Cat owners in Malaysia use social media to document their pets' antics and give back to society

  • Animals
  • Friday, 25 Sep 2020

Lai's Fook Fook in slumberland. Photos: MeowryThing

We all know how popular those cute cat videos are with people. It doesn’t take much to convince us to watch a video of someone else’s cat trying out a new snack, a cat learning how to hunt, a whole litter of kittens tumbling out of a box...all while your cat is swiping the last of your tuna sandwich off your plate.

No one knows this better than a group of colleagues from an events and marketing company who have been exchanging photos and videos of their cats with each other for the longest time.

During the movement control order period, they finally took the opportunity to kickstart a project they have been talking about for ages – a platform to not only keep each other in the loop on their pets and their cheeky shenanigans, but also share it with the public.

MeowryThing – currently on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube – features the five cats belonging to Wataru Takahashi, Mimi Yeoh and Carol Lai.Takahashi with Sumii (right) and Noel.Takahashi with Sumii (right) and Noel.

There is 10-month-old Sumii, the newest addition to the family, who has picked up some distinctly non-cat habits from Noel, the dog she shares a home with.

“She is active, playful and loves to eat. Since she has been spending a lot of time with Noel, she has started to wag her tail like he does!” says Takahashi, who adopted her a couple of months ago.

Also read: 3 Malaysian pet owners talk about how their beloved furkids are like family

Yeoh’s Lucky is considered the drama queen of the group, perfectly content to snuggle with you, but only on her terms. She won’t hesitate to show you her claws if you stroke her for just a bit longer than she wants.

Her other cat Gracie, however, is all sugar and spice and all things nice. Yeoh recently adopted a kitten, and Gracie has been introducing toys to him, teaching him how to navigate the stairs and showing him the ways of the world.

As for Lai, her Zap Zap and Fook Fook are camera shy and she is only able to take good shots of them when they are sleeping or busy eating.Yeoh's gentle Gracie has taken a new kitten under her wing.Yeoh's gentle Gracie has taken a new kitten under her wing.

“Our cats make us laugh, and we hope our cute photos and videos will spread positive vibes and help people destress. Cats are able to sense how you feel and you can actually learn a lot from them.

"Spending time with them helps to overwrite negative experiences from your day. It helps to give life another chance to be truly beautiful, ” says Takahashi.

To that end, MeowryThing ventures beyond the standard cat photo or video. It is early days yet (they launched in May), but the aim is to make it fun, meaningful and as ‘edutainment’ as possible.

“So far, we have worked on content like baking cat treats or what it is like to travel with your cat. Our cats have not met each other yet and we might just plan a bring-your-furkids-to-work-day soon!” he adds.

The MeowryThing social media accounts are run by six people in total – Takahashi, Yeoh, Lai and three other colleagues who are animal lovers themselves. They all pitch in with the photo and video editing, brainstorm for new ideas, and with time, hope to grow the community.

Noel (left) and Sumii get along just fine at home.Noel (left) and Sumii get along just fine at home.

“It is so rewarding when we have other cat lovers reach out to us. One even sent us her homemade ‘pet bak chang’ (dumplings) for our cats to try, ” says Takahashi.

At MeowryThing, their dream is bigger than documentation for posterity or entertaining others; in fact, they hope to use it as a springboard to give back to society.

“We believe that everyone can make an impact and do good for our furry friends. Currently we have a fundraiser in the works to raise money for local animal shelters and organisations that help animals in need, ” he shares.

Updates on this project will be posted on MeowryThing in the near future. In the meantime, sit back, relax and enjoy the cat videos!

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