Jennifer Wilber is a teacher and writer. She holds a B.A. in English and an Associate's in Computer Game Design. She is a life-long gamer.
Is Jigglypuff a Cat?
I know what you’re thinking: “Jigglypuff is a ‘balloon Pokémon,’ not a ‘cat Pokémon!’” I, personally, don’t see why this Pokémon couldn’t be classified as both. Jigglypuff is obviously a cat. This pink puffball Pokémon perfectly exemplifies what it means to be a cat, in both looks and behavior. Allow me to explain.
Those Ears! Those Eyes!
The most obvious and superficial sign that Jigglypuff is meant to be a cat can be found in the shape of her ears. Jigglypuff has those adorable, stereotypical cat ears perched perfectly on top of her head. If you were to cosplay Jigglypuff, you would most likely start your costume with a pink cat ear headband.
In addition to the cat-like shape of her ears, her ears are also sometimes portrayed with additional cat-like details. In the Detective Pikachu movie, Jigglypuff is depicted as a fluffy creature with magnificent ear furnishings which rival those of any Maine Coon or Norwegian Forest Cat. (Ear furnishings are those floofy fluffens that stick out of the ears of long-haired cats).
And look at her eyes! Those large, mesmerizing, owl-like eyes, when combined with her cat-like ears, are make Jigglypuff a nearly exact representation of a housecat.
If you have ever lived with a cat, you know that their mood swings can rival those of Jigglypuff. One second, your cat will be perfectly calm, allowing you to pet their fluffy tummy. The next thing you know, they are hissing at you and scratching your arms to ribbons before darting out of the room off to some unknown realm.
This normal cat behavior is much like Jjigglypuff, who is often perfectly content to and practicing her singing one minute, and angrily drawing on your face in permanent marker the next. At least Jigglypuff appears to be declawed! (But seriously, please don’t declaw your real-life kitties).
If you’ve played Super Smash Bros. you have probably noticed Jigglypuff’s amazing ability to jump straight into the air without visibly pushing off the ground. Really, she floats more than jumps, weightlessly lifting herself into the air a safe platform. In this regard, Jigglypuff is just like a real cat, who can jump straight up into the air and onto your kitchen counters without so much as taking a step back. Both creatures are super graceful.
If you’ve ever owned a cat, then you know that their favorite form of artistic expression is in singing the song of their people to you. Their favorite time to serenade you with this wondrous sound of the Gods is typically at 3 a.m., usually on work nights. Much like the average house-cat, Jigglypuff is known to be something of a singing sensation herself. Coincidence?
I will concede one difference between the two songs, however. Jigglypuff’s song can at least put you to sleep.
Adorable, but Possibly Evil
Jigglypuff is inarguably one of the most adorable Pokémon in the franchise, much like cats are one of the most adorable types of pets on the planet. Behind their cute fluffy faces and big, innocent-looking eyes, you just know that both creatures are debating whether or not they should kill you while you sleep.
They won’t, however, as long as you keep the Poké Puffs and/or catnip coming.
The fact that Jigglypuff has no tail should count against it being counted as a kitty cat, right? Wrong! There are plenty of cats who do not have tails. Just look at the Manx cat breed. Perhaps Jigglypuff is mixed with one of these types of cats.
The tail-less Manx cat was once thought to be a hybrid between a cat and a rabbit, which popularized the concept of the “cabbit” (a creature that is part cat and part rabbit) in anime and manga. When you use a Moon Stone on Jigglypuff, it evolves into the rabbit-like Wigglytuff. Tail-less cats and the hypothetical “cabbit” have long been treated as a sort of “missing link” between these two unrelated species in popular culture.
Since Generation VI, Jigglypuff has been a Normal/Fairy-type Pokémon (originally pure Normal until Fairy was introduced). Cats have long been associated with the fair folk since ancient times in the mythology and folklore of many different cultures. One of the most notable examples of a fairy cat is the Cat Sith from Celtic mythology. The Scottish once believed that the Cat Sith could steal a person’s soul. Many people have the same suspicions of Jigglypuff when they look into her giant, unblinking eyes.
Size and Shape
Jigglypuff is perfectly sized to be a common house pet. Jigglypuff weighs 12.1 lbs, which is about the same size as my cat, Salem. Salem is almost as rotund as Jigglypuff. Jigglypuff is round, soft, and squishy, just like the best domestic cat specimens.
Sleeps a Lot
Jigglypuff has a bad habit of falling asleep a lot. In Super Smash Bros., she rests every time she uses her down B attack. This is just like a real-life cat, who spends up to 18 hours a day sleeping, despite the fact that they can just stay home and relax on the couch all day while you’re out busting your butt to provide for them. Why are you so sleepy all the time, kitty/Jigglypuff? You don’t even do anything?
“Purr” Is Right There in Its Japanese Name
The Japanese name for Jigglypuff is Purin. Purin is a Japanese word for a type of caramel flan-like pudding dessert. Purin also begins with the “purr” sound. Just like the wonderful “purr” sound a cat makes when it’s happy (or thinking about murdering you—which makes it super happy). I know, this one is a bit of a stretch.
Jigglypuff: The Miniature Pink Panther
So, there you have it. Jigglypuff is clearly a pink cat Pokémon. Jigglypuff is just as mischievous and moody as any pet cat. But she is also adorable, so her trainer puts up with her unpredictable behavior. Watch out Meowth! There is another Gen 1 cat Pokémon on your turf!
© 2018 Jennifer Wilber
Jennifer Wilber (author) from Cleveland, Ohio on May 11, 2019:
Wigglytuff resembles a rabbit, while Jigglypuff more resembles a cat. Officially, however, both Pokémon are “Balloon Pokémon.”
Dave on May 10, 2019:
Jigglypuff and Wigglytuff are actually rabbits.
Alexander James Guckenberger from Maryland, United States of America on December 21, 2018:
I hadn't thought of this one as a cat, but I see it. :)