in the Greek island that opens its doors to stray dogs at night. So when volunteers found the poor, frightened cat all alone in November last year, they took him in, naming him Dias and deciding to care for him until his real owners could be found.

A few volunteers recalled that there had been a refugee family that was separated from their pet cat on reaching Lesbos a week earlier, so they began their hunt by putting up posters at reception centers all over the island. They also set up a Facebook page called ‘Reunite Dias’ to help spread the word. In the meantime, Dias was left in the care of volunteers Amy Shrodes and Ashley Anderson, who had been working with refugees on the island.

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Istanbul Mosque Opens Its Doors to Stray Cats on Cold Winter Days

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A mosque in Istanbul is creating social media buzz with its cat-friendly attitude. Stray cats looking for warmth and shelter on cold winter nights are always welcome at Aziz Mahmud Hüdayi Mosque in the city’s historical Üsküdar district.

Photographs of Mustafa Efe, the mosque’s imam (leader), playing with the feline visitors have gone viral online. According to news reports, he started allowing stray cats inside the place of worship last year, to help them escape the cold weather. The imam is apparently well-known for his good humor, diligence, and kindness towards animals.

Efe posted a few pictures and videos of the cats on his own Facebook page and one clip actually shows a mother cat carrying her babies in her mouth, one-by-one, into the mosque. “Our mosque’s Friday guests,” the imam wrote. “A surprise awaiting us at the sermon today. The kitty has found the heart of compassion and mercy.”

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Nature’s Photoshop – Venus the Two Face Cat

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Meet Venus, a five-year-old tabby who’s become an internet sensation for her strikingly unusual appearance – half of her face is orange while the other is black!

The divide, right down the center of her face, seems too perfect to be true, so much so that you’ll be tempted to dismiss it as fake. It doesn’t help that her eyes are different of different colors as well, one green and the other blue. But on her website, Venus insists that she is 100 percent natural.

“No makeup at all,” she says. “Not even eyeliner. In the salon where I get my pedicures done Photoshop and spray paint aren’t even allowed.” And she also dismisses the idea that she’s a Chimera – a mythical lion-goat-snake creature. “It’s appalling, but hey, I didn’t invent the English language.”

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Japanese Company Bottles the Scent of a Cat’s Forehead

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Japanese online retailer Felissimo specializes in all things feline, but they really seem to be in love with cat odor. So much so that they’re releasing their second cat-scented product this year! First they came out with a cat paw-scented cream earlier this year, and now they’re introducing a special fabric spray that carries the smell of cats’ foreheads.

‘Mohu Mohu Odeko no Kaori’ (Fluffy Forehead Fragrance) Fabric Water comes in a 3.4-ounce bottle, priced at 1,293yen ($10.60). The company revealed that they developed the product after collecting extensive data through customer survey responses. Many of the respondents wrote that the smell of a cat’s forehead is like ‘the smell of sunshine’, ‘a futon that’s been dried in the sun’, and ‘sweet bread’.

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Woman Dedicates Her Life to Rescuing Abandoned Kittens

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Ever since she left university, Hannah Shaw has dedicated her life and career to rescuing kittens. The 28-year-old now calls herself a “neonatal kitten warrior” who specialises in fostering abandoned newborn cats that would otherwise end up dead at shelters in Washington D.C. In the past eight years, she’s saved at least ‘a few hundred kittens’ from this terrible fate.

Shaw revealed that her passion for animals began at the age of 12, when she decided to quit eating meat. Since then, she’s been involved in several campaigns to protect various species – right from farm animals to big cats in sanctuaries. She started working with kittens, specifically, about eight years ago after she happened to rescue a “teeny tiny kitten” from a tree. She nestled the kitty in her shirt, took her home, named her Coco, and raised her on her own.

The incident compelled Shaw to look more closely at the plight of kittens in her neighborhood. “After rescuing Coco, I started seeing more kittens outside,” she said. “I also started getting calls from people saying they’d found a kitten and were asking me for help. It became a very fast, cumulative thing where I began learning more about kittens while also honing my kitten eyes, so like anytime I was outside and there was a kitten within a thousand feet of me, I’d hone in on her.”

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Meet Loki, the Internet’s Favorite Vampire Cat

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Loki is the internet’s newest feline sensation – her pictures have gone viral and people can’t stop gushing over her evil vampire face. With over 50,000 followers on Instagram already, her distinctive appearance is only making her more popular by the minute.

Loki’s owner Kaetlyn Koch, from Portland, Maine, says that in real life, Loki is just as adorable as any other cat. She loves to to hide under bath towels and lay on her back for a rub. Her murderous stare only seems to emerge when she’s confronted with a camera lens. She looks downright scary with her fangs jutting out, even when she’s peeking out from under towels or lazing in Kaet’s lap. Loki’s eyes never seem to close, which is a bit of a mystery.

Kaetlyn didn’t know about the vampire look when she adopted the Siamese-mix cat from a shelter two years ago. “They didn’t give me many details about her looks,” she said. “They said it was healthy but she wasn’t able to close it (her eyelids). She’s been to the vet three times in the last year, and no one has made mention of her teeth or why she looks the way she does. Still a mystery.”

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Twinkle Tush – A Bejeweled Accessory That Hides Your Cat’s Bare Derriere

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Constantly having to look at your cat’s butt comes with the territory when you’e a pet owner. Luckily, however, now you don’t have to, thanks to a little accessory called Twinkle Tush.

Some people are apparently put off by the sight of a cat’s bare derriere, but now you can just cover that sucker up with some fake bling. Introducing the Twinkle Tush, a plastic jewel that hangs around the base of the feline’s tail and covers its butt. It was introduced to the world on July 8th, when the makers of Cat Crib, a cat hammock that attaches to chair legs, released a video of felines wearing the Twinkle Tush.Cats are usually don’t like it when you mess with their tales and will do anything to remove whatever you attach to them, but they seemed oddly comfortable wearing this concealing piece of plastic.

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Rare Condition Gives Cat Creepy Alien Eyes

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Matilda the cat is well on her way to becoming an internet sensation, thanks to her large, glassy, ‘alien’ eyes. Her mysterious appearance has earned her over 33,000 followers on Instagram and that number is about to skyrocket now that her photos have gone viral.

Sadly, Matilda’s story isn’t as amusing as it seems. The two-year-old tabby suffers from a rare condition that’s only getting worse as she grows older. Matilda’s anonymous owners, who refer to themselves as her ‘servants’, have revealed that she used to be pretty normal as a kitten, with the exception of having a ‘squinty eye’ from time to time.

“Matilda lives with her loving servants who include The Bearded Man, The Lady and Dog,” the servants write on Matilda’s official site. “She was born on Valentine’s Day in 2013 in a hoarder house in a small town, and was quickly picked up by a rescue society. When she found her forever home she was only 12 weeks old and the cutest, teensiest thing that anyone had ever seen.”

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Japanese Beauty Cream Leaves Your Hands Smelling Like Cat Paws

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Lots of people love cats, but how many would actually want to smell like one? Well, as it turns out, there’s a small army of cat-lovers out there who love the smell of cat paws. So much so that they’re willing to spend money on this Japanese hand cream that promises to lend them the irresistible whiff of feline paws.

The cream is the brainchild of Japanese online retailer Felissimo. The company claims that the unusual idea came about during a brainstorming session, when an employee suggested a cream that leaves the skin as soft and squeezable as a cat’s paw. Everyone at the meeting loved the idea, and eventually they got to talking about the smell of cats’ paws, which is apparently considered mysteriously soothing. So the company finally decided to market their cream with the same smell.

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Karl Lagerfeld’s Modelling Pet Cat Earns Way More Money than You

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German fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld is undoubtedly a rich man, but here’s a shocker – even his cat Choupette is richer than most people. The furry white feline managed to earn over three million dollars from just two days of modelling work. She is now believed to be the world’s most pampered cat – she has two maids, enjoys First Class travel around the world and even has her own Instagram account with hundreds of thousands of followers.

According to 81-year-old Lagerfeld, creative director of Chanel and Fendi, Choupette did two modelling assignments last year – one for Japanese cosmetics brand Shu Uemura, and the other for a Opel Corsa car calendar. Collectively, the two jobs earned her a whopping three million euro – a figure that professional supermodels might probably get paid for a much harder year’s work.

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