Tutankhamun tattoo on a Sphynx cat
It is impossible to tattoo a cat unless the cat is hairless (or shaved) and the Sphynx is one such cat. Actually, it is not completely hairless, there is a fine down hair covering the skin, which feels like a warm and muscular peach!
But to tattoo a cat really shows a disrespect for the cat. And we are talking about large “ornamental” tattoos not the small identification tattoos that are very rarely used and applied by a vet or specialist. This, for me is what is fundamentally wrong about ornamental cat tattooing, which hopefully is extremely rare. The cat is being treated as an object that we can do as we please with. And that attitude cannot be the correct one in our relationship with all other animals including our cat companions.
However, the person who did it, a Russian lady, was happy with the result. It seems that she has no qualms about the process. This is a kind of disconnect that is similar to the one that allows people to declaw cats. Although declawing cats is, in my opinion, far worse.
Sphynx in Egypt, the presumed
inspiration for the tattoo
Photo by S Baker
It shows a lack of empathy for the cat. I don’t think the cat felt any pain as it was anesthetized through out the tattooing. This must mean being fully anesthetized to ensure that the cat was stationary throughout, which carries a risk in itself particularly as it took three hours.
Russia is quite a cat savvy country. They have their own cat association(s) and their own naturally occuring cat breeds such as the Siberian, Don Sphynx, Russian Blue and Kurilian Bobtail so I am not sure that this is due to a country wide attitude problem towards cats. Is it just an isolated incident? Well, it seems not. There appears to be a new craze for tattooing cats. If that is the case it is disturbing.
The greater problem is when an entire culture throughout a country allows the mistreatment of cats. Yes, I am talking about declawing cats again.
See Painted Cats – not the same thing.
I have re-published the image of the cat from http://web.archive.org/web/20141216212655/http://balkanpix.com/ and provided a link in exchange.