happyworld - Scheming Cats Determined To Bust Into A Landmark Are Winning Fans

Animals are persistent when it comes to getting what they want. It’s something pet owners know all too well. Sure, you can protest all you’d like, but whether it’s a spot in bed, a few scraps from the table, or even a simple belly rub, sooner or later every pet gets their way.
Things are no different in Japan, where after being turned away from a local attraction a pair of furry pals decided they weren’t going to take “no” for an answer. With the odds stacked against them, these animals attempted what no four-legged creature had done before — and got the whole world watching in the process.
Located in Japan’s Hiroshima Prefecture, surrounded by the region’s signature cherry blossoms, the Onomichi City Museum of Art is known for showcasing artwork that highlights the natural beauty of Japan.
Painters Wasaku Kobayashi and Wada Eisaku naturalist styles have drawn thousands to the small gallery. But even for all its popularity, it was one famous artist’s work that really put the museum on the map…
Wikimedia Commons / Galerie Nichido
Mitsuaki Iwagō is renowned for his wildlife photography. So when the celebrated cameraman announced he’d be opening an exhibit at the Onomichi, the art world flocked to see his latest masterpiece firsthand.
The collection was titled Cats, and, unsurprisingly, the photos depicted the candid moments of furry felines all over Japan. It was an immediate success, but no one expected a museum visitor would wind up being the biggest draw!
On a summer’s day in 2016, the security guard stationed at the door of the Onomichi was greeted by an unusual visitor: a black cat. Since the museum was located in the heart of a park, the guard assumed the little guy was simply a curious stray.
bijutsu1 / Twitter
But when a guest triggered the building’s sliding doors, the seemingly innocent cat attempted to dash inside behind them! The guard was amused, but since the museum had a strict no-pet policy, he plopped him back outside.
bijutsu1 / Twitter
But this particular furball would not be deterred. The very next day, as he completed his daily rounds, the security guard discovered the cat waiting outside the sliding doors once again.
The Siver Post
“I’m guessing that [the cat] spotted some of the exhibits through the glass, and since the photos included those of black cats, he must have thought he had found a new friend,” said the museum’s curator, Shinji Umebayashi. “And then he just kept coming back.”
Life With Cats
Puzzled by their unusual guest, museum staff did some digging and discovered that the cat – named Ken-chan – belonged to the owner of a nearby restaurant. Ken-chan began returning to the gallery almost every single day.
bijutsu1 / Twitter
The cat would show up at the front door, attempt to enter, and quickly be placed right back outside. Staff and visitors alike marveled at the playful routine, baffled by Ken-chan’s determination to enter the museum.
Word began to spread of this adorable game of cat-and-mouse between Ken-chan and the Onomichi security guard, and pretty soon crowds gathered just to see the resilient cat’s efforts. Nothing was working! So it was time for Ken-chan to get creative…
bijutsu1 / Twitter
The next time Ken-chan showed up, the staff was surprised to find he’d brought a friend. The orange tabby was another local cat, and it appeared Ken-chan convinced him that, when it came to getting into the museum, two heads were better than one.
bijutsu1 / Twitter
Just like Ken-chan, the orange cat began returning almost daily, both alone and with his buddy at his side. And though the staff took to him as they had Ken-chan, their newest feline friend – whom they dubbed “Go-chan” – was also denied entry into the gallery.
NZ Herald
The story of these cats and their efforts soon became a viral sensation. Some online users implored the Onomichi to let the cats inside, while the vast majority of others were content to tune into the museum’s regular updates on the dynamic duo.
NZ Herald
Since then, the popularity of the two cats has grown to become so great that the Onomichi has put out a line of souvenirs in honor of their unofficial mascots. Ken-chan and Go-chan have even inspired artwork of their own!
Even after years of futile attempts, both cats continue to return day after day, likely hoping that their newfound fame – and adorable looks – will earn them entrance. Until that happens, they’re content to enjoy the museum’s grounds.
bijutsu1 / Twitter
“The museum is in a park, so there’s no traffic to worry about,” said Umebayashi. “[The cats] treat the park like it’s their own garden.” However, the pair might have to take a day off from their mission for one very special purpose…
bijutsu1 / Twitter
Earlier this year, officials from the Russian resort community of Zelenogradsk invited Ken-chan, Go-chan, and the Onomichi staff to be their guests at an upcoming cat-centric holiday celebration. This seemed like the perfect place for the felines to take a well-deserved vacation.
Russian Voyages
While it’s unlikely that the Onomichi will break policy even for their most honored “guests,” the story of Ken-chan and Go-chan will continue to delight animal lovers for years to come. And besides: why pay to see a few photographs when the real stars are waiting just outside?
bijutsu1 / Twitter
What Ken-chan and Go-chan really needed was a disguise. Something that would distract the security guard with so much cuteness that he’d be forced to allow them entry. They needn’t look too far. A Japanese designer who works exclusively with cats created the perfect solution.
Rojiman / Instagram
Mugi, Naru, and Nya tried not to panic as they watched their owner. The three Scottish Folds had seen him do plenty of strange things before, but this time was different. For one thing, his antics would make them all famous.
Purr and Roar
See, their owner Ryo Yamazaki always had a flair for the creative, but he couldn’t have expected his talents to put him on a magazine cover (of course, the designer had one of his models pose alongside him).
While there are plenty of other pet clothing stylists out there, Ryo is one of a kind. You see, he specializes in hats — cat hats. But what’s his process like? Let’s chat.
Instagram / rojiman
A few years back, Ryo noticed his cats shed quite a bit. Though that was nothing new, an unorthodox idea crossed his mind: rather than toss all that fur into the trash, would it be possible to make something out of it?
With the help of family and friends, Ryo cleaned the fur clumps and organized them by color. Then, with a spark of creativity and painstaking attention to detail, he molded the shed hair into something magical…
Instagram / rojiman
Like this devilishly dapper top hat, complete with a white band! Even if you’re grossed out by the concept of collecting hair, you have to admit this accessory is fit for the finest black tie occasions. With all the work he puts in, Ryo naturally wants to share his creations.
Instagram / rojiman
That’s why he posts all his creations on social media, spearheaded by his Instagram account rojiman. He describes himself as a “fallen fur hat designer,” and boy, does he deliver.
As you might know from experience, most cats don’t take to kindly to wearing any kind of garment, let alone something on their heads. Fortunately, Ryo’s found himself three feline models willing to put up with his handsome headgear.
For example, his Scottish Fold cats don’t even mind taking on the appearance of a different animal, even a dog! Then again, it never hurts to have a disguise, especially if Mugi wants to spy on the canine ranks.
Instagram / rojiman
Using his expert felting skills, Ryo crafted a fully three-dimensional duck hat. And if you look closely, you’ll notice he used fur from Nya, Maru, and Mugi. Everybody’s a team player (whether they realize it or not)!
Instagram / rojiman
Nya often rocks a highly detailed warthog look, perhaps as a nod to Pumba from The Lion King. Speaking of Disney movies, Ryo also enjoys paying tribute to his favorite cartoon characters.
Instagram / rojiman
Any anime buffs out there will appreciate Maru’s Gundam helmet. However, we bet this cat won’t be fighting any other giant robots — unless they try to scratch his belly. Then they’ll get the claws!
Instagram / rojiman
In addition, Ryo’s dropped some Pokemon references in his work. Rather than going with a fan favorite like Pikachu or Charizard, however, Ryo likes the deep cuts. Here, he’s transformed Maru into the ultra-intelligent Slowking.
That doesn’t look like a genuine smile, does it? Sure, Ryo’s feline friends might not always seem thrilled to be modeling his creations. However, their legion of fans sincerely disagree.
Instagram / rojiman
With over 100,000 devoted Instagram followers, Ryo and his three kitties have become kings of the internet. In fact, their success has led to some interesting new directions for Ryo’s artwork.
Instragram / rojiman
His hats and wigs have officially hit the market! For a nominal fee, you can have a 100% cat hair accessory for you or your pet. You can guarantee there’s no pesky dog hair in these products.
Instagram / rojiman
After all, a cat hair hat makes for the perfect gift around the holidays. A miniature Santa hat would complete any Christmas card photo — if you can manage to get your pet to hold still.
Instagram / rojiman
Though Ryo doesn’t want his customers to limit their holiday spirit to December. Once Halloween rolls around, your cat will feel extra spooky if he’s sporting a pair of horns and a bleach-blonde moptop.
Ryo’s American audience can’t agree on whether Donald Trump’s hair is real or not, but both Democrats and Republicans can enjoy this presidential wig. Your cat better brush up on constitutional claws!
Instagram / roijman
Every once in a while, Ryo goes above and beyond headwear. Can you believe he collected enough fur to make a full sculpture of Maru? Obviously, the real cat looks much more well-fed.
Instagram / rojiman
Nya, Maru, and Mugi’s hats are only getting better and better as their owner hones his skills. A truly unique artist, Ryo is flying high.

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