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Goin’ Japanesque!

Manga “Kuruneko” That Depicts Casual Everyday Life with Cats

Animals that are considered common as house pets are likely to be two kinds; dogs and cats. Unlike dogs, cats are free-spirited and sometimes we feel they act bigger than humans. This time we would like to introduce the manga “Kuruneko”, which depicts everyday lives of such cats.



This is a manga that depicts the everyday life of the manga author Ms. “Kuruneko Yamato” and her cats.

Ms. “Kuruneko Yamato” works as a commercial designer, while single-handedly seeking adoption for stray cats.

She establishes a blog in order to introduce stray cats brought to her, and has been publishing the cats’ lives and episodes in manga.

These cats’ lives and cutely designed manga become a hot topic, and they were made into print. Comics were sold to the public at bookstores, and they became more popular.

The comics have been published up to the 15th volume (as of June 2015), and they were also made into a series of TV anime.




1. Kuruneko Yamato

It’s a strange pseudonym, but she is a woman, born on February 14, 1973.

Her profession is a commercial designer, and she works primarily on package designs.

The first floor of her house is a living space for her and her cats. The second floor includes her study, used as her workplace, and she keeps the stray cats there.

She likes drinking, historical novels, and cats.

2. Tou-san

He is the husband of Ms. “Kuruneko Yamato”. He is three years older than her, and his profession is unknown.

They wedded in 2011, and he was not in the manga at the beginning. He started to appear in the comic books in 2012.

His appearance includes naturally curly hair and eyes bigger than those of Ms. “Kuruneko Yamato”, but his eyes are closed.

He is docile, and even looks timid in the manga.

3. Mon-san

It is a Scottish fold odd-eyed female cat, with a golden eye and silver eye.

She belongs to Ms. “Kuruneko Yamato”, and she was originally a left-over unsold cat at a pet shop.

She cannot get along with other cats, and keeps her life at a distance.

Due to her solitary existence, she is depicted in a commanding image.

Perhaps because of this image, when she is personified in the manga, she is drawn as a gorgeous, noble lady.

She passed away at the age of 17 in 2012.

4. Karasu-bon

He is also commonly called as “Bon-nii (Brother Bon)” in the story.

He is a male black cat.

Ms. “Kuruneko Yamato” adopted him from her friend, and he joined the family.

He likes kittens, but he is bullish to humans.

He grooms kittens but rarely grooms himself, so he is always somewhat dirty.

5. Poko

She is a female tortoiseshell cat.

Ms. “Kuruneko Yamato” found her as an abandoned newborn, and began to take care of her.

Her one eye is closed due to an illness suffered as a kitten.

She is often depicted as a heroine in the story.

6. Ko-bou (Ko-bon)

He is a male white cat, also referred to as “Ko-bon” in the story.

Perhaps because he was raised overprotectively, he wanders around the house as if he owns it. He exhibits most cat-like behaviors in the manga.

His image in the story is sometimes a prince wearing a crown on his head, and once personified, he is portrayed as a chubby prince.

7. Tomekichi

She is sometimes referred to as “Tome” in the manga. She is a female black-and-white cat with a symmetrical white triangle pattern covering her nose and mouth.

She is very fond of dry cat food, and snitches it from the shelves herself.

She is timid and reluctant to meet unfamiliar cats or people.



This story picks up experiences everyone shares if one has ever had a cat, and makes them into funny manga. 

You are likely to find many cat episodes in the manga that remind you of your own cat experiences.

Because the manga started as a means to find foster homes for stray cats, you can feel love of the author “Kuruneko Yamato” in her drawings of the cats’ appearance and actions.

This manga is drawn in a style called “yonkoma manga (4 panel comic)”, and 4 pictures compose one episode.

From the Left: Ko-bon, Bon, Poko, Tome & Mon-san

The expression of the cats’ bodies drawn in round lines is very cute, it is a method that is widely used in Japan, for example in product designs of stationeries for girls.


“Kuruneko” has neither big story development nor dramatic events. It calmly depicts everyday life in a matter of fact manner. Cat lovers will surely find this manga entertaining. We would recommend this manga to everyone, as it has many funny episodes that can make people laugh, including those who don’t like cats or have no interest in them.

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Berial the Demon

About the author

It has been over 40 years of reading manga in the deep world of manga. Japan’s manga has an endlessly wide variety of genres. I will be recommending special manga for you to read from such infinite amount of works.

View all articles by Berial the Demon