It used to be that the only time you’d ever see a cat in a TV commercial was when they were advertising some cat food or other. One finicky cat even became a household name as a result of those ads, but felines doing things on cue besides eating? That was rare back in the day.
Dogs on the other hand, were seen in television ads a lot more frequently. I’m guessing this was partly because dogs are typically easier to train than cats and therefore easier to “direct” in the commercials, and also to portray the “man’s best friend” motto.
Nowadays, cats in commercials are just as prevalent as dogs. Yay for the kitties! It’s about time cats got equal ad time on the boob tube.
Here are a few of my favorite TV commercials featuring cats.
Cats in TV Commercials
The Cat’s Pride Fresh and Light kitty litter commercial elicits a giggle every time I watch the “kitty masseuse” karate chop the girl’s back, and when they both relax after the massage with cucumber slices over their eyes, I just lose it.
The kitty known as Keyboard Cat became an internet sensation in 2007 when he “played” an upbeat rhythym on an electric keyboard. Now, Keyboard Cat can be seen in a TV commercial for Wonderful Pistachios. It’s a short but catchy ad, featuring the slogan “Keyboard Cat Does it Purrfectly.”
The Cowboy Herding Cats commercial debuted during the 2000 Super Bowl. It was said that while the herds of cats and the funny cowboys herding them made for a very memorable ad – considered one of the best Super Bowl ads of all time – many people couldn’t recall what company it was for (EDS, an HP company).
Cats skydiving to the tune of “I Believe I Can Fly” are featured in an ad for Folksam, a Swedish insurance company. Yeah, having nine lives probably does make the act of hurtling toward the ground at warp speed more fun! The video went viral as a result of animal lovers who thought the cats were actually skydiving. They weren’t – it’s called special effects, people! – but it’s still a cute commercial. The insurance company wrote: “Note that we love cats and that this movie is obviously the trick shot. We have of course followed the Animal Welfare Act and not thrown out a few cuties from an airplane.”
The “Cats with Thumbs” commercial for Cravendale Milk is one of the funniest I’ve ever seen. Cats with opposable thumbs are shown bouncing a ball, filing their nails, doing needlepoint and reading a book. The voiceover says “Imagine that. Cats with thumbs. And what if they got together? Gangs of cats with thumbs!” Hilarious stuff, that.
Another commercial with cats that will cause you to LOL (and maybe even spew your coffee) is the Cat Fish commercial for Avista Language School. A goldfish is swimming in a bowl on the table while a cat stealthily sneaks up, while Jaws-like music adds drama. Just when you think the little fishy is going to be called “lunch,” he barks and scares the cat away! The tagline: Learn Another Language.
If you want to see more memorable cat ads, just search “funny cat commercials” on YouTube. You could
Photo by Cloudzilla
Read more articles by Julia Williams