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Cats in cars spread smiles at the Garden State Cat Show

Karen McCandless with therapy cat Waffle.
Karen McCandless with therapy cat Waffle.
Susan Stokes

Cats in Cars spread smiles at the Garden State Cat Show


One could not help but smile when seeing two cats calmly riding in motorized cars around the exhibit hall at the recent Garden State Cat Show & Expo in New Jersey. The felines are behavioral therapy cats who belong to Gregg and Karen McCandless, owners of

“We are an inspirational entertainment service based on the nine fruits of Spirit,” explained Karen McCandless. “We bring this service in order to share smiles and lift people’s spirits with the help of our behavioral therapy cats, Waffle and Princess Tirzah. The inspiration is the Basic9 message that we bring.”

“The nine fruits were taken from scripture,” continued Karen. “Paul taught them in the Book of Galatians. We believe if you live with those virtues, then you can really live life fully.”

The nine virtues taught by are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, and self-control.

“The cats display these virtues of patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness and self-control as they ride in their little car,” said Karen. “They help us teach the nine virtues and the foundation of all virtues.”

Not only does Waffle “drive” the motorized car escorted by Princess Tirzah, he performs tricks in “Kitty Kat Theatre” which was part of the attendee experience at the Garden State Cat Show.

The McCandless couple does not instruct people how to train cats. They show people that training can be done, and in the process, they share their message and the purpose of their service.

The company was started in 2009, and in 2011 Waffle began driving the car with Princess Tirzah in tow.

“We believe the kitties are siblings with the same father,” said Karen. “In all, there were two litters of thirteen kittens born from two mommas that gave birth eight hours apart. The neighborhood tomcat was the daddy of both litters.”

The Garden State Cat Show is not the only event where participates. The McCandless often visit nursing homes with their cats in cars, which they love doing, and hope to add schools to their schedule in the future. View a list of their activities here.

“If you start out with little things like a smile, that’s a good thing,” advised Karen.

Gregg and Karen McCandless can be reached by email at or telephone 724-504-6394.

Learn more about their service and behavioral therapy cats Waffle and Princess Tirzah online at

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Email if you have comments or a story you would like me to share. I currently write as NJ Animal Rescue Examiner, National Cats Examiner, National Pet Health Examiner, and National General Pets Examiner. Follow me on Twitter and visit us on Facebook for news and updates. Join our Circle at Google+

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