A bodega cat is a feline that inhabits, you guessed it, a bodega. It's what New Yorkers call their convenience stores or delis.

And these furballs aren't just judging the buyers and their purchasing choices. No, no, they also provide comfort to workers after they endure clients from hell and can even carry out pest control missions, managing or preventing rodent infestations.

Bodega Cats is a social media project dedicated entirely to celebrating these hard-working kitties. The premise is simple: people spot a bodega cat in its natural habitat, they snap a photo of it and submit it to the people running the show. They select the best ones and share them with their followers. The result, on the other hand, is glorious: a refined collection of adorable cat pics.

More info: bodegacats.nyc | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter

#1

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varwenea
Community Member
1 year ago

Chilling pose? Yup, I got that one down.

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"Since I moved to NYC, I’ve been familiar with cats in our local corner stores (bodegas) but it wasn’t until 2012 when I was out late one evening and stumbled my way into a bodega seeing a cat and making a late-night post to my Instagram feed that I came up with the idea for the project," Rob Hitt, the man behind Bodega Cats, told Bored Panda. "My friends enjoyed the photos of the cats I posted more than the photos of me! At that point, I decided to start the Bodega Cats accounts in hopes of giving people a moment of positivity and smile throughout their day."

"Now, I’d say we get about 75-100 submissions a week," Hitt said. "I really don’t think too much about picking the photos other than if they invoke some sort emotion in me. It never hurts to select a kitten, a cat on top of a bag potato chips, or one protecting a nice warm ATM machine."

#2

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WilvanderHeijden
Community Member
1 year ago

Read headline. See cat. Cry.

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Interestingly, bodega cats are technically illegal. The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene considers them a "general deficiency", raising concerns about the risk they pose for food contamination. Fines range from $300 for the first offense to $2,000 and higher for subsequent offenses.

“Any animal around food presents a food contamination threat,” Robert M. Corrigan, a rodentologist and research scientist for the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene told The New York Times. “And so that means anything from animal pieces and parts to hair and excrement could end up in food, and that alone, of course, is a violation of the health code.”

#3

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WilvanderHeijden
Community Member
1 year ago

No one could explain the incredible losses of the meat department.

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However, many shop owners keep cats in spite of the law because they are seen as preferable to rodent infestations, which also carry a fine.

“In the morning she is lazy, it is her nap time,” Urszula Jawor, 49, a deli manager and a Polish immigrant described her feline employee. “But in the afternoon she is busy. She spends hours stalking the mice and the rats.”

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varwenea
Community Member
1 year ago

Ya gonna believe the sign, or ya gonna believe my face. Enter at your own risk.

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Mr. Corrigan agreed that some studies have shown that even the smell of cats in an enclosed area can keep mice away. But he nonetheless believes this isn't an acceptable form of pest control because the bacteria, viruses, fungi, parasites, and nematodes carried by rats may infect humans by secondary transfer through a cat.

Andre Duran, one of the owners of a corner store in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, said he had kept a cat for about six years and had never been fined. “That’s Oreo,” he said, lifting a tiny black cat with white paws. “No one’s ever complained about cat hair in their sandwiches, and if she weren’t here, you bet there’d be bigger problems than hair.”

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FloC
Community Member
1 year ago

Nice, so I could buy a sweater with cat hairs of a different color than my usual black and white.

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Rob Hitt thinks one of the reasons why people like Bodega Cats is because they love stumbling upon something familiar in a totally unfamiliar way. "It evokes a positive emotion," he said. "If you have a cat and then see one out, it brings back that warm feeling of home. I also feel people are excited because they know to date we've been able to utilize the money from the sales in our webstore towards helping organizations that help the feral, community, or bodega cat population. We’ve also been able to find other effective ways of helping by donating social posts (tweets, stories, feed posts, etc) which can help raise awareness for positive organizations."

For instance, Bodega Cats work with the organization Flatbush Cats who are a 501(c)(3), focused on reducing the outdoor cat population in Brooklyn. They support the community with TNR (trap, neuter, return), rescue work, adoption, and free or low cost cat spay/neuter for low income residents.

#6

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varwenea
Community Member
1 year ago

"Liver, please."

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#7

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kathryn stretton
Community Member
1 year ago

It's ALL mine!

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#8

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Kristof De Smet
Community Member
1 year ago

It looks as if she's got her eyes open!

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#9

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Zoe Snyder
Community Member
1 year ago

The Little Wok Pan Warrior

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#10

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Bonnie Osborne
Community Member
1 year ago

Crooked Kitty. So cute

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#11

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kathryn stretton
Community Member
1 year ago

Just ankle watching.

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#12

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ƒιѕн
Community Member
1 year ago

A cat in a box, how very normal.

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#13

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Katherine Boag
Community Member
1 year ago

BOOP

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#14

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Maul!
Community Member
1 year ago

i love this way of saying 'thank you' :D

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#15

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varwenea
Community Member
1 year ago

Cashier in training

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#16

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Bonnie Osborne
Community Member
1 year ago

I think the cat could'a taken him..

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#17

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TheReader19
Community Member
1 year ago

I said two bottles only

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#18

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Jaxson Evans
Community Member
1 year ago

he's a camel/cat hybrid!

Gregg V
Community Member
1 year ago

You meant a Catmel.

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melbfk
Community Member
1 year ago

Just slept this one off.

Esther Harrison
Community Member
1 year ago

Quick stretch, then find a new box to try out.

Rayvieen Witchen
Community Member
1 year ago

Oo Biiig streach some one was cozy

Lorrie Finley
Community Member
1 year ago

Again, someone was kind and left a box for kitty.

Jill Ferguson
Community Member
1 year ago

Tails are for losers.

Summer Woodsong
Community Member
1 year ago

Just stretching!!

Thomas Ewing
Community Member
1 year ago

I love the Mtn. Mew here.

Gitta Landgraf
Community Member
1 year ago

Man! Was I ever lazy!!!!

BRYLEE CORN
Community Member
1 year ago

HE'S TAKKEN A POOP RUN...

BRYLEE CORN
Community Member
1 year ago

HE'S TAKEN A POOP RUUUUUUUUN.....

Johanne Trudeau
Community Member
1 year ago

Oh, the big stretch!!!!

Eric Forster
Community Member
1 year ago

I think I'll have another beer, then hit the sack.

Sharon Nicoll
Community Member
1 year ago

Feels so good to stretch!

Walkus-Andrew Andrea
Community Member
1 year ago

Halloween cat

Walkus-Andrew Andrea
Community Member
1 year ago

This comment has been deleted.

Jaybird3939
Community Member
1 year ago

That is one incredible kitty stretch.

Ronald Nye
Community Member
1 year ago

The stretch before the rest of the days nap

Steve Barnett
Community Member
1 year ago

Ah, a rare concertina cat

Karen Dyer
Community Member
1 year ago

time to turn over.

Bonnie Osborne
Community Member
1 year ago

Taxidermied. Classic pose

varwenea
Community Member
1 year ago

Someone must have interrupted his nap. Not a happy kitty.

Laugh or not
Community Member
1 year ago

Or he/she woke up and is moving to his/her next nap.

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kathryn stretton
Community Member
1 year ago

Manx cat? Isle of Man pic?

sharron lynn parsons
Community Member
1 year ago

I love the way they stretch, we learn from them actually !!!

maya P.K
Community Member
1 year ago

ID????

Hana Abera
Community Member
1 year ago

I am now the statue that will be turning heads as people walk by.

Lannyc Barton
Community Member
1 year ago

no...no i said dont take a shit its not a litterbox

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#19

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Bonnie Osborne
Community Member
1 year ago

Definitely a portal..

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#20

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Mark
Community Member
1 year ago

How do you want your eggs? Er, without hair please :)

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#21

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Anita Marx
Community Member
1 year ago

One of my cats (ran away and never came back) had the same white boots and white gloves. Some cats have style, some not.

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#22

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Miss D
Community Member
1 year ago

These roses have claws

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#23

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Kate
Community Member
1 year ago

"You going to get what you came for or are you just gonna stand there staring?"

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#24

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Maul!
Community Member
1 year ago

poised!

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#25

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Mark
Community Member
1 year ago

No need to guard the TP anymore ;)

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#26

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Stefanie Voigt
Community Member
1 year ago

Fat Hitler

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#27

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Mark
Community Member
1 year ago

Proof of a link between felines and Corona ;)

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#28

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Mark
Community Member
1 year ago

Is the cat there to distract from the walls!

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#29

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CR Harvey
Community Member
1 year ago

Wait your turn!

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#30

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varwenea
Community Member
1 year ago

Let's see your ID first.

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Note: this post originally had 77 images. It’s been shortened to the top 30 images based on user votes.