January 12, 2022 the 10-Year Anniversary for The Catnip Times. It’s hard to believe that 10 years ago, I started this little blog thinking no one would read it. Today, The Catnip Times is read in all 195 countries around the world and I’ve helped dozens (if not more than a hundred) non-profits/rescues, bloggers and pet brands get their messages out to all of you!
I thought it would be fun to take a stroll down memory lane. So I went through some 600+ blog posts and thousands of social media posts to uncover what made cat news over the last 10 years… will you come along with me?
The Year in Cat in 2012
My very first blog post was about cats peeing outside the litter box (I just rewrote it here). It was the first idea that came to mind because I’ve personally dealt with cats that did this, but also, it’s one of the top reasons that cats are relinquished to shelters. In 2012, I was also posting “Cat of the Week” and “Joey The Garden Cat” was popular. He was a cat that lived on a TV station set in Arkansas. We launched our Facebook page in August 2012.
The Year in Cat in 2013
In 2013, I published about 60 blog posts and invited a number of fellow cat enthusiasts to contribute to the blog. “Cat Island” in Japan was a top story and I wrote several stories about cat purring including how cat purrs can help heal humans.
The Year in Cats in 2014
In 2014, we were thrilled to report that the AVMA had changed its stance on declawing and the inhumane practice started to get more attention. Cat-lebrities also started to gain popularity like Lil Bub and Grumpy Cat. 2014 also saw the first program to help tiny humans gain confidence by reading to cats in shelters. We also reported on “Tara the Hero Cat” who saved a tiny human from a dog that was about to attack.
The Year in Cats in 2015
By 2015, cats had taken over the internet and cat lovers were unapologetic in their love for cats. It was an epic year in the world of cats. CatConLA was launched in 2015 and was the first convention for cat lovers. I was invited to attend as press for the event and really enjoyed the experience. 2015 was also the year that I reported on “Bart the Miracle Cat.” Bart was originally reported on as a zombie cat because he had appeared to have been dead and buried, but dug himself out! A real miracle. The internet of cats was also outraged by the case of Kristen Lindsey [WARNING – GRAPHIC/UPSETTING CONTENT] – the Texas veterinarian that killed the cat “Tiger.” A groundswell of support for Tiger ensued and public pressure saw her veterinary license revoked.
The Year in Cats in 2016
In 2016, IDEXX Labs came out with their SDMA test that can detect the signs of kidney disease in cats much earlier – a definite win for cats! That year “Doppelganger Cats” were a social media sensation. Cat owners everywhere were posting pictures of their cats and their human versions. New York introduced legislation in their first attempt to ban declawing and successfully passed that legislation in 2019 becoming the first U.S. state to ban the cruel practice.
The Year in Cats in 2017
As we continued to break the stodgy old stereotypes about cats, research was increasing about the mental and emotional benefits to humans who live with cats including significant mental health benefits. The documentary “Catnip Nation” came out and featured the life of feral cats and their selfless caretakers. One of the most popular posts of 2017 was about how to tame a semi-feral cat. 2017 was also the year that together we shattered the myth that men don’t like cats, launching our first “Real Men Love Cats” calendar featuring our male readers and followers of The Catnip Times and their lovable cats.
The Year in Cats in 2018
In 2018, we saw the rise of other cat conventions including our very own “Meow MeetUp Chicago!” And cat conventions were popping up everywhere, including with London’s first “CatFest” and Canada’s “MeowFest.” There was also increasing interest in cats as emotional support animals and cat owners wanting to be able to bring their cats into apartments that otherwise wouldn’t allow them.
The Year in Cats in 2019
In 2019, we reported about China announcing that it had plans to clone cats. And the “Fear Free” movement for cats started gaining traction at vet offices in the U.S. The blog also helped bring attention to “Clear the Shelters” with my interview with Christopher Meloni who has appeared in lots of TV shows including Law & Order: SVU, Oz and many others. Remember Kristin Lindsey from 2015? Well she lost her appeal to the Texas Supreme Court in 2019.
The Year in Cats in 2020
2020 – need I say more? Early in 2020, we had to cancel our annual Meow MeetUp Convention and also reported on how COVID-19 might affect cats, particularly after a tiger tested positive for the coronavirus at the Bronx Zoo. 2020 highlighted the need for competent and reliable vet care through telehealth solutions – particularly at end of life since pet owners were not allowed inside vet offices to accompany their pets. Sorry, I know that’s depressing, but it has also been immensely useful for those cat owners who needed some direction. And in an effort to lighten things up a little for everyone, we compiled the best cat cartoons to follow online.
The Year in Cats in 2021
By 2021, there was (and still is) a concern for pets that might suffer from separation anxiety when their humans return to work. The Catnip Times also got behind the Humane Society’s effort to raise awareness around animal testing through their “Save Ralph” campaign. And more research uncovering the amazingness that is cats came to light when scientists figured out that your cat knows where you are, even after you’ve left the room. And because you’re such astute observers of cat behavior, most of you unsurprisingly sound off about it, noting as cat owners “we already know this!” Which I love!
With nearly 4,000 social media posts (maybe more?), I picked out just a tiny handful of the ones that people seemed to enjoy over the last 10 years…
Thanks for taking a trip down memory lane with me. There are SO many stories I didn’t have a chance to mention, but they’re all here on the blog – so browse around and check them out!
Thank you so much for an amazing 10 years!
With gratitude and catitude,
Founder, The Catnip Times