One Cool Cat

From the Boardwalk to Times Square, Pip the Beach Cat has taken Ocean City, the Big Apple and the Internet by storm

Written by Alison Clary  /  Boardwalk Photography by Grant L. Gursky

A star is born in Ocean City — a star with four legs, that is.

A local feline, affectionately known as Pip the Beach Cat, is taking the Internet by storm. He’s accumulated almost 30,000 combined social media followers, and his follower counts increase daily.

Pip’s Internet fame can likely be attributed to his unconventional tendencies, lovable personality and photogenic nature. According to his parents, Emily Meadows and Jack Bulak, Pip has an innate fondness for the beach. Unlike other cats, he blissfully swims, digs holes in the sand and has even been known to jump on a paddleboard or bodyboard.

“As soon as we saw him get in the water so comfortably, we knew he was special and that we needed to share him with the world,” said Emily.

Just as the couple expected, individuals across the community and beyond have embraced Pip’s adventurous persona. Whether he’s at the Boardwalk, arcade, local bars or the Ocean City shoreline, Pip is constantly approached by intrigued locals and visitors, many of whom are already fans. Online, he’s showered with praise and notes of appreciation by folks from across the globe.

“We’ve had people reach out to us, saying they are suffering from mental illnesses, such as depression. They tell us that seeing Pip’s face every day has brightened their spirits,” added Emily.

Unfortunately, life wasn’t always so glamorous for Pip, and people often resonate with his “under-cat” story. He was initially found on a doorstep in Berlin after a late-summer thunderstorm. From there, he bounced around between a few homes before being united with Emily and Jack.

Because the couple were already parents to two other cats, they originally only intended to babysit Pip until a permanent home could be established. They were quickly informed the Worcester County Humane Society (WCHS) was at capacity and could no longer accept any more felines. The couple soon fell in love with Pip and agreed to welcome him into their family officially.

From there, Pip’s story developed in ways no one could have imagined. In addition to earning online fame and local-celebrity status, Pip has some exciting projects in the works. He’s the focus of an upcoming children’s book, which is expected to be released by May. The book’s storyline focuses on showcasing Ocean City through Pip’s eyes, by guiding the reader through his favorite local establishments. Pip and his parents are also working on producing a stuffed animal, Little Pips, for fans to enjoy.

Recently, Pip even made a trip to the Big Apple, where he landed representation from an agent, as well as a shout-out in the New York Post. He was also recently invited to join professional athletes as a VIP guest for the 7th Annual Pawject Runway in Baltimore this April.

As Pip’s notoriety rises and he’s ventured into new business markets, he and his parents have made sure to honor their local roots. They plan to donate 15 percent of his book sales equally among The Cricket Center, Surf Into Integrity, and the WCHS. Additionally, they have decided to donate three dollars from any book purchased at a local charity event back to the charitable organization responsible for hosting it.

So, what’s the next chapter for Pip the Beach Cat? Well, his owners say the sky is the limit, and they plan to keep sharing Pip’s adventures and finding ways to support the local community along the way.