How Do Cats Do It?

There's something so magical about cats — their elegance, confidence, resilience, and independence are so often combined with affection, intuition, courage, and just plain smarts. They make every day an adventure!

Here are previews of two of my favorite stories from our new book Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Magic of Cats that show how cats added magic to the lives of our writers:

Cats remind you that rules are made to be broken.
In veterinarian Jan Rottenberg's story "Ben the Benevolent" she was about to close one night when a man brought in an abandoned, sickly kitten. He could only contribute $50 to the kitten’s care, but Jan took the poor little thing and nursed him back to good health, albeit with only one eye, over the next few months. She took him home every night but resolutely put him up for adoption when he was fully recovered. When someone offered to adopt him, Jan realized what her heart had known all along. She was going to break her very strict rule—you can’t keep a cat you’re fostering. Not only did that new cat blend in well with her other cats, but he also brought her paraplegic senior cat back to life, becoming her new friend. Since then, he has also welcomed two new rescue kittens. Jan says, “Ben not only earned his keep, but is also proof that every homeless kitten deserves a chance.”

When a cat chooses you, accept that the cat knows best.
In her story "Demands Attention" Morgan Rondinelli didn’t intent to adopt a pet but she found herself drawn to the local shelter every time she drove by. After several visits she was hooked by a dark gray cat with brilliant green eyes who walked over and plopped herself in Morgan’s lap. Jade chose Morgan and that was that. Even when Morgan thought she should keep looking, and tried to visit the cat room down the hall, Jade would have none of it, chirping at her argumentatively. Morgan hadn’t intended to adopt an eight-year-old cat either, but now she says, “I’ve heard it said that senior animals love deeper, and I think that’s true. I know from Jade’s cheek rubs and kneading my legs that she seems extra grateful to have been adopted.” Morgan also appreciates the lack of kitten energy, so they can spend “weekends lounging and napping together, with the right amount of occasional play.”


Chicken Soup for the Soul has been “changing lives one story at a time”® since 1993 with more than 250 books that provide hope, inspiration, and tips for a better life. Virtually every title becomes a self-help bestseller. Each book contains 101 true, personal stories submitted by ordinary people with extraordinary experiences to share. The topics are wide-ranging, but always inspirational and entertaining, covering everything from faith and spirituality to family, marriage, pets, and overcoming challenges of all kinds. Life values such as gratitude, forgiveness, mindfulness, positive thinking, and giving back are a big part of the series, with specific self-help books that help readers of all ages, from children to the elderly.