Did you know that a tabby cat was the mayor of Talkeetna, Alaska for 20 years? Were you aware that a cat’s brain is 90% similar to a human brain? Have you noticed that cats have a dominate paw like most humans have a dominate hand? Learn about the history, genetics, biology, and behaviors of cats and discover all the reasons they are terrific companions through this project.
Show Your Skills
- Create your own recipe for cat food and explain the nutritional benefit of the ingredients
- Make a poster describing a disease in cats and why it often goes undiagnosed
- Create a display of items harmful/toxic to cats
- Make a poster comparing and contrasting wild and domestic cats
Service and Leadership
- Volunteer at a shelter
- Start a program reading to cats at a shelter
- Organize a cat food drive for a local shelter
- Cat sit for a neighbor or friend
- Photograph local “celebrity” cats for a calendar and sell to raise money for a worthy cause
- Give a talk/demonstration on proper care of cats
- Mentor youth new to the cat project
- Organize a cat/pet show for your 4-H club
- Research cat population in your area and promote the importance of spaying/neutering
- Make and sell diet appropriate cat treats
- Make and sell cat toys
- Design and build cat scratching or climbing post
- Start a business photographing cats
- Design a new cat toy based on cat behavior and bring it to life using a 3-D printer
- Create a robotic self-cleaning litter box
- Create an app that will engage and stimulate cats
- Develop a motion activated toy
Connecting with a Mentor
- Speak to your local veterinarian about job shadowing
- Contact your local shelter to be connected with people who work directly with cats
- Ask your 4-H leader or Extension Staff to pair you with an older member with experience
- Ask a veterinary clinic about local cat breeders
- 4-H Show
- Pet adoption days at local shelters
- Cat Con
- Cat shows, Festivals and Conventions
Project Manuals & Exhibit Requirements
- LEVEL 1: Purr-fect Pals!
- LEVEL 2: Climbing Up
- LEVEL 3: Leaping Forward
Purchase manuals on the Shop Illinois 4-H Store.
View exhibit requirements and scoresheets on the Illinois State Fair page.
Patrick Fairbrother, DVM and the staff at Vet Care Associates
4-H Spark Sheets are a collaborative effort of 4-H staff, volunteers, alumni and teens from across Illinois. A big thanks to the many contributors and reviewers!