NewsPositively San Diego


Fallbrook surfing cat featured on Netflix raising mental health awareness

Posted at 2:45 PM, Jul 14, 2021

FALLBROOK, Calif. (KGTV) — When you think you've seen it all, a North County cat named, Maverick, comes along.

"I called it 'surf camp' when I put him on a surfboard in the pool when he was a kitten. He took to it really well," said his human, Nick Liam.

The feline, named after the famous Northern California surf spot, is only 2-years-old but has clawed his way into an impressive line of accomplishments. He skateboards, paddleboards, swims, and most recently took an interest in surfing with Liam.

"I was like 'I'd love to get him on a surfboard' and the first time he rode waves was in Malibu," said Liam.

He's been featured in People Magazine thanks to his unique talents and has nearly 50,000 followers on Instagram. Recently, he starred in an episode of "Cat People," a Netflix series that showcases the unique bonds humans have with their pets.

"It was supposed to be a big travel trip with him surfing in Miami, but then the pandemic hit, and we thought the show was dead, but midway they called and said they want to go forward more with an at-home approach; encompassing his adventures," Liam said.

And it's not just extreme sports gaining "Surf Cat Mav" recognition. His humans are deeply involved in non-profits surrounding mental health, using Maverick to help spread awareness.

"We're trying to open up a dialogue and let Maverick be on the forefront and also allow people to realize that having an emotional support animal or therapy animal enhances your life and adds so much," he added. "It's really important because a lot of organizations focus on suicide and depression, and we're trying to work with stomping out the stigma."

His humans said when it comes to Mav's motto, he's "trying to smash the perception cats have to stay home." They said it's worked so far, especially during the pandemic.

"It's spiraled into this community that likes to take their cats for walks. It's been pretty crazy, but it's fun."