A Book About Cats

Cat StoriesWell, I figured, what better way is there to find a book with a cat on the cover than to find a book about cats? I went with the obvious solution for this Category.

James Herriot’s Cat Stories, by James Herriot, was published in 1994. It’s a collection of ten stories about cats. The copy I borrowed from the library has a cat on the cover.

When he entered Veterinary College, James Herriot writes in the introduction, there was nothing being taught, in either the textbooks or in classrooms, about the veterinary care of cats. This was only beginning to change when he graduated. He chose to be a large-animal veterinarian, but on his rounds through the English countryside, he found cats on every farm, either for practical or emotional use.

The stories in this book are semi-autobiographical. Names, places, and time frames have been altered, but are based on real cases. Even “James Herriot” is a pseudonym. (Patients, even non-human ones, deserve their privacy.)

Three of the stories are about the same two cats, Olly and Ginny. They remained wild, but stayed close to the Herriot house, where they were fed. They loved Helen (Mrs. Herriot) but kept their distance from James. (They probably always remembered being stuffed into a cat box and given veterinary treatment.)

It’s a book about medical mysteries. There’s Alfred, who is losing weight but showing no other symptoms. There’s Frisk, who is near death one day and frisky the next day.

There are stories about fascinating cats and their fascinating owners. There’s Mr. and Mrs. Bond, who run a cat establishment.

James Herriot’s Cat Stories is a cute book. It’s a short book (161 pages), full of warmth, heartbreak, and humor. I enjoyed it.

  • A book with a cat on the cover

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