😺 Meowsletter: Mar 18, 2020

A weekly newsletter for cool cats

Meowdy,

Welcome to your first weekly dose of ~quality cat content~!

… but why 🙀

Shakespeare wrote King Lear in quarantine during the Bubonic Plague, and Isaac Newton discovered Calculus and Laws of Motion in quarantine during the Great Plague of London.

As Joanne — a crazy cat lady in San Francisco in between jobs — is quarantined during COVID-19, she and her cat Ellie will use their free time equally wisely to develop quality cat content for you to enjoy every week. Also, why not… 🤷🏻‍♀️

^ Joanne in quarantine

Speaking of Isaac Newton —

👨🏼‍🏫 Cat Fact: Newton invented the cat door. 🚪

The physicist is most famous for calculating gravity 🍎, but it’s also believed that Isaac Newton invented the cat door.

According to How Stuff Works, when Newton was working on his experiments at the University of Cambridge he was constantly interrupted by his cats scratching at the door. So he called a Cambridge carpenter to saw two holes in the door, one for the mother cat and one for her kittens! Apparently these holes can still be seen at the university today.

 🧶 Activity in Captivity: Train and spoil your cat 😻

Challenge: Can your cat high-five or give you their paw on command? Here’s how:

Step 0: Believe in your cat!

This is the most important step. I promise they’re smart enough, so don’t give up! If they’ve learned to run towards you at the sound of a can opening, they can definitely learn to give you their paw at the sound of a clicker.

Step 1: Get a clicker and high-value treats.

  • Click-r Trainer ($4): this clicker will serve as the can opening sound.

  • CHURU ($18 for 20 tubes): to really motivate your cat. My cat’s picky and seems to prefer Churu to Delectables Squeeze Up (a slightly cheaper option), but both can be used as enticing high-value treats!

  • Feline Greenies ($2.50): guilt-free alternative — they may not be getting it but at least their teeth will be cleaner by the end of this…

Step 2: Touch their paw while saying “Paw!” → Click → Treat

They might hate you touching their paw at first, but the instant treat reward will make up for it! Pro-tip: This usually works better when your cat’s already sitting down, so try to get them to sit down first.

Step 3: Repeat step 2 until your cat willingly gives your their paw without you touching it.

Step 4: Spaced repetition

Do this every 4-8 hours (since you’re home anyway) and your cat will eventually get it!

👑 Cat of the Week

The inaugural Cat of the Week is Ellie (yes Joanne is her human and she was the only submission)! An outdoor cat at heart, she loves sniffing grass and lying on warm surfaces including her human’s roommate’s laptop.

Runner-upMylee, who was extremely transparent and vocal about her dissatisfaction about her humans overstaying their welcome in her house. A+ communication skills!

Know a cool cat who should be featured? Reply to this email (meowmeow [at] substack [dot] com)!