Since at least November 2021, misleading online advertisements claimed: "Stop Cuddling With Your Cat, Here's Why."
The ads led to lengthy slideshow articles on the Post Fun and Money Cougar websites and required dozens of "next page" clicks to reach the final pages. Some of the stories lasted up to 60 pages long.
However, these articles never revealed any reasons why cat owners should stop cuddling with their feline companions. It was nothing but clickbait, plain and simple.
In the story on the Post Fun website, the headline read: "Your Cat’s Oddest Behaviors, Explained." The first page didn't even mention anything about the idea to stop cuddling with one's cats:
Having a cat as a personal companion can be a very rewarding experience for some people. But cats come with a lot of unusual and quirky personality traits. Have you ever wondered why your cat is always head-butting people? Or why they have to push your water bottle off the kitchen counter continuously?
Cats do some strange things that we try to make sense of in our heads. But no longer do we have to wonder why they run around the house at three in the morning! Here are the real explanations for some of our feline friends’ strangest behaviors.
Meanwhile, on Money Cougar, which was found and documented by the r/savedyouaclick subreddit on Reddit, the headline was: "Here’s What It Really Means When Your Cat Curls Up With You For Cuddles." Again, it also contained no explanation about why cat owners should stop cuddling with them:
Want a pet that shows you unconditional love and affection? You probably wouldn’t even consider a cat! They’re aloof and independent, right? Well, yes, but stereotypes don’t always ring true.
Kitties are often happy to cuddle up with their humans. And if you assume that’s just because they want something out of it... well, think again. We’ll tell you what it actually means.
The "stop cuddling with your cat" ads appeared to be hosted on the Taboola advertising network. The company has hosted a seemingly endless number of misleading claims for many years.