International Cat Day 2020: origins of the cat appreciation day - and when to celebrate your feline friend in the UK

The day is about much more than just flooding the internet with cute kitties

Friday, 7th August 2020, 11:56 am
(Photo: Shutterstock)

This weekend will see International Cat Day take place on Saturday 8 August.

It's a day for cat fans and lovers of all things feline to show their appreciation of our four-legged friends by sharing photos and videos of their pets on social media.

But the day is about much more than just flooding the internet with cute kitties.

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Here's everything you need to know:

When did International Cat Day start?

International Cat Day was created in 2002 by the International Fund for Animal Welfare - one of the largest animal welfare and conservation charities in the world.

This year, custodianship of International Cat Day has been passed to International Cat Care, a not-for-profit organisation that has worked to improve the health and welfare of domestic cats worldwide since 1958.

When is International Cat Day?

International Cat Day is celebrated on 8 August every year.

It is also referred to as World Cat Day in some countries, and some nations celebrate similar holidays on different dates.

For instance, Russia celebrates National Cat Day on 1 March, and the US celebrates both International Cat Day and their own National Cat Day on 29 October.

What is the purpose of International Cat Day?

International Cat Day is designed to raise awareness for cats and learn about ways to help and protect them.

This applies to both smaller, domestic animals - of which it is estimated there are about 600 million in the world including pets, strays, homeless and feral cats - and wild big cats like lions and tigers.

How do people celebrate International Cat Day?

The most obvious way to celebrate the holiday is to post pictures of your pampered pet on social media, and people across the globe caption their tweet memes, videos and pictures with hashtags like #InternationalCatDay.

But you also help moggies in need by adopting a cat, volunteering at or donating food, blankets, toys and other essential cat equipment to a rescue centre.

Charities that support cats would also welcome your donations on this special day, and of course if you own a cat yourself, help them celebrate by giving them even more fuss than usual.

For International Cat Day 2020 a coalition of NGOs, volunteers and cat professionals will be working together to spread knowledge and build understanding of the individual needs of cats.