Do you know the NUS Cats?
Updated: Sep 18, 2022
This is a collaboration with NUSCatCafé
By now you would have heard that our beloved TikTok star, Ashy, is moving out! In case you didn’t know, Ashy, one of NUS’ oldest community cats, has been adopted by an alumni and will soon be spending his days in the comfort of a loving home. After hearing of this, University Town (UTown) has been busier than ever with more students petting and visiting Ashy as he lazes around our campus. In fact, I just saw him taking an afternoon nap outside UTown Starbucks (his most recent favourite nap spot), and I, myself, couldn’t resist the urge to snap a few pics and pat him.
We may all be familiar with Ashy but let’s be honest, how many of us know about the many other cats that reside with us on campus? From Business to Engineering, there are a whole bunch of cats craving your attention!
Before we proceed on to the cool and fun introductions of the NUS cats, we would like to introduce NUSCatCafé
Established in 2009, NUSCatCafé is a student organization that was formed with the aim of maintaining a healthy coexistence between the campus cats and the NUS population. There are actually more cats than what is shown here as cats come into NUS every now and then. With the love and help of NUSCatCafé, these cats were nurtured, healed and adopted into loving homes whereas the rest that was not adopted have chosen NUS to be their fur home.
Check out their Instagram or website for updates on the community cats!
Let me introduce the NUS community cats to you
Besides Ashy, UTown is home to two more adorable felines.
Name: Sourplum (AKA Plum) Favourite Hangout: UTown Loading Bay Fun Fact: Plum actually is a mother of three kittens! (However, they aren’t on campus anymore. Head to the NUSCatCafé Instagram to find out more!) She is also the second oldest UTown cat, just a little younger than Ashy.
Name: Putu Favourite Hangout: Around the Residential Colleges (College of Alice and Peter Tan/Residential College 4) and Yale-NUS College Fun Fact: Putu was discovered around January 2021 and has been pampered by the endless patting by the UTown students ever since <3 She also loves loves loves food, her motto is “food is love, food is life”
Faculty of Arts and Social Science (FASS)
The FASS cats are quite shy to the point that the phrase “There are FASS cats??” is seen whenever a picture of them is sent in the USCats telegram group.
Name: Crumbs Favourite Hangout: AS4-B1, near Social Work Department or Fragrance Garden Fun Fact: Crumbs is a shy, demure cat but is super affectionate once she gets to know you! She is an elusive cat who is usually hard to find.
Name: M33y Thai (Muay Thai) Favourite Hangout: AS4-B1, around the walkway with plants Fun Fact: Appears big and fierce but is actually a huge softie. However, he will run away if you come too close (unless you are his feeder).
Name: Callie Favourite Hangout: Central Library Fun Fact: Callie usually wanders around a night and is still very shy towards humans. PSA: Callie is not yet neutered! If you happen to spot her then please let NUSCatCafé know when and where.
Author's Note: I think this picture is quite funny
Name: Toothless (affectionately known as toof/toothie) Favourite Hangout: E4A/E6 Fun Fact: Unlike her name, she has teeth and they are reputably the sharpest teeth out of all the other cats. Toothless is also well-known for her “windshield wiper” tail as it will swish from side to side whenever she walks — just like a windshield!
Name: Fred (the red) Favourite Hangout: EA and E1/E1A Fun Fact: Was originally named Simba and used to roam around National University Hospital/Dentistry! Fred was renamed and relocated in January 2022 to Engineering and is very loved (and sometimes laughed at) by the community.
Name: Kit Favourite Hangout: E1/EW2 Fun Fact: She is only two years old and is usually hiding around in Engineering in places we cannot reach
Somehow the only hall with NUS community cats
Name: Cow Favourite Hangout: Raffles Hall Fun Fact: Cow actually looks like a cow and is described as a friendly but strange kitty. Joining the family in March 2020, Cow used to reside along the UTown link bridge but bravely crossed the road over to Raffles Hall.
Name: Meow Meow (Meow2 or Meow^2) Favourite Hangout: Raffles Hall Fun Fact: Has bright yellow eyes that will stare into your soul and is a big fan of chin scratches! Despite his name, Meow Meow is actually not much of a cat that meows.
Name: Lily Favourite Hangout: Raffles Hall Fun Fact: Lily used to be called “tiny cat” because she is small and likes to hide in small places. She coined the name Lily after Lilliput, the place with tiny humans.
Name: Pip Favourite Hangout: We rarely see Pip around a specific spot, but he is definitely roaming around Business school - trust! Fun Fact: Known as the super rare kitty, Pip has actually been living in NUS for some time now but doesn’t appear regularly. If you do see him, it is your time to capture a selfie with this elusive cat! (for good luck)
Name: Belle Favourite Hangout: Science Foyer near MD9 Fun Fact: Belle has been with us since way back in 2013 and she looks like a black cat on the surface but once you flip her over, you will notice a small white patch near her belly. She is named after the astrophysicist Jocelyn Bell Burnell #Science (But also cause she’s the prettiest)
Yusof Ishak House/Ridge View Residential College
Name: Coco (After Coco Crunch, not coconuts) Favourite Hangout: YIH/RVRC/UHall Fun Fact: It’s been years but no one truly knows where she resides in. If you’re lucky you can spot her in RVRC in the middle of the night when you are going for a late-night exercise or supper.
Name: Bast Favourite Hangout: All over NUS (Engineering, YIH, RVRC. Science, KE7 Hall) Fun Fact: Bast was originally hanging out around Business but has broadened his horizons by exploring all over NUS. Broadened his horizons by exploring all over NUS, he is perhaps the next in line (or in contention) for the most elusive cat after Pip - no one can find him! PSA: Bast is also not yet neutered! Please contact NUSCatCafé if you happen to run into him!
Last but not least, here is a special spotlight on Ashy <3
Name: Ashy Favourite Hangout: UTown Fine Foods, ERC Fun Fact: Ashy once got trapped in the UTown Octobox while he was wandering around.
As a tribute to Ashy, I interviewed a few NUS students who shared with me their favourite memories of Ashy:
“I saw someone post a picture of Ashy in the USCats telegram group and so I set out to find him. I was chilling with him for some stress relief and ended up falling asleep beside him for one and a half hours.” - Student A
“At the end of a long school day as I head back to my RC, sometimes I spot Ashy lazing around outside the ERC. Seeing him always brightens my day :)” - Student B
the NUS community cats look after us (keeping us sane from their cuteness), but how can we look after them?
NUSCatCafé is having an ongoing fundraiser from 9-23 Sept! Your support will help NUSCatCafé continue to carry out regular vet check-ups and the neutering and fostering of new cats. This semester, there is also a new Feed a Cat programme which allows you to buy one (or more) meal(s) for the NUS cats at $2 each!
Check out the NUSCatCafé Instagram to find out more :)
Other than following their Instagram, NUSCatCafé is planning on setting up an official telegram channel soon so stay tuned!
There are also student-run social media accounts such as the telegram group USCats. USCats originally started off as an interest group in University Scholars Programme (Now NUS College) but has grown to include cat lovers from all faculties. The telegram group is a platform to share all about cats. Sometimes members will discuss the NUS cats but most of the time it is used to share the times we encounter adorable cats throughout the day. Note: to join the USCats group you would need to be added by someone inside.
Feel free to reach out to me on telegram @raezzledazzle if you want to be added in :)
That’s all folks! I hope that you have learnt something new about our NUS community cats and maybe even be able to recognise them all by name if you see them hanging around. I would also like to thank NUSCatCafé for collaborating with CNM Types for this article and for all they have done for the community cats. Without them, our community cats would not be as pampered and looked after today.
If you ever see one of the community cats, don’t be afraid to say hi and give them a little pat! (But please be mindful and respectful of the cat's personal space when doing so)