Kattarshians – Love them or hate them, reality television shows are everywhere and it looks like producers can’t keep up with people’s insatiable lust for drama, talent, heartbreak or triumph. In 2015, a report claimed there were roughly 750 unscripted reality TV shows being aired in America alone, with 350 of those being brand new titles.
You’ve got your major programmes like Idol, Survivor, Big Brother and The Apprentice, which rely on simple formats that have viewers hooked on every twist and turn. There are contestants who are likeable, others who annoy you for no reason and a few can cause a social media meltdown by doing something innocuous.
But if you’re sick of seeing the same thing on TV every single year, then strap yourself in for something incredibly addictive and adorable. A team in Iceland wanted to launch a project to help stray kittens and came up with Keeping Up with the Kattarshians. It’s streamed online virtually 24 hours a day, with viewers able to watch the kittens play and interact with each other.
Inga Lind Karlsdóttir is the producer behind the show, and has told LADbible it took a while before they were able to get the project off the ground: “There were many complications that needed to be solved prior to the production. We needed to make sure the whole project would get approval from all the authorities, The Cat Protection society and the Animal Welfare Office.
“Then we set out a plan, found the right spot for the house, the right cameras, made sure the temperature would always be sufficient, same with the lights. And it was not easy to find the right furniture because of the size, it’s abnormal.”
The house is a cat’s dream, consisting of toys, scratching posts, hideaways, as well as sleeping areas spread across several levels. There’s also a portrait of Iceland’s President Guðni Th. Jóhannesson included on the wall to keep them patriotic.
The five kittens currently in the house are Halldór Laxness, Ragga Gísla, Fanndís Friðriks, Snotra, Gæi and Ilmur who is the mum. Their names stem from local authors, singers or football players as well as Icelandic or Norse words. Like people, each kitten has their own personality traits.
- Halldór: He is rather shy and quiet and calms his siblings down when things go out of hand.
- Ragga: She likes to cuddle and stay close to her siblings. She’s clever and kind and wants to have everything tidy and clean.
- Fanndís: She’s the black one and she’s a fighter. She’s brave and never gives up.
- Snotra: Snotra is playful and there’s never a dull moment where she is. She finds it’s easy to gather all the siblings together in a joyful play
- Gæi: He’s joyful and teases his siblings and their mother all day long. He loves a lot of attention.
- Ilmur: Quiet, kind, soft and responsible. She likes people and loves her kittens more than anything. Probably the best mom in the world.
Inga says the kittens will stay in the house until families are able to adopt them: “We have these wonderful caretakers to feed the cats, play with them and pet them, three to four times a day. That’s when the cameras are off. It is important for all kittens to get to know human beings and build trust with them.
“Then we get new homeless kittens in the house who assume the lead role of the next Keeping Up With the Kattarshians. We get a lot of messages from fans all over the world. People care about the cats and when they find something wrong with them or the cameras they immediately contact us.”
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Inga isn’t ruling out creating a similar project for puppies, but she admits that dogs are very different to cats, so creating the right environment would be difficult.
Until that time comes, cat lovers can soak up every second of Halldór, Ragga, Fanndís, Snotra, Gæi and Ilmur’s activities at virtually any hour of the day or night.