Why Istanbul is in Loved with CATS? 馃樆馃樆馃樆

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You won't be able to imagine but Istanbul is home to over a million cats.

And cats are everywhere from streets to Social Media. The Cats of Istanbul profile on Instagram has over 17 thousand followers and every day keeps growing. 

Cats and Istanbul allies forever

Cats and people from Istanbul are allies from many years while cats were offering services preventing rats and other bugs inside the wooden houses from the Ottoman architecture period. The people offered them shelter from outside conditions.

But you may still ask:

Why there are so many cats in Istanbul?

The relation between cats and people comes not only as mutual help, but it comes also from religion. Is a society were Muslin is predominant, cats are tolerated and even respected. 

A 2017 The Economist article says:

Turkey is not unique among predominately Muslim countries for honouring its cats, which are considered ritually clean animals in Islam. In the hadith, the collected sayings and actions of Muhammad, there are numerous examples of the Prophet’s fondness for cats. By one account, Muhammad cut off his sleeve when he had to rise for prayers so as to not disturb a feline that had curled up on his robe for a nap. In another tale, the pet cat of Abu Hurayrah (literally “father of the kitten”) saved Muhammad from an attack by a deadly serpent. Muhammad purportedly blessed the cat in gratitude, giving cats the ability to always land on their feet. Cats were considered guardians in other respects for the Islamic world: they defended libraries from destruction by mice and may have helped protect city populations from rat-borne plagues.

Many historian books mention the love that the prophet had for felines and while there has been variation from story to story they keep the same affection for cats has been constant. 

Cat's Coin a monetary image to cats

Angora cat coin Turkey 1 Lira
World Coins Photo
Not only Istanbul is in love with cats, but Turkey is also as well. How big is that love that they have minted a cat coin to immortalize that love they have?

The cat minted in the coin is the Turkish Angora. Is one of the ancient, natural breeds of cat, having originated in central Turkey, in the Ankara region. It's also known as the Ankara cat.

Cats in the 21st Century

A popular saying says:

If you kill a cat, you need to build a mosque to be forgiven by God.

The people in Istanbul takes seriously taking care of cats. You'll be wandering by looking at many small containers by the side of the buildings, and discreet food rations dole out by its inhabitants. 

While many cats are not adopted formally, they are taken care of by no one and everyone, a giant community network of cat caring. 

Not everything is Fairy Tale story for Cats

Not everything is rose color for cats. Walking by some of the less fortunate of Istanbul you will see catfights in the dead of the night, which are quite common and there are problems with the sheer volume of the strays in town.

The Animal Welfare Act No. 5199 in which offenders are only subjected to fines and the problems are not better for dogs since canines are treated with much less affection and care.

However, in better news, recently Turkey introduced a new law that would make it a crime punishable by jail time to mistreat, torture or leave animals without food or water. 

The law is in its infancy right now, but those interested in supporting it can go and sign this online petition. It will be interesting to see how, if passed, the rule will be enforced.

Foundations for animals

Foundations were accustomed for the artery dogs and kitties to accommodate food, water and to be treated. The world’s first animal hospital was accustomed for the storks that could not come back in autumn because of the burst wings. Also in Dolmabah莽e for birds, in 脺sk眉dar bodies hospitals were founded. Even kebab canicule were organized for artery animals.

As a final fact, there is also a documentary that tells all about this relation that Istanbul has with cats, the documentary Ceyda Torun's "Cat".

One of the phrases that catch our attention is:

Cat means more than a cat in Istanbul. The cat is something about the unspeakable chaos, culture, authenticity, and character of all Istanbul

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Why Istanbul is in Loved with CATS?

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