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The Adventure Cats of Instagram

Wired Logo By Taylor Glascock of Wired | Slide 1 of 17

Millie at Stansbury Island, Utah

Move over Lil Bub and Grumpy Cat. Adventure cats are here, and they’re pretty awesome.

Millie may be the most famous of them, but there is an entire community of cats exploring the world. #adventurecats are climbing trees, scaling mountains, even kayaking. “I doubt most people associate cats with hiking, climbing, biking, paddling, etc.,” says Laura Moss of adventurecats.org, who has two rescue cats of her own. “But when they see cats actually doing it, they’re inspired.”

Moss—a self-described “outdoors enthusiast and a total cat lady”—is building the site to help people learn how to safely take their cats outdoors. She also spotlights particularly brave felines on the Instagram account @adventurecatsorg, where you’ll find dozens of images of kitties doing all sorts of things more often associated with dogs. Moss says social media has helped cat owners think outside the litter box.

“The response has been overwhelming in the best possible way,” she says. “I haven’t had to seek out a single contributor. I launched the Instagram account in April, kicking it off with photos of my two cats or my friends’ cats, and within a matter of days, people were tagging adventurecats in photos. Every day I’m awed by these incredible cats and their owners.”

Craig Armstrong’s domestic medium-hair cat Millie undoubtedly is the most well-known of adventure cats. She’s got her own website and makes regular appearances in Armstrong’s Instagram account, @pechanga. They’ve explored canyons and deserts across Utah and beyond for two years. “It wasn’t an intentional ‘I’m going to start an Insta for my cat’ sort of thing,” Armstrong says. “I just kept capturing photos of adventures I’ve gone on with friends, just happens Millie’s been on a lot of them. I hope it continues for a long time.”

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© @pechanga

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