Tuesday, February 11, 2014

What Do You Do With Your Whiskers?

For years and years I've collected the whiskers I've found in the house.  As you can see, there's no shortage of whiskers here!

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I keep them in a little vial. Somewhere there's a tiny box of them too.

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Some of these belong to Drewey, some are Beans and a few are Wylla's.  Kitties don't seem to lose too many, but I would imagine at least a couple of them belong to our foster babes. 


I don't recall why or how it all began, but I'm glad that I did start saving them.   I kind of like knowing that if I ever wanted to, I could clone any of my cats.

Do you save your kitty's whiskers?  If so, what do you do with them?  

63 comments:

  1. I save them too! I cannot throw them out, but I do not have a plan for them. They are in a jewelry box and a handcrafted bowl. I feel they are sacred somehow.

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    1. Sacred...perfect word for it. I have also heard that if you collect them, they bring you good luck. But "sacred" is really spot on.

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  2. (Max and Pooh) Buttercup and ElphabaFebruary 11, 2014 at 10:18 AM

    And we thought our Mom was the only one!

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  3. I DO save my kitty whiskers, and am happy to know I'm not the only one who does. Somehow they're more fascinating than the hair that falls off the kitties...

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  4. I had been saving mine, but cleared them out a few years ago. I do like the idea of saving them in a nice little bottle! I will have to start again!

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  5. I've never found one, but then again, we haven't had our kitties as long as some.

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  6. I used to give them to one of the scientists at my work, because she used them to collect crystals (protein, I think) in the experiments she was running. Apparently dog whiskers don't work the same way.

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  7. I save them in a little box. I am also grateful to hear that other people do it, too. I was afraid that I was some sort of bizarre whisker-hoarding cat lady. =^..^=

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  8. Awww, Drewey. I don't know how I came to have such a soft spot for her, given that she shunned the bright lights of stardom, but there it is. <3

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    1. She was such a personality, secure in her loving home, family and 'tude.

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  9. I tape whiskers and the odd feather to the inside of my cabinet and dresser doors. They make me smile and cry sometimes. They all look different since our pets are multi colored so I can recognize the pet by the color. Some are gone from this world others are in hand and under foot.

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  10. Yes, I also save kitty whiskers! I put them in a small antique cat cream pitcher in my china cabinet. Occasionally, one is gifted to a special friend of my cats as a token of remembrance.

    Rosemary in Mpls, MN

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  11. I have one or two saved from my late cat. A clone would never do though, "there's nothing like the real thing baby". And I think her experiences as a stray before meeting me shaped how close we became. If I had more I think I would try to weave them into a bracelet like the porcupine quill art that some native American tribes made.

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    1. I keep my baby's whiskers in a little heart-shaped box. My dad always saved kitty whiskers growing up in an artsy basket my mum found for "oyster's ice skates, butterfly kisses and cat whiskers." I've also thought of quilling them, as the Blackfoot tribe did with porcupine quills, but have no idea how to start.

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  12. Well, I didn't before this, but I will have to start. I do have a dream catcher that was made using tail hair from one of my horses. She was a special girl. I had to put her down when she was 17. And after she died, my friend made me the dream catcher. I will treasure it forever.

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  13. I've never saved whiskers. I did save one of my cat's baby teeth, though.

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    1. I found one kitten baby tooth and I kept it. It belonged to my darling Sidney. :)

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  14. I am SO GLAD there are other people who save their kitten's whiskers! I save mine in an old watch tin, with no plans what to do with them. So many people think this is weird, asking me if I save their nail clippings too ... which I do not, but other cat people bring me their whiskers. They're so beautiful!

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  15. Ellie (who is 5 now) has a few in her bedside table drawer. None of our kitties have as impressive a set as yours.

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  16. I have whiskers and fur saved from my current kitties and those who are waiting at The Bridge. They are in my jewelry box and a couple of other special places. :)

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    1. I have fur from mine that are waiting at the Rainbow Bridge too. I think all these little bits are so important - memories!!!

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  17. Oh what utterly lovely idea. My sweet Kaliah occasionally "left" whiskers on or around my lap. If only I'd kept them. I'm definitely going to start keeping these when we are ready to adopt another cat into our hearts.

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  18. In my six years as a cat mommy (at least 2 cats at any given time), I've only found one whisker! They must hide them on me!

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  19. A couple of years ago, I saw another blogger's post on the subject of saving whiskers, so I started saving Scarlett and Melly's. I have a little cardboard necklace box with a leopard-print lid, and every time I find a whisker, I stick it in the box. I never realized how many whiskers cats lose until I started saving them--I'm constantly finding them in the favorite napping spots. It's pretty easy to tell which ones came from which cat: Melly's are twice as long!

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  20. I have kept thinking I would like to save them, but with no idea to what end. But as we slog through this good ("", LOL) old-fashioned Midwestern winter here and I am increasingly in the mood to refine my paper butterfly-making skills, I begin to think the whiskers would make lovely antennnas. Only for the butterflies well-crafted enough to become gifts or always keep, though... and spells of tears would someday come with them, but then those are going to happen anyway when the departed ones are thought of just right. But this is not to be shunned. To never know grief is to never have fully loved, and we will see them again someday.

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  21. As long as I've had cats, I've never actually found a stray one?!?!?!

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  22. I haven't saved any but maybe I should. hmm...

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  23. I don't/haven't saved them all, but I do have a few from my dear Rainbow Bridge kitty (Wylla's fraternal twin). I keep them in a special box.

    It would be awesome to make mourning/ remembrance jewelry out of them! I have family heirloom hair jewelry from the late 1800s, and it's so beautiful & such a lost art. It would be AWESOME to bring it back with CAT WHISKERS! >^..^<

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  24. I have been saving whiskers for years. They just seem too precious to cast off. Mine are also taped inside a cabinet door, with the kitty's name written on the tape. They are indeed a precious reminder of days gone by. The whiskers share the door with a couple of hedgehog quills too!

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  25. This is kind of weird. When I find one of Bud or Tige's whiskers, I brush them against my cheek. Maybe I'll start to save them. I kind of wish I had a whisker or 2 from my old departed girls. But rarely found them.

    Buddy and Tiger's Mom

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  26. I've never found a whisker! My cat is 13 and he has lived with me for more than 3 years.

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  27. I've had Snickers for 3 years. He is now 13 and I've never found a whisker!

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  28. I don't notice whiskers. Do they fall off, gets cut off or what. How can I find them? I would love to keep a few of my kitties' whiskers.

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    1. They just shed them on occasion. I find them all all over the house, and most frequently in the spots they sleep the most.

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  29. Whew! Thank Cod I am not the only one who does this! If I know from which kitty the whisker came, I put it in a ziplock bag with the kitty's name. If they are "stray" whiskers (I have 7 cats), I store them in a small tin. When my furry little soulmate had to have ultrasounds and they shaved her tummy, the technicians were very careful about saving her fur for me and put it in a plastic bag so you can still see the tiger tummy button pattern in it! They could see that we shared a very special bond. This means a lot to me because she had to cross "The Bridge" in January 2011. So just call me a crazy cat lady--Guilty as charged!

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  30. I find that finding cat's whiskers on the floor or bed is a bit like seeing pennies on the sidewalk; you develop an 'eye' for it. Merlin tends to shed his on the mat just inside the back door; warmed by sunlight, by duct work beneath, and by a heating vent; a highly regarded spot for a nap if we are out. Otherwise he seems to shed them as he prowls round the house, just like all our previous kitties did. But it is harder to find them now we have so few rugs; basically all laminate or tiles; easier to keep clean. As for storing them; well some are scotch taped to the fridge door, others are inside various containers; those at my house are all in a tiny blue antique jug; used that for 30 years or more, so a glorious mix of 17 different felines who have blessed our lives. Most of them we can say which cat shed each whisker; the Semi-Siamese had THE MOST DISTINCT ones; very dark root fading to cream at the tip. Silver had the Longest; anything up to 4-5" long and pure white, each one is a memory of a dear friend. We have always jokingly told our cats that we save them for the sad day when they become bald with old age and loose all their whiskers. Then we will carefully glue a full set in place using those safely stored away. Cats actually have many sets of whiskers; short ones in the crook of their elbows, some even have a few 'guard hair whiskers' between their paw pads, then eye-brow whiskers, back-below-the-ear ones, ones in the usual side position, ones beneath the chin; a full array can have 7 or 8 sets!

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  31. I use my cat's shed whiskers for painting. The finest brush in the world has nothing on a single whisker!

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    1. This is the post I have been looking for. I have been saving my lovely Jerry baby's whiskers for a while, he is 9 yrs old, so have a bit of a collection. I wanted to make a brush, but this is the second post I have seen that says use only one whisker. I will give it a go. Good luck with you painting.

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  32. Yes, I save them. I do use them for their Creative Memory pages. But, I also use them when I dress up as Cat in the Hat for Halloween. I use spirit gum to apply. :)

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  33. I've considered saving them occasionally but haven't designated a place. I usually pick them up when I find them, marvel at how they go from thick and stiff to feather-light and flexible, and then put them down again. (I have bags of kitty fur, though, and have spun some of it into yarn.) I likewise have no idea what to do with whiskers. But maybe it doesn't matter.

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  34. I too collect my cats' wiskers - I started wirh Zoe, then Pasha and now Pipa - I don't know why I started it, but then :-)

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  35. I've been hoping to find a whisker belonging to my black cat whom I just lost. So far no luck. I think, however, I'll start collecting them like you. If I had, I'd already have one.

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  36. I save my kitty whiskers too! I have a small locktop jar. A few of the whiskers are almost too long for it. Some are wonderfully and gracefully curved. Believe it or not, people who do very detailed painting work will sometimes use kitty whiskers for paint brushes. No kidding. If you know someone who paints miniatures or does Middle Ages type scrollwork, they might like to experiment with some whiskers.

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  37. The ones I save are in an envelope labeled "a few of my favorite things." Though now I want a vial to store them in, that looks much nicer!

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  38. I save the whiskers too. I have various envelopes for each of our furry pairings. Why? My grandmother said they were good luck to find. Reilly & Sprite's are in a Lego box. No clue what I will ever do with them except to remember each and every cat who graced my life.

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  39. We have saved whiskers and given them to a friend who does paper marbling. There is a technique for marbling effects that uses cat whiskers. It's nice to know they will be "repurposed" like that.

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  40. Growing up, we used to stick them into a leopard portrait (photo) wall rug. That cat acquired a full set of cheek and eyebrow whiskers! Now I usually poke them into a large stuffed lion that I have. I've also been known to include them in letters to absent friends as a "present" sent by the cat.

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  41. I'm so glad you do this too--ours are in Altoid tins (one for each cat!)

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  42. I have used mine in a couple of cross stitch designs that I stitched (of cats). They were perfect - much nicer than the backstitching that would have been there. I can't claim credit for the idea - saw someone else had done it and thought it was a really nice way to memorialize them. :)

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  43. I just found (while at work!) a black whisker in a knitted project I'm unravelling that has been very popular with my kitties. For once I know exactly whose it is; six of my eight cats have white whiskers, our tiny tortie has mostly black with a few white, and our magnificent black kitty has black whiskers. This is definitely one of his, as it's way too big for tortie girl. Into an envelope it goes!

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  44. Years ago I bought two pottery containers at a craft show. One says "Cat Whiskers" and the other says "Baby Teeth." They sit on the book shelf and every time I find a cat whisker it goes into the cat whisker one. The other one is filled with my kids' baby teeth (and my kids range in age from 37 to 44) and a couple of cat teeth that broke off. I know one tooth is from the very first cat we had 44 years ago. I love both my little containers.

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  45. When I saved them, I stuck them in a cork. I should start saving them again.

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  46. Our meowmie saves our whiskers too!

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  47. I'm so glad I'm not alone! I always thought this was just some weird variation of my OCD, but it makes me so happy, unlike most compulsions. I have dozens of Eliot's whiskers plus one baby tooth saved in a vial. Every time I find a new one it's like he left a present just for me.

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  48. I tickle the cat with them. Then they go in the garbage where they can't stab my feet.

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  49. Ever since my first growing-up cat I've saved my cats' whiskers. Special memories of special family members. They are stored in a tiny wooden rolling pin my grandmother gave me. It opens up and has the perfect container even for long whiskers.

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  50. I keep them in a small glass bottle. I thought I was weird for saving them. I may be weird but at least I'm not weird alone!

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  51. I used some whiskers for the mouse walking stick I carved. Some have gone into little cloth amulets. Some, I tape to greeting cards. What says 'thank you' or 'happy birthday' better than a cat whisker?

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  52. please explain how to make a paintbrush from the whiskers. I have been saving for a long time and have about 40 now. I started saving b/c I paint china and have two lovely cats and read somewhere that whiskers make great brushes, but when I look at them I am flummoxed at how to make a paintbrush from them, Anyone????

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  53. I googled "uses for cat whiskers" because I, too, save them. So nice to see all you kindred spirits here!!

    I also checked on Etsy, and one person who sells her cat's whiskers said, "For use in Wicca rituals or spells [ cleansing or protection], scrap booking, Jewelry ,mixed media art,add a 3D effect to your arts and crafts and more."

    I plan to keep mine and I love the little clear glass jar.

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  54. I saved them when I was a kid. I used them as antennae on my model cars. Our cat then was an indoor/outdoor and got in many fights. I also saved the little hunks of fur on his scabs - stuffed them into one of my model vans, thinking I'd someday use them as fur upholstery on one of them. Gross, huh? :)

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  55. I am also a bit relieved to hear I'm not the only one that saves their cats' whiskers! I didn't think it was normal, but it is a compulsion of mine. The whiskers collected from my 'forever in my heart pet' that passed away three years ago are in his urn separate from the bag inside with his ashes. I'm collecting whiskers from my current cat, and plan to make a brush from them. I see some people use just one whisker as a brush...so once I make a brush with many whiskers, I'll try the painting technique using just one whisker when I next fine one...but which end to use...?!

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  56. So with whiskers perceived to be sacred, would it be okay to create art with a whisker brush?

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