National Kitten Day 2022: What is it and how can you celebrate?

Close up of kitten with blue eyes
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Is there anything more adorable than National Kitten Day? We think not! After all, what could be better than an entire 24 hours devoted to celebrating these cute and charming creatures in all their glory? 

And the good news is, whether it's treating them to the best kitten food, volunteering at an animal shelter or raising awareness on social media, there are plenty of ways you can get involved. 

But while there's plenty of fluffy fun to be had on National Kitten Day, there's also a serious message behind this popular event. According to the National Kitten Coalition, each year, approximately 1.4 million cats are euthanized in America, so an important part of National Kitten Day is encouraging potential pet owners to adopt rather than shop. 

With so many kittens in need of a loving home like yours, if you don't already have a feline friend and feel that you have the time, space, love and financial capacity to provide a forever family for a young fur baby, National Kitten Day is a great time to head on down to your local shelter and adopt a new companion.

Below, you'll find everything you need to know about National Kitten Day, including how it came to be, when it is, and the many ways you can celebrate and get involved. And if you'd like to know more about adopting a kitten, nip over to our vet's guide or explore our in-depth articles on kitten care including kitten training tips, how to litter train a kitten, and common kitten behavior problems you might encounter.

What is National Kitten Day? 

Founded by pet and family lifestyle expert and animal advocate, Colleen Paige,  National Kitten Day at its heart looks to celebrate the magic of kittens and show how much joy they bring to people's lives. However, it was also created to highlight the plight of homeless kittens in search of their forever home. 

National Kitten Day looks to encourage kitten adoption and focuses on key areas around cat health and pet owner responsibilities, such as spaying and neutering as a way to keep the feline population in control. 

The first National Kitten Day was launched in 2012, with the first held the following year. Initially, National Kitten Day was actually celebrated in December for two years in a row before shifting to the month of July. It's been sponsored by big names in the pets world including BLUE Naturally Fresh Cat Litter, The Blue Buffalo Corporation and Naturally Fresh cat litter. 

What day is National Kitten Day 2022?

National Kitten Day is observed annually on July 10. In 2022, it will fall on Sunday, 10 July.  

How can you make a difference on National Kitten Day and beyond?

Kitten tilting head

(Image credit: Getty Images)

1. Spoil your kitten

If you already have a special furbaby in your life, then you don't need an excuse to spoil them but National Kitten Day is rather convenient! Our guide to the best kitten toys will keep your furry friend entertained; simply playing with your cat helps build a better bond, staves off the boredom, and keeps them healthy and active. 

You could even bake them up a special cat treat in your kitchen. 

2. Take part on social media

You could opt to take a selfie with your special friend and post it in social media. National Kitten Day can be found on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Simply use the hashtags #KittenDay , #NationalKittenDay or #WorldKittenDay to show your appreciation or share your own adoption stories by adding on hashtag #AdoptDontShop.

Even if you don't have your own kitten, it's the perfect excuse to celebrate the kitten of a friend or family member.

3. Adopt

If you have room in your life for a new pet, why not consider adopting? You search for an available pet by using the Shelter Pet Project, or check your local shelter's website to find your lifelong friend.  

Be sure to think about the long term commitment adding a new member to your family will involve. Adopting a cat means preparing and doing your research in advance, including considering any financial obligations. You'll want to ensure you have all the essentials your new kitten would need to hand before they move in too.  

If you have any existing cats in your household, then knowing how to introduce a kitten to a cat is essential advice: some cats won't enjoy an intruder invading their space no matter how adorable the idea may seem to us humans. 

4. Help a shelter

If you're unable to adopt or foster a cat or kitten, why not consider volunteering at your local shelter? This can include basic support like cleaning their litter boxes or cages, but some shelters look for cat cuddlers to help socialize or calm anxious cats. 

Some skills required you may not have even thought of, such as marketing, social media or even carpentry! 

There are a few additional ways you can help a shelter. In addition to financial donations, some shelters have a wish list where you can donate pet supplies such as towels, toys and treats. 

5. Educate

If you're not in a position to adopt a cat, you could let others know about the many kittens that are in need of a home. 

If you're looking to make a difference in the lives of kittens, you could use National Kitten Day as an opportunity to research kitten mills and educate others, or even write to your representatives on the subject. 

6. Spay / neuter 

You can often make the jobs of shelter easier from the comfort of your own home. Ensure your pet is spayed or neutered and look to provide them with collars and a proper ID.

Considering the health of your kitten is an all-year round responsibility, but days like National Kitten Day can remind us to schedule that check-up or simply go out of our way to ensure they have everything they need to live their best life whether that be something as simple as fresh litter, or frequent safety checks of our homes.  

Is National Kitten Day the same as National Cat Day or National Cuddly Kitten Day?

Interestingly, National Kitten Day was added to compliment the existing National Cat Day, which was set up by Paige in 2005 with a similar theme of spotlighting the awesomeness of cats and raising public awareness of adoption.

It doesn't end there, though. In fact, there's actually no fewer than 16 cat holidays on the calendar showing just how much we love these Internet moguls. One of these include National Cuddly Kitten Day which is day specifically intended to give kittens extra love and cuddles. Sounds like the perfect day! 

If you’ve just welcomed a new bundle of fluff into your family and are looking for advice and guidance to help you through that all-important first year, we recommend taking a look at our favorite kitten care tips

Ashleigh Gibbs
Digital Editor

Ashleigh is Digital Editor on PetsRadar. With over 8 years of experience in print and digital media, she has acted as an editorial lead on a variety of projects, with animal themes a keen interest. As an avid animal lover, you can often find Ashleigh checking out the newest trends in animal care or looking at cute cat videos on TikTok.