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Tweet of the Week #80: Cats Spooked by Thunder But Completely Ignore Earthquake Alarms

When you're trying to enjoy your staycation, but Mother Nature has no chill.

By 3 min read

Unable to travel further than their local grocery stores due to the state of emergency, folks in Japan were in for a pretty boring Golden Week aka, gaman week. Naturally, Mother Nature decided to spice things up a bit.

Two quakes, serious enough to trigger the emergency alarm system on our phones, rattled Eastern Japan on the evening of May 4 and around 2 a.m. on May 6. Thankfully, neither tremors caused any injuries or damages—besides scaring us half to death with the terrifying J-Alert warning sound. 


地震じしんです!! 地震です!! 地震です!!



Launched in 2007, the J-Alert is a warning system the Japanese government uses to send emergency information about earthquakes, tsunami, volcanic eruptions, or ballistic missiles to the general population. The J-Alert’s earthquake warning sound is known to send shivers down the spine of people living in Japan.

Cats, however, just couldn’t care less.



“My cat is looking at me flustered like ‘Whacha’ doing?’ while the emergency earthquake alarm roars.”

Run for you nine lives

As if shaking the ground wasn’t fun enough, the weather turned to a pretty epic thunderstorm on Wednesday night in the Kanto area. Thunder and lightning lit up the sky like strobe lights on a dance floor. During the storm, pet owners shared videos and pictures of their furry friends’ reactions to the window-rattling thunder that made even us jump.







“After taking care of the house, I was about to go buy kashiwa mochi… Then the rain started to fall as if the kashiwa mochi gods wouldn’t let me eat any. Maririn is currently hiding, spooked by the thunder. They’ve never done that before.”

It’s every cat for themselves in this house.



“How cats reacted to the lightning strike:”

These Bengali cats weren’t any braver.




“Bengal cats scared by the thunder.”

How to form causative verbs in Japanese

The Japanese causative form isn’t too hard to conjugate, but understanding how it works can give you a few headaches at first. 

Basically, you conjugate a verb into the causative form when making or letting someone do something (or preventing someone from doing something). 

  • verbs: becomes させる.
  • verbs: the last vowel changes like you would for negative verbs + せる
  • する becomes させる
  • くる becomes こさせる

神様は私には食べさせたくない = “The gods don’t let me eat.”

明日あしたやすませてください = “Let me have a day off tomorrow.”



jishin earthquake
緊急地震速報きんきゅうじしんそくほう kinkyuu jishin sokuhou earthquake early warning
爆音ばくおんアラーム bakuon araamu roaring alarm
おろおろする orooro suru be flustered
なにしとるん nani shitorun (casual) whatcha doing?
みたいに mitai ni looks like
いえ ie  house, home
わり owari end, ended
柏餅かしわもち Kashiwa mochi traditional type of mochi eaten on May 5th
絶妙ぜつみょうなタイミング zetsumyouna taimingu perfect (exquisite) timing
あめ ame rain
furu fall
神様かみさま kami sama god/gods
べさせる tabesaseru let eat, make to eat
かみなり (カミナリ) kaminari thunder
避難中ひなんちゅう hinanchuu evacuating
naru rumble, roar
様子ようす yousu state, appearance
ビビる bibiru  be spooked, afraid
ベンガル猫達ねこたち bengari neko tachi bengal cats
やすませる yasumaseru let rest/have a day off

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