Purina had a “Better With Pets Summit” in New York City this week, and I made sure my human was there to see that cats were properly represented. (Well, actually the Purina humans invited her, but she had to get my permission to go.) The Better With Pets Summit featured 16 humans who spoke about the various relationships between people and pets — from the internet to up-close-and-personal relationships to life-saving relationships. It was a pretty awesome one-day event, from what I gather!
Some of the feline highlights of the Summit included Mike Rugnetta, host of PBS’s “Idea Channel” and Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian (pictured above with his cat, Karma, on the big screen). They all but admitted that we cats have conquered the internet! And not only that, but we kitties are also the conduit for bringing humans all over the world closer together. I can say from my own experience this is true because my human has friends world-wide, and my blog and I have helped her get to know them!
Dr. Robin Downing, a veterinarian who is the founder and Hospital Director at the Downing Center for Animal Pain Management, gave a very important talk about pain and pet behavior. One of the stories she related was about Flower, a pretty calico kitty who was almost euthanized because she was aggressive and attacked people. The truth was that she was overweight, arthritic and had such severe mats that she was in constant pain. That was what was making her act out. Dr. Downing worked with Flower and her human and saved her life. Since we can’t tell humans we are hurting, they need to be extra aware about what may be going on with us health-wise if our behavior changes.
One of the Summit’s highlights was Simon Tofield, the artist behind the Simon’s Cat cartoons! He drew for the audience and told stories about his four cats. That is his tabby Jess in the drawing above, in her favorite sleeping position.
Simon told the audience a big secret: two of his cats — Hugh and Teddy — who were the biggest inspirations for the star of Simon’s cat and the kitten who’s his sidekick (or nemesis) are black cats in real life! He explained that he made them white in the cartoons purely because that way it is easier to draw them.
One of the other highlights of the day was when a trio of kittens was brought out and put in a kitty playpen! All the cat bloggers were excited… and it turned out they were being fostered by Beth Stern (author and wife of Howard Stern). Beth is a passionate animal advocate and does a lot of volunteer work with North Shore Animal League. So far, she has fostered nearly 50 kittens and cats and has found homes for all of them… well, except one.
Kitna was a blind mom cat — the kind of kitty that would almost be guaranteed to be euthanized in a city shelter. Fortunately, North Shore Animal League got involved and the Sterns fostered her… and fell in love with her. That was a pretty awesome foster fail story!
This was an amazing event… oh yeah, and there were humans talking about dogs too. You didn’t think I was going to write about them, did you? If you want to know more, you can go to Purina’s Better With Pets website. Right now, they have clips of the talks, and will upload the full talks in early December.
Looks like a fabulous event, YRH! And TYSM for NOT. writing. about. (dogs) 😉
Sherri-Ellen T-D. says
😀 Mum sayz diz iz grrrreat bloggie Sparkle n me must agree!!! Wif da help of da puter n Internet me haz bin able to find Mum furendz all over da werld…includin ya!! Not only doez Mum have all deze furendz so doez me n it iz lubley to meet n chat wif Kittehz all over da werld n learn how otherz live!!
Mum sayz wifout me she wuud have bin bonkerz long time ago… 😥 so we must contin-you to spread da LUB n joy to da Hu’Manz!!!
Yerz Nylablue xxx
Kjelle Bus aka Charlie Rascal says
Thanks for the report from this pawsome event you let your human attend on
Wow Sparkle! That sounds like such an interesting event! Loved your post!
Hi Sparkle! It sure sounds like a wonderful event. Even though I did not get to go, I am glad I got to briefly hang out with your human!
Sue Brandes says
Sounds like it was so fun. Love to hear foster fail tales too.
I think I agree that you cats have conquered the internet. I’ve even seen cat internet things on television. How can I find your human’s blog so I can see the pictures?
Spitty the Kitty says
Simon’s Cat is BLACK? Simon’s Cat is BLACK????? Why, I have achieved Nirvana right here in my own living room in my pink beddy at 8:39 PST.
Angel Abby says
Great post. We are having a hard time using our ipad to comment. Just wanted you to know we read everyday but sometimes it is hard to comment. Our fault, don’t know why the page keeps bouncing around and closing our keyboard.
Oui Oui says
What a great event! We would have loved to have been there too!
Mom says, “Everything goes better with cats.” You can see that we have her trained pretty well–still working on the feeding schedule, though. So wonderful that Kitna has a loving home. It really is very good of you, Sparkle, to allow your human to work for the benefit of all kitties. Purrs. Serafina, Arya, Natasha Velvetpaws, Bean, Iggy, Teddy, and Useless
Cathy Keisha says
TW always liked Howard Stern and now that she’s read all about how he loves animals, she likes him more. Sounds pawsome. Be the dog stuff gave your human time to go bathroom. MOL!
That sounds like a very interesting event.
Savannah's Paw Tracks says
whoa! Mom Linda was very excited about all the great content that was packed into this one day event! Maybe one day she can go to something like that too…hmmm….*starts pawing the couch cushions for silver coins*
Emma and Buster says
wow great job kitties all over the world. so glad you sent your humans to go there so that she could report back to us.
Caren Gittleman says
your photos came out better than mine! (Of course!!!!) I am waiting to blog about it til next week I think 😀
My Dad sure hated to miss that event!
Sparkle Cat says
My human hated missing your human!
Sounds like an interesting summit, and what a touching story about Kitna.
Amelia Hughes says
Sounds like your mom had a pawsome time Sparkle! Hope you held down the fort (along with BINGAâ€¦not literally) while she was away.
Texas, a cat in... Austin says
It seemed to be really interesting! Although I hope that your human didn’t need to go to learn that we kitties have conquered the internet 😉
It was very nice of you to let your human attend such a wonderful event! It sounds like it was very interesting and entertaining!
Kitties Blue says
Wow, Mom says she is lucky that Simon’s Cat creator didn’t call his books, “The Cat on My Head,” as it appears Jess likes to sleep like our Misty May. This sounds like a pawsome conference. Mom is jealous. She says she would have loved to attend. Purrs and hugs, Lily Olivia, Mauricio, Misty May, Giulietta, Fiona, Astrid, Lisbeth and Calista Jo
Glogirly & Katie says
What a cool presentation!!!!
I’m so glad your human did such a great job representing us cats.
Glogirly LOVES Simon! We’ve seen all his videos and have all of his books.
I especially love that those humans are finally fessing up to the power we hold as cats.
: ) Katie
Cattle Aussies~Bella, Terra, & Kronos says
Sounds like lots of fun! Don’t worry, we’re not offended that they didn’t talk about dogs, as long as you’re ok with having doggie fans 😉
Wow!!!! We really are taking over the world!
Layla Morgan Wilde (Cat Wisdom 101.com) says
I heard it was awesome. We could have gotten together!
Tillie and Georgia says
Good of you Sparkle to let your human attend this event.
Looks like it was good and that they recognize the importance
of cats on the internet and in the world 😉
We are impressed that “Simon” is based on 2 black cats!!
Purrs Tillie and Georgia,
Treasure,Tiger, JJ and Julie
Random Felines says
that sounds very interesting!!! what fun….
I mean, dogs are kind of ok, especially if they lick your ears. Anyway, we agree that EVERYTHING is better with pets! – Crepes.
Cats of wildcat woods says
Sounds like a great conference.
The Island Cats says
What a great event, Sparkle! And we’re glad to see that the humans are finally recognizing that us cats rule the internets!
Fur Everywhere says
That sounds like a really pawsome event!
Our mom is always telling other humans to get their pets checked out for any behavior changes, and to not assume behavior changes are due to behavior problems. Medical issues must always be looked at first, hers says. 🙂
That sure sounds like a very worth while get together. It must have been such fun to meet all those people and hear their stories. I enjoyed this post a lot.
The Poupounette Gang says
Lots of interesting subjects, Sparkle It’s just a shame your human has to abandon you to go and attend.
Jobi and Fisher says
That sound like a wonderful gathering and how great that you got to go – and, with permission!
The Kitties of Purring Pines says
Thanks fur the great report. You are so generous letting your mommy leave Binga unsupervised! Hope she didn’t get out of control!
Hannah and Lucy says
You are very good letting your human go to all these meetings Sparkle – you deserve all those gifts she brings back.
Luv Hannah and Lucy xx xx