Grumpy Cat visits GMA, Times Square & gets pawed: “she’s a sweetheart really”

Whenever I see Grumpy Cat, aka Tardar Sauce, I just want to hug and pet and love her. She’s freaking adorable, especially in motion. Of course she looks like a sourpuss in still photos, which explains her astronomic rise to fame after her owners posted a photo of her to reddit back in September. Grumpy is an 11 month-old mixed breed who has feline dwarfism. She’s launched countless memes in which she mocks and dismisses anything that people can come up with. In reality Grumpy Cat is a very docile, sweet cat who is happy to be held by her owners and fawned over by millions of fans. She’ll sit through interviews, she’ll grace SXSW with her presence, and she’ll even let her owners bring her to Times Square for tourists to paw. That bothered me a little, and I’ll talk about that in a moment.

Tardar made an appearance on Good Morning America today to promote her new collaboration with Friskies. It wasn’t her first morning show appearance – she was on The Today Show last December. During her segment, they showed Grumpy cat accompanying her owners, Arizona based brother and sister, Tabatha and Bryan Bundesen, to Times Square. Grumpy was recognized by quite a few onlookers, who went on to fawn and pet her. This wasn’t unlike her SXSW appearance, where people lined up around the block for her, and it bothered me a little. Her owners have heard those complaints, and insist that she’s a normal cat “99%” of the time. Her website states that “99% of the time she is a normal kitty. She plays, hides, and acts as cats act. (She LOVES to hide behind the curtains!) She isn’t in front of a camera all of the time like many people perceive.”

That’s sweet and I’m sure she’s a very pampered kitty. I’ve probably had about a dozen kitties living with me over my life (not at one time! The most I had at one time was three) with various roommates and boyfriends, and I don’t think I’ve had one that would let you carry her out in public like that. Some were cool about being held, but they were all so headstrong that they would struggle away from you once you were outside or if they didn’t want to be there. Tardar is just a rare combination of frowny cute and very docile.

Here’s Grumpy Cat’s new Friskies web commercial. “Will Kitty Play With It.” She looks kind of scared and like she’s cowering! It makes me feel bad for her. She can’t help her face, and she’s just a very shy cat.

Photos credit: Friskies and ABC

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96 Responses to “Grumpy Cat visits GMA, Times Square & gets pawed: “she’s a sweetheart really””

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  1. CariBean says:

    Come on, some of those memes floating around are frigging hilarious!

  2. TheOriginalKitten says:

    As much as I adore Grumpy Cat and would likely turn into a crazy fangirl if I ever met her, I sort of feel bad for her…she probably just wants to lie around on a couch at home, like most kitties, not be trotted around Times Square.

    It’s not a criticism of the owners or anything-I’m sure Grumpy is very loved.

  3. Eileen says:

    I love Grumpy cat! Always makes me laugh

  4. Mich says:

    Aw! Thanks for covering Grumpy Cat! She is indeed a celebrity. I would love to see Lil Bub more often as well!!

  5. Cam S says:

    She looks so cuddly! I’m not a cat person, I have a Yorkie and he is a terrier so he is active and won’t cuddle. I’d love to have her as a cuddle buddy! She is a dwarf cat or something?

  6. bluhare says:

    For dog lovers, go to Youtube and look up Maymo the Lemon Beagle. Especially his Christmas present.

    Oh boy, Grumpy Cat’s going to be even grumpier now I hijacked his thread with a DOG.

  7. Katie says:

    She’s adorable. But does anyone else think they named her “Tard” as in “Retarded” but had to scramble and say her name was “Tardar Sauce” when she got famous? Or were they stupid and didn’t know how to spell Tartar Sauce in the first place?

    Either way, I judge them.

    • Amy says:

      Oh yeah, I totally think they did that.

      Grumpy Cat is the cutest thing ever. I hope (and actually think it is probably true) that her owners are careful with her and how many people get to touch her and handle her. I would think she’d get sore after too many pettings and strokings (insert your own dirty joke here)

    • jc126 says:

      Absolutely that’s what they did.
      I love that cat. I think she seems fine in the ad, cats would really freak out if they were scared. I also think if she didn’t like being held all the time, she’d let everyone know.
      The other cat was beautiful, and so was the cat in the 2nd ad (a Russian blue?). I guess every cat is beautiful, though.

    • EmmaStoneWannabe says:

      Well if that’s the case, they should have played it off with something better than “Tardar Sauce.” “Tardy Hardy” or something..bc, as mentioned above, it’s Tartar…lol so stupid

    • TheOriginalKitten says:

      I don’t know if this adds to your concern or abates it a little but I honestly think Grumps might be developmentally-delayed. It’s really rare for a cat to be SO nonreactive and passive.

      I have a Scottish Fold and she is the cuddliest, SWEETEST cat-never claws or bites and very very docile, doesn’t freak out at the vet’s, will sit on a car seat and chill while being transported (I’ve only done this a couple times, just to give her a break from the carrier) but even SHE would freak out from all the cameras and people.

    • claire says:

      Yeah. They downplayed it. I saw the first Reddit post when it was happening and that name came up. IIRC they played up the name for Reddit yuks, not trying to be offensive, and then when the meme took off, they had to cover quickly. I don’t hold it against them. They learned their lesson I think about being cavalier with that word and they seem like good cat parents.

    • notsoanonymous says:

      Agreed, it was almost certainly Tard and not Tarder Sauce. I’ve read that the cat has a form of feline dwarfism. When you watch videos of Tard in motion, you can totally see that the cat isn’t quite like other cats.

      Such a cutie though!

  8. MonicaQ says:

    This cat is my spirit animal.

  9. brin says:

    I love her face, if they ever did a voice over for her, it would have to be really raspy (like Big Ang).

  10. aud says:

    I love her

    But bring her home. Stop whoring her out for fame and money. Let her be a cat

    • Gine says:

      …She’s a cat. She has no idea what’s going on, and while she may be a little shy, she certainly doesn’t seem to mind the attention. If I had a weird-looking pet that I could make a ton of money off of just by taking pictures of it and bringing it on a few talk shows, I totally would.

      • CS says:

        Cats get very stressed in unfamiliar places, it’s not fair to her.

      • aud says:

        cats aren’t meant to be moved around like this. It’s not in their natures to enjoy being passed around, in new cities constantly.

        Cats freak out over moving to a new house and usually need to be shut into one room for a while so they can gradually adjust to the change.

        Even if she’s shy and docile, I’d be very worried about the impact of so many new places and faces and traveling. I hope a vet is keeping a close eye on her for signs that the stress is starting to impact her health.

      • janie says:

        ..then you don’t deserve a pet. It’s a living thing, not an inanimate object.

      • ??? says:

        Well, that’s a bit insensitive. “She’s a cat. She has no idea what’s going on.” Um, she’s a living being. I guarantee she’s processing her surroundings in some way, regardless of her seemingly passive outward demeanor.

        This kitty may very well be extremely docile and accommodating by nature, and perhaps she is also mentally developmentally delayed, as someone else already mentioned here. But by instinct, cats are prone to becoming very stressed by even the slightest changes in their environment, routine, etc. — and they don’t necessarily always show it, though it does take a toll on their health. They can also be unpredictable and have flight responses that are triggered in a fraction of an instant. It concerns me that Tardar Sauce is being handled out in the open in Times Square, an environment in which she could easily go into sensory overload and completely flip out, out of the blue. Her owners seem like decent people, but I hope they know when enough is enough and don’t let the dollar signs cloud their sensibility.

        I also hope they’re not feeding Grumpy kitty Friskies. It’s one of the lowest-grade commercial cat foods available. It’s like getting your nutrients from McDonald’s extra value meals every day.

    • Meerkat says:

      If I tried this with any of my lot, I’d be shredded like my chairs are! Mine are more like Simon’s Cat.

  11. Ruyana says:

    I love Grumpy Cat. But I’d think all that traveling around and assorted people handling her would stress her out.

    Her family should be content with the still pictures taken at their home and let the poor little cat have some peace.

  12. banarang says:

    I’m jealous I want to cuddle the grumpy cat.

    Side note my mum said I remind her of the grumpy cat because I’m small and moody

  13. Kcarp says:

    Is it just me or is it weird that ADULT brother and sister own the cat? I mean isn’t this just a pet? Why would they own it together.

  14. Mauibound says:

    Grumpy cat rocks! Most cats i’ve seen or been owned by wouldn’t take to the traveling well so I hope her tour goes quickly

  15. SRT says:

    I am worried they are exposing Grumpy Cat to germs and diseases with all that petting by strangers. Not good.

  16. KellyinSeattle says:

    Grumpy Cat; this is her famous time of her nine lives. She reminds me of my cat, who just disappeared :) That cat would sit on the passenger seat when I drove, so I drove him all around.

  17. LeeLoo says:

    I hope our grumpy faced friend has had all of her vaccinations. I especially love the Kristen Stewart/Grumpy Cat comparison. I think Tardar Sauce seems like a gentle and loving little soul.

    This article makes me a little sad right now. My 14 y/o ball point ragdoll is having a pancreatic inflammation spell (she has chronic pancreatitis). It’s not life threatening at the moment but I worry that one of these days these attacks will be the end of her.

    • Catlady says:

      What are you feeding your kitty?If you are feeding any dry food that definitely can be a trigger.

      • LeeLoo says:

        I pulled all dry food from her diet about a year ago. As of right now, she will only eat Fancy Feast. She’s always been a picky eater so finding a food that’s good for her and she likes is hard. I do want to get her away from Fancy Feast though.

    • Catlady says:

      Fancy Feast is problematic with all the fish and wheat gluten which both can cause inflammation as a result of an allergic response. With patience any cat can be transitioned to other foods. Before Grain chicken, turkey or quail would be good to try first. All are grain free with no fish or wheat gluten and are basically meat and vitamins. You might also want to check out and for a lot of excellent information regarding feeding cats.

      • LeeLoo says:

        I’ve tried giving her the BG chicken, quail and turkey foods. She refused to eat them. I’ve also tried giving her BFF, Tiki, Wellness, Pinnacle and Deli cat (she loved the tunas of the first two, no surprise there) to no avail. I usually give each one a try for two days. I know all of the dangers of why she shouldn’t eat fish. She used to be a primarily dry food kitty until she got diagnosed. I used to feed her the grain free Pinnacle cat food.

  18. TrustMeOnThis says:

    Just FYI to my catladies: Friskies is not healthy food. Tinned food is generally better for kitties, but in any case you want meat to be the main ingredient, not “meat by-products” because “meat by-products” are not actual meat. Just because it has a certain percentage of protein does not mean it is necessarily in a form that is nutritionally accessible for kitty.

    Also, if your cat seems to barf a lot, try removing fish from the diet; many cats are allergic but it is in a lot of cat foods because of the smell. This made a huge difference to one of my rescue babies.

    =^. .^=

    • LeeLoo says:

      All these things are true. My kitty isn’t allergic to fish but another issue is a B-vitamin deficency. Taurine is an essential mineral cats need and fish lacks. Turkey, chicken and liver are much better for them. The unfortunate fact though is that my cat is ill with pancreatitis and also a picky eater and has is down to 6 lbs when she is normally around 7 1/2. She only wants Fancy Feast flaked tuna or flaked trout. FF is better than Friskies but not by much. At this point, I am letting her eat what she wants as seafood is high in protein and low in fat (she requires a low fat diet due to her pancreatitis). When she recovers though, I will likely be making the switch to Hi-Tor.

    • janie says:

      Agreed! I used to feed my cat Friskies, then switched to Wellness/Felidae/Holistic Select and she looks and acts so much healthier. It’s really not that much more expensive if you get the big cans. Friskies is about 50 cents a can (1 can per day), and Felidae is about $2.40 for a large can, which lasts 2-3 days. Totally worth it.

    • Mich says:

      So true! My almost 18 year old Burmese is highly food allergic and I blame the tuna her previous owner fed her daily.

      When was the last time you saw a kitty swimming in the deep sea?

    • aud says:

      Very true

      At least where I live, any food sold in a grocery store is pretty much bad for your cat. Friskies etc are all crap

      My cat won’t go anywhere near friskies or the popular brands. We have her on Wellness Indoor formula and she loves it. It’s grain free :)

      Acana is a great brand for outdoor cats but is higher in fat and protein in my experience. It was just too much for my indoor kitty’s activity level(she was gaining weight so quickly). so we switched to Wellness Indoor and she’s at a good weight now.

      Her wet food isn’t the best though, Meow Mix Market Select. She won’t let me change it though. They were sold out once and I got dirty looks every night when I fed her another brand. I got a stink eye and she’d refuse to eat it for an hour before giving in.

  19. janie says:

    Ugh, NO. This really upsets me. Remember “Meow” the obese cat that was super famous last year? Its owners brought it all over the country to be on talk shows, and it ended up dying of heart failure. I know that obesity played a large role in that, but the stress of constantly traveling and being in unfamiliar environments is not good for a cat.

    Take Grumpy cat home and let her be a cat.

  20. Catlady says:

    I hate hate hate the commercial and I hate that they are forcing her to do all these public appearances. Her body language in the commercial makes it clear this is not fun for her and they are assholes for making her do this. This is not good. Not good at all.
    And Friskies is cheap crap.

    • Ellie says:

      Agree regarding Friskies being cheap s**t that’s terrible for cats. But about Grumpy Cat’s commercial, I think the reason she kinda just sits there and wobbles a bit is because of her feline dwarfism (see my comment to Syko below), which makes walking difficult for her. And I think that’s why she’s always crouching down—here’s a video:

      Poor kitty :( Anyway, I take more issue with them trotting her all over Times Square, SXSW, and letting strangers paw all over her than her being in a commercial. At least that was probably filmed in a secure environment.

  21. Syko says:

    Is she a dwarf, or is she a Munchkin kitty? They have very short legs.

    I can’t pick up my cat at all, never have been able to. He doesn’t sit on laps either. Very companionable, will sit beside you and follows you room to room, but the not liking to be held is a trait that many Maine Coons have.

    • Ellie says:

      Per Grumpy Cat’s website: Her petite size and famous face is likely due to feline dwarfism and her rear end wobbles a bit when she walks due to this; otherwise she is a perfect little kitty! She is not a munchkin cat and was not bred purposefully from other munchkin cats.

      Also, thanks for the info about Maine Coons! I’ve long suspected my pound kitty has traces of Coon in her because of her ear tufts and super-fluffy belly, and she also hates being picked up. Loooves to sit in my lap or lay on my chest, but only if she puts herself there.

  22. Nicolette says:

    I love that face! Her grumpy expression makes me smile every time. :)

  23. Jess says:

    She is just like my cat! she lets me carry her around outside when I check the mail or go for car rides. I hold her over my shoulder like a baby and she doesn’t fuss. But she’s also the most playful cat ever. Likes to hide around corners and jump you when you walk by.

    • jaye says:

      I had a kitty like that. When my son was small any time he’d take a shower, Moose would patiently sit outside of the bathroom door and as soon as my son came out wrapped in his towel and Moose would pounce and try to pull his towel off. Watching the ensuing struggle was hilarious. Once my son wrestled his towel away, Moose would calmly walk away with a look that seemed to say “well…THAT’S done”. Man, I miss that cat.

  24. allons-y alonso says:

    I really love this cat but i do feel bad that she’s paraded around everywhere with lots of cameras, lights and people. I hope it doesn’t spook her.

  25. crtb says:

    I don’t understand people’s concern about GC being handled and traveling. Show cats travle all of the time and they are constantly being held. Most are well loved and happy.

  26. Ginger says:

    I love Grumpy Cat/Tardar Sauce. I’m very happy her owners decided to share her cute lil mug with us all. But I’m a huge cat lover anyway. I too hope they give her a little break when she needs it.

  27. Miss M says:

    Gosh, grumpy cat is adorable! I am a cat person and had to wait to get home to read this post. Otherwise, I would be checking all day at work, hahaha.

    When I was a child, my kitty (back then) didn’t like to be held. But it was my fault since I behaved like Elmyra Duff, chasing him all day… lol

  28. lucy2 says:

    I love Grumpy Cat! So cute. And amazingly docile – I can barely hold my cat inside, she’s very stubborn and freaks out easily.

    In a controlled environment, I can see bringing the cat and letting people (calmly) meet her, but I can’t believe they took her out to Times Square. She seemed OK, but I have to imagine it was stressful and overwhelming.

  29. leslie says:

    LOVE Grumpy cat! She’s so adorable. My Sebastian, who passed away this Christmas Eve past, looked like a grumpy cat too, but he was hilarious & very loving.

    Tardar Sauce’s little downward shaped mouth really seals the grumpy deal. Cute.

  30. katiebob says:

    my 2 kitties are pretty feisty but they love going for car rides in their harnesses and leash, but they would be PISSED if hundreds of people were petting them, they are divas after all.

    Tardar is adorable and I really hope her humans treat her well and don’t just see her as a money making piece of property

  31. Debra says:

    You have to love Grumpy Cat, if for no other reason than she peed on Harvey (TMZ) at SXSW

  32. Daphne says:

    Cute cat but I think she is getting exploited. The owners need to let her be a cat and stop trying to make money off her. They seem to be taking advantage of the cat’s sweet nature.

  33. LeeLoo says:

    @Mich I think your love and purrs are working. She’s been feeling a lot better the past couple of days.

    When my fuzzy feline friend was first diagnosed, we thought she was in the early phases of kidney failure as her creatine was 2.9 and her BUN was 40 (U.S. measurement). But as of this week her creatine has returned to normal (1.9) but her BUN has elevated to 45. I’ve been flushing her system with 100ml of Subcutaneous fluids daily. Her vet thinks that her flare up in August may have caused her little filtration system to go wonky. She was a lot sicker in August than she is now. When she stopped eating for a couple of days, I force fed her some watered Hills i/d. I have a couple of cans in her crash kit I made. What I really want to do everything I can to prevent these flare ups from happening, I can only imagine the damage done to her body whenever this happens. The good news is she is on her way to recovery. Once her weight goes back up, I’ll continue my food experiments but right now I think it’s vital to just get her weight back up and even if it means giving her something that isn’t healthy for her. Her vet agrees with me on this one. I have been sprinkling about 1/12 of a tsp of complex B-vitamins in her food daily, per the suggestion of some members of my email support group and her vet agreed that it will make sure she gets some of her essential B-vitamins. She is already making a good recovery and I hope I can do whatever I can to make these flare ups few and far between.

  34. GoodCapon says:

    Pokey should be there with her!