When Disneyland in L.A. was built back in the 1950’s, it was so big that it was constructed and opened in stages.
The iconic Sleeping Beauty’s Castle was built some time before it actually opened, and it had a period, in those earliest days, of sitting there idle.
When they were ready to open it, Walt Disney and his team took a lil walk to the castle to check it out, but then they got there, and went inside, they were mortified to discover that an army of stray cats had invaded the castle and made it their very own luxurious kitty den.
Maybe Walt had a great big heart and really loved cats. Or maybe he just didn’t want the story of him being a cat murderer getting out there and ruining the Disney Dream. But either way he decided that rather than evict them from Disneyland, he’d to put these scallywags to work.
So they got them off to the vets, neutered, checked over and vaccinated and found them a new place to sleep in the park, that was a little more discrete.
In return, the cat-gang spend their nights out in the park, hunting and catching the masses of vermin that inevitably come with such an expansive piece of land, that’s filled with people endlessly dropping food.
Sixty years later, the Disneyland Cats are still in the park, helping keep the place tidy and rodent free. In fact, they are indispensable and the place would seriously deteriorate without them! After all, what’s better than to use the most natural pest solution of them all?!
There are onsite vets to take good care of them and keep them healthy. And if you know where to look, you can see their supplementary biscuit feeders dotted around the park in discrete locations.
Like most of the amazing behind-the-scenes secrets at Disney (there’s so many, it’s utterly fascinating, and it’s a fun rabbit hole to get stuck down…), the cats are not widely discussed, and the park works hard to train them to only come out after-hours, and have nothing to do with the public. But there’s a dedicated group of Disneyland Cat enthusiasts who spend their days at the park looking for signs of kitty life, and occasionally, if they’re lucky, they might just catch a cheeky one out and about during daylight…