Cat Obsessed With Carrying Oversized Toys Melts Hearts With 14M Views

We know that dogs are great at fetch, but a cat with a love for bringing his favorite toys to his owner has captured hearts online.

Feline fetch fan Harpo is a black and white cat with more than 200,000 followers on the TikTok account rainsurnamecats. Most famous for his blue sea monster toy, his videos show him meowing loudly as he carries the oversized stuffed animal through the house.

Harpo lives with his owner, who goes by the name Rain Surname. They told Newsweek: "I adopted Harpo and his brother Groucho from the Humane Society as a Christmas present for myself in 2008. At the time, Groucho was loud, obviously clever, and funny in a broad obvious way, while Harpo was completely silent, seemingly stupid, and funny in a weird, oblique way, so I named them after two of the Marx Brothers."

Harpo's owner says that carrying the toys is his "daily ritual" and "favorite game," something which checks out thanks to the number of videos of him carrying the blue sea monster.

One video from June 29 has gained more than 14 million views as Harpo heads into the living room after dinner with his trusty toy. In the comments, viewers shared their thoughts.

Harpo the cat carries sea monster
Pictures of Harpo the cat carrying his favorite "frenemy," a sea monster toy. With more than 14 million views, a video of Harpo's antics has delighted the internet. rainsurnamecats/TikTok

"The way he's waddling to you. Omg," wrote one commenter. While another TikTok user said: "Cats are the freakin' best dude."

Early on, Surname noticed that things were moving around the house—papers and fridge magnets. But it wasn't until a few years later that Harpo was actually caught in the act. Subsequently, after Surname and their two cats were evicted from their house, and staying in a neighbor's home, Surname started training Harpo to carrythings: "I started giving him treats for those things dropped closest to me, or that were accompanied by especially funny meows."

It was around this time that Harpo was also diagnosed with cancer. With vet bills upwards of $5000, it took time to find a vet clinic that would let them pay in installments. But before even getting his stitches out, Harpo was back to his usual tricks.

Surname explained: "He started bringing me the sea monster he'd had since he was a kitten several times a day, after years of just fighting with it whenever I threw it. I began having him bring me stress-inducing papers so he could turn them into mirth-inducing papers, like these legal notices about mandated repairs to the awful house we've been stuck in, thanks to my having that eviction on my record."

But why do cats behave like this? Cat advice site Kitty Help Desk says that when cats carry around items and meow like this, they have essentially bonded to the toy as though it was their offspring.

"It's not uncommon for cats to do this," they wrote. "Especially if they're raised without a lot of interaction from other cats. The toy basically fills a gap in his world and comforts him, in much the same way that a stuffed toy can comfort a child."

"I love the split second at the beginning where you can only see the stuffed animal floating," said one comment of the latest video. Another user wrote: "My cat does this but with a Dave the minion toy. But she'll do it at like 3 a.m. which is always super fun to wake up to."

Despite it being part of a parenting instinct, tom cats are as likely to exhibit protective parenting behaviors as their female counterparts, and this could explain why Harpo enjoys carrying items around the house.

After posting his antics on Reddit for a while, Surname eventually moved over to TikTok to share Harpo's talents.

"In honor of the third anniversary of him coming home after the surgery I did not expect him to survive, I launched a Ko-Fi so people who loved his videos could tip us directly in order to raise money for some long overdue oncology scans," said Surname.

Thankfully, there is no sign of the cancer's return and Harpo is doing very well. More recently, Surname has introduced a monthly subscription on Ko-Fi so that fans can send in pictures of their loved ones for Harpo to carry in one-off videos.

"A couple dozen people signed up in the first couple of days, and now we have about 100," said Surname: "If we get somewhere between 500-1000, I would be able to afford safe, stable housing for us again.

"Thirteen years after I rescued him and his brother from a shelter, Harpo could potentially save me from ending up in a shelter myself."

For some viewers, the viral video was a little bit too much to handle. One commenter said: "I'm sobbing I'm literally crying. I love him so much I love your cat I will die for him I genuinely mean that I'll do anything for him. God, he's so amazing."

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UPDATE 07/11/2022, 03:18 a.m. EDT: This article was updated with additional comment, a new video and a new image.