Neko Atsume, In Real Life

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It all started with a fluffy brown cat.

You may have heard of an app for your phone called Neko Atsume, or Kitty Collector. If you haven’t, it’s basically a game you can play on your phone where you collect cats. You have a yard (that you can eventually expand and remodel), and you put bowls of food and cat items out, and wait. Eventually cats start visiting your yard and leaving you fish, which can be used to buy more items for your yard in the shop. There are even Celebrity cats that will come if you place specific items out. For example, if you place a baseball in your yard you could possibly get a visit from “Joe DiMeowgio,” a scratching log may warrant a visit from “Mr. Meowgi,” and a luxurious hammock might lure “Lady Meow Meow.”

Screenshot from Neko Atsume

I was cleaning in the kitchen one night when I glanced at the dining area and saw Wallowitz looking at his reflection in the window.


I did a double-take when I realized that his reflection was brown, not white.  It wasn’t his reflection.

Sitting in our windowsill was a brown, fluffy cat. He was resting and staring inside at us and our cats. Being the crazy cat people we are, we thought he might like some food, so we set some of our dry food outside for him. There are quite a few strays in our neighborhood, and from the looks of him he seemed to have been a stray for a long time. He looked as if he had been in a couple of turf wars.

Real Life Neko Atsume - "Mr. Fluff"

We started leaving a little bit of food out for him at night, and he kept visiting. David named him “Mr. Fluff.” We are not completely sure if it is a male or female, but David likes to think of it as a he. A few nights later I saw what I thought was Fluff eating the food, but when I looked, it was a very skittish blue tabby that ran away when he saw me looking. We nicknamed him “Little Blue.” He is sneaky and will only come around when he thinks no one is watching. Once he is seen by either the cats or one of us, he is off like a rocket.

A few days later, a white cat appeared. I thought I recognized this cat from some signs I had seen around the neighborhood a month before. I drove around to see if I could find any left over signs, and once I did, the rain we had been getting caused the phone number to be partially gone. I scoured the Lost and Found Pets Facebook page for about fifteen minutes before I finally found the post that matched the cat, and we sent a message to the owner. The cat’s name is Fifi. The owner is pretty sure that our little visitor is indeed Fifi, so we made plans to catch her. She brought over a live-trap, and we set it up. The next day, we had a cat.

Real Life Neko Atsume - Fifi

Only it was the wrong cat! Little Blue was in the trap, and terrified. David let the poor kitty go, and it was a while before we saw him again. He still visits from time to time, but only when we’re not looking, and runs away when seen.

Fifi seemed too smart for the trap and didn’t go near it. So we decided to try to gain her trust and capture her that way. We are getting very close to being able to freely pick her up, and hopefully we can capture her soon and return her to her owner.


The next cat that came to visit was a chubby little brown shorthair that we nicknamed “Tabby.” We don’t see him too often. But it was around the time that we saw him when we realized that we were living in a real life Neko Atsume. We put the food out and the cats come. David even bought an igloo dog-house for them in case the get cold or need shelter from the rain.

The next cat was “Tubbs.” Tubbs is the name of a character in Neko Atsume.  In the game, he is a fat white cat that will come to your yard and eat all of the food.

We named this one Tubbs because we place three piles of food outside, and he will eat from all three of them.


Tubbs seems to be a resident now. Every morning and night when I go to put food outside, he is laying under our rosebush. He will wait until I go back inside to get up and eat. Then he’ll eat until he’s satisfied, then hop over the fence and be on his way. He will sometimes come back during the day to see if there is any food left over.

The most recent visitor we had was a little white kitty that looks like a small version of Fifi.  We have only seen “Littlebit” a couple of times, but she looks to be very young.

This makes six cats total we have seen in our backyard, and who knows if more come while we are sleeping.  Some mornings I will see both Fifi and Tubbs outside waiting.  Mr. Fluff has not visited in about a month, we are hoping he is okay, and like to think that he found even better food elsewhere.

Real Life Neko Atsume - Tubbs and Fifi
Tubbs and Fifi


We do realize that this makes us look even more like crazy cat people.  We both love animals and do what we can to help them.  Every time a new cat visits I will look at the local Lost and Found pet pages to see if anyone is missing a cat that resembles the ones we have seen, but most of them seem to be strays (we have quite a few in our neighborhood).  We do like our little visitors.  Our cats seem to have fun watching them as well.

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