Are You Resting? Cats are Working!
Everyone knows that cats have their own holidays: this is the World Cat Day (August 8), and our Russian holiday, which is celebrated on the first day of March. However, do you know that today, June 17, is also the "cat's day"? And even if it is celebrated not all over the world, but only in one country, but this is a special holiday, because it is dedicated to hardworking cats. Yes! Real cat lovers know: this is a mistake to consider the cats as lazy and indifferent animals, they know how to work just like people! That is why June 17 is the National Take Your Cat to Work Day in the USA. An excellent occasion to remember the cats who became famous for their labor exploits.
Mayor Cat. This magnificent feline lived a long and glorious life - as many as 20 years. And he spent a significant part of them in a very responsible post: the cat named Stubbs worked as a mayor of Talkeetna (Alaska, USA) for 16 years. He was of humble parentage: in 1997, an employee of one of the stores found the cat in a nearby parking lot, in a box with other abandoned kittens. The future mayor was tailless and squeaked desperately, and the kind girl took him home. In the same year, local residents, dissatisfied with the city authorities, nominated the crippled animal for the post of mayor. And although the nomination was a joke, the cat received an absolute majority of votes (900), and in 2012 he was re-elected. In 2017, the Mayor Cat died of old age at the age of 20, having managed to escape to the outskirts of the city in a garbage truck. Still, Stubbs was anordinary cat - for example, he was very fond of water with catnip.
In the service of Her Majesty. Dogs that help police officers in their difficult work are known to everyone. However, the cats are not far behind! In England, for example, cats are very successful in the police. For example, in the summer of 2016, the police department in the city of Durham recruited a cat named Mittens. Do you know why? Because a little girl asked for it! The five-year-old Eliza Adamson-Hopper wrote to the law enforcement officers as follows: “A police cat will do a good job, because he hears well, and feels danger. The cats know their way home very well, and therefore they can bring the police to the place". How could they refuse such a request?!
In England there are other cats in the service of Her Majesty: their duties include "providing psychotherapeutic support to police officers" and creating a favorable atmosphere in police stations. In the city of Huddersfield, this is done by a cat named Oscar; in the city of Skegness - his colleague Smokey. True gentlemen!
Ship Cat. During World War II, at least one cat lived on every British ship: war was war, and no one canceled catching mice. However, you can just catch rodents, or you can do it really heroically like Simon the cat did, who was awarded the Maria Dickin Medal. This is Britain's highest military award for animals, a kind of the Victoria Cross, and Simon received it for helping to rescue sailors during the Chinese Civil War in 1949-1950. The ship, where the brave cat served, was cut off from the main fleet forces for 101 days, and all this time the cat was protecting food supplies from the invasion of vicious mice and rats. He was even wounded during the shelling, and when he returned to his native Plymouth, he was greeted as a hero. Unfortunately, three weeks after returning to England, Simon died and was buried with military honors in Ilford (Essex).
Stationmaster. Let's go from Foggy Albion to the Land of the Rising Sun, and there is an excellent cat reason for this: in the Japanese city of Wakayama there is a cat that officially serves as the head of the railway station. The cat's name is Tama, and thanks to her work in this position, the passenger traffic at the station has grown by as much as 10 percent. Well, everyone just wants to see a station keeper cat, it's an amazing thing, is not it? If we translate this percentage into absolute figures, the growth is about 2.1 million people annually, and this brings an additional billion yen to the city treasury, or about 11 million US dollars. Cats are not only touching, but also bring real profit!
Simply Space. Do you think that only dogs have been in the space orbit? No! Cats are no worse than their barking friends, and they have also participated in space programs. So, at the beginning of the 60s of the twentieth century, a special program was carried out in France, where cats-astronauts took part. A black and white cat was the most famous of them, which made its flight on October 18, 1963. The Veronique AG1 launch vehicle with a cat on board ascended to an altitude of 97 miles (about 160 km), where the capsule with the animal separated. With the help of a parachute, the cat returned safely to Earth, where it was found by the search team. At first the name of the brave cosmonaut, like those of her other “colleagues” in the program (there were 15 of them in total), was not disclosed; later the British press called her an astrocat, and only then she got the name Felicette. Happiness, in a word.
Postcats. In the 70s of the XIX century, a unique ... cat post worked in Liege. Seriously! About forty cats brought up by representatives of the Belgian Society for the Elevation of the Domestic Cat, delivered letters to the homes of local residents. The country citizens liked this idea; they wrote a lot in the newspapers about the postcats, and gradually the cat delivery service began to work throughout Belgium. But, alas, postal companies later decided that cats would deprive people of jobs, and now cats, if they live at post offices, it is solely in order to fulfill their centuries-proven mission - to catch mice. It's a pity. Maybe the Russian Post will remember the long-standing initiative of its Belgian colleagues? May be letters will come faster...
Museum Cats. Until 1960, about a hundred cats lived in one of the most famous museums in the world - the British Museum, and all of them were homeless before settling in the museum's storage facilities. There is information about this in the museum archives: one of the service notes says that a cat gave birth to kittens right on the shelf with books, and the other - that it happened on a cargo cart. The management of the British Museum did not like all this, and it was decided to expel the cats from the respected cultural institution. And even exterminate! And they were saved by a simple cleaner Rex Shepherd, who founded a society for the protection of cats. All the male and female living on the territory of the museum were neutered and sterilized, and calmly continued to do their job - they protected the museum from the spread of rodents. History remembers the names of some of them: for example, Susie became famous for her ability to catch pigeons in the air, and Pippin and Poppet were able to somersault on command. Now there are no cats servicing in the British Museum, only a few stuffed animals remained in the halls...
But there are cats in the St. Petersburg Hermitage! There were, are and probably will be, but only lazy ones have not written about them.
Musician Cat. The cat named Quetzel won the Paris Music Competition prize for the melody he played with his paws. It is not known for certain what the cat wanted to compose - a symphony, some canzona or just a song, but when walking on the piano in his master's house, he extracted a certain harmonious melody from the instrument. Hearing it, the musician Morris Moshe Cotel memorized the musical sequence, wrote it down, and then sent it to the composers' competition. As a result, the main prize went to Quetzel! By the way, there was no deception: the jury found out that the author of the melody was a cat only after the winners were announced.
As you can see, cats do well in various professions. And in various countries! So isn't it time to make the National Take Your Cat to Work Day an international holiday?