Europe and of course Italy is celebrating World Cat Day today. World Cat Day was established obviuosly in Italy almost 30 years ago by a journalist of Tuttogatto (All Cat) magazine, Claudia Angeletti.
Why today? The choice of the day was linked to the month of Aquarius (February), the sign of the Zodiac that characterises free and independent spirits just like cats. February is also known as the month of witches.
Italians love cats. Well, they also love dogs, but cats are all time favourites and Italians do all that they can to guarantee a decent life also to stray cats. Since cats are free spirits and would be almost impossible to collect them in an animal shelter, therefore Italians created the so called cat colonies where volunteers take care of the cats living outdoors. They do not only feed them, they also keep cats regitered and check their physical conditions. Italian cats are also world famous, just think of Romeo from Disney’s Aristocats.
According to official datas, there are 156 thousand cats living in 15 thousand cat colonies all across Italy. The most cat-friendly city, without any doubts is Rome with 55725 cats living in 4415 colonies. The most famous one is definetely the colony of the archeological site of Torre Argentina with hundreds of kittens. . According to urban legends, Anna Magnani the extraordiary Italian actress (Mamma Roma) who lived in this neighbourhood also used to feed these cats, personally.
And as per the number of cats living in homes per capita, the small town pf Aymavilles in Valle d’Aosta is on top, where there is a cat per every four humans. Aymavilles is followed by two Tuscan cities, Scarlino and Arezzo, respectively one cat per every ten\twelves inhabitants.