“Cats may have conquered the Internet, but every year thousands still end up homeless in shelters, sanctuaries, and feral colonies. Cat Champions is about some of the people – most of them kids – who dedicate their personal time, imagination, and resources to care for them.
The book starts with a brief overview of Felis catus, or the domestic cat: its social, physical and behavioural characteristics, as well as various breeds. This section also profiles some unusual felines, such as the Hemingway cats, a colony of six-toed kitties that roam Ernest Hemmingway’s historic home in Key West, and the inhabitants of Japan’s famous cat islands, who vastly outnumber human residents.
In addition to those interesting tidbits, Laidlaw offers practical information about what to consider when adopting a cat, what makes a good shelter, the pros and cons of kittens versus adult cats, whether to allow your cat outdoors, and the truth about declawing. The author also suggests considering a cat’s colour – black cats tend to be adopted less often (a phenomenon known as Black Cat Syndrome) because of enduring myths that they are evil or bring bad luck.
The highlights of this book are the profiles of the cat champions themselves. Readers may be inspired to take action after learning about kids like Harley Helman of Ohio, who had the idea of collecting blankets for shelters and rescues when she was only eight, or 17-year-old Kieran Zierer-Clyke, who socializes feral kittens in his Toronto home to prepare them for adoption.
Written in a clear unpreachy style and brimming with lovely full-colour photos, this is an ideal volume for any young cat lover who wants to take his or her passion a little further than simply clicking “like” on YouTube videos.” – Emily Donaldson, a freelance reviewer and editor in Toronto.