Caturday felid trifecta: An iPhone for cats; cat mistakenly shipped to Montreal, cats on glass tables

This is the last Caturday felid before Coynezaa, but they will continue, as usual, unabated through the holidays.

The first contribution comes from Slate (click on screenshot) and TechCrunch. The upshot is that the fingerprint sensor you can use on an iPhone 5s (I use one on the iPhone 5), also happens to work with cat paws:

Watch a cat’s paw unlock the phone!

From TechCrunch:

As you can see in the video above, Apple’s new fingerprint sensor in the iPhone 5s isn’t restricted to human users. After commandeering a cat, I tested a colleague’s hypothesis that you could register the identifying skin segments of your favorite furry friends for Touch ID, too.

The cat’s paw worked, and while it encountered more frequent failures than did a fingerprint, it was able to unlock the phone again repeatedly when positioned correctly on the sensor. Note that no other paw pads would unlock the device, and that cats essentially have unique “fingerprints” just like people, so this doesn’t make the Touch ID sensor any less secure.

For the curious, I also tested the 5s fingerprint sensor on the heel of my palm, as well as on the inside of my forearm up around the wrist, and found that I could register and successfully unlock with both skin regions. Again, it was trickier to get the unlock to work consistently, and trying to fool the sensor by using the same part of the body on the opposing limb never worked.

To clarify, this isn’t a ‘hack’ of Apple Touch ID tech, like the kind a group of individuals is trying to crowdfund via the covered earlier this morning by ZDNet. But it is a broadening of the definition of what counts as a “fingerprint” by the iPhone 5s scanner’s standards, so if you think your pet needs access to your accounts, feel free to register them as one of your five stored Touch ID profiles.

This bodes ill for cat owners with iPhones, as your cat can now do butt-dialing and maybe even ordering from Amazon:


From the CBC News (click on screenshot):

From the site:

Baloo, a one-year-old tabby, survived the 17-hour trip to Montreal after crawling into a parcel shipped by his family.

He was spotted by a Purolator worker in Montreal last week.

“[It] could have had a much worse ending so we’re very relieved that he’s doing fine,” said SPCA Montreal communications director Anita Kapuscinska.

The shipping company called the local SPCA when they found Baloo, and the organization was able to track down its owners.

“They couldn’t be more relieved, surprised, thrilled, there were a lot of emotions going on during this phone call with them,” said Kapuscinska.

His trip back to Nova Scotia begins Saturday morning.

Baloo got into a box of tire rims the family was preparing to ship.

“Somehow he managed to sneak into the box when no one was looking and must have taken a little cat nap,” she said.

Baloo is on his way back under much cozier conditions, courtesy of the Freedom Drivers, a network of volunteers that transports animals between shelters.

Only in Kindly Canada would there be an organization that would drive a wayward moggie 1200 km so it could be home for Christmas. The moral: check those boxes before you send them out! Here’s Baloo at the SPCA. He’ll be starting for home today!



Finally, you might know the image of Hovercat on a glass table; it’s an iconic Internet meme (see here). Here are a few more photos of cats on glass contributed by reader Gravelinspector, with his captions:

Tail up, back arched, not happycat.
Catling, glass table, water glass.

More undercarriage:


h/t: Diana MacPherson, gravelinspector


  1. Randall Schenck
    Posted December 22, 2018 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    Baloo wants to get into logistics. Pretty smart cat.

  2. Ken Phelps
    Posted December 22, 2018 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

    “…as your cat can now do butt-dialing”

    Ooooh, I wish you hadn’t said that just after I was fiddling with the face recognition on my phone. Thank Dog I’m not still 14, or…

  3. Merilee
    Posted December 22, 2018 at 1:28 pm | Permalink


  4. gravelinspector-Aidan
    Posted December 22, 2018 at 3:46 pm | Permalink

    Only in Kindly Canada would there be an organization that would drive a wayward moggie 1200 km so it could be home for Christmas.

    Me, I’d suspect a “bucket brigade” across adjacent “territories” of animal rescue organisations.

  5. Heather Hastie
    Posted December 22, 2018 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

    “My” cat (‘Heather’s Homilies’ readers will understand the speech marks)isn’t worried by glass tables with glasses of water on them. When my brother visited a few weeks ago, after being initially a bit wary of the Big Loud person, Reilley jumped on the glass coffee table and began drinking from Doug’s glass of water as if he’d been doing it all his life. There’d never been a glass of water on my coffee table during his tenure before.

  6. jpetts
    Posted December 22, 2018 at 7:36 pm | Permalink

    Not just in Canada: at Purrfect Pals in Arlington, WA, we will arrange for any cat that has been adopted from our no-kill shelter to be picked up and returned from ANYWHERE in the US. Recent examples are Los Angeles and Las Vegas.

    There are also organizations that operate Underground Railroads, transporting d*gs from kill shelters in CA to OR and WA.

    James Petts
    VP, Board of Directors
    Purrfect Pals

%d bloggers like this: