These Famous Animals Make More Money Than You
The average American makes $44,720, according to the US Census Bureau in 2017. The famous pets on our list make that or more either by being cute on Instagram, doing sponsorships, commercials, or starring on TV and movies.
Just how much these furry friends have made is uncertain and unconfirmed in most cases. Despite this, we’ve compiled what estimations we could find about these animals’ money to give you an idea of how much you’re not making. Read on to find out how being cute pays off.
1. Princess Monster Truck
From the mean streets of New York City to Instagram star! Princess is a black Persian kitty with a serious underbite. Princess was rescued by artists Tracy Timmons and Joseph Bryce when they were walking home one night. Timmons told Buzzfeed Princess Monster Truck’s fur was matted and she was hungry and skinny. At first, the only thing they saw was her teeth as it was pitch black outside.
Princess’ Instagram account currently has a following of 294,000, as of June 2019. It’s unclear how much dough the Princess rakes in with her unique looks. However, Princess was able to get Sean Casey Animal Rescue a donation by partnering with credit card company American Express.
NEXT: Film critic Roger Ebert once said this was the “best Internet cat video ever made.”
2. Henri, le Chat Noir
Estimated to earn $1,000 weekly
In this tuxedo long-haired cat’s 1950s avant-garde parody YouTube videos, a French narration describes his ennui. In “Henri 2, Paw de Deux,” Henri complains about tasty treats (aka the pet birds and rat) being out of reach and the other resident cat being an “idiot.”
Even Roger Ebert called “Henri 2, Paw de Deux” the “best Internet cat video ever made.” It’s unclear who owns Henri, but filmmaker Will Braden was the one who made Henri a star. The Huffington Post says that Henri earns $1,000 weekly from his online store.
NEXT: He was the angriest-looking cat I’ve ever seen.
3. Colonel Meow
Estimated to make $5,000 annually
If I ran into Colonel Meow in a dark alley, I’d be intimidated, but would also want to snuggle his beautiful, long Himalayan-Persian fur. Unfortunately, Colonel Meow died at the young age of 2, but he’ll forever be in our memories. He first came onto the scene in 2012.
His gray-and-black locks and crazed stare won hearts all over the world. Those 9-inch-long locks won him a Guinness World Record for the cat with the longest fur. Although he’s gone, the Huffington Post says Meow still earns $5,000 a year from his YouTube videos.
NEXT: Some have accused this cat’s guardian of Photoshopping her face.
4. Venus the Two Face Cat
Estimated to make $6,000 off each sponsored post
Venus’ 1.8 million followers (as of June 2019) on Instagram love her unique looks, but not everyone feels that way. When this multicolored lady first came into popularity, her guardian was accused of Photoshopping her half-black and half-orange tabby face. Torbies’ (tortoiseshell-tabby cats) faces can be multicolored but this half-and-half look is very rare!
Venus, who’s about to turn 10 years old, lives with her cat siblings, a Shiba Inu doggo, and her human. CelebrityPets.net says that Venus the Two Face Cat makes $6,000 off of each sponsored post, but that number seems to be unverified.
NEXT: This Lynx Point Siamese kitty promotes pet adoption through her social media platform.
5. Nala Cat
Estimated to make $15,000 for each sponsored post, says CelebrityPets.net
Nala is a ch0nk of a Lynx Point Siamese kitty (Siamese and tabby mix), with cream-and-black-colored stripes. She was adopted when she was about 5 months old in 2010 by Varisiri Methachittiphan. Little did Nala know she was about to become a huge star.
She became one of the most popular cats on social media (with a following of 4.1 million on Instagram as of June 2019), starred in a Sony video for the movie Pixels, was in a Friskies commercial, has her own emojis, and is promoted the movie The Secret Life of Pets, says MSN.
NEXT: He made waves as the star of one of the early viral internet cat videos.
6. Keyboard Cat
Estimated to earn $21,100 to $175,800 annually
The original “Keyboard Cat” video showed an orange tabby named Fatso dressed in a blue shirt “playing” a keyboard. Filmed in the 1980s, Fatso died in 1987, according to The Guardian. Fatso’s dad, Charlie Schmidt, got a new cat named Bento who took Fatso’s place in YouTube videos for eight years.
Bento died on March 8, 2018, at 8 years old. In a statement to Newsweek, Schmidt said: “He was such a loyal and talented companion. I am sad.” The Washington Post says that the cat could be worth up to $175,800 nowadays because of Schmidt’s viral videos.
NEXT: She starred in a VICE documentary about why people love cat videos so much.
7. Tara the Hero Cat
Estimated to make $55,600 to $463,700 annually
When the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) Los Angeles announced its award for Annual National Hero Dog, some were surprised when that honor went to a cat. The heroic cat, Tara, was recognized for her work protecting her young human from a dog attack.
The act of heroism was caught on security camera footage, which Tara’s dad uploaded onto YouTube. Subsequently, cat fans around the world learned of Tara and became instant fans. The Washington Post estimated that Tara’s YouTube presence has earned her $55,600 to $463,700 annually — which is quite a range.
NEXT: This good boy is named after boxer Manny Pacquiao.
8. Manny the Frenchie
Estimated net worth: $150,000
The website Compare the Market estimated this little French bulldog’s net worth at $150,000, placing him at number 26 on its “The 2018 Pet Rich List.” Manny’s good looks have helped him get modeling gigs, TV appearances, and his own merchandise, which helps raise money for charitable causes. Wow — some human models don’t even get that much work …
Manny is quite popular on social media, with a following of 1.1 million on Instagram as of June 2019. There, you’ll find photos of the little guy hanging out with friends, napping, chillin’ with his humans, and wearing cute little hats and glasses. Basically, we want Manny’s wardrobe, sense of style, and cool parents.
NEXT: Give this cat a box, any box.
9. Maru the cat
Estimated to make $180,000 annually
Some cats like string, some like catnip, but Maru loooves boxes. YouTube videos show Maru jumping into many boxes of various shapes and sizes, consequently charming audiences all over the world. The Japan-based Scottish fold has starred in two books, a DVD, and commercials in Japan, says The Huffington Post.
The same 2015 article estimates Maru makes $180,000 annually from YouTube’s Partner Program, a book, merchandise, and endorsement deals in Japan (that number doesn’t seem confirmed by Maru’s guardians). Who’d have thunk such a natural combination (cats and boxes) could’ve made such big business? Perhaps we should skip out on the cat toys and just give our cat a box …
NEXT: This pup looks more like a stuffed animal rather than a dog.
Estimated net worth: $204,000
Jiffpom, a tiny brown-colored Pomeranian, doesn’t even look like a real dog! His adorable, teddy bear-like looks have racked up 9 million followers on Instagram and 30 million followers across all social platforms, says Jiffpom’s website. He looks like another famous Instagram Pomeranian we’ve seen all over the internet …
His other accolades and achievements include winning three Guinness World Records, starring in a Katy Perry music video, and appearing in CoverGirl and Target commercials. Jiffpom has an estimated net worth of $204,000, according to Compare the Markets.
NEXT: She starred in a VICE documentary about why people love cat videos so much.
11. Lil BUB
Has donated over $400,000 to animal charities
Lil’ tabby cat Lil BUB is known for her unique looks caused by genetic anomalies. Like with most of the animals on our list, Lil BUB’s exact net worth is unconfirmed. However, the ASPCA says that the little kitty’s fund has donated over $400,000 to animal charities.
She’s created Lil BUB’s Big FUND for the ASPCA, which her website says is the first fund for special needs animals. As far as other income goes, The Huffington Post estimates that Lil BUB earns $30,000 in YouTube royalties annually. She and her guardian Mike Bridavsky might be earning a lot more, however.
NEXT: This dog’s name rhymes with “pug.”
12. Doug the Pug
Estimated net worth: $500,000
Like Lil BUB, Doug the Pug has merch, books, and millions of followers on social media. The self-proclaimed (or rather, his guardians proclaimed) “King of Pop Culture,” Doug recently stunned the internet with his impersonation of Ashley O (played by Miley Cyrus) from TV show Black Mirror.
The Nashville-based doggo also made a splash recently at the CMT Music Awards in June 2019. CMT.com said the pug was working the room after walking the red carpet with Hunter Hayes. Website Compare the Market says this social media mogul is worth $500,000.
NEXT: You wouldn’t normally think this type of animal could be domesticated.
13. Juniper & Fig
Estimated net worth according to Compare the Market: $540,000
If you’re thinking, “Why are they keeping a wild fox in captivity?” — don’t. According to JuniperFoxx’s website, she and fellow fox sibling Fig were born in captivity and are descended from fur-farm foxes. Releasing them into the wild would be detrimental to their survival as domesticity is all they’ve known.
Now Juniper lives happily with Fig, their adoptive dog brothers, and their human family. On Instagram, Juniper has a strong following of 2.8 million (as of June 2019) who log on to see her chew socks, play with Fig and dog brother Moose, and the other exotic animals that live at her house.
NEXT: This cat’s unique face markings inspired his guardian to name him this.
14. Hamilton the Hipster Cat
Varying reports on income — Compare the Market says his net worth is $826,800 and Celebrity Pets says he makes $15,900 annually with $3,000 per sponsored post. (Basically no one seems to know ¯\_(ツ)_/¯)
Hamilton’s dad, Jay Stowe, is a tech recruiter in San Francisco, California — where hipsters like Hamilton used to reign supreme until tech bros pushed them out.
The cash that Hamilton’s online presence has made was donated back to charity, says Business Insider. Hamilton isn’t the friendliest cat, as he grew up feral, so he doesn’t make public appearances. However, Hamilton has Skyped into panels and another cat’s birthday party.
NEXT: He’s known as “The Most Stylish Dog in the World.”
Estimated net worth: $990,000 annually
He’s known as Bodhi (right), “The Most Stylish Dog in the World.” Bodhi is a male Shiba Inu that loves to dress up in men’s human clothes and model them on Instagram. Bodhi’s website says that he rose to fame when one of his modeling photos surfaced on the internet in 2013.
Since then, his photos have graced the pages of The New York Times, GQ, TIME, and many more popular publications. Compare the Market says he makes $990,000 annually but who knows if that’s true? I do know that this Shiba Inu is far more successful than I …
NEXT: Some think that this pooch had a boost from the social media platform his mom worked for.
Estimated to earn $1 million annually
To the despair of many, Boo the Pomeranian passed away in January 2019 at the age of 12. Boo racked up millions of followers on Facebook, but some think the pooch had a boost from the platform itself. It was revealed that Boo’s human mom was Irene Ahn, an employee in Facebook’s finance department.
“I can’t help but think perhaps knowing a few of the right Facebook engineers helped Boo go viral a little bit faster,” says Mike Isaac of AllThingsD. Maybe he did, maybe he didn’t — it’s hard to tell. The Huffington Post estimated the pooch had made his mama $1 million annually.
NEXT: Not many Instagram-famous pets are show dogs like this one!
17. Pudsey the dog
Estimated net worth: $1.57 million
Pudsey is no longer with us, unfortunately, but he made a splash on TV during his lifetime. The performance dog first came to prominence on Britain’s Got Talent in 2012 when he and his guardian, Ashleigh Butler, stole the show. They managed to take home over a million dollars.
Pudsey also got to star in a 2014 film called Pudsey the Dog: The Movie due to his rise to fame on Britain’s Got Talent. It wasn’t confirmed what Pudsey the dog died of, but the BBC says it might have been acute leukemia.
NEXT: This dog will inherit more money than most kids do from their parents.
Will inherit $3 million from mom Betty White
Actress Betty White is known for her love of animals. Not only has she dedicated time and resources to animal welfare, she’s adopted a lot of animals during her lifetime. Her current main squeeze, however, is the golden retriever Pontiac. Every Golden Girl needs a Golden Boy, right?
Now Pontiac is rumored to be in White’s will and possibly inheriting millions from the actress. It’s not uncommon for wealthy animal lovers to leave money for their pets in their wills. German shepherd Gunther IV is said to be the wealthiest pet because his owner left him a $375 million inheritance.
NEXT: Her human papa was creative director of some of the biggest fashion houses in the world.
19. Choupette Lagerfeld
Made $3.3 million in 2014
This fluffy little kitty once belonged to the renowned creative director Karl Lagerfeld. Lagerfeld passed away February 19, 2019, but is survived by the beautiful Choupette. This kitty girl has her own social media account with 293,000 followers, her own social media manager and a modeling career to boot.
Choupette’s social media account has fallen silent since March 14, 2019, possibly due to Lagerfeld’s passing. Although she mourns her father, Choupette is probably well off financially. She reportedly made $3.3 million one year due to two high-end modeling gigs.
NEXT: This cat helped this former addict on the road to recovery.
20. Street Cat Bob
Estimated net worth $5 million
It’s a rags to riches story for Street Cat Bob and his guardian James Bowen. Bowen found the once-homeless tabby in the doorway of his London apartment building. Taking Bob into his home helped Bowen overcome his drug addiction and find a new purpose in life.
Bowen chronicled his life with Bob in a book called A Street Cat Named Bob: And How He Saved My Life. Romper reports that the book grossed $5 million for Bowen and Street Cat Bob. This number seems unverified but Bob’s movie website says 5 million books copies have been sold. Either way — that’s a far cry from being a struggling musician and stray kitty!
NEXT: You might recognize him from an episode of Game of Thrones.
21. Bart the Bear II
Estimated net worth $6 million
Bart the Bear II is named after another movie star bear named Bart. Bart I starred in projects from the 1970s to the 1990s until he died in 2000. Notably, Bart II was in Into The Grizzly Maze, Into the Wild and an episode of Game of Thrones, says the online publication Mental Floss.
The bear went head to head with Brienne of Tarth and Jaime Lannister. Bart I and II aren’t related, but Mental Floss says they both had the same trainer, Doug Seus. The publication also says Bart II’s net worth is $6 million but it’s unclear where it got that number from.
NEXT: Here’s how much Oprah will reportedly leave her dogs in her will.
22. Oprah’s five dogs
Her five dogs will reportedly inherit $30 million
Luke, Layla, Sadie, Sunny, and Lauren are already living large with their TV megastar guardian, Oprah. These lucky dogs might receive a healthy portion of Oprah’s huge amount of money — $30 million, in fact, reports publications like Mental Floss and Extra. Again, hard to tell if this number is confirmed or not.
What’s known for sure is that Oprah truly loves her big dog family! She fondly refers to them as her “fur children,” says BravoTV. You might imagine that Oprah has a trainer on speed dial to help care for her five puppers. In reality, she does most of the dog training herself.
NEXT: Who do you think is the most wealthy whale of all? And no, it’s not the “Prince of Whales“…
Estimated net worth: $36 million
Remember Free Willy? That was Keiko the orca whale raking in the big bucks, one flip at a time. Huffington Post says the whale earned $36 million from his starring role. Keiko was released into the wild post-Free Willy but tragically died from pneumonia a year after.
Keiko was 26-years-old. That’s a relatively short lifespan considering orcas can live 50 to 80 years in the wild, says National Geographic. His short lifespan could be due to the fact that he’s only known life in captivity — Keiko couldn’t hold his breath for long, catch his own food or swim in harsh waters.
NEXT: Taylor Swift named her cat after a popular character on Law & Order.
23. Olivia Benson
Estimated net worth: $97 million
You might have spotted singer Taylor Swift toting her white Scottish fold kitty around in photos. She told Access Hollywood that Olivia Benson flips out when put in a cat carrier so she just holds her. (Hopefully, Swift safely transports Olivia in a carrier when traveling by car.) The star named Olivia and other cat Meredith Grey after “Strong, complex, independent women,” she told Rolling Stone.
(If you didn’t know, Meredith Grey is the starring character of TV show Grey’s Anatomy.) Anyways to Olivia’s income — Compare the Markets says that Olivia has starred in commercials for products like Diet Coke and Keds shoes, earning $97 million (apparently — it’s hard to confirm this number).
NEXT: Her real name is Tardar Sauce but she’s known better as…
25. Grumpy Cat
Estimated net worth: $100 million
Also known by her Christian name, Tardar Sauce, Grumpy Cat was the grumpiest looking cat we ever did see. Unfortunately, Tardar Sauce died May 2019 at the age of seven. Her family posted online that Tardar Sauce had encountered complications from a urinary tract infection. She’ll forever be in our grumpy hearts.
Her unique, grumpy looks were perhaps due to feline dwarfism, says Tardar Sauce’s website. The condition also contributed to her tiny frame and slightly wobbly walk. Tardar Sauce’s looks won over the Internet, inspiring her human guardians to create merch, books, videos, and more. The $100 million number was disputed by Tardar’s human mom, Tabatha Bundesen, but she didn’t confirm if the number was too high or too low, says Huffington Post.