On 18 October 1963, the Centre national d'études in France was set to send a small cat named Félix into space. After lagging behind its Soviet and American competitors, France was eager to stake its claim in the space race — with cats, for some reason. But on launch day, the mischievous little beast went missing — and an accidental heroine stepped in to take his place. Her name was Félicette.
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Video: Man, cats are so dang smart that they can pretty much replace actors in movies these days. I'm watching this wonderful scene reenactment of The Empire Strikes Back and I'm not sure I even miss the real Darth Vader or Luke Skywalker. OK, I guess Darth Vader is still way more badarse than any cat, but the cat actor playing Luke is hilariously good. The crawl back, the clinging to the post, the scream... it's so perfect.
Over in the US last week, NPR reported that 45 cats were confirmed sick with H7N2, a rare form of avian flu making the leap from birds to felines. Poor kitties. But the NYC Department of Health has since confirmed H7N2 has spread from cats to humans, infecting a veterinarian caring for the cats who had tested positive for bird flu.
After getting his internet privileges taken away by the Ecuadoran government in October, Wikileaks founder Julian Assange is evidently bored. Currently in exile from the United States and facing rape charges in Europe, without internet, Assange has found a better way to pass the time: Playing dress-up with his kitty cat.
Last year Hasbro wowed, and saddened us a little, with a new line of toys targeted at seniors in need of a companion, but without the need for all the mess that comes along with a pet. The first addition to its Joy For All line was a robotic cat, but it's now being joined by a robotic golden retriever that any dog lover would spend hours playing with.
You can probably think of countless reasons why you don't want to take your dog for a walk. It's too cold, you're tired, your arch nemesis lives around the corner — the list goes on and on. But with this double-duty exercise bike and treadmill, you can give your pup a good run without ever stepping outside.