Salty Sam’s Fun Blog for Children

Number 365

Working Cats


Hello Everyone



Many moons ago, l wrote a blog post about dogs that have jobs.


Some dogs help the police and some help customs officials.


Some dogs are assistance dogs and live with their owners all the time.


But cats have been a huge help throughout history too – ever since they were domesticated back in Ancient Egypt.


l thought l would give them a mention to make things fair!


ln Africa, cheetahs, which are from the big cat family, have been trained to accompany people on hunting trips and fetch shot game, just like hunting dogs do in Europe.


When they brought the game back to their owner, their owner would pinch their nose.  They couldn’t breathe and so let go of what they were holding in order to be able to breathe through their mouths.  This was part of their training.


That is a really big cat doing a job!


ln modern times, Grumpy Cat made a fortune for his owner after becoming a famous star on the lnternet.


That was a wonderful job to do!


But lots more cats have been unsung heroes, and they work at what they do 365 days a year.


Cats can be very efficient hunters.  They need to eat meat to stay fit and healthy.  This is why they got so good at it.


Rodents often like to eat food from human stores.  They can also spread disease.


Rats help spread diseases like the bubonic plague, and outbreaks of plague at various times have killed millions of people. 


We associate this illness with mediaeval and Tudor times, but there was an outbreak in Madagascar just a few years ago.  Bubonic plague is not just to be found in history books.


And rats can also spread a terrible disease called Weil’s disease (pronounce viles).  lf someone catches this illness, they will become ill very quickly.  The disease can even be fatal.


ln the Middle Ages, cats were very valuable if they were a good mouser and exchanged for a very high sum of money if they were a good ratter as well.


lf you have ever seen how fast a mouse can run, you will know how fast a cat has to be to catch one. 


Mice can look like they are as fast as a bullet shot out of a gun when they run across the ground.


Very old grain stores looked like sheds balanced on stone mushroom-shaped stilts.  Mice could not run up posts shaped like this.  They could not run upside-down along the overhang.


Rodents can gnaw through wood, but they could not get to the shed if it was protected by posts of this shape.


Farmers wanted to protect their stores from being eaten.


Even today cats help us.


Cats are an environmentally-friendly way to deal with a rodent problem.  You do not require poison.  Even the smell of a cat in a house will make mice vacate it overnight!


Scientists have found that cats have an intelligence equal to that of a two-year-old human.  So they can be aware if something is wrong and alert their owners to the situation.  They can understand a lot of things.


When we watch cats, cuddle them and stroke them, they help us to relax. 


These activities slow down our heart-rate and this is healthy for us.


They are lovely companions that make us smile and laugh, which is healthy too.


Luckily, if you don’t have a cat, you can watch cat antics on the lnternet.



lf you like my blog, please support it by telling all your friends and followers about it.


Thank you!


And see you again next Fun Friday!


Love and kisses



Salty Sam





Bill and Bob’s Joke of the Weekjokejoke


Bill:  Where did the kittens go on their school trip?


Bob:  l don’t know.  Where did the kittens go on their school trip?


Bill:  A mewsuem!



Salty Sam © Christina Sinclair 2015

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of material from this blog without express and written permission from this blog’s author and owner is strictly prohibited.

Links may be used to



Picture Gallery




Larry the cat – No 10 Downing Street’s official mouser


But was he the right cat for the job?


A grain shed on mushroom-shaped stilts







When you go to school do you have a USB stick that keep getting lost at the bottom of your bag?

Make this little bag for it and it will be protected and easy to find.

You could make the cord really long to go around your neck, if you are allowed to.







Using 4mm knitting needles and black dk yarn cast on 11 stitches

Knit 1 row

Purl 1 row


Change to red dk yarn

Knit 22 rows of garter stitch

Purl 1 row

Purl 1 row

Cast off



  1. Using over- sew stitching and appropriate colours sew along the base and sides of the bag with right sides together and then turn the bag the right way out
  2. Crochet 30 chains into a length of black yarn
  3. Thread the chain through the tiny channel at the top of the bag and tie the ends of this cord together








Quick Quiz


Do you know who these pantomime characters are?


  1. B _ _ _ s    in    t _ e    W _ _ d
  2. D _ _ k   W _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ n
  3. W _ _ _ w    T _ _ _ _ y
  4. B _ _ _ n    H _ _ _ _ p
  5. F _ _ _ y    G  _ _ _ _ _ _ _ r
  6. A _ _ _ _ _ n
  7. J _ _ k






lt’s the Weekend!





This bag is cleverly constructed so that it will shut up without needing a zip or clasp to keep it closed.



Using 4mm knitting needles and red dk yarn cast on 12 stitches

Knit 1 row

Knit 1 row

Knit 8 rows of stocking stitch


Continue knitting in stocking stitch

Decrease 1 stitch at the beginning of each of the next 6 rows (6sts)

Cast off



Using 4mm knitting needles and red dk yarn cast on 12 stitches

Knit 30 rows of garter stitch

Cast off



Using 4mm knitting needles and red dk yarn cast on 17 stitches

Knit 30 rows of garter stitch

Cast off



Using over-sew stitching sew pieces wrong sides together so that you get nice crisp edges

  1. Sew the bottom of the sides to the base
  2. Sew the bottom of the ends to the base
  3. Sew up the four corners easing the pieces to match together as you go
  4. Crochet 10 chains into a length of black yarn – twice – to make two handles that you can tie into the knitting at the top of the bag
  5. Sew a 40cm length of yarn into the seam of the side of the base as shown in the photograph – the loops go under the bag, up the sides and over the handles to keep the bag shut



Please note that the material on this blog is for personal use and for use in classrooms only.

It is a copyright infringement and, therefore, illegal under international law to sell items made with these patterns.

Use of the toys and projects is at your own risk.

©Christina Sinclair Designs 2015sand



Quick Quiz Answers



  1. Babes in the Wood
  2. Dick Whittington
  3. Widow Twanky
  4. Baron Hardup
  5. Fairy Godmother
  6. Aladdin
  7. Jack


Jack and the Beanstalk

  • Peter says:

    I read your blog in my coffee break. It always gives me a smile.

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