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Kristofferson (found on the July page of the calendar) was born to a stray. (Caitlin Riendeau) Kristofferson (found on the July page of the calendar) was born to a stray.

Veterinary students create calendar celebrating the feline mystique

By Genevieve Rajewski
Tufts / December 21, 2011
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Intertwined limbs. Deviant behavior. Luxurious fur. Bodies posed with legs akimbo. Coy glances. All make an appearance in a new calendar produced by veterinary students at Tufts.

However, these playmates of the month have four legs and were chosen from among 230 photos the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine community submitted to the Tufts student chapter of the American Association of Feline Practitioners.

The annual Tufts Cats calendar has proven a surefire breadwinner, said Melissa Yu, vice president of the student group, which is known as the “cat club” on the Grafton campus. The 2011 edition raised $475 to help fund events the association sponsors for its 50 members and for the veterinary student body, including talks on cat nutrition, behavior and gastrointestinal parasites and labs on feline dentistry and neurology.

This year, more than 70 students, alumni, faculty, staff and friends submitted photos. The six association officers picked the ones that elicited the strongest collective response, Yu says. “When there’s one where everyone goes, Awww, or people laugh, you know that’s a winner,” she said.

There are 50 feline stars in the 2012 calendar. Between four and six cats are featured each month, grouped by themes such “love” for February and “back to school” for September.

The 2012 calendars were so popular they sold out and are no longer available.

The secret to taking a great photo of your kitty is to avoid “expecting too much,” said Yu. “Cats have their own agenda most of the time. As one my friends said, ‘When taking pictures of my cats at home, the harder I try, the more I fail. But if I sit back and let them just be themselves, I capture great moments.’ ”

This article originally ran on Tufts Now.

Genevieve Rajewski can be reached at genevieve.rajewski@tufts.edu

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