He’s not grumpy, no matter what his face looks like.

By Austin Cannon
November 20, 2020
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Credit: Melanie Anielski, Riggi Rescue

You wouldn’t believe it from looking at his expression, but Giggles is a happy, chill cat. We swear! 

The cat with a scowling, serious face became the talk of social media—to the tune of a few million shares—after the rescue organization Riggie Rescue in Ohio shared his photo. So much so that the kitty's foster family fielded more than 100 requests from all over the world to adopt him, says Melanie Anielski, the rescue’s adoption coordinator. 

But those folks were too late. Giggles had already found a family, one he'd snuggled up to immediately in Strongsville, Ohio. 

“He’s so chill, and I’m like, ‘I don’t understand this cat. Where did you come from?’” says Ashley Francek, Giggles’ new mom. 

A good Samaritan picked Giggles up on the side of the road in Akron. The stray cat was full of ticks and he had a bite on his neck (likely from another cat), but otherwise he was in decent shape—other than his desire to be inside with a new family. 

And yes, he had a scowl that would make Oscar the Grouch jealous. Not quite full Grumpy Cat—no one can compare with Tardar Sauce, the internet's favorite frowny feline—but he still looked plenty displeased. But what could be making him upset? Turns out, it's just his face!

“He’s definitely not grumpy personality-wise,” Anielski says. “His face doesn’t really fit his demeanor. He’s super sweet, very relaxed.”  

Francek and her fiance quickly fell in love with his personality, just as Giggles, who’s about 3 or 4 years old, was gaining internet fame. She admits that he looks a little scary at first, but he was soon showing her his affectionate side. 

“Don’t judge a book by its cover,” she says. 

She says Giggles is kind of the "great equalizer" of her other cats. He’s affectionate sometimes, but other times he’s happy to go off and be by himself. 

His forever home was being finalized as the adoption requests began to pour in, leaving Anielski to steer people enquiring about adopting the feline to their local shelters for another pet in need of their forever family. There are plenty of other unique-looking cats out there who need homes. 

Francek agrees, adopting can help in so many ways. Plus, you have zero shot at adopting Giggles.

“I’m never letting this cat go,” she says.