Category Archives: Cats

Kitties to Follow on Instagram

Happy Caturday!

Cats have dominated the internet for awhile now. They are the muses for countless memes, launched by the “I can haz cheezburger” Happy Cat. Which then inspired Ceiling Cat, Monorail Cat, Longcat, and the Invisible Bicycle. In 2013, a dour-faced cat named Tardar Sauce gained international fame, endorsements, a movie, and its own agents and lawyers. I have no idea who owns Longcat or Monorail Cat, who had their cult following, but everyone knows about Grumpy Cat.

Instragram is flooded with people who want to make their cats Internet-famous. Why do cats dominate the internet, especially when it seems most people in real life are “dog people?” I suspect it is because when people go out to walk their dog, they get lots of “real-life” likes from those who pass by. But most cats are indoors, and the majority of outdoor cats are unapproachable. Cats do not like to be led along on a leash. But their owners can share their darling fur-babies with an iPhone and and a couple social media accounts.

I love these cats so much that I want to share them with you. Some of these you may have already heard of, but some are less-followed.

Pudge the Cat (@pudgethecat)
Breed: Exotic Shorthair
Location: Minneapolis, MD


A photo posted by Pudge (@pudgethecat) on

This laid-back, patch-worked beauty with a permanent milk mustache has quite a following (100,000 followers). She keeps herself nice and plump to get through those cold Minnesota winters. Got milk to go with this adorable loaf of love?

My Cat Kyle (@mycatkyle)
Breed: Mixed / Domestic Longhair
Location: Unknown

A photo posted by 💜 Kyle 💜 (@mycatkyle) on

Kyle, another milk-mustachioed feline, has not had it easy. He was part of a cluster of 30 cats that were abandoned when their owners were involved in a fatal domestic violence situation. On top of that, Kyle has several medical issues, such as persistent dandruff, missing teeth, partial blindness, and hip dysplasia. His most distinctive feature are his haphazard whiskers, which complement his white stache. This gives him that rough old man look, but you can see the kind heart beneath it. His owners are wonderful people who take care of him, and he is a “spokes-kitty” for domestic violence awareness.

Smoothie The Cat (@smoothiethecat)
Breed: British Longhair
Location: Netherlands

A photo posted by @smoothiethecat on

Her silky, peaches-and-cream fur and striking emerald eyes cause many to deem her the most beautiful cat on the Internet. I have been following Smoothie for several months because she reminds me of my childhood cat (who was also a diva). Her likes have skyrocketed during this time, especially in the last month. She loves to show off her fluffy belly, and who can resist double-tapping that?

Twelve Cats Lady (@12catslady)
Breed: Chinchilla Persian
Location: Japan

Michelle is a full-time cat-mommy to this “dirty dozen”, though how she keeps her place shed-free is beyond me. She adopted three chinchilla Persians, who ended up having nine babies that were too cute to give up. My personal favorite is the black one. What is most impressive is how well they get along and how they all eat together in a row. These kitties are getting rapid Internet notice-ability.

Fuzzy Stinky (@fuzzystinky)
Breed: Mixed
Location: Japan

This multi-cat family from Japan is not as well-known, but this clowder of cuteness and unique name got my follow. These are 13 rescued cats. Most of them are black, with some silver kitties. This would probably be my life if my husband loved cats as much as I do. But in reality, I am not sure if I could deal with all the cat hair and litter boxes.

Kooty the Owl Cat (@kootytheowlcat)
Breed: Persian
Location: Middle East?

With that fluffy black belly and bold yellow eyes, Kooty might dethrone Smoothie as most beautiful Internet cat-diva. I admit that I have a special place in my heart for fluffy black cats because I have two of my own. Kooty bears a striking resemblance to my cat Musashi (below). Kooty is missing a few teeth, but smiles are overrated when you have eyes like that.

Sorry for the self-promotion bit, but did you really think you could get through reading this without posting pictures of my own? Like every pet-mommy out there, I think my fur-babies are the cutest.

Putt the Teacup Cat (@teacuppuff)
Breed: Teacup Persian
Location: Washington, DC

Puff is a golden-haired, teddy bear of a kitty who just wants to snuggle in bed, especially on Mondays. Who could blame him, as I know firsthand how stressful D.C. commuting can be. However, seeing this little cutie makes life a bit more bearable 🙂

Princess Monster Truck (@princessmonstertruck)
Breed: Domestic Longhair
Location: New York

Princess Monster Truck’s beauty stands in contrast to her trademark overbite. But the whole package works together to create a one cool-looking cat. She even has her own merchandise (T-shirts, etc.). You’d never know she was wandering the streets of New York all alone until her owners found her.

What I find most amazing about these kitties is how diverse they are in their beauty (my bias for fluffy black cats aside). For most, their attractiveness is reflected in their imperfections and unique features, rather than fitting into some cookie-cutter image. It’s a shame that human beings often cannot see this in ourselves and in each other, as there is often so much pressure to conform and hide our flaws.

At the end of the day, cats are cats. They don’t care what you think 🙂

How to Train a Cat To Use the Toilet

For my Java class, our first assignment is to write out a list of instructions for simple everyday tasks, keeping in mind all of the contingency planning in case things go wrong. The idea is that a computer takes things very literally and will often not successfully complete a task since it cannot make an assumption.

Being my snarky self, I decided to write fictitious program instructions on how to train a cat to use the toilet. One day, I would like to make this into a flowchart so it can join the ranks of all of the other everyday tasks, such as The Grad Student’s Flowchart for Doing Laundry.

Warning: it is very complex. And I have never tested whether this works. But it is totally for humor.  Enjoy!


1) Do you have a toilet? (Y/N). If Yes, Proceed to Step 2.

If no:

  • 1a: Go to Sears and talk to sales-person about purchasing a new toilet.
  • 1b: Proceed to Step 2a: Call a plumber.
  • 1c: Consult with plumber about what kind of toilet works with your plumbing
  • 1d: Go back to Sears and buy toilet.
  • 1e: Spend hundreds of dollars and proceed to Step 2.
2) Does toilet work? (Y/N). If yes, proceed to step 3.

If no:

  • 2a: Call a Plumber
  • 2b: Have plumber look at toilet and fix it. If fixed, proceed to Step 3.
  • 2c: If plumber is unable to fix toilet, replace it. Repeat Steps 1a-e and 2.
3) Do you have a cat? (Y/N). If yes, proceed to Step 4.

If no:

  • 3a) go to shelter and adopt a cat. If you are unable to adopt a cat, steal one from the crazy cat lady next door. Trust me, she won’t miss it.
  • 3b) Put cat in the bathroom
  • 3c) Put food dish near toilet so cat makes positive associations with it.
4) Is cat able to jump a vertical distance of at least 20″? (Y/N). If Yes, proceed to Step 5.

If no:

  • 4a: Is cat too old? (Y/N). If Yes, purchaes pet ramp.
  • 4b: is cat too fat? (Y/N). If Yes, put cat on diet.
5) Is cat currently using the litterbox? (Y/N). If yes, proceed to Step 6.

If no:

  • 5a: Did the cat go potty inside the house? (Y/N). If yes, give cat a stern “NO!” and proceed to Step 8.
  • 5b: Did the cat go potty outside the house?(Y/N). If yes, you probably have an outdoor cat, and really do not need to train a cat to use the toilet since you rarely have to clean the litter box. Proceed to END TASK.
6) Open first toilet lid
7) Place litter box on top of toilet.
8 ) Place cat on toilet
9) Wait for cat to go potty.
10) Keep waiting…

11) Decide that the cat’s evil glare as you wait for him to do his business is not effective, as he has made it clear through his death stare that he will not, under any circumstances, bow to your wishes.

12) Go to Sears and buy camera for bathroom (referred to from now on as CatCam.

13) Install CatCam per product instructions (refer to separate program entitled “Vague Instructions in 145 Different Languages”) and connect it to your wireless device. If you do not own a wireless device, END TASK, as you are therefore not a functioning member of society and thus unable to perform a complex task such as training an unyielding animal to effectively utilize a toilet.

14) Does camera set-up work? (Y/N). If yes, proceed to Step 15.
If no:
  • 14a) Find receipt (you never throw those away, right….right??!!). Since you totally threw it away…
  •     14a-1) Call geek friend and pray he can fix it. If so, proceed to Step 15.
  •     14a-2) If no, go to paint store and find colors that match your shower curtain. Skip Steps 15-17. Repeat Steps 9-10 and pray.
  • 14b) You have the receipt, which means that the planets have aligned, Jesus has returned, and you are existing in a transcendent universe where cats do, in fact, use the toilet. Therefore, proceed to END TASK.

15) Go to Starbucks.

16) Order an over-priced sugarbomb latte and turn on your CatCam. Repeat Steps 9 and 10 as your glucose levels spike to Pluto.

17) Rush home when cat finally does do his business.

18) Place a cat treat on flusher

19) Does cat operate the flushing mechanism by reaching for the treat? (Y/N). If yes, give cat another treat. If no, manually place cat’s hand on flusher and provide treat.

20) Hide litterbox and place catnip near toilet. If cat decides to go potty inside the house (which he will just to spite you) repeat Steps 5a, 6, and 8.

21) Continue repeating Steps 8-19 until cat finally gets it.

22) If you wake up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom, and the cat is in there reading the Wall Street Journal, congrats! You have successfully trained the cat to use the toilet!

23) Smile in satisfaction as you hear the flush.