FACT CHECK: Does a photograph show Mr. Peebles, the world’s smallest cat?
Claim: A photograph shows Mr. Peebles, the “world’s smallest cat.”
Example: [Collected via Facebook, August 2015]
“Smallest Cat Mr Peebles may look like a kitten, but he is actually 2-year-old. The tiny cat got its size from a genetic defect that stunts growth. At just 6.1-inch (15.5 cm) high and 19.2-inch (49 cm) long, he currently holds certification from The Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s smallest cat.”
Origins: An image purportedly showing Mr. Peebles, the world’s smallest cat, has been circulating online since 2006, when it was created for a Worth1000.com “Sickening Cute” Photoshop contest that challenged participants to create “Images so cute, you wanna puke”:
It’s just the tiniest cutesy wittle bitty baby kitty-witty you just want to give it kisses but you can’t because it is so adorably fragile.
According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the world’s smallest cat is actually a male blue point Himalayan-Persian named Tinker Toy:
The smallest cat on record was a male blue point Himalayan-Persian, named Tinker Toy that measured only 7 cm (2.75 in) tall and 19 cm (7.5 in) long when full grown (aged 2.5 years). The unusually tiny feline was owned by Katrina and Scott Forbes (USA) of Taylorville, Illinois, USA.
The Guinness Book of World Records entry for Tinker Toy does not include a photograph, which may explain why the Photoshopped image of “Mr. Peebles” has grown so popular over the years (and is sometimes misidentified as being a picture of Tinker Toy).
This isn’t the first time that a Photoshopped image has escaped the confines of Worth1000.com. Other pictures from their contests that have gone viral include ones depicrting a zippered tongue, a rock formation resembling a horse, and multiple photographs of houses in strange places.
Last updated: 10 August 2015
Originally published: 10 August 2015