This week, we’d like to take some time to honor a cat who has for years been a beloved icon and cat champion for special needs animals. Though Lil BUB sadly passed away this week, the eight-year-old cat will never be forgotten here at the ASPCA, as we are sure she will be held in the hearts of so many across the country.
You may know Lil BUB from her viral social media accounts or her many talents as talk show host, movie star, Billboard-topping artist, author and philanthropist. It’s a big bill for such a small kitty, but BUB and her dude Mike spent the many years creating an important legacy that helped raise money and awareness for special needs pets across the country. The adorable “perma-kitten,” as she was dubbed, used her amazing look to inspire people about acceptance and helping others.
“Lil BUB was much more than an internet celebrity—she was a champion for at-risk cats and animal shelters, and a true friend to the ASPCA through Lil BUB’s Big Fund for the ASPCA,” said Matt Bershadker, President and CEO of the APSCA. “Our sympathy goes out to Lil BUB’s owner Mike Bridavsky and to BUB’s legion of fans, and we thank them for creating such an inspiring and enduring legacy for animals in need.”
We had the honor of joining forces with BUB and Mike in 2014 with Lil BUB’s BIG Fund for special-needs pets, which has now administered over $400,000 in grants to shelters nationwide. This unique program is funded through proceeds from Lil BUB’s web store, in-person appearances and other types of Lil BUB events, as well as from direct donations through a donation page on the ASPCA website. 100% of the funds collected through this program have been distributed as grants by the ASPCA to animal welfare organizations across the country to help animals with special needs.
When BUB wasn’t entertaining her six million social media followers, or helping raise funds, she took time to make special appearances, and even came to the ASPCA as our Cat Executive Officer for a day, where she took important meetings and even toured the ASPCA Adoption Center!
We will truly miss BUB, and our hearts go out to Mike and his family. But we know that her impact and message will continue to be spread far and wide. Thanks to BUB, we were able to help more at-risk animals and give more special pets like her a voice.