Animal Advocates Raise Concerns About Taylor Swift Fans’ Viral Cat Challenge: Addressing Concerns of Extreme Distress

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This viral trend got rather hairy.

A new challenge launched by Taylor Swift fans on TikTok is causing some “Bad Blood” between pet owners and their feline friends after a UK animal charity issued a warning that the stunt causes the animal “distress and pain.”

Set to the singer’s hit “August,” the trend features pet owners hoisting up their cats by their front legs while clutching their smartphones between their chin and chest, then spinning in place while the cat appears to look directly at the camera, wide-eyed with fear.

Despite the move being focused mainly on cats, some users — whose “Wildest Dreams” include having a little bit of internet fame — have used other animals such as sheep, dogs, tortoises, hamsters, pigs and even raccoons.

The trend, which started earlier this month, has received nearly 155,000 entries.

In response, the Cats Protection Animal Charity issued a statement telling fans that they need to calm down.

“At no point should an animal deliberately be put in a position to feel fear, anxiety, frustration or experience pain for the benefit of human entertainment,” Central Behavior Officer Daniel Warren-Cummings told Metro. “Cats in particular will experience extreme stress by being swung or spun around and it could even cause them physical harm.

“Cats in particular will experience extreme stress by being swung or spun around and it could even cause them physical harm,” continued Warren-Cummings. “Even more disappointingly, these are being described as cute or funny in the comments section by people who appear to count themselves as cat lovers.

People have been spinning their cats around to the soundtrack of Taylor Swift's "August" in a viral TikTok trend. Photos by TikTok.

“It’s clear from the language that the owners don’t understand that animals don’t feel and behave the same way humans do and this undercuts the distress that the cats are experiencing,” concluded the officer. “Even if the experience is only brief, it’s unethical and should not be encouraged.”

The Post reached out to Swift and the Cats Protection Animal Charity for additional comment.

Set to the singer’s hit “August,” the trend features pet owners grabbing their cats under their front paws while holding their phones under their chin and spinning them around several times while the cat looks around with wide-eyed fear.
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One avid watcher claimed that they watched “approximately 82 cats, 6 dogs, 1 turtle, 1 chicken, 1 human reenactment and 1 raccoon” who took part in the trend.

Her feetsies 😂🥺 #catsoftiktok #catspin #taylorswift | Cats Of Tiktok | TikTok

Even though users have gotten a stern talking to, several TikTokers plan to “Shake It Off.”

“I’ve never skipped one of these ever and they always make me laugh,” said one user.

Despite the move being focused mainly on cats, some users — whose “Wildest Dreams” include having a little bit of internet fame — have used other animals such as sheep, dogs, tortoises, hamsters, pigs and even raccoons.
Raymond Hall/GC Images

“I love this fricking trend,” gushed another.

“I’m dying, this is amazing,” commented a third person.

Other users used the “Blank Space” to voice their concern.

Cute New Trend Alert: TikTok Users Spin Their Cats & Dogs to Taylor Swift's Song | Taylor Swift, TikTok | Just Jared Jr.

“Isn’t this bad for a four-legged animal’s spine or am I just overthinking,” commented one person.

“Mans just chilling on the bed not bothering anyone then some human disrupts his peace,” said a second person.

“He looked so scared,” said a third person.

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