Furry red scottish fold highland breed Cat sitting on isolated black background, fat ginger cat


Sad cat memes to make you laugh (or cry)

Crying or sad cat memes have become a significant part of internet culture.


Kahron Spearman


Posted on Dec 14, 2023   Updated on Dec 7, 2023, 5:39 pm CST

The world of internet memes is vast and varied, but few have captured the hearts of netizens quite like crying or sad cat memes. These photoshopped images of melancholic felines have become a staple for expressing of emotions as varied as sadness and sarcasm. Let’s dive into the history of these iconic memes.

The birth of the crying cat

The crying cat meme, also known as Sad Cat or Schmuserkadser, started with a photoshopped image of the Serious Cat meme. An anonymous user on Meme Generator posted this altered image on June 11th, 2014, and the image quickly gained popularity, amassing over 925 user-generated images in four years.

In 2015, it was posted on the German image board pr0gramm, where it garnered over 975 points in three years. An anonymous 4chan user also added to its versatility when they photoshopped the face onto a larger cat. By 2017, the meme’s popularity skyrocketed as it began to appear on various social media platforms like Facebook and Reddit.

The Screaming Cat variant

Another popular variant of the sad cat meme is Screaming Cat, or Yamato Cat, which features a photoshopped image of a cat crying. Originating from a post by Tumblr user busket in 2015, this version gained traction after being featured on the X (formerly Twitter) account of ShitpostBot 5000 in 2017.

Thumbs Up, Crying Cat

In June 2019, the Thumbs Up Crying Cat meme emerged on Reddit’s r/sadcats forum. This image depicts a cat with teary eyes giving a thumbs up at the same time, symbolizing a sad yet compliant sentiment. It quickly became a favorite on Twitter and Reddit, and was often used to convey a resigned acceptance of unfortunate circumstances.

Cat Crying into a microphone

Cat Crying into Microphone, another variant of the sad cat meme, surfaced in 2019. First posted on Reddit’s r/sadcats, this image of a small white cat crying into a microphone resonated with users for its portrayal of nervousness or emotional stress. It became a hit on Tumblr and Reddit for expressing feelings of anxiety or discomfort.

Cat Sniping Crying Cat

A more dramatic version of Cat Crying into Microphone is the Cat Sniping Crying Cat meme, which features a two-panel image macro of a cat with a sniper rifle aiming at a crying cat. Started in 2014, this versatile meme has been used in a series of object-labeling memes, adding a layer of dark humor to the crying cat theme.

Inkky, the screaming cat

A significant contributor to the Crying Cat meme genre was Inkky, the original cat featured in the Screaming Cat meme. Inkky, who passed away in 2020, left a lasting impact on meme culture, with her owner, Kiana McMillian, sharing her story and expressing gratitude for the love and recognition Inkky received online.


Sad cat memes are appealing because of their ability to humorously convey a wide range of emotions. From the resigned thumbs-up to the dramatic sniper cat, these memes capture feelings of sadness, frustration, anxiety, and even absurdity in an extremely relatable way.

Crying or sad cat memes have become a significant part of internet culture, offering a unique blend of humor and emotion. These memes have provided a creative outlet for expressing feelings, making them a beloved and enduring feature of the online world. From simple edits to complex image macros, crying cat memes remain a go-to for digital expression, and they continue to resonate with audiences worldwide.

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*First Published: Dec 14, 2023, 9:00 am CST