About Me

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Washington, United States
loves: you win if you guessed "pets" and "museums". Also books, art history, travel, British punk, Korean kimchi, bindis, martinis, and other things TBD. I will always make it very clear if a post is sponsored in any way. Drop me a line at thepetmuseum AT gmail.com !

Thursday, November 26, 2015

happy thanksgiving!

thanks vintageimages.org. PD

"Give me turkey for my dinner,"
Said a tabby cat.
"Before you get it, you'll be thinner,
Go and catch a rat,"
Said the cook, her pastry making,
Looking fierce and red,
And a heavy roller shaking
Over pussy's head.

Hark! her kittens' shriller mewing;
"Give us pie," said they,
To the cook, amid her stewing,
On Thanksgiving day.
"Pie, indeed! You idle creatures!
Who'd have thought of that?
Wash your paws and faces neater,
And go hunt! Scat! Scat!"

So they went and did their duty,
Diligent and still;
Exercise improved their beauty,
As it always will.
Useful work and early rising
Brought a merry mood ;
And they found the cook's advising,
Though severe, was good. 

-- Cats and Kittens (Readings and Recitations No. 35), Edgar S. Werner, ed. (New York : Edgar S. Werner & Company, c1906), 38.

Happy Thanksgiving. Museum friends!

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

vintage wordless wednesday: holiday rerun

bought in pdx
happy thanksgiving 1985

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

kittenful of mice

courtesy and thanks to Library of Rennes - Les Champs Libres. public domain.
They don't make giveaway calendars like this any more.  If only.  This chromolithograph of a kitten holding a cage of six mice dates from 1885.  It's a typically high-quality product from Oberthur Printing, which among other accomplishments published the first French telephone directory.  Though this may not be the finest of fine art, in its day Oberthur Publishing brought attractive and well executed ephemera to the general public.  There's a lot to be said for teaching people how to look via their everyday materials.

Monday, November 23, 2015

a dog in stitches

Embroidery, 1800s, New Zealand, maker unknown. Gift of Adrienne Stonyer, 1981. Te Papa (PC002029)
A cushion?  A seat panel?  Part of a screen?  We'll never know; the hands that finished this goofy boy and his ring of roses (brown ones, which are a tad depressing) didn't get around to the background.  This item is part of the collections of Te Papa Tongarewa, the Museum of New Zealand, and dates from the 1800s.  It may have been a precolored design on the canvas, a craft kit type which became popular in the second half of the century.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

color ancient egyptian cats!

all images copyright and by kindest permission of l. a. vocelle
Pet Museum friend, The Great Cat (L. A. Vocelle) has created a wonderful coloring book of ancient Egyptian cat imagery!  It's called Ancient Egyptian Cats: A Coloring Book for Adults and Children (and the link takes you to its Amazon page for the getting thereof). 

The images are inspired by statues and wall bas-reliefs.  Don't you want to get to coloring right now?  

I went looking for a poem to Bast (the cat goddess) and this one pops up a great deal:

Hail Bast! Hail Bast! Hail Bast,
coming forth from the secret place,
may there be given to me splendor
in the place of incense, herbs,
and love-joys, peace of heart in the
place of bread and beer.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

wordless vintage wednesday

i own this. thanks seattle antiques co

Monday, November 16, 2015


Hans Hoffmann, An Affenpinscher (detail), 1580, watercolor and gouache on vellum. Kasper Collection, New York.
I didn't know you could give an Affenpinscher a lion cut, but apparently in late 16thc Germany that was doable.  "Affenpinscher" is German for "monkey terrier."  The breed was developed there as a fast, cute little ratcatcher for the kitchens of the time, but even the most useful little dog will find its way into the laps of the fashionable if it's cute enough.

lisette, the dog who changed peter the great's mind

thanks karenswhimsy.com (PD)
In which Peter the Great is moved to mercy when his beloved dog is roped in to intercede:
* * *
. . . Among the powers that were, who had their pets, Peter the Great must be included -- the Czar whose evil-tempered monkey was a terror to all the attendants at court, obliged as they were to endure without resenting its malice. A much more agreeable favorite was Lisette, an Italian greyhound presented to Peter by the Sultan. Once she saved a life, and her Victoria Cross is the record in history of this achievement. A poor fellow had been condemned, for some small error, to the knout. All intercession had failed, and the hour of execution was at hand, when his friends bethought them of fastening a petition to Lisette's collar and sending her with it to the Czar. This was done, and what he had refused to his loyal subjects he granted to little Lisette. Not without reason is the skeleton of this timely advocate still preserved in the city where she lived!
--- From Lewis, E. (1892). Famous pets of famous people. Boston: D. Lothrop Company. 83-84.  As it happens, Lisette - along with a horse also named Lisette, and another royal dog named Tirana - are still present at the Zoological Museum in St. Petersberg, though rather inexpertly taxidermied.  You can see them in this blog post, halfway down the page.  That post also tells me they're on the Facebook page of Badly Stuffed Animals...somewhere.