It’s not an overstatement to say that the world’s most famous cat originates in Japan. Guess what? ‘Hello, Kitty’!
Besides Hello Kitty, we can see the image of cats almost everywhere. Especially shops and restaurants often have the statues of beckoning cats, called ‘Maneki neko’. (please refer to this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maneki_Neko ) They are regarded as the lucky charm to attract customers. Strictly the cat raising its right hand is believed to bring in money. The cat beckoning with the left hand brings in guests and friends.
Then, is the Japanese society cat-friendly? We can’t always say so. For example, it is very difficult to find rental apartments or houses that allow the tenants to keep a cat. Even if apartments say ‘you can have pets here’, they often mean cats are not included in the term ‘pets’. It’s terrible! Personally, I think cats are quieter than dogs.
On the other hand, stray cats are sometimes called ‘local cats’. They are registered and taken care of by local volunteers.
By the way, you can see that several stray cats in Japan have a short tail. Of course that is not made by fighting. (Some might be so…) It’s a very unique hereditary trait of Japanese cats.
★★★ You will be welcomed by many beckoning cats. If you see cats on the streets, please look at their tails.