If you’re in possession of one of these new fangled desktop computers, a ‘smart’ phone or a ‘tablet’ computer, you know by now that cats are kind of a big deal.
Cat-related stuff has accounted for 15 per cent of traffic on average in the past few years, and in the UK alone, 3.8 million cat pictures are shared every day. With stats like that, it’s no surprise that some of the internet’s most famous cats are making some seriously big bucks.
2014 Channel 4__ documentary Star Paws took a look at the members of the animal world who are making serious commercial money. From Grumpy Cat to Lil Bub, cats are most certainly the ad world's animal du jour. At the time of the documentary we spoke to Caroline – owner of Bronte (who you might recognise from a Three ad earlier that year), as her cat worked her way up the ladder of internet fame.
What happened next?
We had the trainer come over from LA. She trains a lot of animals in America, like the Chihuahua dogs in the films and stuff. So then it was a case of about three-and-a-half weeks of training every day – getting Bronte in the basket and using a clicker until she was comfortable with that, then we had to get her to sit with her paws on the front of the basket. In the end, Bronte absolutely adored that basket – we couldn’t get her out of it.
So Bronte’s kind of a celebrity now, right? I know when you take her to pet shows people get really starstruck
I still find it so funny. They absolutely adored her. I didn’t even known these people but they were talking to me as if I knew them. And with Bronte as if they knew her. But to them, it was like they were meeting a pop star or some actor off the telly. I was very humbled by the whole thing.
So what’s she up to now?
I have now taken advice and Bronte’s being looked after by her agent Melody, at the pet London agency. I can’t cope anymore. Up until now I have done it all myself and it is exhausting, it really is. Arranging your train and your hotel and travel, it’s exhausting. And while I'm doing that, you know, I’ve also got her own website and she’s got her own Facebook and Twitter, so I’m dealing with it all. Also, I wrote a book that came out last Friday and I’ve already sold about 50 copies. And I haven’t even got a publisher.
Do you have to look after her appearance properly?
Yeah, she has a bath and a hairdryer and she’s got a few little outfits that I only use for photos. She doesn’t wander around in them all day.
Exactly. I know we’re not as big like they are in America, they do go really crazy in America – with Grumpy Cat and stuff.
So what is it that makes Bronte so special?
I do think that whatever the animal, they’ve either got it or they haven’t. And it’s so strange with Bronte, it’s like she knows. Like a guide dog when they put the little vest on, they know they have to work. Bronte’s the same, she’s ordinary but, for some reason, when she’s in front of a camera it’s like, ‘Oh OK, it’s that time.'
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This article originally appeared on The Debrief.