Heathcliff is a comic strip created by George Gately in 1973 featuring the title character, a wisecracking cat. Now written and drawn by Gately's nephew, Peter Gallagher, it is distributed to over 1,000 newspapers by Creators Syndicate, who took over the comic from McNaught Syndicate in 1988.
The strip takes place in a port town called Westfinster. Heathcliff as seen in the strip is predisposed to annoying Mr. Schultz, the manager of the local fish store, called the Elite Fish Market; tipping over, and much more often somersaulting garbage cans into the air, to the annoyance of the local sanitation workers; annoying the milkman to get milk (usually by tricking them into dropping a milk bottle or two); bothering the hard-working sailors who work on the Tuna Fleet; harassing and abusing the dog population; being an informant to the local Dog Catchers; and pursuing female cats. His girlfriend is a girl cat named Sonja, but he has been the target of unrequited affection by another female cat named Crazy Shirley.
Heathcliff is also involved in an occasionally difficult relationship with Mr. Nutmeg, the moustached owner of the house he lives in. He is, however, loved by the young grandson, Iggy, whom he sees as his friend and owner; and Mrs. Nutmeg, Iggy's grandmother, overindulges him. He is also a friend of Iggy's playmates. Willy, Iggy's brainy best friend; and Marcy, a neighborhood girl whom Heathcliff (dressed in baby clothes) has played play doll carriage with. Another character is Muggsy Faber, Westfinster's local bully and his bulldog, Spike, whom Heathcliff usually (and very easily) outwits. Another dog named Chauncey, unlike Spike, has been friendly and lovable, and used to constantly lick Heathcliff's face.
He is, overall, an adventurous and fun-loving cartoon character. He is not predisposed towards apologizing for the endless situations he finds himself in the cartoon.
The strip is usually presented in single-panel gag frames on weekdays. On Sundays, though, the strip is expanded to multiple panels and titled Sunday with Heathcliff. A regular feature in the Sunday strips is Kitty Korner, where unusual cats in the real world are described.