Conclusion of Galaxy Interview
After jackson Galaxy and I finished talking about his Foundation and his and Kate Benjamin’s new book, Catify to Satisfy, a few minutes of our interview time remained. That’s when I had the opportunity to ask Galaxy two additional questions.
If you have ever watched Galaxy’s Animal Planet program, My Cat from Hell, you probably have wondered what gives him the ability to connect with both cats and humans and make a difference in their lives. I asked him just that. This was Galaxy’s answer:
I have no idea. I think the one thing I bring to the table is that I come to the world of cats, animals and their guardians from the perspective of an artist. My whole life was as an artist. (He has an MFA in acting from the University of Iowa and is a songwriter, singer, guitarist, bandleader, actor and performance artist.) The thing that drives me is the reality. I came at cats with the same kind of inquisitive nature I used to sit on a bench, watch people, make up stories about their lives and channel it into my art. I did the same thing with cats. I didn’t discriminate. I think when you are clicking on all cylinders as an artist, you are using both your imagination and tapping into your natural sense of empathy, which is to say you feel for what is going on in this being’s life. Two-legged or four-legged, it doesn’t really matter. That’s what I feel like I’ll bring to every situation.
Of course, I bolster that with the science of behavior and the science of animals in general. I bring to it all the experience I have had. But it all starts with the premise that nobody is a hero and nobody is a villain. Everybody’s three-dimensional and worthy of my investment.
We all know how important it is to spay/neuter our pets and to keep our cats in the house or a protected area such as a catio. With that in mind, I was interested in what one piece of advice Galaxy could give cat guardians other than these two things. This is what he had to say:
Expand your circle of compassion. Yes, I know that you love your cat, but if you just go a little bit wider you’ll realize that means you love all cats. And if you love all cats, then there is something you can do. My one piece of advice is to do something. If you don’t have the time to volunteer at a local organization, maybe you can trap a cat that is right outside your house who needs your help. You can foster or if you can’t foster, you can donate. Do a little research and find the organizations in your area you feel are being innovative at pushing the envelope. There is something you can do. You know what…adopt another one. There is always a little something you can do so that we can forever change this reality. Make it so that when today’s young children grow up, they can say, “You did what? You stored animals in shelters? Why?” It won’t be part of their reality. We’ll change that realty if you expand that circle just a little bit and do something.
News from the Jackson Galaxy Foundation
The Foundation is working on a new project in conjunction with the non-profit organization, Photographers for Animals. The “Picture Me @ Home” campaign will help shelter animals find homes by providing animal shelters and rescue groups with turn-key marketing campaigns to help increase adoptions, community support and donations.
Elizabeth Putsche, Executive Director of Photographers for Animals, says, “If an animal shelter wants help from their community, they need to be part of the community. We encourage shelters to hold events that bring people into the shelter—so the public can experience the shelter as a positive place, with an atmosphere of love for the animals. The public will remember the shelter when they are ready to adopt—and shelters may find a few new volunteers along the way!”
Three campaigns are set for the Winter Holidays.
“Twas the Night Before Christmas” invites children of all ages to read their favorite holiday stories to the shelter animals. Reading aloud can help improve a child’s reading skills and help calm the animals, who are in unfamiliar surrounding.
Photos with Santa Paws & Mrs. Claws invites the community (and their pets) to the animal shelter for portraits with Santa and a chance for children to share their Christmas lists.
Black Friday Sale appeals to the bargain hunter by offering discounts on all black animal adoption fees and additional incentives today.
Check with your local animal shelters and rescues to find out if they are participating in any of these campaigns and find out how you can help. Barn Cat Buddies, the rescue group with which we work, will be taking part in Photos with Santa Paws & Mrs. Claws. Dad Tom will be taking the photographs on December 5.
Our Giveaway for Catify to Satisfy
In the post with Part 2 of my interview with cat behaviorist and Animal Planet star, Jackson Galaxy I reviewed Galaxy and Kate Benjamin’s new book, Catify to Satisfy. If you would like to have the opportunity to win a copy of this must have book, leave a comment here by 5 p.m. EST today. The winner will be selected using Random.org.
To read Part 1 of the interview, click here.
[I’d like to thank Patricia Jones, Founder and President of Paws PR, and Jackson Galaxy for this opportunity to interview Galaxy and share information with all of you about the Jackson Galaxy Foundation and Catify to Satisfy.]
If you’d like to learn more about Jackson Galaxy, I highly recommend you read his memoir, Cat Daddy.
(Credits: Photos of Jackson Galaxy: Jeff Newton. Excerpted from CATIFY TO SATISFY: Simple Solutions for Creating a Cat-Friendly Home by Jackson Galaxy and Kate Benjamin with the permission of Tarcher/Penguin, an imprint of Penguin Random House. Copyright Jackson Galaxy and Kate Benjamin 2015.)