Cat-related holidays have been created by cat lovers and animal welfare organizations, to inspire cat parents worldwide in celebrating their special bonds with their kitties and the unconditional love cats give us, as well as hoping to raise awareness of cats in need of rescue each year, although we encourage you to do this every day, not just on specially selected days!
In this article, we came up with a cat calendar containing the most important ‘Holy-Cat-Days’, and shared some ways you can celebrate them, so you can extra pamper your furbabies and also help cats in need.
If you are looking just for the FULL list of annual cat days and general pet-related holidays in chronological order please proceed at the end of the article! If you want to find out some cool stuff, keep reading!
Felines are spreading their love one tiny paw at a time for over 10,000 years!
We always believed that Egypt was the birthplace of domesticated cats, but, in 2009, archaeologists have found a grave in Shillourokambos, Cyprus, containing an eight-month-old cat buried with its human, dating back to the Neolithic area and believed to be 9500 years old. The site was already known for authenticating the presence of cattle in the aceramic Neolithic period, and now is offering the oldest genetic evidence of human domestication of cats, preceding the Egyptian civilization!
Ailurophilia goes back thousands of years, the word itself means cat love, from the ancient Greek αἴλουρος (ailuros) – “cat” and φίλος (philos) – “to love, regard with affection”. A cat lover is called an ailurophile.
Because Dobby and Dot are rescued from the Mediterranean island Cyprus where cats today still roam free on the streets since probably 328 A.D. as the origin of the Aphrodite cat breed states, we take pride in knowing that Cyprus is not just the Island of Love, but also seems to be the Island of Love for cats!
Cats have domesticated themselves – go wonder.
Dr. Carlos A. Driscoll believes, wildcats chose to live with humans more than 10000 years ago, for the easy hunting of the mice and other rodent livestock on the first ‘grain farms’ of the Neolithic villages and finding human food scraps, so they did not serve humans but more likely were accepted by humans as useful pest control. He writes “whereas other domesticates were recruited from the wild by humans who bred them for specific tasks, ancestors of domestic cats most likely chose to live among humans because of opportunities they found for themselves.” in his article ‘The taming of the cat’. (for more info about the manuscript check the article sources)
In other words, cats were just beginning their journey to becoming Gods, worshipped by the Egyptians as “official deities” about 2,900 ago, portrayed especially as the goddess Bastet, a cat-headed woman, protecting homes from evil spirits and disease.
Cat days calendar
Today, cats are still celebrated by many different countries and have selected days in the human calendars. We came up with a calendar that collects all cat-related holidays worldwide. Please let us know in the comments if we missed any!
How to celebrate an official cat day?
- Adopt a cat – not just a pretty little kitten, adult cats in shelters also deserve a loving home to spend the rest of their life thriving and happy.
- If you can not adopt, DONATE! Animal shelters and welfare organizations always need food supplies, medications and treatments, carrier cages, beds, and toys!
- Volunteer at a cat shelter and see what they need help with.
- Take cute pictures of your cats and post them on social media to support adopting cats, spaying, and neutering.
- Get your cat some new presents: a new collar, a brush, funny toys, healthy treats, or even go big and get a condo, a cat bed, or a cat tree if you can afford to splurge!
- Build your cat a cat castle from big cardboard boxes, put up some wall shelves so she can see you better from above, get a window perch so your baby can do some cool birdwatching and lay in the sun, or if you have time and love DIY’s why not even try building a catio?
- Spend more time with your cat, make her some homemade cat cake.
- Bake cat-shaped cookies for your kids or colleagues at work
Here are the best things you can donate to a cat shelter.
Every cat holiday is unique and I will say a little something about them so efurybody knows why they are so important.
February – National Cat Health Month
February has been taken over by felines!
Not only with their mating calls going on outside for weeks at a time but also the whole month has been dedicated to cat health. Cat parents are encouraged to learn more about their cat’s health and help their cats have a thriving life!
To be more aware of your cat’s health schedule a vet appointment, educate yourself about the best nutrition your cat can have, and why not, try to make some homemade treats!
But most importantly make sure your cat is happy! Check out our ‘E.G.S’ scheme so you know how to tell if your cat is happy!
International cat day or World cat day, August 8
Founded by the International Fund for Animal Welfare, International cat day, also known as World Cat Day, is celebrated Worldwide on the 8th of August each year since 2002.
We might not worship them as Gods anymore, but cats still manage to make us treat them like royalty every day! They have us eating right out of the pads of their paws!
House cats are spoiled, they always get treats, toys, and fancy litter boxes, but on this special day, where all domestic felines are celebrated, we need to remember there are stray cats that are not so lucky to have a purrfect life and need our help too. And if you can not sponsor any shelter, donate or adopt a cat on International Cat Day as tradition goes, just sharing the love on social media is more than enough to spread the awareness.
Take photos of your cat (or a friend’s cat) and share them on social media with the hastags: #InternationalCatDay #CatLover #CatDay #FriendlyFelines #CatDayIdeas #CatCelebration #CatsCatsCats #CatOfTheDay, so more people know about it!
Global Cat Day, October 16
Global Cat Day is celebrated on October 16th since 2017. The cat holiday’s original name was National Feral Cat Day, brought to life by Alley Cat Allies in 2001 to raise awareness towards the benefits of having Trap, Neuter, and Return (TNR) programs, helping feral cats have a better life on the streets.
Feral adult cats are hard if not impossible to adopt if they have lived without human contact for a long period, or never had any human contact at all, so rehoming them is not an option. Feral kittens still have hope if caught and acclimated with people from 12 weeks old.
TNRs are humane and non-lethal programs that aim to reduce feral colonies and help the strays live healthy lives right there on the streets, and at the same time reducing the numbers of euthanized animals in shelters. After being through a TNR program, neutered or spayed cats will have a clipped ear as a distinctive mark that can let you know the cat has been altered.
Neutering cats and releasing them back on the streets will lessen the number of offspring in kitten seasons because the mating behavior will decrease.
North Shore Animal League America tells us that over 70,000 puppies and kittens are born in the US each day, and more than 3.7 million animals are still being euthanized each year in shelters across the country.
In theory, one unspayed female, one unneutered male, and their offspring, producing just 2 litters per year with an estimate of 2.8 surviving kittens per litter, can produce up to 2 million kittens in 8 years!
National Cat Day, October 29
National Cat Day is celebrated in the US on October 29th. In Canada, the same holiday is celebrated on August 8, in Japan on February 22, and in Russia on the 1st of March. These days honor the love cats bring into our everyday lives.
The US National Cat Day was created by Colleen Paige, one of America’s leading Pet & Family Lifestyle Experts and animal behaviorist, that believes the best way you can celebrate is to save a cat life! Advocating that if you can you should adopt, not shop! She gives us 20 Ways to Celebrate National Cat Day, encouraging us to spoil our furbabies a little more.
National Kitten Day, July 10
Like many other holidays in the US, National Kitten Day was founded by Colleen Paige to be celebrated on July 10th each year and spread awareness to all helpless kittens left to fend for themselves encouraging adoption from shelters.
What better way to celebrate than adopting a little bundle of joy or foster one to lighten up your spirits every day, saving a life in the process! Experience the magic of kittens yourself!
#KittenDay #NationalKittenDay and #WorldKittenDay are all appropriate hashtags to use and spread the word!
Find here some of the purrfect ways to celebrate this day!
There has also been talk about a Cuddly Kitten Day on 23rd of March but we are still collecting data for its validity.
Happy Mew Year For Cats Day, January 2
Happy Mew Year For Cats Day is a unique Wellcat holiday created by Thomas and Ruth Roy from Wellcat.com, where felines have a day unto themselves to celebrate the “mewness” of a new time.
And it seems like Thomas and Ruth Roy have taken over the January cat holiday calendar with yet another pawesome Wellcat holiday.
Answer Your Cat’s Question Day, January 22
Another ingenious Wellcat holiday, created to advise cat lovers to pay more attention to their feline furends! Learn to listen and be more aware, your cat will litterally tell you what she needs, even if you don’t understand, or at least show you.
National Respect Your Cat Day, March 28
This day inspires owners to play with their beloved cats and respect them by providing them with proper care.
Most of us when we needed a hand we found a paw and a loving purr that lifted our spirits and helped us get through some tough times. Cats are known for reducing feelings of loneliness and lowering stress and anxiety. Besides that, they are independent, smart and propper zen masters and we should learn how to live in the moment from them. These are just a few reasons why they deserve to be celebrated and respected!
Making time for your cat is important
Our lives can get hectic, but no relationships have ever been built without investing time. By spending quality time with your cat you will learn a lot about what she likes and dislikes, what are her favorite games to play, and how she likes to be properly petted before sticking her needle-sharp teeth in your arm. What better way to tell them you love them than by showing it in actions.
I often hear the words ‘Oh I wish my cat did that!’, well, it could if given the time! If you don’t invest time in getting to know your cat better and have the patience to teach her some tricks then, of course, all you will get are wishes. Cats can be trained, they just don’t bother unless they think is fun for them too.
National Siamese Cat day, April 6
As one of the most popular cat breeds in the World, Siamese, earned their own holiday.
The holiday was created by “The Queen of Holidays”, Jace Shoemaker-Galloway, in 2014 celebrating the classy Mezeers.
Did you know?
Siamese cats originated from the Siam Kingdom of Old Thailand and go back to being domesticated since the 14th century, which will make them one of the oldest cat breeds out there, not to mention treated like royalty by none others than the royal families of Thailand who believed that after they die their soul will enter a bod of a Siamese cat.
All original Siamese cats were crossed-eyed and had crooked tails, but today these characteristics are undesirable in cat shows and among cat fanciers, so these traits have been bred out over time.
A Siamese cat’s fur markings are determined by its body temperature. All Siamese cats are born white and they get their distinctive dark extremities on their tail, feet, and head around four weeks of age.
We hope you stay pawsitive on this day and celebrate it whether you have a Siamese by your side or not!
National Cat Lady Day, April 19
National Cat lady day started in 2017 with the hashtag #NationalCatLadyDay celebrated by thousands of cat lovers out there!
Being a cat lady is not a bad thing anymore. Once considered grumpy ‘old unmarried women’ and surrounded by felines because no one else would love them but their cats, cat ladies have evolved and are now super cool. I am proud to be one!
What do we cat ladies do? We mind our business raising our cats in peace and are slowly overloading the internet with cat cuteness from pictures to funny videos lifting everyone’s spirits everywhere! We might be still a bit weird, but it’s just because we talk to our cats all the time!
On this day let us be a little extra and wear cat ears, draw whiskers on our cheeks, bake cat-shaped cookies, and spread the love for cats as a source of happiness in the World!
Do you know a cat lady? Let her know she is special and has now her own holiday!
National Tabby Day, April 30
This is a day we can not miss celebrating as Dot will not be very happy about it!
Our rescued tabby princess gets extra attention today! As do her stray and feral friends with some more yummy food and pets than usual.
Tabby cats have now their own special holiday thanks to the Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals, Bideawee, and book author Sandy Robins who started the holiday in 2016, celebrated with a cat adoption event and the official launch and the signing of the book “Making the Most of all Nine Lives: The Extraordinary Life of Buffy the Cat”. The holiday may be also known as Adopt a Tabby Day and coincides with the National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day.
Here are some cute facts about tabby cats that I would like to share with you because I can also vouch for them:
- Tabby cats have dog-like personalities (no kidding mine plays fetch!)
- Tabby cats are very intelligent, outgoing, and curious, more than other types of cats!
- Tabby kitties are born hunters (Dot hunts anything that moves, from flies on the walls to toes under blankets!)
- They are big-time attention seekers (my romantic evenings are now spent in 3: me, Brian and… Dot! She will follow us everywhere and liter-ally get in between us to cuddle up)
- They are very affectionate ( Dot just purrs her life away activating the shooting sound every time you touch her, and also likes to lick us sometimes! A true honor, to be honest, a cat lick is way more valuable than a dog lick… Sorry puppy lovers, this one is a fact!)
- Tabby is not a cat breed. The name describes a coat pattern with unique markings.
- All tabby cats have a distinctive “M” on their foreheads
- The tabby coats have 5 typical markings: classic (bold swirls on the cat’s sides), mackerel (tiger-like stripes on the cat’s sides), patched ( red and brown area on the cat’s coat), spotted (dark dots on a cat’s sides) and ticked (stripes may show only on the cat’s face).
On these days, I hope, cat lovers will celebrate not only by offering a little more attention to their house cats but also bring a purrfect start to a mew life for a cat in need by adopting, if pawsible! If adoption is not an option, we hope many people will donate some cat necessities to shelters or at least some food for the feral colonies in their neighborhood.
National Hairball Awareness Day, the last Friday of April
This year’s National Hairball Awareness day falls today on the 30th of April, and next year it will be celebrated on April 29th… okay you can do the math yourself after that.
Created by the National Museum of Health and Medicine in 2006, this day has been created to bring awareness to animal lovers, especially fluffy cat owners, of the delightful hairballs you keep finding on your carpets!
Hairballs are very common in cats, especially because they keep themselves clean by self-grooming and so, ingesting hairs! The swallowed hair then passes through a cat’s digestive system or, if it gets stuck in their stomach then it will come back out their mouth through vomiting. Ouf I remember the smell just writing this.
Educate yourself on this day about how you can help your cat manage their hairballs better by grooming her regularly and help detangle its fur, healthy diet, and maintaining a healthy and less shedding coat, it will be a win-win situation for you and your floof!
Did you know? – Hairballs are not actually round!
If you have experience with the nasty things around your house, you do know that hairballs are tube-shaped and not round-shaped, because they come out through your cat’s esophagus. Hairballs are more regular in long-haired cats and more common during the summer months when cats groom themselves more to keep cool.
National Black Cat Appreciation Day, August 17
Black cats are celebrated on August 17, a day assigned to dispel myths and superstitions associated with black cats and also bring awareness to the fact that black cats are the least adoptable pets in shelters.
Black cats are not the evil entities associated with witches (except Binx from Hocus Pocus and Salem, Sabrina the teenage witch’s cat of course), neither they are bad omens bringing bad luck if you cross path with one unless you step back in open sewage attempting to undo its curse by walk backward! There is no need to fear them, plus a black cat will love you as much as any other!
Don’t you want a tiny panther of your own?
This day is not to be confused with National Black Cat Day celebrated in the UK on October 27th founded by Cats Protection to also raise awareness of the lower rates of adoption for black cats in shelters.
World Lion Day, August 10
Founded in 2013 by National Geographic’s Big Cats Initiative co-founders Dereck and Beverly Joubert, this day is all about protecting the majestic creatures and help preserve their species as they made the Red List of Threatened Species as an endangered species.
The population of lions is rapidly decreasing and lions are found in the wild only in Africa and Asia due to trophy hunting and the loss of their natural habitat.
On #WorldLionDay volunteer at a zoo to learn what does it take to care for a lion, or sponsor a wildlife foundation preserving lions in their natural habitat like Hakuna Mipaka a private animal sanctuary owned by Dean Schnider, a beloved animal lover who dedicated his life to saving the wildlife. His connection with his lion pride ruled by the lion Dexter is purely magical and inspiring, but don’t trust me, check it out for yourself!
Saving, protecting, and conserving wildlife as well as educating and inspiring people about wildlife on a global level comes with enormous financial expenses. So if you can, help Dean save lives with any donation here.
Official cat-related days list:
- Happy Mew Year for Cats Day, January 2
- National Dress Up Your Pet Day, January 14
- National Answer Your Cat’s Questions Day, January 22
- February – National Cat Health Month + Spay/Neuter Awareness Month
- National Cat Day (Japan), February 22
- World Spay Day, last Tuesday in February
- National Cat Day (Russia), March 1
- National If Pets Had Thumbs Day, March 3
- Gertrude of Nivelles – patron saint of cats, March 17
- Cuddly Kitten Day, March 23
- Respect Your Cat Day, March 28
- National Siamese Cat Day, April 6
- National Pet Day, April 11
- National Cat Lady Day, April 19
- National Pet Parents Day, April 24
- National Tabby Day, April 30
- National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day, April 30
- National Hairball Awareness Day, last Friday of April
- May – National Pet Month
- National Specially Abled Pets Day, May 3
- National Hug Your Cat Day, June 4
- International Box Day, June 19
- National Garfield the Cat Day, June 19
- National Take Your Cat to Work Day, June 21
- National Kitten Day, July 10
- International Cat Day, August 8
- World Lion Day, August 10
- National Black Cat Appreciation Day (US), August 17
- International Homeless Animals Day, August 21
- National Take Your Cat to The Vet Day, August 22
- National Pet Memorial Day, September 13
- Meow Like a Pirate Day, September 19
- Global Cat Day, October 16
- National Black Cat Day (UK), October 27
- National Cat Day, October 29
- National Cook for Your Pets Day, November 1
- December – National Cat Lover’s Month
- National Cat Herders Day, December 15
Other Article Sources:
- Carlos A. Driscoll, Juliet Clutton-Brock, Andrew C. Kitchener, and Stephen J. O’Brien, “The taming of the cat”( PMC free article)
- National Today: Cat Holidays ( 25 holidays list )
- North Shore Animal League America (cats multiplying chart)
- Colleen Paige (pet holidays list)
Let us know which cat holiday is your favorite and don’t furget to stay pawsitive!