The Kitten Crisis in Warriors by Eggpaw

Art by Warrior-Junkie

Eggpaw questions the role of Twolegs and kittypets in Warriors

(This will be a bit of a darker article, so feel free to click away if this stuff makes you uncomfortable.)

First, a disclaimer. I’m not trying to stop you or anyone else from reading Warriors. I’m not saying Warriors is a bad book series. I’m only saying that Warriors should address the kitten crisis or overpopulation, especially since the Clans are already too huge. A passing mention that “the Clans are getting too big” or “there’s not enough prey/herbs to go around” or even “not all kittypets are lazy” would already do something.

So, many people are unfamiliar with the kitten crisis. I’ll explain. The kitten crisis is a term for the overpopulation of feral cats in real life, specifically the overpopulation of kittens. There are simply not enough homes for all the feral and/or stray kittens in the world. Open-admission shelters are overwhelmed and have to make horrible decisions about which animal gets to live. It’s a terrible thing that’s happening right now, in the real world. But what does this all have to do with Warriors, a fantasy book series? Allow me to explain.

Warriors is all about Clans of cats living in the wild. Already, this reminds me of groups of feral cats. When I see feral cat groups, I always notice that some cats have injuries or are sick. This always serves as a reminder of the things some strays go through. Feral cats groups are terrible places where cats fight daily and have to face cars, predators, humans, and disease. Meanwhile, in Warriors, Clans are portrayed as the exact opposite. Cats cooperate, share prey, and rarely get as badly injured as the real-life ones in feral cat groups. But you might say, “These are just fantasy Clans!” And I’ll tell you why they still affect real life.

When I was re-reading Into the Wild, I found myself thinking about the kitten crisis. Why are kittypets portrayed as lazy and disloyal? Why was Rusty, a kittypet, portrayed in a bad manner, while Firestar, a feral Clan cat, portrayed in a good one? Almost every kittypet in Warriors is deemed “bad” unless they join or help a Clan. This needs to change. Years ago, when I first read Into the Wild, I wanted to release my own cats thinking they would live a happier, unrestrained life in the wild. Yes, this is a true story. I was young and didn’t know better. Thankfully, my parents stopped me and told me it was a bad idea, but imagine how that could’ve gone. As you can see, overpopulation needs to be addressed in Warriors, or more people could feel the need to release their own pets as I did.

And now another thing. Why is there no human intervention? Even in WarriorClan, the humans don’t seem to care that their poor housecats are creating groups outside. In my opinion, there should be more indoor cats in Warriors, examples of what many think is the best thing to do. Why are everyone’s cats allowed to just roam outside, sometimes even without a bell collar to prevent the cat from catching prey? Why didn’t Rusty have any sort of microchip? Isn’t that what you should do if you let your cat outside? Why wasn’t Rusty fixed yet? Again, many agree it’s the best thing to do if your cat roams around. And why did Rusty’s owners just… get a new one from the same mother cat? If they lost one, what makes them think they’ll be responsible enough to take care of another? And that cat, Princess, had kittens, too? So they didn’t fix Princess, either? Are they doing anything to prevent overpopulation?

Sorry, I got a bit passionate there. But the facts remain. I’ll go on a bit of a tangent here but stay with me (unless this is making you uncomfortable. Feel free to click away at any time).

The Clan cats’ views on veterinarians. As soon as I realized how negatively they portray the veterinarian (dubbed “the Cutter”), I was extremely confused. Why do they see vets as so evil? Is it because they fix cats? I’ve already discussed that. Is it because they heal kittypets, which they already see as soft and lazy? Has any Clan cat been to the so-called “Cutter”? Has any kittypet told any Clan cat what vets do? Because vets aren’t just for fixing cats. They’re for healing pets. It’s unfair that the “Cutter” is seen as evil while medicine cats do the same thing, only with herbs that could have fungus or be poisonous. This, again, has the risk of translating to real life. And then the Clan cats’ view on humans—why are they so negative about anything that doesn’t support their way of life? What should happen is Clan cats being less stubborn and prideful so they can see how devastating life in the wild really is. But Pinestar, a Clan cat who became a kittypet, is openly shunned and hated by the Clans simply for this action. This is exactly what should happen, a feral cat being taken into someone’s home to become a housecat. Instead of supporting this in the books or doing anything to acknowledge its importance, it portrays it as a bad action from the cats openly saying Pinestar was a bad leader. But back to the main point. The Clans fail to recognize how big and unmoderated they really are, and the humans fail to recognize the enormous amount of feral and stray cats that are living at the lake.

And now we come back to the start of the article. The kitten crisis is a huge problem where there are too many kittens and not enough homes to contain them. And Warriors is a book series that may convince little kids who don’t realize the severity of the situation to turn a blind eye to the sheer amount of feral cat groups they’ll simply label as “Clans”.

That’s all I’ve got. Please talk about this in the comments! I’m very passionate about this, so comments are greatly appreciated.

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70 comments

  • The clans take place a long time ago, of course they don’t have bell collars nor mircochips.

    “The Clan cats’ views on veterinarians. As soon as I realized how negatively they portray the veterinarian (dubbed “the Cutter”), I was extremely confused. Why do they see vets as so evil? ”

    I really, really don’t know why you are questioning why humans are shown as evil in the warriors universe out of all universes. Of course cats would share “scary stories” about what they went through at the vet since most cats get hissy and scared when they arrive there. Should they just go like, “oh yeah there’s this twoleg who cuts off our balls btw, she’s so veryyy nice.”

    ” is seen as evil while medicine cats do the same thing, only with herbs that could have fungus or be poisonous. ” Because medicine cats are literally cats who can speak to their gods and are highly respected.

    • hi midnightshadow, i answered your comments on the previous page 🙂

      by the way, your points all focus on the world within the story, though this issue has nothing to do with the story anymore. this is a real life problem that should be dealt with outside the actual story, as a note on one of the first/last pages or as an announcement from one of the authors. warriors might inadvertently promote feral cat colonies and the releasing of pets if it doesn’t do something about this issue.

  • These books focus on cats, and what you do if you were caged up and forced to go to the vet, loosing your freedom entirely? , and what would you do if you were neutered,and the population went significantly lower? ,or was purposely stoped?. And the humans in the
    book do care for the population the plot was to not get caut to focus more about cats. And these cats were written to be intelligent enough to be carefull and not get too harsh diseases. Like they know how to visit starclan, and create and oganize clans like humans. And for the pinestar arc, he was to scared to die fighting, so he decided to live as a kittypet so he didn’t have to say he is retiring even as being leader, stranding thunderclan, I saw your artical and went on the warriors worlds side (no offence)

    • hi stargazer! this isn’t about the story anymore (explained in my above comment to midnightshadow), the authors need to acknowledge that the vet isn’t a completely evil figure. the cats being intelligent is another problem, as it promotes humanizing animals, which again, may contribute to the kitten crisis/other problems if humans think animals are smart enough to deal with it themselves. the warriors world is fantasy, and i respect that, however the authors really need to address the kitten crisis since warriors is so popular. 🙂

  • I never thought about that before. But sometimes maybe the twolegs can’t get an appointment with the vet because it’s too full. (This is what happened in real life with my cat until the shelter thought he was an alley cat and picked him up to give him all the shots and things) But I do think you have a good point.

    • thank you, fluffpaw! i agree that sometimes the vet might be too full, but responsible owners still shouldn’t let unfixed cats outside. rusty was already pretty old (cats can get kittens at just 4 moons of age!) so it’s odd that he wasn’t neutered already. i see your point though 🙂

  • Thank you for addressing these problems!! I totally agree. I love Warriors, but it does go against just about every movement in the feline welfare world. Thank you so much for bringing this to attention!

  • Interesting article. But kittypets DO like the Cutter. Jake says that the Cutter is good because it heals them. But clan cats don’t like it because it’s a kittypet thing. Also of course the twolegs don’t know about WarriorClan. They have no idea what their cats are doing while they’re at work.

    • Cats in real life hate the vet because they make them not be able to have kittens and my cat once bit a vet because he was so scared! (Sorry if a sounded rude)

    • Cats in real life hate the vet because they make them not be able to have kittens and my cat once bit a vet because he was so scared! (Sorry if a sounded rude!)

      • No. They hate the vet because they get poked and touched and don’t like it. Whenever u remove the testicles/uterus, they lose the urge to mate. It’s not like they will regret not having kittens. And this is a real life problem, so even if it didn’t make sense for them to love it, it should not demonize spaying/neutering ur animals. Also there is no attempt by the humans to control the wild cat population. And the kitty pet owners just let their cats roam freely, which, unless it is a farm cat that has been raised to be self sufficient, most cats and cat breeds cannot survive by themselves. They run the risk of being preyed on by coyotes or bobcats, getting hit by cars, getting bitten by snakes, etc. and it shouldn’t be encouraging letting pregnant cats roam around freely. Especially One as far along as princess. They are slower and less agile, and more likely to be killed by dogs, bobcats etc.

      • Actually, they hate the vet bc they get poked and touched and dont like it. Not bc they cant have kittens. Whenever the testicles/uterus is removed, animals loose the urge to mate. They cant want kits, or make the association with the vet. A cat after being spayed or neutered will not even care about kits, since the do not have an instinct to mate anymore. And if they have no desire to mate, they cant ‘want’ kittens. Also, this is a real life problem, and the Erins should find a way to not demonize the vet, or spaying/neutering. Overpopulation due to backyard and accidental breeding, as well as wild cat population is a big problem for most every domestic pet. And also, they should be encouraging letting ur cat roam around in a forest. Most cat and cat breeds cannot survive outdoors by themselves. They can get lost, killed by dogs, bobcats, coyotes, snakes, cars, etc. Unless its a cat that was raised on a farm, or outside, they should not be able to roam around freely. Also, u should never let a pregnant cat roam around, especially one as far along as princess. They are slower and more fatigued, and they are carrying the extra weight of kits. This only increases the risk of ur pet being injured or killed.

        • Sorry for the basically duplicate comments. My iPad was acting weird and I thought It didn’t submit so I’d rewrote it on the computer

    • thank you, crowpaw! a bit of your comment has been answered in the comment to midnightshadow ^^
      i’m pretty sure at least a few humans have seen their cats in warriorclan on break days or something. it’s just confusing that there is absolutely no human intervention. there’s never even a child following a cat to warriorclan, which i’m pretty sure should’ve happened much sooner. good point, though!

  • Very interesting article! I’ve never thought of it in this way before but I can see how Warriors could give a naive kid the wrong idea about the kitten crisis. Great writing!

  • Awesome article! You brought up an issue that I hadn’t really thought about before and you’re right: we should address this. I’m definitely a person to defend kittypets, but Warriors is unrealistic, since I’m sure that most Twolegs care better for their cats than the ones portrayed in the series do. You made a lot of a great points!

  • i see ur point and i agree with u on a lot of it but i don’t think there’s ever going to actually be any action taken on it since it doesn’t directly affect people. this isn’t to say it doesn’t need to be helped, but to say people don’t care enough to help.
    at the same time, though, it’s kind of.. minuscule? there are much bigger issues in the world than how a fantasy world affects the overpopulation of feral cats..
    still, u make good points!

    • hi beebrain 🙂
      this is a big real life issue, and, judging from how big warriors is as a franchise, it actually does have a lot of influence on the real world. yes, there’s war and climate change and a whole lot of other bad stuff, but the kitten crisis is among them. if warriors addressed this issue, a lot more people would know about it, and hopefully the kitten crisis would be given the attention and care it deserves.

  • One thing that I would also like to say is that they are an invasive species. They kill all of the prey that the native animals should eat. There won’t be as much prey for owls, bobcats, coyotes, foxes, badgers etc. The native wildlife that SHOULD be there are more likely to starve. Invasive species throw of the ecosystem. Yes some animals like horses are invasive species, but they have been here long enough that they are part of the ecosystem. And they had also previously lived in a north america

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