National Cat Days

Valhalla Cats
February 20, 2024

This is just placeholder text. Don’t be alarmed, this is just here to fill up space since your finalized copy isn’t ready yet.

With no less than three international cat days (and with some countries even holding their own) there’s no doubt that cats are the most celebrated animals. But what are the reasons behind this?

February 20th

What if I told you that a cat celebrity is the reason for this date to be celebrated? Everything started with Socks, the presidential cat who dwelt in the White House during Bill Clinton’s term. As a typical cat, it didn’t take long for him to capture the attention of the press by leisurely strolling through wherever he wanted and by stealing the thunder during presidential events. 

He quickly became a famous inhabitant of the White House, even before the era of social media! With his own fan club and website, Socks received hundreds of letters from admirers and he even took advantage of his fame to carry out fundraising campaigns. However, in his final days, he suffered from throat cancer, leading the Clinton family to put him down on February 20, 2009. 

Due to the media impact he had and how he helped bring visibility to cats, several cat lover organizations decided to use this date as the day to commemorate cats. During this day these organizations promote adoption and provide convenient information about the proper care cats require. 

February 22nd

Everybody knows there is some special love among the Japanese and cats. So much so that the Japanese have their own national cat day. The reason for choosing this specific date is related to how the date itself is pronounced in Japanese (Neko no Hi) (猫の日). 

The number 2 sounds like “ni”, which is quite similar to “nyan”, an informal way to talk about cats due to the sound they make “nyan-nyan”. 

During this day many people in Japan pamper their cats, share photos of them on social media and they even hold and join events related to cats. The popularity of this event has soared up and it has become a funny opportunity to celebrate cats and share your love for them. 

Photo: National Geographics

March 1st

The Russians don’t lag behind in their admiration for cats and they’ve picked a different day to be their own national cat day. The reason is very similar to that of their Japanese neighbors. In Russian “March” (март) sounds very much like the sound that cats make, often described as “mur-mur” in Russian. A fun phonetic coincidence that has served as a great excuse to express their love for cats on social media, celebrate their presence in daily life and participate in cat-themed events. 

August 8th

In 2002, the IFAW (international Fund for Animal Welfare) settled this day as International Cat Day. While the reasons are very similar to February 20th (to raise awareness about these animals, provide information on their care and responsible ownership…), the reason behind why this date is rather different. The reason is that on August, in the northern hemisphere, the high temperatures and the intensity of sunlight favor the reproductive cycle of felines. 

October 27

In the UK we find the National Black Cat Day, marked  on October 27. In 2011 different animal organizations celebrated this day to raise awareness about how unlucky black cats are when it comes to adoption. They’re adopted much less frequently, and many people don’t choose them because they don’t photograph well on social media. Alas! 

(We clearly don’t agree. This is one of our colleagues’ cat).

We sincerely hope this day can change this situation and encourage people to adopt them and appreciate them as much as they deserve. 

October 29th

Colleen Paige, a renowned pet care specialist, established this day in the United States as International Cat Day, although its influence has spread to many other countries.

Collen’s idea was to choose this day to raise awareness about the large number of abandoned cats, as well as to promote neutering, cat adoption and responsible ownership. Different reasons and motives to celebrate. And why not to say it, a different and perfect excuse to talk one more day about our feline friends!

The latest from Valhalla Cats and things I found interesting this week:

  • Hannah “Kitten Lady” Shaw and professional cat photographer Andrew Marttila journey to thirty countries to bring you hundreds of photos and stories of cats from every corner of the world: Cats of the World.Personally can’t wait to buy it when it goes on sale.

Thank you for your time. I hope you enjoyed the read.

Have a wonderful day,