Post to the Host

Host Garrison Keillor answers your questions about life, love, writing, authors, and of course, A Prairie Home Companion.

Send GK Your Question »

Bertha's Kitty Boutique

September 11, 2008 | 11 Comments



Dear GK,
What happened to Bertha's Kitty Boutique ads on the show?

Alex G.

Bertha's was a big sponsor years ago when I had two cats, Tuna and Ralph, and now that I'm no longer a cat owner, Bertha is not so interested anymore. I wouldn't mind having cats, and my daughter would love to have one or two or four or five, but I have relatives who are allergic to cat dander. And we have some upholstered furniture we would rather not be scratched to shreds. And my family and I love to travel. All of which legislates against cat ownership. Which disqualifies me for Bertha's sponsorship.


11 Comments


I knew you were a cat person. If you bathe a cat in Woolight a few times, the cat dander allergy problem might go away. Worked for my daughter. (and did not hurt the cat, who lived to the ripe old age of 18).

As for the furniture, scratches lend character and inanimate objects cannot replace the love of a furry animal.

Travel, they will forgive you. Doesn't your child deserve a live pet?


Re you are allergic to cats.
There are now some cats which have been specially bred not to cause this problem. They are called ALLERCA cats and have a website, just Google it!
Bred in California.

Don't deny yourself the pleasure of a wonderful friend and they don't all scratch the furniture, buy a scratching post!

from an English cat lover.


As a side note: One should note that cat dander is very difficult to remove from carpets. I've even tried to "scream" it out, it doesn't work. However,
tomato juice helps.


I hate to hear that you are without cats. I am a country boy from Eastern NC and had to take care of my Granddad's fox hounds. Consequently, I grew up to love cats, particularly siamese. I play a game called "Bagpipe" with my lilac point, Keishi. That is where I put her under my left arm, lightly bite her tail and squeeze her at the same time. If I do it just right I get a C#, never fails.

Best regards,

Ken Stewart


All that comes with being a cat owner is not wonderful...but the love and companionship from the cat makes up for the liter, cat vomit, dander and the occasional redecorating of your home. I get met at the door from my 2 cats with lots of
kitty kisses (probably because they want food and possibly because they vomited up a glob of hair
on my clean clothes in the laundry basket. They were only reminding me to put up the clean clothes! I, too miss the Kitty Boutique!!


There is a reason European Medieval people associated cats with the Devil: cats do not really care for you the way dogs do, and were found eating their dead owners eyeballs in those now-quaint thatched huts. Cats simulate friendship in order to be fed; dogs give unconditional love.

Having written that, I must point out that both dogs and cats are a burden to the gadabout, kennels are expensive and depressing, and one feels the contempt shooting out of the staff's eyes for selfishly abandoning a pet just to travel somewhere for one's own enjoyment.

Turtles, on the other hand, are nice ...


Right.....and when the cat dies you will have a Woolite sweater!!!!
By the way GK I have several rolls of used duct tape in ziploc bags marked "American Duct Tape Council."


People don't "have" cats.

Cats have people.

Someone whose name I cannot recall observed that the difference between a dog and a cat is that, while a dog may well consider himself a part of the family, a cat considers the family a part of her staff.


Well..Grump. I miss Bertha's Kitty Boutique too! I am the devoted slave of Francesca, who required a very surprising C-Section one month after I adopted her the result of which was Nina, her now adult daughter kitten. (BOTH are now spayed!) The love and companionship, and the high degree of entertainment and comedy they supply is much greater than that of any sofa I've ever met, be it ever so elegant.

I love your show and listen whenever I can, and am looking forward to a new season of PHC. For the record though, if I ever meet your daughter, I'll be on her side of the "we need a cat" argument!


We have two cats who used to be indoor/outdoor cats. Since we moved to the mountains of So.Calif. they became of necessity, strictly indoor. Many of our local fauna are carnivores and love a tasty tidbit of pussycat. Remember, dogs have owners, cats have staff.

My family had farms outside Aitkin for a lot of years so I know most of the people in Lake Wobegon. May you keep on forever.


I miss the Kitties' talking too. My cat has so much expression when she talks to me. How do you get yours to talk on the radio? Is it really Sue Scott? She does an excellent job and I wish you would do more.

Previous Post:
« Feeling Follows Form

Next Post:
The Angel's Appearance »

Post to the Host Archive

Complete Post to the Host Archive


American Public Media © |   Terms and Conditions   |   Privacy Policy