A Cat for Every Season

Veterinary students’ perennially popular calendar celebrates the human-feline bond

Cats may rule the Internet, but they enjoy equal appeal in print—if the annual Cummings School Cats Calendar is any indication.

The 2015 calendar showcases 71 proud cat owners’ photographs of their pets. The kitties were chosen from more than 150 photos submitted to the school’s student chapter of the American Association of Feline Practitioners.

As with past calendars, the latest edition shows that there isn’t just a cat for every season, but a person for every cat, too. The majority of owners say they adopted cats that were homeless, including several strays treated at the school’s Foster Hospital for Small Animals.

That was Levon’s path to his forever home. “A good Samaritan found him outside when he was very sick and brought him to Tufts in June 2013,” says Elizabeth Kulik, V16, of her pet, the March kitty of the month. “He spent a couple of weeks being nursed back to health by all the kind doctors, techs and students. He charmed everyone with his outgoing and affectionate personality.” Today, Levon and Kulik share a home with Kate Graves, V16, and her cat, Carlos, the October calendar star.

September kitty Sadie is similarly thriving. “She came to the Tufts hospital as a found-by animal without a home two summers ago,” says Calli Coffee, V16. “I adopted her when I was working as a tech at the hospital.” Coffee says her impish pet loves to race around the house, knock things off shelves and steal hair ties.

Erica Levin, V16, adopted December calendar star Elvis after the homeless cat was brought to the Foster Hospital with a broken pelvis. “He’s trouble,” jokes Levin. However, her cat’s inclination “to do everything he is not supposed to” led to a perfect holiday picture, when Levin managed to snap a photograph just before Elvis started trying to remove all the ornaments from her Christmas tree.

The annual Cummings School Cats Calendar contest has proven a breadwinner for the student group, known as the “cat club” on the Grafton campus. Sales from last year’s edition raised more than $700 to help fund events the association sponsors for its 50 members and for the veterinary student body. Last year these included a talk by a cats-only veterinarian about the benefits and challenges of an exclusively feline practice, a discussion by a Cummings School radiologist on case studies featuring feline X-rays and labs on cat handling and dental procedures.

The 2015 calendars ($15 for the first calendar, $10 for each additional one) will be sold at Cummings School’s Holiday Craft Fair & Student Sale, which takes place on Tuesday, Dec. 16, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Elms Café in the Agnes Varis Campus Center on the Grafton campus.

If you are on a Tufts campus or an alum of the university, you can place an order by emailing aafp.tufts@gmail.com by Friday, Dec. 5. Include your full name, student year or department and number of calendars requested. Checks, payable to Tufts AAFP, will be accepted at the holiday fair or through campus mail to Kate Vezza, V16, Cummings School.

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

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