[[quoteright:320:[[Manga/KOn http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/kon09konep9nekomimi_9126.jpg]]]]

In fiction, there are many ways to show a character is cute. You can give them [[HairDecorations cute hair decorations]]. You can give people a LittleBitBeastly CuteMonsterGirl. Or, you can give a hint of both, which is where this trope lies.

Adding fake animal ears is a way to keep the media within the bounds of reality and avoid potential {{Squick}} while still having the appeal of a [[PlayboyBunny Bunny]] or CatGirl. They are most often found on a headband, but can also appear on hats, hoodies, or other hair decorations and head coverings. They can sometimes be accentuated with fake tails. Most common are cat ears, although fox, bunny, and dog can also be found.

This is a standard accessory for the PlayboyBunny outfit. It is also a common prop for {{Cosplay}}. May be seen on the BunnyEarsLawyer.

Compare HairDecorations, CatGirl, UnusualEars, LittleBitBeastly (the latter two when the ears are necessarily real).



[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* ''Manga/MahouSenseiNegima'' Starting from the festival arc onward, these make appearances everywhere.
** Evangeline accepted a bet where she would have to wear cat-ears (plus glasses, a school swimsuit, and the top of a SailorFuku) if she lost. Regrettably, Evangeline won this bet, though the readers do get to see Eva with all that stuff on, courtesy of her imagination.
** Kaede gets some Bear ears for most of the festival arc (you can still see the tag in front of one of them)
** Also, during the festival, several girls wear cat ears as part of a costume or on their own.
** During the festival arc, Negi wears at various times a bunny costume, a cat-eared hood, and fox ears (the latter as part of a fox''girl'' outfit).
** In the Magical World Arc, a number of the girls wear cat ears as part of disguise.
** Setsuna, Chachamaru and Ako have cat ears as part of their pactio outfits.
* ''Manga/SayonaraZetsubouSensei''. [[YaoiFangirl Harumi Fujiyoshi]] has a massive affinity for these. She once chased Itoshiki-sensei around town because he had a tail accessory without the proper headgear.
* In ''Manga/{{Genshiken}}'', Kanako Ohno tries thoughout the manga to get Saki to wear one. Also, Madarame once put one on her, and she responded by chasing him through the halls with a broom.
* In ''Manga/KOn'', Azusa is made to wear a cat ears band. The results are [[{{moe}} well worth it]]. This also earned her nickname "Azu-nyan".
* In ''Manga/MariaHolic'', God has a pair. They even move, although her real ears are still visible.
* The normally serious Nikaido dons these for the Mai Festival teacher's skit in ''Manga/TheWorldGodOnlyKnows''. Keima (and most likely the reader) finds this jarring.
* In ''Manga/AxisPowersHetalia'', Japan places a cat ear headband on Greece after the latter said that he wishes to be reborn as a cat.
* In ''Manga/{{Loveless}}'', cat ears and tails indicate that someone is a virgin. One member of the female Zero team is ashamed of her lack of ears and so wears fake ones.
* ''Manga/HayateTheCombatButler'':
** Izumi got cat ears when she was possessed (by a neko-spirit). Not a headband, but also not naturally hers.
** Hayate himself gets these in his unwilling {{Instant Cosplay Surprise}}s.
* "Aki-chan" from ''Sensitive Pornograph'' is a rare male, non-cute example. The ears come off as props for his potentially forced bunny play role in his abusive relationship.
* Hazuki from ''[[Anime/TsukuyomiMoonPhase Moon Phase]]''. To the extent that in the anime adaptation it seems to be the main point of the entire show. After all, "[[{{Earworm}} Neko Mimi]] [[{{Memetic Mutation}} Modo Desu~]]"
* During the first story arc of ''Manga/DragonBall'', there is a group of bandits that are identified by the bunny ears they wear on top of their hats. This is to show allegiance toward their leader, who's an anthropomorphic rabbit. Of course, confusion ensues when Bulma arrives in town while dressed as a PlayboyBunny because of Oolong.
* In early ''Manga/OnePiece'', the Black Cat Pirates, all of which are males, wear black cat ears, with the exceptions of their captain, Kuro, and first mate, Jango.
* In ''VisualNovel/{{Kanon}}'', child!Yuuichi gives a pair of bunny ears to his Childhood Friend to compensate for her short stature in hide-and-seek. She ran with it.
* Teru of ''Manga/MagicOfStella'' seems to like these.
** When she leaves the SNS Club for college, she left a rabbit one and all subsequent presidents are supposed to wear it.
** In episode 10, Tamaki thinks she is wearing one, but it turns out to be an actual [[HeadPet cat on her head]].
* In ''Manga/OuranHighSchoolHostClub'', Ritsu Kasanoda is briefly shown wearing cat ears as part of his attempt to be less scary. It doesn't work.
* ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'' and his team mates wear the cat ears version in a filler episode. The ears enable them to understand the cat-people language. The end of the episode has [[spoiler: Itachi]] wearing them as well.
* Koboshi in ''Manga/PitaTen'' always wears a pair of fake cat ears, until her [[ImportantHaircut hairstyle change]] late in manga.
* Hiiro in ''Yomeiro Choice''. She also sports a strap that hangs off the back of her dress that clearly mimics a tail.
* Kuro in ''Kodomo no Jikan'' often sports these to complement whatever she's wearing from her UnlimitedWardrobe.
* Tsugumi from ''Anime/GuiltyCrown'' wears a cat-eared headband, has CuteLittleFangs, and sometimes displays cat-like mannerisms.
* The Third ''Anime/RebuildOfEvangelion'' film gives [[{{Tsundere}} Asuka]] a cat eared [[{{Defictionalization}} hat that is]] [[http://www.evangelion-japan.com/neon-genesis-evangelion-asuka-cats-ear-cap-cosplay-with-badge/ now for sale.]]
* Nagisa Momoe from ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagicaTheMovieRebellion'' wears a cat-eared hat as part of her MagicalGirl outfit.
* In ''Anime/SandsOfDestruction'', Kyrie likes wearing cat ears. He eventually convinces Morte to wear rabbit ears, though she's less amused and only doing it out of necessity, as beastmen show more than a little FantasticRacism towards humans.
* There's an entire chapter of ''Manga/KaguyaSamaLoveIsWar'' devoted to the main cast trying on cat-ear headbands. Both Shirogane and Kaguya end up suffering a CutenessOverload at the sight of each other wearing them and their use in the student council room is subsequently banned.
-->'''Fujiwara:''' Cat ears are scary!!
* ''Anime/YuriOnIce'':
** The members of Yuri Plisetsky's GroupieBrigade, the "Yuri Angels", are easily recognizable by their cat-eared headbands. Yurio ends up wearing a cat-eared headband himself in Episode 8, when a fan throws him one as a gift at the end of his short program and it lands squarely on his head.
** The hoods of the Nishigori triplets' vests all have animal ears on them; Axel's hood has bear's ears, Lutz's has bunny ears, and Loop's has cat ears.
* Umaru from ''Manga/HimoutoUmaruChan'' has her trademark hamster hood, which she only wears at home.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* The Cat (a.k.a. Greer Grant Nelson), from Marvel's short-lived 1972 series, wears a masked hood with cat ears as part of her costume. She later mutated into the LittleBitBeastly Tigra.
* Hellcat (a.k.a. ComicBook/PatsyWalker), of Marvel's ComicBook/TheAvengers and ComicBook/TheDefenders teams, wears a masked hood with cat ears as part of her costume.
* The Cheetah (aka Priscilla Rich), longtime foe of DC's WonderWoman, wore a masked hood with cat ears as part of her costume.
* A second Cheetah (aka Deborah Domaine), succeeded her aunt as an enemy of DC's Wonder Woman, wearing a cat-eared headband as part of her costume.
* ComicBook/{{Catwoman}}, of ''Franchise/{{Batman}}'' fame, wears a masked hood with cat ears in most of her incarnations.
* Batman himself always has tiny bat-ears on his cowl, in all incarnations.
* ''ComicBook/{{Runaways}}''. [[CuteBruiser Molly Hayes]] wore a kitty-eared hat at least once.
* Barbara Thorson of ''ComicBook/IKillGiants'' wears these to give herself UnusualEars. It also helps to serve as visual shorthand for how other people in the story see her as an outsider and "weirdo."
* ComicBook/SquirrelGirl wears a squirrel-ear headband as of her 2015 [[ComicBook/TheUnbeatableSquirrelGirl solo series]]. This addition to her costume tends to appear in comics (and assorted tie-in material) published later.
* ''{{ComicBook/Foxtrot}}'': One strip has a worried-looking Roger ask his wife if she remembers what he said about his bachelor party, where his friends drank and told stories. He then says he might have kept a souvenir... cue Jason in Playboy bunny ears, which he's mistaken for an Easter bunny costume.

[[folder:Films -- Animation]]
* In ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyEquestriaGirls2013'' the main characters don horse-ears headbands and tails as part of Canterlot High's cheerleader outfit during the big musical number, since the mascot of the school is a horse. They makes a comeback in the short "Shake Your Tails!" for a party, and in the sequel ''[[WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyEquestriaGirlsFriendshipGames Friendship Games]]'' for a pep rally and later during the title games.

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* ''Film/ETTheExtraTerrestrial''. On Halloween, Elliott's mother dresses up in a leopard costume complete with an Animal-Eared Headband.
* The ''Film/JosieAndThePussycats'' film has cat-ear bands that [[spoiler:were part of a plot to secretly brainwash teenagers into buying whatever the villains wanted them to.]]
* In ''Film/TheDarkKnightRises'', Selina Kyle wears a pair of flip-down goggles that look like cat ears when they are in the up position.
* In ''Film/MeanGirls'', many of the girls at the Halloween party are wearing these as part of their SexyWhateverOutfit. "I'm a mouse, duh."

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* In ''Series/{{Riverdale}}'', Josie and the Pussycats wear cat ears as "part of their brand".

[[folder: Literature]]
* At the end of ''Discworld/TheAmazingMauriceAndHisEducatedRodents'', when the Educated Rodents have become a tourist attraction in Bad Blintz, amongst the souvenirs for sale are Rat Ears.
* In the ''Pax Britannia'' novel ''Gods of Manhattan'' by Al Ewing, the opening description of the WretchedHive of {{Steampunk}} New York has a brief reference to {{Gothic Lolita}}s with kitten ears poking out of their hair.

* Creator/SteveMartin wore a pair of rabbit ears on the cover of ''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Awildandcrazyguy.jpg A Wild and Crazy Guy]]''.
* Music/{{Kana}} [[http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/24/Japan_Expo_2010_-_Moon_Kana_-_Day4_-_P1470230.jpg Kana]] of the NiceHat variety.

* In ''Pinball/TheAdventuresOfRockyAndBullwinkleAndFriends'', Rocky the Flying Squirrel wears a pair of fake rabbit ears for Bullwinkle's Hat Trick.
-->'''Bullwinkle:''' Watch me pull a rabbit outta my hat!

[[folder:Theme Parks]]
* Theme parks usually sell these; the most famous example is Mickey Ears from Ride/DisneyThemeParks.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXII'':
** The Cat-Eared hood is an equipable accessory that ups speed by a lot.
** The Devout Class in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyIII'' and Seer Class in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyTacticsAdvance'' and ''[[VideoGame/FinalFantasyTacticsA2 A2]]'' have Cat-Eared Hoods.
** Krille's White Mage job class in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyV'' has a cat-eared hood. This is ''probably'' to be cuter rather than sexier, given her age.
** Catmancers like Minette in ''VideoGame/BravelySecond'' all have cat-eared hoods as part of the outfit.
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXIII2'': Female staff at the Serendipity casino wear cat-eared headbands.
* ''VideoGame/LightningReturnsFinalFantasyXIII'': A wide variety of animal-eared headbands are available as adornments.
* In ''VideoGame/ResonanceOfFate'', some of Leanne's hair bands have cat ears.
* ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaOcarinaOfTime'' and ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaMajorasMask'' have the bunny hood which increases speed in Majora's Mask and stopped the skeleton enemies from showing up in Hyrule Field as Young Link Ocarina of Time.
* In ''VideoGame/SuperSmashBros. Brawl'' and ''Melee'', equipping said item will increase a character's running speed and drastically increase said character's jumping height. Any character. Most frequently [[TheComicallySerious Mewtwo and Ganondorf]].
* ''VideoGame/GuildWars'': Cat-eared headgear was handed out as a freebie during Halloween 2010. It's purely ornamental and has no game effect.
* ''VideoGame/RagnarokOnline'' has various types of animal headbands, like the Kitty Band (which has oddly round ears instead of pointy) and the Bunny Band.
* ''VideoGame/TalesOfVesperia'' has the Bunny Ears Guild, which gives you bunny headbands for various characters in exchange for acquiring titles. Rita also gets a waitress costume which involves cat ears -- presumably on barrettes as they are not attached to a band -- and a different headband with a cat face decoration on it.
* ''VideoGame/TricksterOnline''. Every character has these and a detachable tail by default. Each character type is actually named after which animals ears/tail they have. Odd thing is, they cannot be unequipped until you reach Lv 20. Also are non-dropable and have their own equip slots, so they don't hog any real inventory space. Most headgear also let the ears clip through, as if they had holes in them, but capes hide the tail completely.
* ''VideoGame/WorldOfWarcraft'':
** The game has an achievement for Easter to cast bunny ears on a woman of every playable race above level 18.
** It also has the literal version of the trope, a wearable item that gives one bunny ears.
* Kokari of ''VideoGame/{{Okami}}'' wears a [[NemeanSkinning rabbit pelt]] over his head. The ears of the pelt are positioned where they would be if he were an anthropomorphic rabbit. It makes him look both cuter and tougher at the same time.
* ''VideoGame/TeamFortress2'': One NiceHat is the top half of a rabbits head, a pre-order bonus from ''VideoGame/{{Sam And Max|Freelance Police}}''.
* ''VideoGame/{{Pangya}}'' features cat ears for most of the characters for sale for pang.
* [[PlayerCharacter The Boss]] can buy and equip cat-eared headbands in ''VideoGame/SaintsRow2''.
* ''VideoGame/RuneFactoryFrontier'' uses VirtualPaperDoll for head equipments. One of the more powerful headgears happen to be a bunny ears headband.
* An equippable item for Pericci, the '''CatGirl''' (and thus totally superfluous), in the first ''VideoGame/StarOcean''.
* For some reason, local zombie girl Nanashi is sporting cute pink rabbit ears ''VideoGame/DuelSaviorDestiny''. Why this is is never elaborated on.
* The ''[[Music/{{Vocaloid}} Project Diva]]'' series of {{Rhythm Game}}s lets you customize your character (the Vocaloids of course) with accessories that include these after you purchase them with points earned in the game.
* Annie, the Dark Child from ''VideoGame/LeagueOfLegends'' wears a hairband with red kittie ears.
* In ''VideoGame/DungeonMakerIITheHiddenWar'' the female main character can wear nekomata ears as a hat.
* A possible accessory in ''VideoGame/HunieCamStudio'', which can be used to appeal to the [[UsefulNotes/FurryFandom furry fetish]].
* One of the side quests in ''VideoGame/DragonQuestIX'' involves a girl whose cat needs cheering up. The solution? Someone in the Hero's party must be equipped with a set of cat ears.
* Usalia from ''VideoGame/Disgaea5AllianceOfVengeance'' wears a rabbit-eared headband, with earmuffs covering her regular ears. However, she is actually a rabbit demon, and if her mother is any indication, her real rabbit ears are inside the fake ones.
* ''VideoGame/LoveNikkiDressUpQueen'' has several outfits like this:
** Cat: Tabby Cat (Jingle Kitty might be as well, but it's unclear whether the ears are a headband or real.)
** Rabbit: Rabbit and Camellias, Fluffy Lop. There's also the hooded sweatshirt "Bunny Pocket", which has ears.

[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* Kasumi in ''VisualNovel/MuvLuvUnlimited'' and ''VisualNovel/MuvLuvAlternative'' has random bunny ears as part of her uniform. It may have been her own idea to add them, though it also seems like something base commander Yuuko may have done for shits and giggles.
* Chiaki Nanami from ''VisualNovel/SuperDanganRonpa2'' wears a bat-eared hoodie.

[[folder:Web Animation]]
* Inverted in ''WebAnimation/{{RWBY}}''. For most of Volumes 1-3, Blake Belladonna wears a head ribbon which is hiding her ''real'' [[LittleBitBeastly Faunus]] ears.
* ''WebAnimation/MysterySkullsAnimated'': Lewis's little sister Cayenne has a horned headband and Lewis, Vivi, Arthur and Shiromori have been shown wearing animal ear headphones in [[http://artsyfeathersartsyblog.tumblr.com/post/158050075642/artsyfeathersartsyblog-my-next-batch-of-steeckers official merchandise]].

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* ''Webcomic/{{Spacetrawler}}'': Yuri starts off wearing a cat-ears headband. She eventually replaces them with [[BioAugmentation real cat ears]].
* In the ''[[ShowWithinTheShow Lucky Bunny Bounty Show]]'', in ''Webcomic/ElGoonishShive'', bunny ears appear to be Unusagi's IconicItem.
* ''Webcomic/{{Homestuck}}'''s [[TheDragon Draconian Dignitary]] [[http://www.mspaintadventures.com/?s=6&p=003432 wears one once.]]
* In ''Webcomic/GirlsOfTheWild'', Dal Dal is almost never seen without her tiger ears hairclips.
* ''Webcomic/KarinDou4koma'': Seren uses this for a PowerLimiter - bunny ears for her normal form, and cat ears for her child form.
* The eponymous Webcomic/BladeBunny wears a pair of rabbit ears. And a tail, but she admits that's pure RuleOfCute.
* In ''Webcomic/MenageA3'', it's become taken as read that animal ears headbands are beyond cute...
** Zii was obliged to cosplay as an anime catgirl character while at work in a comics shop. (This may initially not have been entirely to her taste, but she soon discovered that it had the pleasing effect of [[DistractedByTheSexy disabling most of the customers]].) Then the cute kitten-ear headband became a prop in her seduction of Sonya and Sonya's boyfriend.
** Then Sonya acquired more animal-eared headbands in order to seduce Zii.
** Later, Jung incorporated this idea into his designs for Zii's band's costumes, [[http://www.ma3comic.com/strips-ma3/part_of_your_outfit_tonight which made Zii happy]] and [[http://www.ma3comic.com/strips-ma3/like_all_cute_little_bunnies scrambled Sonya's brain.]]
** A few days after that, Sonya and Yuki were trying competitively to seduce each other. When Sonya found that a [[YouCanLeaveYourHatOn striptease]] wasn't quite working, [[http://www.ma3comic.com/strips-ma3/you_just_pushed_it_too_hard she just dug out the kitten ears.]] They seem to have become the sexual nuclear option...
* ''Webcomic/LuminaryChildren'' has Leony with her bear ear headband.
* The ''VideoGame/{{Touhou}}'' fan-comic ''Four Seasons House'' is a HighSchoolAU where all the characters are ordinary human beings; as a result, characters who are a LittleBitBeastly in the games like [[MoonRabbit Reisen]] and [[CatGirl Chen]] wear these so they still have their iconic appearances (and presumably because they would look weird without the ears).
* Both Max and his cousin Sam from ''Webcomic/YoungerDays'' have "onesie" [[http://fav.me/d8ovsgr pyjamas with hoods]] which have cat ears (Max's is a black and white cat and Sam's is tiger-like). Max has also worn a [[http://fav.me/d9uka3r cat-hat]] (eyes and ears) and a cat costume for Halloween.
* In ''Webcomic/SkinHorse'', Unity has this look when they visit the [[SouvenirLand Whimsy Little House theme park]] in "My House is Me", claiming to look like the Whimsy character Tapioca Pudding Cat. Sweetheart isn't sure stitching actual bobcat ears to her scalp has the same effect, even for a [[MixAndMatchMan patchwork girl]].

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/JosieAndThePussycats'' theme song.
-->''Josie and the Pussycats\\
Long tails and ears for hats...''
* The above is satirized by the character of Foxy Love in ''WesternAnimation/DrawnTogether'', though she tended to drift into LittleBitBeastly at times... that is to say, [[RuleOfFunny whenever it was funnier that way]].
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Wakfu}}'':
** Yugo's hat, and those of all Eliatropes in ''The Guardians'' spin-off, evoke this trope.
** In the Gobbowl story arc, all the cheerleaders (including Amalia and Evangelyne) wear bunny-ears headbands.
* Younger daughter Louise in ''WesternAnimation/BobsBurgers'' constantly wears a hat with bunny ears which only adds to her [[BewareTheSillyOnes borderline psycho persona]].
* Finn from ''WesternAnimation/AdventureTime'' wears a NiceHat with bear ears. His female counterpart, Fiona wears a bunny-eared hat instead.
* ''WesternAnimation/GravityFalls'', "Boss Mabel": Dipper dons a wolf-eared headband as part of his Pre-Teen Wolf Boy costume.
* ''WesternAnimation/MiraculousLadybug'' has this as part of Chat Noir's outfit, natch.

[[folder:Real Life]]
* [[PlayboyBunny Waitresses]] at the Magazine/{{Playboy}} Club used to have to wear these.
* And now there's a version that [[http://neurowear.com/news/index.html reacts to your brainwaves.]]
* During Christmas season, it's not unusual to see workers in retail businesses (gift shops, coffee houses, etc) wearing reindeer antler headbands.