Some see it as ruthless propaganda proliferated by cat owners. Others see it as a prelude to the events portrayed in the movie Cats and Dogs, where cats fight dogs to overthrow them from their traditional roles as ‘man’s best friends’ and take over instead. Whatever the origins, one fact is amply clear; cats rule the internet. Now dog owners may be fuming as they read this, cuddling their pet canines as if to reassure them of their cuteness, but the truth remains. The internet is captivated by felines, and this is not just a personal opinion, a recently published study revealed there are more cat photos out there than there are selfies. Cat celebrities are a result of this feline-worshipping online culture, which demands and insatiably devours an endless stream of photos and videos put out of these stars by their owners, who, for the majority, prefer to stay out of the limelight themselves. Here’s a look at some of the internet’s favourite cats:
1) Probably the most famous feline internet celebrity to date, Tardar Sauce, first became famous when a photo of her, wearing her trademark grumpy expression, went viral. Netizens immediately took to her and christened her, quite unoriginally, as Grumpy Cat, and the rest, as they say, is history. The Grumpy cat meme very quickly became popular, used across various social media platforms such as Facebook and Reddit. The adoring public was soon clamouring for public appearances, and the owner, Tabatha Bundesen, obliged. Grumpy’s popularity is such that the owner even had to take a leave of absence from her work to manage her schedule. Reportedly, a movie contract is also in the pipeline.
It seems that the cat’s appearance is actually the result of a genetic condition known as feline dwarfism, and ironically, the cat famous foe being ill tempered, is actually quite pleasant natured in real life.
2) When Lil Bub’s owner first posted her photos to Tumblr, he did not know just how famous his derpy cat would become. Lil Bub is a perma-kitten, implying that she will always remain kitten sized. Her pecular appearance is the result of a genetic anomaly that causes dwarfism and disformity of the lower jaw, due to which, her tongue is always hanging out, Lil Bub is very active publicly and does paid meet-and-greets, where hundreds of people, including several celebrities, line up to meet her. She has even starred in an award willing documentary titled ‘Lil Bub and Friendz’. Most of the money raised from her appearances goes to animal shelters and various other charities.
3) Maru, a Scottish Fold cat from Japan, started his career as internet celebrity with a photo-blog started by his owner, who does not like to appear publicly, for the sole purpose of publishing photos of Maru. A year later, Mary became very popular on YouTube where videos were put up of Maru performing various adorable antics, mostly jumping into boxed too small for him and sliding across floors. Maru has also been the subject of two photobooks and a compilation DVD, and has also appeared in various commercials.
4) Snoopy the cat is probably the most famous feline in China. This exotic shorthair with the huge brown eyes and short snout is an Instagram celeb. Her cuddly appearance and calm countenance haven’t hurt her popularity either.
He started out as a show cat, before his owner started posting his pictures, first to Weibo, and then Instagram and Facebook, where fans also share fan art created in honour of the cat.
5) If cats ever decided to take over the world, surely Colonel Meow would have been the one to lead them glory. A Himalyan-Persian crossbreed, who also held the record for longest fur on a cat at 9 inches, the Colonel could often be seen plotting world domination by overthrowing the human in photographs taken by his human family, whom he referred to as his Slave Beasts. His Instagram feed described him as a prodigious Scotch drinker, in keeping with his image as a fearsome, formidable aspiring Dictator, and was followed by thousands of humans, who he referred to as his ‘minions’.
Unfortunately, the Colonel passed away late last year after a period of illness. Right now he is, without doubt, busy drinking Scotch and plotting his dominion over the Great Litter Box in the Sky.
6) Scarface is a Singapore celebrity with a huge head, covered in numerous scars from fights with other street cats, which is how he got his name in the first place. Scarface had to be removed from the original locality where he lived due to numerous complaints from human inhabitants regarding the noise he made when indulging in his gangster activities. He was rescued and treated for the wounds on his face. Once healed, his photos were posted to Facebook, where he quickly amassed a large fan following. Fondly known as Scar, his page says his favourite activities include eating, sleeping and bullying the dog. His scars have not deterred him and he has participated in several pageants and has also been featured in several magazines.
7) Another Instagram celebrity, Hamilton the Hipster cat gained popularity due to his glorious white moustache. He is a rescued cat adopted by his present human, and going by his current popularity, his previous owners probably rue the day day the ever abandoned him.