There were plenty of cool cats and cat people on the Internet in 2014, but coolness alone doesn’t make a Catster Hero. No, that title is reserved for the felines (and friends) who are making the world a better place for kittykind. Lots of deserving heroes earned the title in 2014, but I’ve only got five spots on my list of the greatest Catster Heroes of the last 12 months. Here’s who made the cut to become my fave favorites.
Sally the Tabby from Down Under deserves a place on this list because this little girl managed to save her sleeping human from a devastating house fire, which ravaged their home. While many cat people find it annoying when our kitties meow and paw us awake in the middle of the night, maybe we shouldn’t be so quick to dismiss our feline friends — they could be trying to save our lives (or they could be trying to get an early breakfast).
The term “cat lady” is often used to describe someone who hasn’t got a lot going for them, but NYC’s Sheila Massey is proving that one can be vibrant and busy and still be a cat lady at heart. This New Yorker cares for feral, stray and abandoned cats in her neighborhood (a neighborhood that has no rats, according to Massey). What began as a reluctant relationship with a single cat has evolved into a love of a species, and Massey is making sure the cats who find her also find a better future.
From rescue kitty to Internet star, the Oreo Cat is providing his human with plenty of artistic inspiration. Children’s illustrator Tina Mondugno is now using her kitty muse to help other cats. It started when Modugno began posting little comic strips and funny bits to Oreo’s Facebook page. When his fans started asking for a book, Mondugno obliged, and Oreo’s book, Bacons and Other Stuff, was published in the fall of 2014. Oreo and his human are donating a portion of the proceeds of the book to the Paw Project, an organization working to stop declawing.
His name may be Buzz the Fuzz, but he wasn’t always so fuzzy. This adorable long-haired kitty was practically bald when he first came to live with Sandra Soroka and her boyfriend, after being rescued from a hoarding situation (along with 39 German Shepherds). Back when Buzz was nearly naked, his new mama started a Facebook page, detailing his regrowth and adorable antics in The Fuzz Report. These days, Buzz has got his fuzz back, and along with his buddy Charlie, he is using his Facebook fame to promote local rescues and his fellow rescue pets. Soroka is busy loving her two furry kitties and telling Buzz’s story through eye-catching animation. Buzz proves that kitties who look rough in the shelter can turn into beautiful cats once they have a loving home.
Poor little Finnegan had a rough start in life. The adorable little guy found himself at a high-kill shelter when he was just a wee kitten. Finnegan’s chances weren’t good — he’d gone blind after suffering a head trauma that probably happened at the hands or feet of humans. It was a good thing Milo’s Sanctuary — a non-profit shelter focusing on special needs cats — got their paws on Finnegan. When the swelling in this handsome kitten’s brain went down, his eyesight returned and Finnegan was able to embark on a career as a cat model. If you do some Christmas shopping at Target this season, you might catch a glimpse of Finnegan strutting his model stuff and showing the world what special needs kitties can do.
Did I miss your favorite Catster Hero of 2014? Show them some love in the comments.
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About the author: Heather Marcoux is a freelance writer in Alberta, Canada. Her beloved Ghost Cat was once her only animal, but Specter the kitten,GhostBuster the Lab and her newest dog, Marshmallow, make her fur family complete. Heather is also a wife, a bad cook and a former TV journalist. Some of her friends have hidden her feed because of an excess of cat pictures. If you don’t mind cat pictures, you can follow her on Twitter; she also posts pet GIFs on Google +