At the end of last fall, Max the cat made national and international news. The Washington Post, The Independent and even The Irish News, based in Belfast, wrote about Max and his escapades in Macalester.
Max went viral when library workers posted a sign prohibiting Max from entering. Max was a frequent visitor to campus before the sign went up. He had been in dorms, forced gatherings on the Old Main lawn, and even visited patrons of the local French Meadow restaurant on their patio.
Gregory and Connie Lipton are Max’s humans. Gregory Lipton was a former professor of religious studies at Macalester and now teaches at High Point University in North Carolina. This led to Max moving away from Macalester.
The Liptons adopted Max “memeable” and his more sedentary sister Gracie in the Twin Cities. From the start, Max was adventurous; his humans knew he liked to be outside and walk around, but they didn’t know how far he would go.
“I went down to get him and he was laying down and ignoring me until I put the baby carrier down, and he lined up with it and said, ‘Okay, let’s go!'” Connie remembers when it was time to bring Max home.
“It didn’t put Macalester on the map, but it made them famous in a fun way,” Connie said of Max’s internet fame. Eventually, the Liptons kept Max mostly indoors, but he went to campus for special events. Connie had taught Max to walk on a leash so they could walk around campus to give him more enrichment.
Max found it difficult to adapt to North Carolina this spring. “He’s settled in now, but for a long time he was just screaming around the house all day and night,” Connie said. do more in Macalester. He always dreams of his freedom and his time with all the students. We take him for walks, but it’s not the same thing.
Max has no immediate commitments planned at High Point University, but he has already visited the Department of Religious Studies to the delight of faculty, staff and students.
Max lives on a busy street, so he’s kept inside until further notice, but the Liptons occupy him. Max and Gracie share a cat tree in the new house, and the couple spend many houses catching z’s on the perches.
“I need to play with him a bit, it’s gotten to the point where he’ll come and bite me to make me play with him because he’s really bored. I trained him on the clicker to squeeze his paws to occupy his little mind, ”said Connie.
Connie plans to walk Max around the High Point University campus more often as the weather improves and possibly to craft Max the Cat merchandise. She tried to get Max certified as a therapy animal while she was still in Minnesota, but he struggled to stay focused. He could re-register for classes once he is a little older and more relaxed.
“He’s kind of a funny guy. [It] is unusual for a cat to enjoy playing with its human. He likes to hide and then jump on you, play along the stairs and hit you. He’s a funny boy and makes us laugh a lot, ”said Connie.
Max has 18.4k Instagram followers and 1.1k Facebook likes and Connie often receives comments from Max fans saying, “They are looking forward to the post and it encourages them. If that’s all he does, that’s great. As for Max, he seems content with his lot in life and enjoys the extra attention between his sunspot naps and playing with his family.