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Japanese Street Cats

In Japan it is common to see cats in the streets. These cats don’t usually belong to anyone, but in a way they are everyone’s cat. It seems that someone in the neighborhood is feeding them and leaving water for them.

These cats are known as pests to others, however. Some people even poison them like they would a bug, which I find sad. I think the caregiver types are more common! One day there were two tiny newborn kittens abandoned on my porch. We didn’t know what to do and got a little box for them. While we were deciding what to do, the mother must have come and taken her babies back to the spot they were sheltering because just as suddenly as they appeared, they were gone.

Some people have cats for pets, and if you are looking at cats in the pet stores, they cost thousands of dollars (or hundreds of thousands of yen). Most people with cats for pets keep them indoors all the time. These cats on the street however are always outside and are a little wild. Most people don’t touch them but I think people enjoy seeing them around their communities.

In some countries I’ve visited, there are wild dogs on the streets. India is known for wild cows everywhere as they are considered sacred there. Where I am from we have wild turkeys show up on people’s yards. You’ll also see wild deer quite often (I’m from Northern California). I think it’s interesting that in different cultures and different areas of the world, the way we come across animals is different too!