Cat on a Mat Yoga for Hunter Valley Cat Haven

Stretched: Cat yoga will be held to raise money to rescue and rehome moggies across the Hunter. Picture: Simon Bennett
Stretched: Cat yoga will be held to raise money to rescue and rehome moggies across the Hunter. Picture: Simon Bennett

The fat cat sat on the mat is widely known as a good phonic method for teaching how to read and write the English language.

But what about “the cat sat on the mat and did yoga”? It doesn’t have quite the same ring to it.

Nevertheless, cats and dogs do have their own version of yoga. Hence, the yoga poses downward dog and cat-cow.

Hunter Valley Cat Haven is tapping into these connections, with an event to be held on Thursday called Cat on a Mat Yoga.

This two-hour workshop involves humans doing yoga while kittens roam about. Patting is encouraged, but not mid-pose. 

Money raised goes to Hunter Valley Cat Haven, which rescues and re-homes our feline friends across the Hunter Region.

The cat haven’s president Tracey Burkill said she had heard of yoga with baby goats, but she wasn’t too keen on getting into that.

“I’d be a bit worried about that because they do poo a lot,” she said.

Yoga with kittens, though, sounded much more fun.

“Everybody loves a kitten. They’re gorgeous,” she said.

Cats, she said, were “very individual”.

“You don’t pick a cat, a cat picks you. You have no say in the matter,” she said.

Tracey herself has four cats.

So not quite cat-lady status, just yet?

“No, but getting there,” she joked.

“We’re all crazy cat ladies in this rescue, we really are.”

Seriously though, she said the cat haven was particularly busy at present.

“This time of year is kitten season. We can’t keep up with the requests. It’s really sad,” she said.

“There’s no cat shelter,” she said.

They could do with more foster carers.

“We can’t take the cats in unless we have foster carers,” she said.

The event will be held at Free Spirit Yoga in Singleton at 6.30pm on Thursday.

Handy Hints

Warners Bay’s Ian King has a few handy hints he’d like to share.

He pointed out that super glue, once opened, tends to dry up quickly.

“With those little tubes of glue, you use them once and have to throw them away. But put them in the fridge and they’ll last.”

Ian also has a tip for fixing feet marks in patches of carpet, next to lounge chairs.

His lounge suite recently had to be removed to be repaired. He asked the bloke who came to repair the lounge’s upholstery about the feet-mark problem.

“He said you put an ice cube, perhaps two or three times, in the dent where the feet were.

“It’ll raise the patch of carpet and you’ll never know there was a dent there.”

Send your handy hints to

Koala-sniffing Dogs

We’ve heard of drug-sniffing dogs, but never koala-sniffing dogs.

Apparently, though, they do exist.

Greens MP Dawn Walker called on the NSW government to commit to independent trials of these so-called koala-sniffing dogs.

“We believe that the deployment of koala-trained sniffer dogs in our state forests will be a much more reliable and accurate way to detect koalas and their core habitat.”

She added that the current method “requires loggers to manually search through dense leaf litter looking for koala scats”.

A trial in 2013 using the “world’s first koala-sniffer dog, Oscar” detected several koalas in Royal Camp State Forest near Casino, she said.