Cat Songs

Janet Coburn
3 min readNov 5, 2023

My husband and I have some silly traditions, some of which I’ve mentioned in the blog. There was naked cooking with Julia Child impressions, for instance. And we make up little nonsense songs. Well, Dan makes up most of them, mostly about me. (My nickname, which no one else may use, is Bunny, so they often have titles like “When Bunny Comes Driving Home Again.” They’re silly, as mentioned, but infinitely better than the NSFW song an ex-boyfriend once wrote describing my physical charms. But I digress.)

But this post is about cat songs. Not songs the cats sing, of course — their repertoire is pretty limited. Not songs about cats either (“Year of the Cat,” “Cat Scratch Fever,” “Stray Cat Strut,” “Honky Cat,” “Nashville Cats”). No, these are songs that we’ve made up about cats we’ve owned over the years.

Shaker’s song was really more of a poem or a chant than a song. It went:

Shaker in the park

Shaker in the pool

Shaker for dessert

Shaker after school.

Shake, shake, Shaker puddin’

Puddin’, puddin’, Shaker puddin’.

(Shaker was a very dignified tuxedo cat. She didn’t approve.)

The song will make no sense unless you remember a product from the 60s and its jingle (indeed, it doesn’t really make any sense at all, whether you remember it or not). The product was called Shake-a-Pudding. It was a brown plastic cup with a lighter brown plastic lid. If you put milk in the cup and added powder, then shook vigorously, hoping the top didn’t come off, what you got was something that at least resembled pudding. An interactive dessert. At the time, we thought it was neat-o.

Toby also has a song based somewhat on a commercial. It goes like this:

His name was Toby.

He used a Flowbee.

Obviously, this requires some explanation. First of all, it’s sung to the tune of Bary Manilow’s “Copacabana.” So far, so good. The Flowbee mentioned in the second line was one of those products you used to see on after-midnight infomercials from companies like Popeil or Ronco. Exercise equipment. Beauty products. That sort of thing.

Technically, I suppose you could call the Flowbee a beauty product. It was an attachment that you put on the end of your vacuum cleaner hose. It would make your hair stand on end so you could lop an inch or two off the end. I think it was mostly used on children who were too young to know any better and was responsible for the infamous bowl cut. It’s described by the company (yes, you can still buy them) as a “Vacuum Haircut System.” Need I tell you that we’ve never used one on ourselves, much less on Toby?

Louise had a song of a sort, or at least one line of one:

Every little breeze seems to whisper: LOUISE!

Naturally, the name was shouted.

Julia, the most beautiful cat in the world (she told me so) had a whole verse. Obviously, it was ttto “Julia” by John Lennon, which was written about his mother. Our Julia’s version went:

Julia, pinky nose

Pretty fur, naughty lips.

So I sing my song of love for Julia.

(No, I don’t know how the “naughty lips” part got in there. Cats barely have lips at all, and I don’t know how they could be naughty. That’s just the way the song went. So sue me. But I digress again.)

Dushenka had a tune that should be familiar to TV cartoon aficionados:

Shenka-Shenka-Doo

Where are you?

On your little kitty adventure.

Laurel’s song was melancholy.

Pooska-wooska-pooska

Pooska-wooska-pie

Pooska-wooska-pooska

It’s Laurel’s lullaby.

I even sang it at her funeral.

Of course, all the songs are doggerel (catterel?) and make us seem like idiots. But the cats don’t care. They’re used to us talking like idiots. (Does Toby want his noms? Pet, pet, pet, the incredible pettable pet. Mama loves kitty. Does kitty love mama? Ribbit.)

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Janet Coburn

Author of Bipolar Me and Bipolar Us, Janet Coburn is a writer, editor, and blogger at butidigress.blog and bipolarme.blog.