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What Kind of Cat Breed Is Walter from the Chevy Commercial? Feline History on the Media

orange and white tabby cat with collar
Image Credit: Sydneymills, Shutterstock
Last Updated on November 16, 2023 by Christian Adams

In one of the most memorable commercials of recent times, Chevrolet introduced us to a charming cat named Walter. The commercial features a couple driving down the road with Walter the cat in the back seat. As they discuss the features of their new car, Walter chimes in with his own meows and opinions, stealing the show with his adorable antics. But what kind of cat breed is Walter from the Chevy commercial? As a guess pick we can say Walter might be a shorthair cat.

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Walter’s Breed

From his appearance, it’s clear that Walter is a shorthair cat with orange and white fur. He has bright green eyes, a round face, and a playful personality that endears him to viewers. Some have suggested that he may be a tabby cat or a domestic shorthair, while others have pointed out his resemblance to an American Shorthair.

Beautiful grey tabby cat_Kathie Walters_shutterstock
Credit: Kathie Walters, Shutterstock

Walter’s Effect on Cat Adoptions

Regardless of his breed, Walter’s popularity has led to a surge in interest in adoptable cats. Animal shelters and rescue organizations across the country have reported an increase in adoption inquiries following the commercial’s debut. Many viewers have been inspired by Walter’s charm and have even decided to adopt a cat.

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The History of Feline Representation in American Media

Cats have been an integral part of human society for centuries. They were originally domesticated by humans to help control the rodent population. However, their representation in American media has evolved significantly over the years. The earliest depiction of cats in American media can be traced back to the early days of animation.

In the 1920s, Felix the Cat became the first feline cartoon character to gain popularity. Felix was a lovable and mischievous cat who starred in a series of animated short films. He was known for his black body, white eyes, and wide grin. Felix’s popularity paved the way for other feline cartoon characters, such as Tom and Jerry, Garfield, and Marie from The Aristocats.

Tom and Jerry

Tom and Jerry, which premiered in 1940, featured a cat and mouse duo. Tom was a mischievous cat who was always trying to catch Jerry, the mouse. The show was immensely popular and ran for several years. Tom and Jerry’s influence on feline representation in American media can’t be overstated. The show portrayed cats as cunning, agile, and intelligent creatures that were always sort of on the hunt. This representation of cats as predators continued in other media, such as horror movies and other genres.

Garfield the Lovable Fat Cat

Garfield cartoons
Image Credit: Piqsels

In the late 1970s, a new feline character was introduced to American media, Garfield. Created by Jim Davis, Garfield was a lazy and overweight (but super adorable) cat who loved to eat lasagna and hated Mondays. Garfield’s popularity soared, and he even became a cultural icon. The character was so popular that he was adapted into a TV show, movies, and video games. Garfield’s depiction of cats as lazy and food-loving animals was a departure from the traditional representation of cats as hunters. Garfield’s popularity also paved the way for other feline characters, such as Heathcliff and Sylvester.

Heathcliff & Sylvester

Heathcliff, which premiered in 1980, was a cartoon series featuring a street-smart cat who was always getting into trouble. The character was popular with children and adults alike and ran for several years as well.

Sylvester, on the other hand, was a character from the Looney Tunes series. He was sort of a bumbling cat who was always trying to catch Tweety Bird, but his plans always backfired – and it was always chuckle-worthy. Sylvester’s depiction of cats as lovable but not always successful hunters was a sort of departure from the traditional representation of cats as cunning and ruthless predators.

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The Role of Cats in Horror Movies

Cats have also been portrayed as evil creatures in horror movies. This representation can be traced back to ancient Egyptian mythology, where cats were revered as sacred animals. In the horror genre, cats were often depicted as evil creatures that were out to get humans. The most famous example of this is the 1963 movie, The Black Cat, which had notable success. The movie was based on a short story by Edgar Allan Poe and became a commercial success, helping to solidify the representation of cats as evil creatures in horror movies. This is why it’s so common to see black cats represented in movies and in decorations (often along with witches in black attire) around Halloween time

In recent years, cats have become a popular subject of internet memes and viral videos. The rise of the internet has allowed cats to become cultural icons in a way that wasn’t possible before. Feline characters like Grumpy Cat and Lil Bub have become internet sensations – and with millions of followers on social media.

a black sam sawet cat in the dark
Image Credit: Bangtalay, Shutterstock

The Rise of Internet Cat Videos

The rise of the internet (and “cuteness overload” videos) has also allowed cats to become cultural icons in a way that wasn’t really possible before. The first internet cat video was posted in the early 2000s, and since then, cats have become a super popular subject of online content. The popularity of internet cat videos can actually be traced back to the early days of YouTube, where users would post videos of their cats doing funny things. These videos quickly gained popularity, and soon, cats became a staple of internet culture.

One of the most famous internet cats is Grumpy Cat (aka Tardar Sauce). Grumpy Cat became an internet megastar around 2013. The cat’s permanently grumpy facial expression was actually due to a condition called feline dwarfism – so no, he wasn’t actually grumpy. Grumpy Cat’s popularity led to the creation of merchandise, movies, and even books. Grumpy Cat’s success showed that cats could be just as popular on the internet as they were in traditional media.

Cameo Tabby Norweigan Forest Cat
Image Credit: Elisa Putti, Shutterstock

Cats In Pop Culture

The representation of cats in American media has had a significant impact on pop culture and society. Cats have become cultural icons, appearing in books, movies, TV shows, and even social media. The representation of cats as lovable and seemingly mischievous creatures has helped to make them one of the most popular and beloved animals in the world.

The representation of cats in American media has also had an impact on how they are perceived in society. Cats were once viewed as mere rodent hunters (something they were used for in earlier centuries), but their representation in American media has actually helped to elevate their status. Today, we can’t get enough of these little furry creatures – even though they can seem moody and may scratch us when we show them affection. They’re viewed by Americans as beloved pets and are often treated as members of the family – with inclusion in hilariously cute holiday pics and family activities.

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Wrapping Things Up

So, as you can see, cats have etched their place in the hearts of America over the past 50 years and they continue to do so today. From the early days of animation to the present-day internet sensation, cats have become a part of our culture. The future of feline representation in American media looks bright, with new feline characters being introduced all the time. Whether they’re portrayed as lovable and mischievous creatures or evil and cunning predators, cats like Walter will always hold a special place in American media and society.

Featured Image Credit: Sydneymills, Shutterstock

About the Author

Christian Adams
Christian Adams
Christian is the Editor-in-Chief of Excited Cats and one of its original and primary contributors. A lifelong cat lover, now based in South East Asia, Christian and his wife are the proud parents of an 11-year-old son and four rescue cats: Trixie, Chloe, Sparky, and Chopper.

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