Published by: Ingrid King. Last Updated on: November 1, 2022 by Crystal Uys


A snowshoe cat named Tardar Cat became an internet sensation when photos of her permanently grumpy expression went viral.

It’s no secret that the internet loves cats. Currently, the reigning queen of internet cat stars is Grumpy Cat, a one-year-old mixed breed cat with a facial expression that makes her look like she’s permanently grumpy. Just last week, Grumpy Cat won the Golden Kitty, awarded to the best internet cat video at the Walker Center Internet Cat Video Festival in Minneapolis, MN.

How Grumpy Cat Went Viral

Grumpy Cat’s owners had no idea what was in store for them when they posted a photo of the cat, whose real name is Tardar Sauce, on social network Reddit in September of 2012. Since viewers suggested that the original photo was probably photoshopped, Tardar’s owners posted a series of videos on YouTube. They quickly went viral, and a meme was born.

What is the appeal of Grumpy Cat?

It’s almost impossible not to laugh at Grumpy Cat’s expression. As her internet fame grew, people came up with increasingly funny memes using the small cat’s face. One of the most popular Grumpy Cat meme is the one that is captioned to say, “I had fun once. It was awful.”

Grumpy Cat’s Empire

As of the writing of this article, Grumpy Cat has more than a million Facebook fans and Twitter followers. She has a merchandise ranging from apps to t-shirts, mugs, magnets and more. She even has a line of coffee drinks named Grumpucchino™. She has a book out, and she signed a movie deal.

The real Grumpy Cat

Tardar’s owners aren’t exactly sure what breed Tardar is. She looks like a snowshoe or a Ragdoll, but her parents were a calico and a grey tabby. Her small size and grumpy face are due to feline dwarfism, which may also be the reason why she wobbles a bit on her hindlegs when she walks. She is said to have a very sweet personality.

Tardar is a calm and mellow cat who travels well, but Tardar’s owners try to limit her public appearances. They make sure that these public sessions are short, and that Tardar isn’t handled by too many people. According to her owners, she lives the life of a normal pet cat. She plays, hides and acts like a normal cat. Photo sessions are kept short and limited to about once a week.

There’s no telling what makes a cat so popular on the internet, but it’s hard not to love this grumpy looking little cat.

Photo via Grumpy Cat’s Facebook page.

This article was originally published on and is republished with permission.


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11 Comments on Why the Internet Loves Grumpy Cat

  1. Love grumpy cat. I prefer her real name. I think that is so cute. Well she is cute and I love the cute comments they ad to her photos.

  2. I USED to love her….now I am sick of her lol. I just wish I had cashed in on Cody’s “grumpy” face long ago lol

  3. I actually do not like “Grumpy Cat”. I don’t not like her, I just don’t feel the need to go out and buy a stuffy or a t-shirt with her on it..

  4. All respects to Rudolph, I adore Tardar for her sweet disposition that shines out, despite her downturned mouth. Why Pokey, Tardar’s cat friend, doesn’t get more coverage is beyond me, since they both have that ‘world-weary’ expression. Guess people just like cats, like looking at photos and videos of cats (if they are nice and not mean-spirited), and want to see more. I have five cats that I constantly snap photos of, plus any cat I find as I meander through life, and I would love to have Grumpy Cat as my next-door-neighbor! She’s cute, hands down, imho.

    • I agree, Vicki – if it wasn’t for her sweetness that comes through even on the screen, I doubt that she’d be as famous as she is.

  5. A freak cat by nature and being born at the right time in the “INTERNET ERA” is the prime reason for the stupendous scuccess of “Grumpy Cat” as a media celibrity. Having the right human owners who showcased her bizarre and humorous facial expression is also the the most important reason for “GRUMPY CAT” becoming a World celibrity cat and a money spinner for her owners. 20 years ago i doubt people would have noticed much about “GRUMPY CAT’, at most a photograph of her in a newspaper or cat magazine.The “INTERNET” has leveled the playing field in the media World where common people with access to the “Internet” can become reporters,authors, consultants or media stars.Prior to the “Internet Era” it was the “ESTABLISHED MEDIA” which had authoritarian rule in publishing and hence it was mostly the wealthy, famous,infamous contacts or sheer talent that could catapult any subject into the limelight.The Internet era has made the World a audience for any person having access to the Internet, irrespective of class, creed, contacts or talent. At times luck or just being at the right place at the right time is enough to become a “Internet Media” star in the era of “Digital photography” and “Youtube”. Remember a “Youtube popstar” named Justin.Bieber ? “Grumpy Cat” is the luckiest freak cat in the World.

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