the cat boat
August 7, 2006 3:18 PM   Subscribe

"Soon there would be no space left. But the cats kept coming. What could she do with them all? The solution turned out to be right outside Henriette's front door. If people could live on the houseboats which lined the canals, why not cats? And so came the idea to buy one for them." De Poezenboot.
posted by reklaw (22 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I have a bad feline about this.
posted by nthdegx at 3:27 PM on August 7, 2006

Snakes Cats on a plane boat!
posted by nthdegx at 3:28 PM on August 7, 2006

Damn, nthdegx, you beat me to it.
posted by ottereroticist at 3:30 PM on August 7, 2006

Being of Scandinavian descent myself, I have long suspected (and feared) that all the crazy cat-loving old ladies out there were somehow connected to me through the gene pool.

Sometimes I hate it when I'm right.

And now, not only do I have to contend with the fact that Scandinavians are, in fact, mostly complete loonytoons, but they also appeared to have discovered the internets.

It was only a matter of time.
posted by AbnerDoon at 3:31 PM on August 7, 2006

I can't help giggling at the puss-in-boots likeness of poezenboot.
posted by nomisxid at 3:31 PM on August 7, 2006

Apparently the site has been Metafiltered, and the Google cache isn't working either.
posted by triolus at 3:32 PM on August 7, 2006

Works for me....
posted by interrobang at 3:32 PM on August 7, 2006

Now it works.. after posting that. =)

Interesting site. How much space is on one of thesse houseboats? is it enough room to keep the kitties occupied and let them move about and play?

Just asking, because I think houseboats are awesome, and wouldn't mind living in one myself, but I fear my cats would get bored (even more than they do in my apartment).
posted by triolus at 3:38 PM on August 7, 2006

Being of Scandinavian descent myself...

Er, the Poezenboot is in Amsterdam.
posted by ottereroticist at 3:40 PM on August 7, 2006 [1 favorite]

I am adding this to my Amsterdam itinerary. Thank you.
posted by ltracey at 4:22 PM on August 7, 2006

I've been aboard. It's fantastic. I don't think the cats are bored, as the boat is small-house sized, there are things to scratch and climb etc - not to mention all the visits by backpackers who miss their cat.
posted by pompomtom at 4:47 PM on August 7, 2006

mmm... pussy boat...
posted by Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese at 4:50 PM on August 7, 2006

I thought this was going to be furry porn at first.
posted by StrasbourgSecaucus at 4:51 PM on August 7, 2006

I'm not sure she's an official Crazy Cat Lady until she has Ein Poezenfreezer for the ones that shuffle off this mortal coil.

From the web page, the operation sounds better run than many animal shelters with more traditional real estate holdings.
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 5:26 PM on August 7, 2006

Bulkhead cat is watching your hand on the tiller.
posted by rob511 at 5:55 PM on August 7, 2006 [1 favorite]

What happened to Boat 20? I click on the link and it's 404!

imagining a feline Flying Dutchman, meowing throught the Seven Seas...
posted by potsmokinghippieoverlord at 5:59 PM on August 7, 2006

Working boat 20 link.

A sad story indeed.
posted by reklaw at 6:04 PM on August 7, 2006

I visited Das Poezenboot (sorry, couldn't resist) in 1999, and have to agree with pompomtom. It was a cozy place for the cats to hang out and socialize with the backpackers. It's definitely worth a visit.
posted by malaprohibita at 6:14 PM on August 7, 2006

Has no one linked to The Cats' House? (Tour starts here.)

Previous Cathouse posts.
posted by girandole at 6:26 PM on August 7, 2006 [1 favorite]

I never knew you could visit it! I'm going back to Holland for a trip in just over a week. If I can fit it in my schedule I'll go see the cats!!
I have, however, been in the cat cabinet museum, also in Amsterdam.
posted by easternblot at 7:29 PM on August 7, 2006

I'm currently a dog "owner," and have had cats. At the risk of seeming to pick a fight with cat lovers, I'll say this article points to a difference I sense between cat lovers and other pet keepers/owners. To wit, that cat owners are less likely to put down unwanted or poorly bred cats, and to just let them go feral, or turn them over to others. There are, I think, a lot of reasons for that, not least that cats will go feral with less observable impact to human activities than will dogs or other pets, but I think it also has to do with the reluctance cat lovers have to exercise human selective pressure on cats.

It's been said that cats are just the means of turning cat food into kittens, but that little joke hides a deeper truth; without human selection pressure, cats over populate easily. As a lately domesticated species, they depend on humans to exercise the judgement they lack on reproductive issues, until such time as responsible breeding can (if it is possible) select for lower fecundity. Clearly, neutering cats before reproduction is best, and most humane. But putting down excess adult cats quickly, especially those that are still potential breeders, and lack domestically valuable traits, is best for both people and cats.

Whatever the good intentions of the cat boat people (and I trust they are kind and well intentioned people, every one), failing to euthanize, adding additional stray housing, and publicizing their efforts as a charity, are all irresponsible behaviors, in that they tend to legitimize false kindness, and failing to care for pets, when what is really needed is an insistence on control. They'd be doing a better social service if they sold the boats, and put the money and volunteer effort into trapping.
posted by paulsc at 11:35 PM on August 7, 2006

See also.
posted by malthas at 8:42 AM on August 8, 2006

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