A British television program titled “The Secret Life of a Cat” documents how, for one week in April, 50 cats in the picturesque Surrey village of Shamley Green were put under 24-hour surveillance, fitted with highly sensitive GPS collars and miniature ‘cat cams’ which recorded their every move. The program is the result of a study conducted by Dr. John Bradshaw, an expert in human-animal interactions at Bristol University, who led the study alongside Sarah Ellis, a cat behaviorist at University of Lincoln’s Life Sciences department.
Each cat was fitted with a specially-designed collar which collected GPS data on their location and level of activity. The scientists could then remove the collars and plug them into a central computer installed at their temporary headquarters in Shamley Green’s village hall. If the GPS system showed interesting movement patterns, the cat in question would be fitted with a ‘cat cam’ – a tiny surveillance camera designed by specialists at the BBC’s research and development centre – which dangled from their neck as they went about their business. Read the full story on The Daily Mail to find out what the cats were up to!
Janea Kelley, Catster editor and publisher of the blog Paws and Effect, got to spend a day with a little tortoiseshell kitten named Freida who became known as the “throwaway cat” after being rescued from a ditch by Forgotten Felines of Maine. Freida has multiple health issues, including incredibly brittle bones, ongoing anemia, paper-thin skin, tiny size, and liver and gallbladder abnormalities. Freida was given tiny sweaters to wear because so much of her fur was missing. Forgotten Felines is sending Freida’s records to a geneticist at Tufts University in hopes of getting some answers as to the cause of her health issues. Read the full story of Janea’s visit with Freida and some of the other cats at Forgotten Felines of Maine on Catster.
This week on The Conscious Cat
If you missed any of the stories featured on The Conscious Cat this week, here’s a recap: On Monday, we shared why it’s important to watch cats for subtle signs of illness, on Tuesday, we reviewed the new eco-friendly cardboard toys from Hauspanther, on Wednesday, mystery writer Clea Simon’s cat Musetta guest blogged about the trials and tribulations of being a writer’s cat, and on Friday, we shared some tips on how you can help cats find their forever homes during Adopt-a-Cat Month, even if you can’t adopt right now. And don’t forget to enter our giveaway for a beautiful cat garden flag from Portraits of Animals.
The kitty in today’s video looks like she’s having a blast. Do any of you have cats who do agility? Would you consider training your cats to do it?
Have a great weekend!
Photo sources: photo of cat with tracking device from The Daily Mail website, photo of Freida from Catster