TORONTO — As summer enters full swing, the quadruped citizens of Toronto are faced with an insurmountable challenge before they can become an integral part of the Cute Animals With Adorable Antics IndustrI (CAWAAII).
This industry began from humble beginnings, when the father of this field, YouTube user Sanchey, posted the first video of a cat facing off against puppies back in 2006. Now, cat and dog videos are staples of every web surfers diet and soon the demand for YouTube-able animal antics has started to put pressure on bigger cities with local animal populations.
So what’s the challenge? The animals of Toronto must compete with the cute animals online, and need to deliver such antics all year round, especially to tourists, who are key players in increasing the cute animal’s visibility in this industry. Such a supply is hard to meet simply with the stalwarts of Canadian cuddliness – Raccoons© and dogs in boots.
It’s hard to break the glass ceiling in this industry, created by the biggest competition there is – the diabetic and magnificently obese Racoons©. Indeed, most tourists in Toronto keep their eyes trained on trash cans, street corners, and more recently, Shopper’s Drug Mart on College Street, hoping to spot the most famous member of the Procyonidae family trying to perform basic functions like walking or hissing. Or, during winters, they are treated to the sight of dogs trying to walk in their little colourful boots during winter.
However, the rise of conscious, Racoon© health freaks campaigning for racoon-proof dustbins have severely dented racoon occurrences in the city. And indeed, the end of the winter season means no more puppers strutting about in their wittle adorable bootsies ‘til December at best. So who’s going to pick up after these (literal) giants and advance the cute animals industry in Toronto for the season?
The answer may lie with the newest upstart in the Toronto CAWAII scene that is starting to burrow its way into Torontonians’ hearts with its little face and huge bushy tail.
The humble Squirrel© might not seem like much at the outset — its diminutive stature simply holds no comparison to the chonky Raccoon©, and it’s tiny scampers are hardly a match for the majestic strut of a dog.
However, the sheer manic energy held inside a Squirrel©’s body for performing death-defying antics has even the most discerning tourist reaching for their phone to tweet images captioned #cute #adorable. One could simply stand for hours on end, watching a Squirrel© manoeuvre itself up a vine on a building — on a good day, one can hear the oohs and aahs of university students shirking all work to watch a Squirrel© make its way to the top of the building like Tom Cruise.
Apart from an inexhaustible supply of energy, the success of Squirrels© can also be attributed to their neurotic, bipolar nature. One minute they’re staring at you as you gently approach them to take a picture. The next they’ve either jumped into a mound of leaves or run into a dustbin.
Nevertheless, photographs of these furry balls of nerves are truly majestic, with their patented taxidermic stare and twitching tail.
In conclusion, all is not lost — Toronto’s seasonal CAWAII game can still be saved by these charming little Sciuridae, and will definitely will be the mammal to watch out for in the fall.