Kate Benjamin, co-author with Jackson Galaxy of “Catification”

Kate Benjamin—the cat style expert extraordinaire, founder of the cat design website Hauspanther.com and frequent collaborator with Jackson Galaxy on his show “My Cat From Hell,” helping him create cat-friendly environments for his clients—explains her lifelong love of cats, yet her relatively recent step toward sharing her life with them. 13 of them!Cover Using the new book she co-authored with Galaxy, “Catification: Designing A Happy And Stylish Home For Your Cat (And You!),” as a jumping off point, she describes the Catification set-up in her office and in the “catio” of her condo. Benjamin also notes how her career traveled a circuitousCatification2_PhotoCredit-RebeccaBrittain path before arriving at the world of HausPanther and Catification, yet taps the academic training she received before starting down that path: she studied Design and Environmental Analysis at Cornell. She discusses the importance of identifying what type(s) of cat(s) live with you, and how that dictates the sort of Catification gambit to employ, addressing the universal significance of including a Cat Superhighway. She also responds to observations about the array of design ideas presented in the book, including those submitted from proud Catification achievers across the world, underscoring that some designs are simple and do-able by virtually anyone, while others seem far more ambitious and daunting. Photos by John Burcham Photography (Kate in office), Rebecca Brittain (living room) (www.hauspanther.com)

ALSO: We had a brief conversation with Cory Cooper, of TampaPets.org, a coalition of Tampa rescues and other animal welfare organizations holding the then-impending major event, Woofstock (www.tampapets.org)

COMEDY CORNER: Joe Zimmerman’s “Pet Snakes” (portion) (www.zimmermancomedy.com)

MUSIC: Rebekah Pulley’s “Talking Animals Theme,” Mindy Smith’s “Shelter Me,” instrumentals

NAME THAT ANIMAL TUNE: Elton John’s “Honky Cat”

AUDIO ARCHIVE

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About the author
Duncan Strauss is the producer-host of “Talking Animals,” which he launched at KUCI in California in 2003, combining his passions for animals, radio, journalism, music and comedy. The show has aired since late 2005 on Tampa’s WMNF. Strauss lives in Jupiter Farms, FL with his family, including four cats, two horses and one dog. He spends each day talking to those animals, and maintains they talk right back to him, an as yet unverified claim.

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