In this book, Jackson Galaxy, star of Animal Planet’s hit show My Cat from Hell, and Kate Benjamin, cat design wizard, show cat guardians everywhere how to use home design tricks to address everyday cat care issues. Does your feline friend like to pee everywhere but in his or her litter box? Does your kitty have a thing for your furniture that has left your beloved couch in tatters? Catify to Satisfy will show you how simple DIY design projects and hacks can help bring harmony back into your home. Featuring the amazing projects cat guardians from around the world have shared with Jackson and Kate—design strategies for solving even the most daunting kitty challenges—this book is the ultimate guide to creating a happy home for cat guardian and cat alike.
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Jackson Galaxy is a cat behaviorist and the host of Animal Planet’s hit show My Cat from Hell. He is also the author of Cat Daddy: What the World’s Most Incorrigible Cat Taught Me About Life, Love, and Coming Clean.
Kate Benjamin is the founder of the popular cat design website Hauspanther.com. She makes frequent guest appearances on My Cat from Hell, helping Jackson Galaxy create stylish cat-friendly environments.
Jackson and Kate would like to extend their sincerest thanks to the following individuals and organizations for their help in the creation of this book. Some have been around the catified block with us before, and for some, this is their first cat rodeo—but every single one has been essential in making something with so many moving parts appear effortless:
Sara Carder and her team at Tarcher/Penguin, including Joanna Ng and Brianna Yamashita.
Joy Tutela at David Black Agency, always our champion.
Josephine Tan, Kevin Krogstad and Jessica Hano at Tan Management for keeping the wheels on the train well-oiled and on the tracks.
Norm Aladjem and his team at LEG, including Sanaz Yamin.
Liza Anderson and her team at Anderson PR, including James Weir and Melissa Nowakowski.
Carolyn Conrad at Schreck, Rose, Dapello & Adams.
Ivo Fischer, Bethany Dick, Amanda Gawrgy, Jeff Lesh, Theresa Brown and Jenni Levine at William Morris/Endeavor.
The incredible Animal Planet team behind My Cat From Hell, including Marjorie Kaplan, Rick Holzman, Melinda Toporoff and Pat Dempsey.
The team at Discovery Communications, including Shannon Erb, Chris Finnegan, Matt Windsor and Karin Failla.
On the production side thank you to those at 3 Ball Entertainment who have raised and waved the flag of My Cat From Hell for six seasons including Adam Kaloustian, Eva Mancil, Matt Allyn and JD Roth.
Nica Scott for lending her illustration skills again.
Jeff Newton for a fresh eye, steady hand, artistic mind and a definite way with the cats.
Bridgette Chesne and Maggie Schaefer at Humane Society of Boulder Valley, the backbone behind our innagural shelter Catification profile.
Many thanks to Greg Krueger, Peter Cohen and Diane Irvine Armitage for opening their homes and hearts to us and for showing the world what can be accomplished by simply asking a family member, “What can I do to make you happy?”
Thanks to the enduring faith and grounding power of my family.
Thanks to Minoo for loving me.
Thanks to Mooshka, Audrey, Pishi, Barry, Lily, Caroline, Vivienne, Sophie, Ernie, Eddie and Oliver just for being near me.
Thanks to Heather, Siena and Toast for patience, trust and belief. And more patience.
Thanks to the team at Spirit Essences, including Debra, Celeste, Leanne, Beth, Jeff and Mojo for the elbow grease and good vibes behind the promise.
Stephanie R., for teaching me to stay right-sized and close by.
Robert D., for reminders of the promise and the occasional long-distance lasso.
Finally, I’d like this book to honor two ladies who have seen me at my worst and stood by me as I promised better:
Mama Galaxy, for teaching me early on how to love unconditionally—and today, for showing me how to live unconditionally as well.
Velouria, for showing me what life beyond the challenge line looks like. And for sleeping on my chest for twenty years.
Thanks again to the Hauspanther team, Linda Pelo, Star DeLuna, Sara Santiago, Gerda Lobo, Mamalat and Claude. Thanks to my parents, Barbara and Don Benjamin, for cheering me on, and to Mark Allred for his enduring support. And of course, my feline family members who continuously serve as my inspiration and test subjects: Simba, Mackenzie, Ando, Dazzler, Sherman, McKinley, Andy, Bear, Sylvia, Margot and Lilly.
We are thrilled to bring you our latest collection of ideas and inspiration for catifying your home in order to create a peaceful and pleasant environment where your cat can truly thrive.
As wonderful a process as it’s been to take our ideas from our first book together, Catification, bend and shape them, and make them—well, generally—more awesome, we are even more excited because this book represents a collaboration in the truest sense of the word: a global dialogue where inspiration turns to perspiration turns to happy cats and back again. There has been a never-ending flow of projects coming our way from you, the citizens of Catification Nation, and we have been in the enviable position of poring through this sea of amazingness and gathering some of our favorites here for you. One thing that makes us giddy is seeing projects that were directly inspired by ideas in the first book, which you’ll find throughout the chapters.
This time, keep an eye out for special sections where “Jackson talks about” important concepts behind Catification—taking you deeper into the world of thinking, living and feeling like a cat than ever before. We’ve also tackled some of the thornier topics plaguing cat guardians, like litter boxes and scratching. With our support, you are better equipped to face these issues head-on, without fear or preconceived notions, as we work toward successful and creative solutions.
As usual, make sure to utilize “Kate’s Pro Tips” as you start planning your projects, as well as tips and tricks from cat guardians whose Catification trials, errors and ultimate successes can help get you to the feline promised land with less frustration.
Last but definitely not least, we are thrilled to add in-depth explorations into some very special catified spaces. These profiles and projects from Catification Nation introduce you to unique stories of relationships that spawn inspired works. Included in these pages are: Peter Cohen’s cat paradise in Southern California; Greg Krueger’s Minnesota home, which thanks to his dedication to his craft and to his cats has become almost a monument to catified nirvana; Diane Irvine Armitage’s artistic catio in San Juan Capistrano, California; and an incredible renovation of the cat adoption center at the Humane Society of Boulder Valley in Colorado.
This global explosion of Catification projects indicates one thing for sure: cats are being seen in a new light, and their happiness is taking center stage. Just do a quick search on Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest for #catification and you’ll see what we mean. As people devoted to the elevation of cats in our collective consciousness, we see Catify to Satisfy as a celebratory tribute to the creativity and commitment of a global community. We are well on the way to making the world a better place for our beloved feline family members. And, as citizens of Catification Nation, we can all agree—if the cats are happy, so are we.
—Jackson and Kate
a note from jackson
Over twenty years ago, I became immersed in the world of cats and the animal welfare movement when I was initially hired at an animal shelter. Many cats’ lives were lost back then, oftentimes due to nothing more than a lack of knowledge of their inner lives. They were “other” to us; we shelter workers, as a population devoted to animal companions, “got” the language and life of dogs, but cats, while lovable, as a whole came across as distant and uncaring compared to their canine counterparts.
It was at that point that I naively dove headfirst into all things Cat (so much so that my coworkers dubbed me “Catboy”). I immersed myself completely in their world—and on their terms—and began communicating what I learned in the process to other humans, hoping this would cultivate true empathy and a deeper human-cat connection, and translate into lives saved.
Fast-forward eighteen years, when we published our last book, Catification, and I finally proclaimed that it was “a good time to be Catboy!” Why? Because from the era of the desperate measures, the sticking of fingers in the dam, the bailing out of the SS Overpopulation with a proverbial thimble, to the publication of Catification, I had been privileged to be both participant in and witness to an amazing rebirth—an appreciation of all things Cat that hasn’t been seen since ancient Egypt. Suddenly, instead of rolled eyes and subconscious dismissal of these magnificent, barely domesticated animals, an investment is being made; instead of lamenting what cats aren’t, we have begun to take back the stereotype, while simultaneously exploring terra incognita with humility. That’s right, humans are asking for answers and camaraderie, not just from another species, but from the “other.”
This renaissance of sorts is not exclusive to the appreciation of cats from afar; the new breed of “cat person” is not satisfied to just rack up YouTube views of Maru jumping in and out of a box twenty-plus million times. Let’s face it: the “community” we call the Internet is still decidedly anonymous. If you are feeling the heat of judgment, you can always just unplug and walk away.
But that’s not how the new breed operates.
The new breed doesn’t just gingerly step out of the closet marked “cat person”; they bust down the door. They own it. Shrugging off preconceived notions (as well as their crazy-cat-lady sweaters), the new breed is art student and high-powered attorney, truck driver and goth girl, Ozzie and Harriet and Ellen and Portia and all stops in between. The bond between us, and the message megaphoned out to the rest of the world, is: We love our cats and we couldn’t care less what you think. That’s not a renaissance—that’s a revolution.
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