When you were immersed in the busy daily life, somewhere in a snow-covered land, there lies a clowder of cats who have nothing to worry about but to play in the snow all day. He and his furry friends Hiskias Hääppönen, Elmeri, and Nelli, all from the upper, Northern European region – Northern Finland. Their playful everyday life is updated on Sämpy’s social media account – @sampycat.
Of course, Gidypet has to collect the chonkiest, floofiest, and the most captivating photos of Sampy’s pals. These pics would definitely uplift your mood as it gives you the daily meow-dicine you need, but they would also evoke your desire to own a cat just like Sampy or his friends so you can hug and snuggle with them when the weather gets chilly.
Riikka Hedman – the owner of Sämpy and the other cats, also gave some insight into her and the cats’ life in the brisk weather of Northern Finland and how loved the clowder is on the Internet. Scroll down to read her interview and make sure to vote for your fave pics of the cats!
More info: Instagram
“Sämpy is a 6-year-old domestic cat and isn’t a special breed, although he looks like a Norwegian Forest Cat. Elmeri, the gray cat, is 11 and he is also a domestic cat. Hiski, the biggest tabby without white paws, is a half-Norwegian Forest cat and is 2 years old. They all are neutered male cats. On my sites, there are also pictures of a gray-white cat, Nelli, but she passed away earlier this year,” Riikka explained.
She also added that Sampy absolutely enjoys outdoor activities, especially when the weather isn’t too cold. “He is so happy when he goes with me on a small trip to the old forest near our house. There is a small river there, as well as many other exciting places, and interesting scents. Elmeri and Hiski prefer to stay in the yard, at home, but sometimes they come along for a walk. My cats jump over obstacles I build in the backyard for them, especially in the winter. It is easier to demarcate the jumping area when there is a lot of snow.”
Riikka won the 2014 ''Photographer of the year" title in a Finnish photographer magazine's competition and was overjoyed when she got a 'super-fast camera for being 1st place. “I was practicing shooting with my new camera and got a great jump shot of Sämpy. I sent the picture to a local newspaper and it became so popular that a journalist was sent to make an article about the cat. When the article came out,
Sämpy’s owner mused that the popularity of the social media accounts is most likely linked to the fact that she usually photographs her cats outdoors, ‘in beautiful surroundings, in funny situations, and without forcing them’ to do anything: “I think that in a good cat picture the cat needs to be natural and do its own cat things.”
I got many wishes that the cat would have his own Facebook page. After Facebook, I created an Instagram account for Sämpy.”
Rikka pleasantly claimed that Sampy and his friends' adorable photos on social media have gained tremendous love worldwide. In fact, all of their photos are captured and edited by her. Therefore, you can really see her passion and love for her cats in each frame! Her setups are ‘in beautiful surroundings, in funny situations, and not forcing them to do anything': “I think that in a good cat picture the cat needs to be natural and do its own cat things.”
Rikka has been able to publish two books about Sampy. In 2016, the first one was published and is called ‘Kissan vuosi’ (‘Cat Year’). “Then another publisher contacted her and asked for a photo book about Sämpy. Needless to say, I agreed without hesitation:” The new book came out just last week. Sämpy and Riikka have together also published calendars for three years.
“It's not that easy to pick pictures for a book, but luckily there are professionals at the publishing house. I also wrote some text, but the books are mostly picture books. In the captions, I use the local dialect, which has also been a much lauded. I do not have any specific plans for the future, but proposals are certainly welcome. If anyone wants to make Sämpy a character in an animated movie, a wallpaper, or a key chain, it is all fine, as long the cat doesn't have to leave his home himself. Sämpy hates travelling,” Riikka pointed out.
Sämpy & Co. have won the hearts of many internet users, the majority of whom are from Finland, but there are also many from other countries. The cat has over 132,000 Instagram followers and another 43,000 Facebook fans. They're all looking forward to seeing the latest images of Sämpy and his companions Hiskias, Elmeri, and Nelli.
“My favorite hobby is hunting. I hunt mice and moles. I’d also like to catch birds, but they are too fast. I also like meeting with my Secretary of Forest Trips and playing with my cat friend Elmeri," Sämpy the floofy and chonky cat explained. “Every day, I eat dry food and wet food; meat and salmon every now and then. Best of all is butter, that’s my biggest delicacy. Sometimes, I get a small dollop of butter. Aaaaah. And yes, I hear when the butter box is being opened.”
Sämpy continued about his owner (or ‘secretary’ as it refers to her): “The secretary is my servant and maid. All the time she is pointing her camera at me. In the morning, she usually will go somewhere, of course, she makes breakfast for us cats before she leaves.
I like to sleep outside, even in the middle of the grass if the weather is good. Inside, I lay on the sofa and sometimes on top of the refrigerator. Sometimes, I sleep in the sauna, whenever it’s not too hot. In the summer, I’m the boss. I’ll give orders to the other cats and mice of the neighborhood,” Sämpy revealed.
It's a fact that Sampy and his friends are super cute and floofy, therefore, they deserve as much upvote as much as possible. Let's hope that the cats can enjoy their everyday lives without worries, and Rikki can continue to take paw-some pictures of them in the Winterland!