At the Met Gala 2023, cats were a prominent theme for some of the world’s leading stars.
And at the same time, new studies have uncovered the lengths cat owners will go to showcase their love for their cats. Both in the world of celebrities and the everyday pet owner, people are just becoming more and more obsessed with cats.
Cats Take Over the Met Gala
It’s clear to anyone who saw coverage of the Met Gala that cats significantly influence our lives.
Indeed, the event was a celebration of the life of Karl Lagerfeld, the German fashion designer who passed away in 2019 and famously adored his white Burmese cat Choupette. And some of the outfits on display were directly inspired by Choupette – including a full-body fur suit worn by Jared Leto.
Extreme Tributes to Cats Through Fashion
Doja Cat and Lil Nas X both dressed as cats too. And both went to extremes – Doja Cat wore prosthetics to remodel her face to look more cat-like, and Lil Nas X would only respond to interviews with a “meow.”
While the Met Gala is always a performative event for attendees, this was the first time such incredible tributes to cats were paid as part of the show. And it reflects the trend of everyday people showing absolute dedication to their feline friends.
Permanent Tributes to Cats
While the general population doesn’t get to dress up in ornate designer outfits inspired by their kitties, they find many other ways to bring that obsession to the fore.
And many owners look to permanent solutions such as a tattoo of their cat. In fact, 25% of pet owners stated that they were already planning to get a tattoo of their animal. A further 25% admitted that they would consider it.
Portable Pet Pecs and Kitty Kitsch
Not every animal lover is open to inking their bodies, but plenty have made sure to get pictures of their cat, or inspired by their cat, around their home. They are often printed on clothing or other items, including phone cases – for when your phone’s background screen just isn’t enough of a reminder, and the back of the phone has to resemble your kitty too.
33% of pet owners have said they have created their own custom merch for their animal, and half believe that they could sell their custom merch to other people. The fact that people are so besotted with their pets that they think other people would want to buy pictures of them shows just how obsessed the world has become.
Facebooking Felines and Posing Instagram Pussycats
And pet-owners have brought that obsession into their online lives. One in three owners of cats or dogs has said that they have created a social media profile purely for sharing pictures of their pet, and one in six think that their pet has the potential to go viral.
So whether it’s a dedicated Facebook account to share updates of a cat’s life – perfect for reflecting through Facebook Memories in years to come – or just an Instagram of their cutest moments, owners are ensuring their beloved animals have a digital footprint that will live on.
Cuteness a Key Factor
ACANA pet food commissioned the survey, which found these results. Brand Manager Kirsten Mundorff said, “If there’s one thing the internet has taught us, it’s that people are obsessed with seeing and sharing cute animals with each other. The popularity of animal influencers proves that pet obsession is incredibly common, even if you don’t actually own a pet – although it certainly helps!”
Many pet owners have admitted to using their cat as a prime conversation starter when talking with others. 31% of those surveyed have used their pet as a topic for an icebreaker with new people, making it as popular as discussing relationships (31%) and more important than hobbies (30%) or favorite movies and TV shows (28%).
But it’s not just talking about cats – it’s also talking to cats. Over half (55%) of those asked said they hold regular conversations with their pets.
Cats as Secret Keepers
Sometimes it’s not just a regular conversation that pet owners will share with their animals. Almost half of all people taking part in the survey have said that they have told their pet a secret that they have not told another human.
Indeed, pets are seen as some of the best listeners – they let pet owners vent their hearts, and they can’t then blab to someone else.
Online vs. Offline Obsessions
ACANA pet food Brand Manage Kirsten Mundorff continued, “The difference between obsessing over pets online and offline, of course, is that you can channel those feelings into taking care of your pet in person be with snuggles, healthy treats or special snacks.
“Let’s face it, being able to pamper your own cat or dog and experience the reciprocal love they have for you is a lot more rewarding than hitting the ‘like’ button on a phone screen!”
Owners Fixation Awareness
The fact that celebrities and regular pet owners are becoming so obsessed with their cats and dogs is not new information to those involved.
In fact, it’s often seen as a badge to be proud of, or at least for those owners to admit they know they take things a little too far. 68% of people felt they were significantly more obsessed with their pets than other pet owners.
The survey was conducted by the research company OnePoll in March 2023. It was commissioned by ACANA pet food, involving 2,000 cat and dog owners.
This article was produced by Floppycats and syndicated by Wealth of Geeks.
Hi, I’m Jenny Dean, creator of Floppycats! Ever since my Aunt got the first Ragdoll cat in our family, I have loved the breed. Inspired by my childhood Ragdoll cat, Rags, I created Floppycats to connect, share and inspire other Ragdoll cat lovers around the world,