National Cat Day: Celebrate pawsitively felinetastic holiday right meow!

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Cats were once worshipped as gods, which is something they have never forgotten. It must be in their DNA, part of what makes a cat a cat.

Judging by social media, that worship continues today. It's simple, really. 

Cats. Rule. The internet. And they do it with a velvet paw and sometimes a swipe of the claws.

It's a fact. (Hello? Grumpy Cat (who is from Arizona and starred in her own movie). Nyan CatKeyboard CatCaturdayCole and Marmalade. Venus the Two-Face Cat. Lil Bub. Maru, Master of Boxes. Colonel Meow (whose death warranted a story on Time.com). Invisible Bike Cat.  I Can Has CheezburgerLOLcats. Need I say more? Because I totally can.)

[MASHABLE: 15 best cat memes ever]

Cats also rule the hearts of their human slaves … ahem, guardians/parents.

Perhaps that’s why there are so many days set aside to celebrate our feline babies. And I’m not just talking about the weekly one known as Caturday. Of course, if you’re a cat, every day is a day you should be honored. And by that, I mean pampered, petted, played with and, of course, fed on demand and given treats. (Full disclosure: I am a devoted cat mom.)

But when it comes to “holidays,” there are several for cats, so grab your calendar and a pen because you would not want to forget these. Your cat would hold a grudge. They’re good at that. And with those sad little meows, they are excellent guilt-trippers, too.

Cats are born knowing exactly how to manipulate their humans. As a cat mom, I know this firsthand.

[RELATED: Cats facts and myths]

Back to your calendar. These are just the holidays related specifically to cats, not general "all-inclusive" pet holidays like National Pet Day (which is April 11, by the way), National Love Your Pet Day (Feb. 20) or National Dress Up Your Pet Day (Jan. 14), but there are plenty of those, too.

Phew! That is quite the list. Are cat people (No human owns a cat! It’s quite the other way around.) crazy or what? Yep. Crazy awesome!

Quick quiz. What is today? If you answered National Cat Day, you are absolutely right. Bonus points if you knew that without looking at the list above. If you answered Oct. 29, you're still correct, but you're missing some very important information. Did you not read that list I worked so hard to compile? Shame on you.

Just kidding. Mostly.

At this point, you might be thinking, "Didn't we just do this Cat Day thing?" The answer is yes. And also a resounding no. Friday, Oct. 27 was all black cats. (Story spoiler: Black cats are not bad and are certainly not evil. Never have been. Never will be.) Oct. 29 is about all the cats from the sleek Abyssinian to the fluffy York Chocolate Cat (there are no breeds that start with z) and every breed in between. 

[MORE: Pets and animals stories]

Owning a cat -- or rather, being owned by a cat -- comes with a slew of benefits, some of which are based in science. Science!

[RELATED: Valley woman eases pain of pet owners who must say goodbye to their dogs and cats]

Earlier this year, Kathy Benjamin and Austin Thompson ran 10 of those scientific benefits on MentalFloss.com. They did a very nice job explaining each one so you should check out the article when you have a spare minute., but here's the basic list.

  1. Owning a cat is better for the environment.
  2. They'll help you cope... (I can attest to this one)
  3. ... and find a significant other.
  4. Cat owners are smart.
  5. You'll have a healthier heart.
  6. They fulfill your need for companionship.
  7. They can tell you (and others!) a lot about your personality.
  8. You'll sleep better.
  9. Cat ownership means fewer allergies.
  10. They can quite literally save your life.

Good list, right?

Cats might have a collective reputation as cold, aloof jerks. But they really do adore their people. Or perhaps it's just a coincidence that cats are almost always in the same room as their people. Cats can be selective about to whom they show affection, but they do like their cuddle time, on their terms, of course. 

Cats do what they want when they want, and we humans happily (usually) deal with it. More than one cat guardian has fallen victim to "feline induced paralysis," a condition in which a person cannot move because a cat has made himself comfortable in his or her lap. The struggle is real.

[RELATED: Why can't cats resist thinking inside the box?]

[BuzzFeed: 21 simple reasons having a cat is the best thing in the world]

Perhaps my favorite thing about cats is that they purr. It is one of the most soothing sounds in the universe, in my humble opinion, and -- back to science -- it's also good for humans.

"A cat's normal purr is between 25 and 150 hertz. Researchers have shown that bones and muscles heal faster when exposed to sounds in the very same frequency range," according to CatHealth.com "Some scientists speculate that this might be why cats suffer fewer joint problems than dogs and why they often heal so quickly and well from broken bones. Many scientists even take it one step further and suggest that humans exposed to cats' purrs may experience faster and better healing of joint, muscle, and bone problems."

Another that makes cats so awesome, is that they are funny. Hilarious, actually, and endlessly entertaining. Often to their dismay. The plethora of internet video starring cats -- often not at their finest moments -- is proof of that.

As much as cat guardians/parents love their fur babies, cats are mysterious creatures with a language all their own and it can be confusing.

[DID YOU SEE THIS? Cat lovers house for sale in eastern Arizona]

Take a madly wagging tail, for example. While that is a sign of a super happy dog, it's also a sign of a super unhappy cat. Back off because that cat might be getting ready to attack.

For a dog, flooping over and exposing his tummy is obviously an invitation (request, even!) for belly rubs. It's not the same for cats. At least not if you want to keep your fingers. Rolling over for cats is a sign of trust, but we human's can't help ourselves.

Because visual explain it so well, Reddit user Slothkitty posted "textbook instructions on how kitty belly rubs really work."

'Nuff said, right?

Sloppy kisses are a sure sign of puppy love. Cats show their love for you by giving you a nice slow blink. Weird, right? Cats certainly keep life interesting, to say the least.

Understanding and communicating with cats can be so confusing to humans, that Jackson Galaxy, aka The Cat Daddy, has spent 20 years "helping cats and the people who love them."

[FROM THE ARCHIVES: Cat whisperer Jackson Galaxy explains 'cat speak']

Cats are this man's life! He shares everything he knows in his new book, "Total Cat Mojo: The Ultimate Guide to Life With Your Cat." He'll actually be in Mesa on Sunday, Nov. 5  to talk about some of his experiences and give cat lover's a basic class in what I like to call felinese. The Changing Hands  Bookstore event is at 3:30 p.m. at the Dobson High School Auditorium (1501 W. Guadalupe Road, Mesa)

Are you owned by or the guardian of a cat? Post a photo in the comments below or tag #azfamily on Instagram and/or Twitter.

Note/confession: In case you hadn't already figured it out, I am a "crazy cat lady" and share my home and life with a gorgeous black cat named Figaro


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