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Cats have sailed the seven seas (like Hemingway’s polydactyl cats), managed libraries (Dewey and Max the library cat), and supervised the United States Postal System (USPS). So why not NASA? There are theories that cats came from outer space. Which seems highly unlikely, if only for lack of kitty treats. But with cats, nothing is ever what’s likely.

NASA cats logo

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is an independent agency of the executive branch of the United States federal government responsible for the civilian space program, as well as aeronautics and aerospace research.

And…they have cats!  Why am I surprised?

The CATS space program

NASA created a Cloud-Aerosol Transport System (CATS) that launched in 2014. CATS is a remote sensing instrument to provide range-resolved profile measurements of atmospheric aerosols and clouds from the International Space Station (ISS). In simple English, it’s technology that interprets (and helps us predict) the weather.

Does anyone else smell something fishy about all this? The CATS program could quite possibly be the brain child of ingenious interstellar felines. After all, cats are extremely finicky about exposure to rain, sleet, and snow!


Here’s the official NASA CATS brochure. Though, it might have been humanized, so we won’t realize just how in control felines are of NASA…and the world.

The REAL NASA cats & the Ames Cat Network

There are plenty of real cats roaming the grounds of NASA, at Moffett Field in Mountain View, California. Sadly, many were abandoned without even being fixed. Left to reproduce uncontrolled, the cat population boomed.

The kind folks at NASA partnered with the Palo Alto Humane Society to trap, spay and neuter, and find homes for these cats in need. The Ames Cat Network was created, and each cat is tested, altered, and inoculated before being offered for adoption.

If you or someone you know in the San Francisco area is interested in fostering or adopting a NASA cat, please contact the Palo Alto Humane Society at 650.424.1901.

Other organizations in the San Francisco Bay area that help homeless animals, and have many wonderful pets available for adoption: