Published by Ashley Palmer.

During Cat Week 2011, fantastic felines take center stage on PETA’s website. Year-round, these cute critters have earned a starring role in the hearts of many Hollywood heavyweights. Check out these kitty-loving celebrities who give cats “two paws up”:

  • Battlestar Galactica‘s Tricia Helfer stars in a PETA ad that encourages people to be their cat’s angel! Clean cats’ litterboxes daily, give them plenty of clean water, have them spayed or neutered, make sure that they have a cozy window seat for gazing outside, never allow them outside without supervision, play with them, and give them lots of love and affection every day.

  • Self-proclaimed cat person James Franco makes us swoon with his cat-cuddling ways. This picture of Franco and his kitties, Zelda and Sammy, gives new meaning to the term “cat nap.”
  • Dancing With the Stars judge Carrie Ann Inaba appears in a PETA ad with her rescued feline friend, Shadow, to promote spaying and neutering. In the U.S. alone, more than 7 million unwanted dogs and cats are turned in to animal shelters every year, and almost half of these animals will be euthanized because there aren’t enough good homes for them. Having your animals spayed or neutered is crucial to controlling the companion-animal overpopulation crisis—just one unaltered female cat can lead to 370,000 feline descendants in only seven years!

  • PETA’s Sexiest Vegetarian Celebrity of 2011 Russell Brand is a fan of felines and named his own cat Morrissey—after The Smiths’ frontman, who is a fellow vegetarian and cat lover.
  • Vampire Diaries star Ian Somerhalder may play a conniving vampire on TV, but in real life, he has a huge heart for animals and lots of love for his three rescued cats. In fact, not liking animals would be a dating deal breaker for Ian. He told Cosmopolitan magazine, “I don’t care how hot a girl is—if she doesn’t like animals, it would be a major, major problem.”
  • Jenna Fischer, aka “Pam” from NBC’s The Office, is a champion for kitties. In addition to caring for her own rescued cat, she fosters homeless cats and volunteers for a cat rescue organization.
  • Singer Melissa Ferrick takes a bold stand in favor of adopting animals from shelters by posing with a rescued cat in a PETA ad with the tagline “Don’t Buy While Animals Die.” She asks others to be lifesavers by always spaying and neutering and by never buying from breeders and pet stores.
  • Christopher Walken, a cat guardian himself, shares his appreciation for cats and their emotions. Walken explains, “A tail is so expressive. On a cat you can tell if they’re annoyed. You can tell whether they are scared. They bush their tail. If I was an actor and I had to play scared in a movie all I’d have to do is bush my tail. I think that if actors had tails it would change everything.” Walken promotes the proper treatment of cats and even penned a foreword to a book on cat care.

Do you love cats as much as these famous feline fanatics? If so, check out our Five Cat-tastic Actions to Help Felines, and let us know in the comments box below why cats have captured your heart.

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