Sunday, May 26, 2013

Stories of Our Feline Friends: June is National Adopt a Cat Month


Cat Among the Fairies
by John Anster Fitzgerald 1819-1906





I confess, I am more of a dog lover but I did grow up with many cats and kittens in my childhood home. At one time there were two adult cats, which timed their pregnancies perfectly, and blessed us with 12 kittens all at the same time!

My first cat was beautiful, fluffy, white stray, and of course, being such a creative child, I named her "Fluffy."  But by far, the funniest cat ever was Sassy, named for her rather erratic behavior and personality. She would run full tilt down the hall, a straight shot from our kitchen to my bedroom door, and slam herself into it shake it off, then begin the routine all over again. I learned quickly to leave the door open.

She never did quite get the hand of the litter box . Sassy would climb into it, scratch around, finding just the right spot, then hang her behind over the box and deposit her business on the kitchen linoleum. She always made my friends laugh!

One day Sassy sat on the hassock, facing my sister's boyfriend who was ensconced in my father’s favorite chair, and entered into a staring contest with her. It went on for quite a while until Sassy began to slowly tilt, then tumbled right off onto the floor!

June is National Adopt a Cat Month so let’s celebrate these beautiful, feline creatures that definitely have their own style and attitude! These stories will have you purring in no time at all!

  • The oldest archaeological evidence for domesticated cats was found on the Greek island of Cyprus, where several animal species including cats were introduced by 7500 BC.
  • The next is 6th millennium BC Ha├žilar, Turkey, where female figurines carrying cats or catlike figures in their arms have been discovered.
  • The first illustration of a cat with a collar appears on an Egyptian tomb in Saqqara, dated to the 5th dynasty (Old Kingdom, ca 2500-2350 BC). By the 12th dynasty (Middle Kingdom, ca 1976-1793 BC), cats are definitely domesticated, and the animals appear frequently in Egyptian art paintings and mummies.
  • The ancient Egyptian reverence for cats is well-known—and well-documented in the archaeological record: scientists found a cat cemetery in Beni-Hassan brimming with 300,000 cat mummies. Bastet, an Egyptian goddess of love, had the head of a cat, and to be convicted of killing a cat in Egypt often meant a death sentence for the offender.
  • Ancient Romans held a similar—albeit tempered and secularized—reverence for cats, which were seen as a symbol of liberty. In the Far East, cats were valued for the protection they offered treasured manuscripts from rodents.
  • Cats came to be demonized in Europe during the Middle Ages. They were seen by many as being affiliated with witches and the devil, and many were killed in an effort to ward off evil (an action that scholars think ironically helped to spread the plague, which was carried by rats). Not until the 1600s did the public image of cats begin to rally in the West.

The above information was found at the following websites:: http://www.smithsonianmag.com/history-archaeology/brief_cats.html#ixzz2UPp0bxQp
STORIES

The Boy Who Drew Cats – Japan
The Cat’s Elopement – Japan
Cat and Mouse in Partnership - Germany
Domingo’s Cat – South America
Why Cats and Dogs Never Get Along – Haiti
You will find these seven folktales at the link below, along with a few Aesop fables.
·                     How Cat’s Got Their Purr – England
·                     The Master Cat, or Puss n’ Boots - France
·                     The White Cat - France
·                     Kissa the Cat - Denmark
·                     The Lion and the Cat - England
·                     The Cottager and His Cat - Iceland
·                     The Clever Cat - Iran
Here are 12 different stories about cats from Nigeria, Palestine, Tibet and other countries around the world.
  
CRAFTS

Cat and Kitten Crafts for Kids
Cat Puppet – Cute and easy, made from Styrofoam and a straw.
CURRICULUM

For Kids About Cats - Resources for Parents and Teachers

Kidssoup.com – Cute cat math activity for preschoolers.



SONGS/FINGERPLAYS
 
Step by StepSong, fingerplays books and there is even a flannel board story all related to cats.

Do you have any of  cat stories to share? I would love to hear them! Please feel free to add them in the comment section of the blog.






Karen Chace 2013 ©
This blog post was researched and compiled by Karen Chace. Permission for private use is granted. Distribution, either electronically or on paper is prohibited without my expressed written permission. For permission please contact me at storybug@aol.com. Of course, if you wish to link to my blog via your website, blog, newsletter, Facebook page or Twitter please feel free to do so; I greatly appreciate your support and personal integrity.