By Phil Plait | February 12, 2011 7:00 am

I haven’t posted a Caturday picture in a while, and this one presented itself to me.

How proud am I, that on a cold Boulder winter’s day, Canis Major sought out the brightest astronomical infrared source she could find?

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Humor, Miscellaneous, Pretty pictures
MORE ABOUT: Caturday

Comments (23)


    So, Phil, where’s the cat? 😉

  2. Mchl

    Ah… the vision of IR Homing Canis Major Missile is now in my head and won’t be out soon…

  3. Bobby

    Sun shines in, dog lies down, you can’t explain that.

  4. Zucchi

    In some homes, they don’t even let the dog get on the bed. Cruel, cruel masters.

  5. Aw, what a cutie! She looks quite a lot like one of my dogs. :)

  6. OtherRob
  7. blf

    Rays from space. Were-cat.

    (or is that Where-cat?)

  8. Ross

    Just this morning I was thinking there hadn’t been a Caturday post in a while!

  9. Gonçalo Aguiar

    If the dog is Cannis Major then… Orion is Dr. Phil?

  10. Mrs. BA

    Since Canis Major spends approximately 22 hours a day sleeping, she’s an appropriate subject for a Caturday post.

  11. Joseph G

    Woohoo CatIRday! LOLdogs are welcome, of course :)

    Speaking of cats and heat, I recently adopted a two kittehs, one of which is at least half Siamese (it has Siamese markings). I learned an interesting factoid: The gene that’s responsible for the Siamese’ distinctive coat pattern is actually a temperature-sensitive form of albinism. That’s why the middle of the cat is light-colored and the extremities, nose and ears are dark.
    Unfortunately, IR images of cats* don’t illustrate this very well, thanks to the insulation afforded by the cat’s fur. In IR, the nose, ears, etc appear warm as they lose more heat, even though they’re slightly cooler then the cat’s core. But a Siamese cat’s fur color can still be thought of (roughly) as an average temperature map of the cat’s skin. Cool, eh?
    And yes, the colors can change over time. If they become extremely obese, the extra “insulation” will cause their core to darken. In hot weather, a Siamese’ coat will lighten, as well.

    *As you might imagine, Googling “IR cat picture” gets you a LOT of lolcats (eg “I R serious cat”) :)

  12. Joseph G

    @ 7 Lee: Sundog.
    Hah 😀

  13. Jamie

    Haha! Phil, you actually named your dog Canis Major? You can’t be sirius!

  14. meirelle

    I am totes stealing your dog’s name when the time comes for me to get a new puppy.

  15. Messier Tidy Upper

    Yay! Caturday’s back! Thanks BA. 😀

    Glad your dog is Infra-red seeking rather than seeking X-rays, Gamma rays or microwaves! 😉

    @4. Zucchi Says:

    In some homes, they don’t even let the dog get on the bed. Cruel, cruel masters.

    While in others they do. :-)

    I’ve always been a real softie where pets (& animals generally) are concerned and the cats and dogs that own me always get to sleep on my bed. Which is fine with little dogs such as my Jack-Russell cross Fox terrier but when I’m minding a laborador that also wants to sleep on my bed .. &, of course, I’ve got to be fair & so if one dog gets to do it they all can.. So I woke up one memorable morning with my dog and my cat and the labrador all on the bed with me leaving not much room at all! 😉

    @13. Joseph G : Thanks for that info – I didn’t know that. Neat. :-)

  16. Messier Tidy Upper

    @15. Jamie : Haha! Phil, you actually named your dog Canis Major? You can’t be sirius!

    Why not? Sirius is a great name for a dog. :-)

    I had a dog named Sirius once – the last one before the dog I have now actually – she was a staffy, great dog that I got from the pound, they named her “Nell” but she got renamed by me with her full name being Sirius Dogstar Nell.

    I’ve also named my cat – a black & golden tortoiseshell – Zosma after Delta Leonis – see :

    & a former family dog Tycho after Tycho Brahe. 😉

    Nor am I alone as Olaf Stapledon, a great early science fiction author used Sirius as a dog name here :

    too in this great eponymous novel. :-)

    Finally, I could be wrong here, & please correct me if so, but I think the Bad Astronomer’s dog(s) actually has a different name & “Canis Major” is just its web pseudonym, right?

  17. Joseph G

    Naming a dog Sirius? That’s a Dogon* funny thing to do.
    Next think you know you’ll be putting her in Bootes.

    *Wiki “Dogon People”. I’m reaching, I know.

  18. Gary Ansorge

    My dogs are “Black Body” seeking. They’re a Chow and Chow/Shepard mix and neither is particularly fond of heat. When I rise in the A.M. and turn up the heat, they seek the cool outdoors. I think they’d be most comfortable in Siberia.

    Gary 7

  19. From Buenos Aires, I’d like to share my love for all animal species (including Homo Sapiens-Sapiens) Greetings from my doughter Wendy (9, half pointer, half doberman), my son Patito (Little Duck in spanish, 5, street dog half dog, half dog) and Felix (of course a cat, and black, 7)

  20. Gary Bryant

    “Sun shines in, dog lies down, you can’t explain that.” #3 Bobby

    I’m still laughing on that one; would make a great T-Shirt.

  21. katwagner

    We got our big dog, Ben, from the shelter. His litter mate’s name was Jerry. Our puppy, Jasper, is named after the mineral. Because he looks like jasper.

    #3 Bobby. Thanx! You made my day!


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