Famous Friday: John Lennon and His Cats

by Paws on Your Heart on April 19, 2013

John Lennon is one of the most well-known musicians of all time, most famous for being a member of The Beatles, and he also had a popular career as a solo musician and political activist. His music and activism are remembered all over the world, but did you know that John was also a dedicated cat lover?

John’s love of cats started early in his life with his mother’s cat Elvis. John adored him, or at least it was assumed Elvis was a him… until ‘he’ gave birth to a litter of kittens in the cupboard! Like many cat lovers, John doted on his cats. As a child he would ride his bike down to the docks to buy fish for them. Later, once The Beatles rose to fame and John was away touring, he would call home to check on his cats and make sure they were happy.

John owned several cats throughout his life, and at one point he owned as many as ten cats. They varied greatly in breed and origin. Many were abandoned or stray before they were taken in, and there were Persians, Tabbies, and a Russian Blue. You can read the collected information about the various cats in John’s life onĀ this website.

Though many of his cats had traditional names, several names had stories behind them. Elvis the cat, mentioned earlier, was of course named for Elvis Presley, one of John’s earliest musical influences. Elvis wasn’t the only cat named after a famous figure. At the height of The Beatles’ career, John had made a controversial comment that The Beatles were “more popular than Jesus”. Then, ever the jokester, John named his cat Jesus.

The paired names that John gave to some of his cats were also notable. Two stray kittens he adopted were named Major and Minor – very fitting names coming from a musician. Another pair of cats, one black and one white, were named Salt and Pepper… the names seem to suit a pair of this colouring, but John named the black one Salt and the white one Pepper!

John Lennon is just one of the many famous personalities who had a special place in his heart for cats. Cats even inspired John creatively. A visual artist as well as a musician, John created many drawings that featured cats. You can read more about John’s love of cats and see some of his drawings HERE.

Is there a famous feline you’d like to see featured in one of our Famous Friday posts?
Let us know in the comments section below.

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