Meowfest cat festival to celebrate all things furry and feline

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      Aside from, you know, not having a stable home, the worst thing about Vancouver’s housing crisis is the difficulty of owning a pet as a renter. Many buildings refuse to allow cats or dogs, and as the exploding market forces tenants to move, animal lovers are increasingly forced to leave their companions at shelters in order to find a place to live.

      Recognizing just how much Vancouverites miss having furry friends, Meowfest fills the gap for those looking to get some cuddle time with some cute felines.

      The first of its kind on the West Coast of Canada, Meowfest is a global celebration for cat lovers. Featuring a number of speakers, entertainment, shopping, and adorable adoptable cats to hang out with, the event is the perfect place for current cat owners to stock up on new treats and toys, and for aspiring fur-parents to get some hands-on playtime.

      The biggest draw of the day is Meowfest’s celebrity guests. Cross-eyed internet phenomenon Nala Cat, who has a staggering 3.5 million followers on Instagram, will be in attendance with her owner Varisiri Mathachittiphan. Nala is the most followed cat in the world, and Mathachittiphan uses her status to draw awareness for sheltered cats and raise money for animal charities. Also at the event will be Luna Rose—a sassy one-year-old Scottish fold mix who is pushing 400K followers on Instagram—and BenBen, an adopted cat from the streets of B.C. who was saved from being euthanized by his New West owners.

      As well as the fine feline talent, the event’s human lineup includes Kitten Lady—or Hannah Shaw to her friends—who has made it her goal to advocate for tiny orphaned kittens. Joining her is Andrew Marttila, the man behind The Great Went Pet Photography, who documents the lives of celebrity and adoptable cats alike.

      Hosted by meowbox—a company that sends fun cat toys and treats monthly to an owner’s door—Meowfest will donate all ticket sales to the BCSPA to help the hundreds of pets currently without a home.

      Meowfest is at Roundhouse Commuity Arts and Recreation Centre (181 Roundhouse Mews) on July 29. Tickets go on sale in January 2018. More information is available here.

      Follow Kate Wilson on Twitter @KateWilsonSays