Page 1

Making a difference A variety of volunteers united by cats

Out in the wild How ferals fend for themselves

Can’t have a cat? How to get your feline fix

Unsinkable Sam A serving sea cat of the Second World War

Plus Vital vet checks, bats, cats and great giveaways

Winter 2012

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*Reg Charity 203644 (England & Wales) and SC037711 (Scotland)


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From the Editor  General enquiries  Cats Protection, National Cat Centre, Chelwood Gate, Haywards Heath, RH17 7TT.  03000 12 12 12 (calls charged at standard rate) @ Subscription enquiries To change your details, become a Special Friend, subscribe, make a donation or become a member of Cats Protection:  Supporter Services, Cats Protection, National Cat Centre, Chelwood Gate, Haywards Heath, RH17 7TT.  0800 917 2287 @ Editorial submissions  The Editor, The Cat magazine, National Cat Centre, Chelwood Gate, Haywards Heath, RH17 7TT. @ We reserve the right to edit material for clarity or space. Cats Protection is not responsible for the opinions, advice and factual content of contributed items. The views expressed do not necessarily conform to those of the Trustees. Advertising enquiries  Cats Protection, National Cat Centre, Chelwood Gate, Haywards Heath, RH17 7TT.  03000 12 12 12 (calls charged at standard rate) @ Advertisements are accepted in good faith and we endeavour to check their accuracy. However, the charity gives no guarantees or endorsements of the products or services advertised. Cats Protection cannot accept responsibility for any correspondence between the parties, nor can they be expected to arbitrate should any dispute arise.


s Edith Sitwell once said, “Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is the time for home.” It’s made even better with a purring feline friend and a good magazine! In this edition of The Catwe talk about not having a cat. For a variety of reasons some people simply can’t have a cat of their own and we look at solutions found by others to this on pages 18 to 20. Cat-loving pop star Saffron, interviewed on page 13, could probably relate to this dilemma as she is currently catless but hopes to redress this with a visit to the National Cat Adoption Centre. We’re sure to have the perfect cat for her! On pages 34 to 36 Rebecca Evans finds out there is nothing typical or predictable about a CP volunteer, from racing drivers to teenage fundraisers, our volunteers bring a whole array of much appreciated talents and skills to the charity. Many animals have earnt their military stripes and on pages 30 to 31 we learn about Unsinkable Sam, a somewhat inappropriately named naval cat – his paws seemed to be constantly wet! Alison Prince, Mitzi and Fingal have been playing host to a Pipistrelle bat population and she regales us with her experiences of these flying creatures on page 29. With so many more people extending their houses to accommodate their growing needs they can sometimes forget the effect it can have on one of the smallest members of their household. The presence of builders, dust, noise and general mayhem can be extremely stressful to the most placid of cats, and once it’s all done there is the ‘new look’ territory the cat has to adjust to. Vicky Halls gives us some great advice on how to get through it all on pages 22 to 23. If you have internet access you may be interested to know that we now have a selection of articles from The Catmagazine (as well as other information pamphlets), particularly about cat care and behaviour, available to download or perhaps send to others. It can be found here It is the end of another year but also the end of an era as this will be the last edition Senior Designer, Ryan O’Hara will be involved with. Ryan has been an integral part of the Design team overseeing T  he Catmagazine for the past eleven years and we will all miss his professional expertise and experience. We wish him well for the future and would like to thank him for his invaluable contribution to the charity – he will be missed! Winter well, have a lovely holiday season and see you next spring!

Francesca Watson Editor

Published quarterly by: Cats Protection Printed by: Pensord Press Ltd.

Please recycle this magazine when you have finished with it

The Team Editor F rancesca Watson Deputy Editor R  ebecca Evans Creative Designers R  yan O’Hara, Rus Hudda, Sam Roberts, Martin Green Communications Assistant P etra Coghlin

The Cat  Winter 2012


Making a difference


A variety of volunteers united by cats

Out in the wild How ferals fend for themselves

Can’t have a cat? How to get your feline fix

Unsinkable Sam

Contents Winter 2012

A serving sea cat of the Second World War

Plus Vital vet checks, bats, cats and great giveaways

Cover photo: CP Library/Jenny Ferreira

Regulars 6





Cats’ tales


Walker on the wild side


Playing detective


Ask the vets


Ali’s cats


Paws for thought


Our favourite things


Capital fundraising


Coffee paws


How can we help?


Cats Protection in focus


Diary of events


Find your local Cats Protection


Kids’ corner


Making memories


Remembering cats


Book reviews


The Cat  Winter 2012


34 30


Feature articles 13 Celebrity interview She’s stylish and sassy, she’s Saffron from Republica

18 Feline bereft? How to survive life without a cat of your own

26 A close shave The importance of regular veterinary checks

30 The high seas One cat’s war time adventures


34 Our vital, vibrant volunteers We meet some of the different types of people who volunteer for Cats Protection

40 Behind the scenes We meet an indefatigable Co-ordinator from Arbroath


Cats Protection’s vision is a world where every cat is treated with kindness and an understanding of its needs. Reg Charity 203644 (England and Wales) SC037711 (Scotland)

The Cat  Winter 2012


Black in the spotlight

CP focused on darker felines on Thursday 25 October – National Black Cat Day. We spread the message on social media that black cats make great pets, while our centres and branches highlighted the black and black-and-white cats in their care needing loving homes. CP is currently looking after around 1,300 black cats almost a quarter of all CP cats – with each taking around a week longer to be rehomed than the average cat. “People seem to be more taken with torties, tabbies and other colours – perhaps due to a perception that variety adds spice,” said Danielle Draper, Manager at Cats Protection’s National Cat Adoption Centre in Sussex. On the day, CP created a buzz on social media, asking black cat fans to download and wear a specially-designed black cat mask or post a photo of their own black cat. Our National Black Cat Day posts on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google Plus reached a total audience of almost 330,000 people. National Black Cat Day also attracted celebrity support. Glamour model Lucy Pinder, who posed in black cat ears especially for CP, said: “I was really surprised to hear that black cats take longer to find homes – it’s such a shame. Black cats make just as good pets as the more colourful moggies and often have particularly striking and noble looks so I’d recommend adopting a black cat to anyone thinking of getting a cat.” To find out more about black cats or to adopt one please visit or phone CP’s helpline on 03000 12 12 12.

Model Lucy Pinder thinks black cats are striking


The Cat  Winter 2012

Shop, save money and support CP!

Cats Protection recently launched a new online shop,, where 100 per cent of the profits from each sale go to the charity. Customers can to choose whether they’d like the money raised from their purchase to go towards the work of Cats Protection as a whole or select a specific adoption centre or branch. The shop has a great range of over 2,000 products to choose from, catering for your cat’s needs. The products range from pet foods such as Felix cat food and general pet care products to behavioural products such as the Feliway diffuser, toys, grooming accessories and bedding. There are products for other household pets, too. There is an introductory 10 per cent new customer discount on your first purchase and we offer a door-to-door delivery service to anywhere in the UK and parts of Europe. With a simple check out system for ease of purchasing and personalised individual client accounts for customers’ repeat orders, an automatic product ordering schedule can easily be put in place. There is also the option to receive text messages and email delivery reminders in advance of delivery, with orders of £39 and over being eligible for free UK delivery*. By shopping at customers will be helping to support our work, which will enable us to care for even more cats. *Some remote UK postcodes are subject to an additional delivery surcharge. Please visit the online shop for more details.


Luca makes a splash

The strength of any charity lies with its supporters and we’re very glad when we catch ours so young! We were recently told of Luca Thompson, aged 10, who decided to raise funds for Cats Protection by doing a 50-length (1250m) sponsored swim at the King Alfred’s Leisure Centre in Brighton this July. His swimming prowess has raised £347.50 in total and we are very grateful for his efforts! Luca, pictured with cat Fuj, said: “I did my swim to raise money for cats because they’re my favourite animal. I have a cat called Fuj who I got for my ninth birthday. I had another cat, Custard, but he died. I visit Cats Protection quite often to visit the cats and stroke them. I always want to take one home with me, but I think Fuj wouldn’t be happy about it! “I had to practise for my swim, once a week on Sunday. I trained for about eight weeks and in the end, I swam the 50 lengths in less than one hour. I’m quite pleased it’s over now!” On behalf of all the cats in our care, thank you, Luca!

Paws from Downton Abbey

Our annual Celebrity Paws is something we all look forward to and this year is no exception. A host of kind-hearted celebrities, including Downton Abbey stars Dame Maggie Smith and Hugh Bonneville, have donated their unique paw prints to help raise funds to support the charity’s work. Each of the stars has drawn around their hand and customised the drawing to create an exclusive piece of art, which will be auctioned on eBay later this year. Each lot will be framed and ready for the winning bidder to display, or perhaps give to a friend as the perfect Christmas present. This particular paw has been drawn by illustrator and cartoonist, Simon Drew. This year, the proceeds will go towards Cats Protection’s new homing centre in Leeds, to help more needy felines in the Yorkshire area. This is the sixth year of Celebrity Paws with past contributors including Joanna Lumley, John Barrowman, David Cameron, Tracey Emin, Phil Collins, Rolf Harris, Bernard Cribbins and Dame Shirley Bassey. Last year’s event was the most successful yet, raising nearly £7,000 with the highest bid of £1,519 received for a detailed drawing by Simon Tofield, the creator of S imon’s Cat. The eBay auction runs from 29 November–9 December 2012 and the winning bidders will not only receive a distinctive piece of celebrity artwork but will also be supporting the vital work of Cats Protection. For further details about Celebrity Paws please visit the website at

The owls and the pussycats

A story in The Daily Mail made us smile recently. Paul Bunyard, a professional Photographer, received a surprising call from the estate manager of private woodland near Rugby in Warwickshire. There were new residents in one of the estate’s four owl boxes, cats! This particular box is 20ft up an oak tree. It has been in its current location for four years with owls only taking up residence in the second year, leaving it tempting for potential squatters. It has a cat-flap sized hole and this year an estate worker saw a mother cat and her kittens looking out. It seems the cat had previously resided in a nearby barn but this year she had decided to move onwards and upwards. The box was designed to house Little Owls, similar to these photographed by Paul on a previous occasion, but no one had expected these black-and-white furry interlopers. After the call from the astonished estate worker Paul was quick to get down to the woodland to see for himself. “I was equally amazed,” said Paul. “I wouldn’t be surprised if they returned next year too. We don’t mind having them around but would rather they returned the box to the owls - who are the rightful homeowners.” As you can see from the photos, the cats seem very much at home in their eyrie! Thank you to Paul for allowing us to use his photos, you can see more of his amazing work at

The Cat  Winter 2012



Eighty-five years of dedicated cat work

The plight of cats in the Slough area was brought to the public’s attention by Albert Steward, who was General Secretary of the Slough Cat Club. This Club, along with Ilford and Liverpool Cat Clubs, were to form the basis of the Cats Protection League in 1927. As Secretary, Albert became the charity’s first paid employee in 1933 and two years later premises in Slough were acquired via a legacy and this is where the League’s headquarters was first established. Mr Steward and his wife lived on the first floor with the rest of the house and garden being used for cat work. The Catmagazine from 15 January 1935 says: “Possibly all members are not aware of the League’s indebtedness to its Slough Branch in many ways. It has from the start been an inspiration to Headquarters.” The charity ran its ever expanding national work from Slough until its headquarters moved to Horsham in West Sussex in 1978. Veronica Robinson, Publicity Officer for the current branch, takes up the tale: “Determined to continue the charity’s work in the area one of the Slough office volunteers, Miss Ethel Smith started a local branch and the Maidenhead, Slough & District Branch was born. Miss Smith was the first Coordinator and the very first Treasurer was Mary Rose. We are very proud that Mary is still an active member of the group helping out at events although she is now well into her nineties. “However, there comes a time when even the most successful branch needs to consider recruitment of new members. Despite having a very successful welfare programme, rescuing and homing many hundreds of cats every year, it is getting harder and harder to get volunteers to run the fundraising events and add to our welfare team. “Instead of recruitment, which implies a commitment to work which seems to frighten most people off, we decided to make it a celebration, a fun event which would attract people to join in and support Cats Protection. With the anniversary of the founding of Cats Protection this year, we decided to hold an 85th Anniversary Celebration Event with the Town Hall in Maidenhead chosen as a venue. The team created a wonderful display of information about the branch, including lots of pictures of people helping at events showing what we do, and also many photos of cats in our care. Entry was free and every visitor received a goody bag. Uniformed volunteers made everyone welcome and were ready to chat to everyone and there was a presentation promoting the charity’s work. We covered our costs and raised more than £100 during the evening. We hope to have enough new faces to train up to take on the roles of Secretary, Fundraisers and Assistants to our Co-ordinator Peter Simmonds in welfare, homing and fostering!” Slough has been a point of reference for Cats Protection from the very beginning over 80 years ago, here’s to many more years of sterling cat work!


The Cat  Winter 2012

Get social!

Our National Black Cat Day once again highlighted the cause of the black cat. Here are some of the comments made on our Facebook page during the day. Roz I have a black cat called Clyde and he is amazing – very handsome boy and very intelligent, not sure why there should be the colour discrimination, black cats are very elegant Mickala We love our three black cats and think they’re just as beautiful as the three who aren’t. The black really draws attention to their lovely eyes and in the sun you see a rainbow of colours reflected off their guard hairs. All of ours are a joy and a privilege regardless of colouring. Jackie Can’t understand why black cats are not wanted. They are so beautiful we have two Skipper and Mouse. And we love them to bits! Come on folks give black cats a chance! Lesley I got my two black cats from CP four years apart. It was obviously fate as the second one was in same pen the first one had been in when I chose her! Debbie I’ve had my black cat Pins since he was six weeks old. He’s 12 now and I love him to pieces. He follows me everywhere, sleeps next to me, sits next to me and hides my slippers under the bed! He’s so funny and loving and thoroughly spoilt! Can’t imagine my life without him. Serena Can’t understand people who select pets because of their colour. I had an amazing all black cat who passed away last year at the grand age of 24. I now have a CP rescue who just happens to be black and white. She is disabled and was overlooked for a year. She is truly delightful. I could not imagine life without her. SEE THE CAT NOT THE COLOUR! Sonja I love my black cat, she has beautiful black fur and the most in depth green eyes.. She has a personality all her own. She has been the best kitty a person could ask for and she wakes me up each morning by sitting on the dresser and just staring at me.. Nicci Every black cat I’ve owned or known has been the friendliest. Don’t understand why they take longer to rehome. Already have a six-year-old black male rescue cat and about to get a rescue black kitten. Go black! Lisa My black cat Marley is the most loving cat in the world he follows me around the house, sits with me every chance he gets, loves cuddles and kisses and is afraid of his own shadow, he has a beautiful shiny coat and a long sleek body, just gorgeous. Saffron Today is also my dad’s birthday. When I moved out at 11 to live with my mum he bought a black kitten. Since that day we buy each other black cat gifts and cards as an unspoken rule. Post your comments, questions and photos at and meet other CP supporters, too!

Season’s Wishing all of our readers a very happy festive season.

Do you have an interesting story to tell, a point of view you want to air or something that you just have to get off your chest? Send your thoughts, views, stories, funny photos and ‘mewsings’ to The Cat magazine, National Cat Centre, Haywards Heath, RH17 7TT or email us at Don’t forget to tell us your return address and please remember that your letter may be edited for length.


Hard of hearing but larger than life From: Lorraine Barker, Alicante, Spain teffi ‘the deafy’ – so named by my stepson – was a rescue. Steffi has no idea of the noise she makes when she pushes things off a table top – she has broken so many things I’ve lost count. She also yodels very loudly. It is a gargling, crowing sound used for attention, food demands, and often a special announcement from the litter tray! Her other senses are acute; when we lived in the country, I fed the badgers every evening and I would often only know they were outside because Steffi would run round the house excitedly. She couldn’t hear or see them, but somehow she knew they were around. Her sense of smell is extraordinary; even if I put on some slightly perfumed moisturiser in another room, she will run away when I come out of the room. She hates any kind



The Cat  Winter 2012

of non-food smell! If she is asleep, I tap the bed or chair lightly to wake her softly, and she comes to in a gentle way. She recognises, when she feels like it, certain hand signals meaning “go to bed”, “stop doing that” – always ignored – or “food”. I think it’s a privilege to have a deaf cat because they teach you new ways of interacting with them; I have had cats all my life, but Steffi is very special. She always gives a chirrup when she sees me or sees food being opened – a lovely way to be greeted and thanked. She loves her ears being fondled, perhaps because they are extra sensitive. I heartily support the advice in The Sound of Silencein the previous issue of the magazine: don’t be concerned about owning a deaf cat. They deserve a good caring home where they can be allowed to live safely...and not be ignored!


Working nine to five

From: Anne Lawrence, Southampton or my work, I used to have to travel to an office in Cowes on the Isle of Wight. On my first visit there, I entered the office and approached the person at the desk to make myself known and was very surprised to see that, on a chair at the other desk, was a black and white cat! Apparently, he lived in the launderette next door but presented himself for ‘work’ at the office at 9am every morning. He went home at 5pm every afternoon. He soon got to know me and would insist on ‘sitting in’ on my interviews in the back office. He was such a beautiful cat and I really missed him when I stopped going to that office. He didn’t have a name that we knew of and was always referred to as ‘the cat’!


Let the cat out of the bag

And so to bed



From: Jackie Blake, by email e chose our cat Bagpuss from the Winchester Branch of Cats Protection six years ago and have never regretted having him. He was three years old and very anxious; it did, in fact, take him a year to actually come into our lounge, although he was quite happy on our bed! He is a very talkative cat and certainly lets you know what he wants – he even comes to get me to tell me he’s eating his food. When it is time to go to bed he taps me on the arm with his paw and escorts me to bed. The other day we found him asleep in our green recycling garden bag on top of our rubbish where he stayed for about two hours – Bagpuss by name and Bagpuss by nature! I would say to anyone who wants to give a slightly older cat a chance to go ahead and contact your local branch.

From: Isabel Sweet, Taunton, Somerset his is a picture of Bramble. He is curled up in one of two boxes in the utility room that I keep meaning to throw out...but how can I when my cats like to sleep in them? I mean, it’s not as if either of the boxes is on the floor: one is on a table and the other is perched on some plastic crates on top of a low unit! We all know cats like to sleep anywhere and if an empty box is put on the floor, well, it won’t be empty for very long! Many years ago I had a cat called called because he was long, sleek and black. One day I was clearing out the shed when I moved a wooden tomato crate which turned out to have a big black spider in it – spiders are not on my list of favourites. I hastily put the crate on the lawn and, of course, Panther had to come over and inspect it... and what did he do? Well, I expected him to play with the spider as most cats do but no! Panther got in the crate, curled up and promptly fell asleep, leaving the – poor? – spider trapped under him! Sorry to all spider lovers, but I had to laugh! So, to anyone out there thinking of getting a cat – or two – and also thinking of rushing out and buying the most expensive cat bed you can find, please think again. You might think your beloved cat will thank you for it, but I have two empty cat beds at the moment, although I have one cat asleep on my bed, one is curled up underneath my bed...and Bramble is in his box in the utility!

The Cat  Winter 2012



It’s a small world!

Protecting cats overseas

From: Alison Shewry, Ramsgate, Kent uring the course of my weekly shop a lady and I got talking about cats. I showed her a picture of one of ours, a tortoiseshell Turkish Van called Toffey. The lady commented that her cat was very similar and the next week when we saw each other again she brought a picture of her cat Sammy to show me. I was surprised to see that he was also a tortoiseshell Turkish Van. Hazel and I now see each other every week and have a chat about Sammy, her other cat Muffin and our Toffey and Teddey. Recently I was having a chat on the phone with Hazel and when she said where she got Sammy from, I just couldn’t believe it, as it was the same lady we had got Toffey from. When Hazel said what year and date she had Sammy we realised that Sammy was Toffey’s daughter! We also realised that Toffey is older than we had thought as Sammy is 16 this year. Another surprise was that Muffin, Hazel’s other rescue cat came from a lady we have known for many years, having got our rescue cat Amber from her and my mum’s rescue cat Timmy in the 1980s. Hazel also lives five minutes away from where my mum used to live, so all these years, our Toffey’s daughter had been so near. Hazel has visited Toffey and I have seen lots of pictures of Sammy and hope to see her very soon, she is so much like our dear Toffey. So it goes to show what a very small world it is!



A companion fit for an anchoress


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The Cat  Winter 2012


From: Susan Tilley, Tyne and Wear enjoyed the article T  he Social History of Cats very much. Although there may not be much reliable historical information about cats prior to the 17th century, it’s widely believed that Julian of Norwich, the anchoress [a religious hermit] born in 1342, had a cat as a companion, and there’s lots of artwork showing her with a cat. This picture, Mother Julian & Her Catis by Liz Hinton and is copyright to The Julian Centre in Norwich. [It is reproduced here with their kind permission.] There seems to be a general opinion that it was quite likely that she had one to deal with rats and mice – I think she was around just after or even during the plague. At least there’s no suggestion that she was really a witch with a familiar!

From: Christian Brownless, by email ’m writing to you about a remarkable person who my wife, son and I met while on holiday in Majorca last summer. Her name is Elke Neumann. Elke single-handedly runs the Cats Association of Can Picafort. After holidaying there 15 years ago, she decided to stay on the island and devote her time to giving love, shelter, food and veterinary treatment to the many stray cats. We met Elke at the weekly local market; within a few minutes of speaking to her it was clear that we shared her passion and dream of opening a cat sanctuary one day. Elke funds her organisation with her own wages and kind donations from holiday makers and the general public. I strongly feel her story needs to be told as readers visiting Can Picafort can find Elke at the market and alert her if they see any needy cats. Without Elke’s help these cats would not have the chances they deserve and I hope that by sharing her story she will realise her dream and build the sanctuary she has worked so tirelessly for.


Saffron The rock band Republica burst on to the music scene in the mid 1990s with their infectious dance-infused tracks Ready to Goand Drop Dead Gorgeous. Fronted by striking singer Saffron, the band won critical plaudits and dance floor popularity. Two albums later, Republica took a break after their record label folded, sparking a series of solo projects. Luckily for fans, Republica reformed in 2010 and have been gigging around the world ever since. Saffron is a keen animal charity supporter and CP fan. QUESTION Saffron, what have Republica been up to recently? ANSWER We’ve been really lucky. Last year we got to go to Dubai and Bahrain. And we also went to Bucharest and Transylvania in Romania to play a big rock festival. We got around, it was great. This July we played Guilfest in the UK, and got to play with [Jamaican reggae legend] Jimmy Cliff; that was fantastic! QUESTION And what can we expect from your band in the coming months? ANSWER We hope to do some more gigs around December time and a tour in the New Year – although I can’t confirm the details yet! And we’ll fit in some more international gigs. We also have a new single out, Christiana Obey. My friends, Tenek, have done a great remix of it and quite a few stations are playing it at the moment. We’ve got to finish our main mix and hopefully we’ll get a release in the New Year. QUESTION As a solo singer and songwriter, you’ve collaborated with all sorts of artists – from The Cure and Jeff Beck to DJs Carl Cox and Junkie XL. How do these partnerships come about? ANSWER I’ve been approached by most of the artists I’ve worked with. But with Carl Cox, he was a

Republica’s lead singer Saffron talks to Rebecca Evansabout her band’s plans, the artists she admires and why it’s probably not a good idea to pick a fight with her

long-term friend. Jeff Beck just met me in a recording studio one day, and asked me to be on his album. I feel privileged to have done so many collaborations and I hope to do more. QUESTION Can you tell T  he Catabout any projects that are in the pipeline? And who would you love to work with that you haven’t worked with yet? ANSWER A couple of bands have asked me to guest. One’s called Polaroid Kiss; they’re American-Swedish. Another is my friend’s band Passarella Death Squad – he’s got a fashion label too. I’m hoping to do collaborations with them. As for the second question, I’d love to work with David Bowie! QUESTION Ok, we’ll put the word out! What are your interests outside of music? ANSWER I study Wing Chun, a form of Kung Fu devised by a Shaolin Monk 300 years ago. It’s designed for people of a smaller stature and is very exciting and beautiful. Apart from fitness and learning self-defence skills, it teaches the body to react as an animal would under attack if there’s any kind of negativity towards you or those around you. It’s not a sport or a competition, it’s a martial art so it’s something you learn for yourself, training your body into working automatically if you’re ever in danger. My Master is Anton Van Thomas; he was one of the few Westerners who was trained by Ip Man, [actor] Bruce Lee’s Master. I’m very lucky that I got to be his student. QUESTION You don’t have any pets at the moment – would you like one? ANSWER I love animals and I’ve always been a supporter of animal charities; I’d like to have a dog and a cat. But I have a busy schedule and I don’t agree with having animals at home all day long. It’s a big decision, I think it’s as important a decision as having a child. But maybe at some point in the future I can visit the National Cat Centre and home one of CP’s cats! Keep up the good work CP!

The Cat  Winter 2012


Funny, weird, or just plain photogenic; this is the place to show off your cat for the remarkable creature he is. If you think you’ve got a cat who deserves his 15 minutes of fame then write to us at Cats’ Tales, The Cat magazine, National Cat Centre, Chelwood Gate, Haywards Heath, RH17 7TT or email including a contact number and a photo of at least 500kb in size. If you would like your photos returned, please enclose a self-addressed envelope. Your letters may be edited for clarity and length.

Learning to trust From: Pam Boon, Bracknell, Berkshire This is Gemma who is five years old. We adopted her in October 2010 and she has been a delight ever since. She likes to play with balls and to climb our large oak tree! I must say she was quite wary of me at first and is only just starting to trust me so I think she hasn’t had happy experiences with females! She loves my husband though and is always in attendance when he’s gardening and sleeps by him!

Hoody the handsome hooligan From: Mrs K Walton, Newton Longville, Buckinghamshire This is a picture of Hoody who is a Cats Protection rescue cat. He is full of mischief as you can probably tell by the photo! He is extremely friendly but likes nothing better than waiting by the cat flap to ambush one of our other three rescue cats! He has so far spent most of the summer snoozing the day away on top of the shed roof.

Partners in crime From: Diane and Steve Westwood, Stourbridge Last year my cat Bernie died. In December I decided to get another cat to keep my Bengal rescue cat, Hagrid, company. I knew that the cat had to be playful and an equal match. The cat also had to be FIV+, the same as Hagrid. I contacted Rob at Stourbridge CP who did some networking and found Harry. I saw the photo of Harry on the Worcestershire CP site and decided that Harry was the one for us. So we went down to meet him at the home of his Fosterers, Valerie and Ivor. Harry has been here over a month and, as you can see, has settled down really well.


The Cat  Winter 2012

READERS’ CATS Cat nap From: Patti Thraves, Rustington, West Sussex This is Samuel taking it easy after a good meal! He is 10 years old, very gentle and, as you can see, handsome. He shares my home with Emma who is 16 and they get on quite well. Samuel is a talking cat and his favourite activity is being brushed. He is very affectionate to me but only when we are alone.

The girl next door

From: Alex Hare via email Harold (on the left) and Toni, pictured here on their last ever day together, have been boyfriend and girlfriend for five years. Our rescue cat Harold met Toni after she moved in next door as a tiny kitten and ever since they met she has been besotted by him. As she grew up Harold showed her essential cat skills such as how to climb and often rescued her from vicious fights. Toni would come over the fence and happily play with Harold or sit in the sun with him. We have often seen Harold forgoing his basket for Toni to sleep in and giving her first chance at his meals. Toni’s owners recently had to relocate to Germany. Sat together here for their last time both cats were as calm and happy as ever, enjoying each other’s company, passing the occasional lick to each other and giving the odd chirrup of pleasure.

The face of mischief From: Michael Blank, Stockport, Cheshire Susie was aged about eight months when I took this photo. She has filled out somewhat since then – too many pouches of wet food, which she virtually lives for. She is a pretty aggressive cat and I have never known her be friendly to another cat. She remains just as mischievous today as she was then and is sitting on a desk beside me as I write this email, frustrated at not being allowed to go out at 12.15 at night. We don’t like her staying out overnight and as she has just done that two times on the trot she is ‘on report’. She is quite a keen mouser, very affectionate – though only on her terms – and indisputably a moggy. She loves sleeping, but is also a pretty active cat, going out a good deal.

The Cat  Winter 2012


Laptop cat From: Lauren Newitt, Alcester, Warwickshire Here is a picture of our cat Willow asleep in our laptop case. Willow enjoys sleeping in many strange places but this is one of his favourites, maybe because he can hunt a mouse at the same time?! At 10 years of age Willow has recently been diagnosed with diabetes which means he has to have regular injections but also means he gets a lot more fuss to encourage him to sit still!

Copper the tortie with her own ‘hottie’ From: Sybil Chapman, Droitwich Spa I have a stair lift. Copper comes up for me each morning, waits until I have slippers and dressing gown on, then pauses two steps down while I get on the chair. Once I’m moving she runs with very long legs to the bottom of the stairs where she turns to wait for me. Oh dear! I’m halfway down but I’ve forgotten my book! Reversing up the stairs I see the frustration on her face – delayed breakfast, of course. Having collected the book I start down again and she is very annoyed. Was that her paw stamping? At bed time, medication taken, ‘hotties’ in the bed and book in hand, I start the last ride of the day. I’m watched by Copper waiting at the bottom of the stairs. It is a slow ride, I’ll admit but I’m just two steps away from the top and, whoops, she’s beaten me to it. She turns around and – was that a wink?

Introducing the beautiful Sly From: Tabitha Gander, Gilfach Goch, South Wales Sly is eight years old and has been with us since he was six months old. He arrived at our home after he and his sister captured our hearts at a Cats Protection adoption centre. He is well known in the neighbourhood as the ‘top cat’ and seems to think he is the sheriff – no cat is allowed to pass our house without him bolting out of his cat flap to check them out first. He is also an excellent hunter, bringing home rabbits, magpies and moles to name but a few. However, despite his boyish antics Sly is the soppiest cat I’ve ever known. He enjoys being carried like a baby and is very vocal if he feels he isn’t getting enough attention. I think this photograph shows his babyish and sweet nature – our soppy Sly.


The Cat  Winter 2012

'c' is for cat, but also care At Cats Protection we offer free talks to nurseries and schools about caring for cats. One of our volunteers can deliver an interactive session based on the five points that are vital in keeping cats happy and healthy: • • • • •

Freedom Freedom Freedom Freedom Freedom

from discomfort from hunger and thirst from pain, injury and disease to behave normally from fear and distress

We also offer visits to our adoption centres across the UK. For more info, please email or visit

Reg Charity 203644 (England and Wales) and SC037711 (Scotland)

Coping w a cat

 aroline Impeymeets four cat-lovers who C for varying reasons can’t actually own their own feline


f you’re reading this there is a very high chance that you own a cat. After all, why would anyone without a cat want to read a magazine about cats? Well, the truth is that almost a fifth of those who read  The Cat [according to the magazine’s recent survey] don’t actually own one – although it would perhaps be more appropriate to say they c an’t. Despite being devoted cat-lovers, many people find themselves in a situation where cat ownership is not possible. Perhaps they live in rented accommodation, or on a busy main road, or have to move house or travel frequently. Probably the most common reason and, sadly, often the most permanent, is having a partner or a child with a severe allergy to cats. For these people, owning a cat is usually out of the question – hypoallergenic breed or not. Because while some allergysufferers can tolerate certain breeds, or even individual cats, most would quickly find their lives becoming a misery if they shared their home with any feline member at all. So what’s it like to love cats but not be able to have one? And how do these people cope? Anyone who isn’t a feline fan would find it hard to understand the level of distress a person can experience if they cannot own a cat. But feelings of emptiness, loss and grief are common, as well as deep sadness and, in some cases, heartbreak. Here, four cat-lovers explain what it’s like to be unable to own a cat – and what they do to cope.

without The big tissue Beth Stone lives in Kent with her husband Phil who is allergic to cats. ”I grew up with cats and throughout the years before I met Phil I always had a cat,” Beth explains. “I just love the companionship they give you. They’re happy to see you when you get home and you can talk to them and they don’t judge you. ”When I met Phil 10 years ago I knew he was allergic but we travelled a lot and at the time I don’t think it really sank in. When we settled here two years later I realised I wasn’t going to be able to have a cat. ”It was hard. I missed the company cats give you, the feeling of stroking them and having them sit on your lap. It was like there was something missing. ”After a few months, I knew had to do something. I was lucky to have a Cats Protection adoption centre near me, so I signed up as a volunteer to help socialise cats and kittens awaiting rehoming. It made such a difference. Not only did I get my cat fix, but I knew I was doing a really important job. Sometimes I would get lots of cuddles, but sometimes, with very shy cats, I would just sit and talk to them. ”I became a Cats Protection member and subscribed to The Cat. I’ve also always collected cat memorabilia and done cat cross-stitches, so I carried on doing that, too. Now, if I’m not at the centre, I’m reading about cats or doing another cross-stitch surrounded by my cat ornaments. ”The way I see it now is this: I may not have a cat in my lap at home, but I have cats in my life.”

Beth Stone gets her cat cuddle Inset one of Beth’s crossstitches


Paula, keeping shop for cats

Raising funds for cats Paula Warnes lives with her partner Larry in Hertfordshire. Larry is also allergic to cats but Paula has learned to think beyond these boundaries. “Only people who have been in my situation can understand what it’s like. It’s actually quite heartbreaking, as if there’s this big hole where a cat should be,” Paula says. ”Before I met Larry I’d always had cats. The sad thing is Larry is a real animal-lover, but the second he gets near a cat he reacts very badly. ”A couple of years ago I was working as a shop manager when I saw an advert for the same role for The Scratching Post’s charity shop. I knew The Scratching Post was a local cat rescue centre, so I didn’t hesitate to apply. I was thrilled when I got the job. Although the work isn’t hands-on with cats, I’m earning a living working for a cat charity. And about once a month, people bring stray cats to the shop, so I take them upstairs and look after them until they’re collected by the centre staff. ”Although the job brings me a lot of satisfaction, the yearning for a cat didn’t completely go away, so a year ago we got Poppy, our Chihuahua. I have to admit I chose a Chihuahua because she was closest in size to a cat! Poppy brings lots of joy, but she isn’t a cat. When you’re a cat person, only a cat will do. “I haven’t given up on having a cat one day, somehow. In the meantime, I’m grateful to be managing The Scratching Post’s shop, serving customers, arranging our cat-themed displays and doing my bit for cat welfare. It definitely helps ease the longing.”

The Cat  Winter 2012


FEATURE Cat caring by proxy Maggie Marshall and her husband Colin live in Gloucestershire with their dog Jake. They board dogs as part of their pet-carers business but also live on a busy main road. ”I have always loved cats,” says Maggie. “I love the fur and I love the purr! In the early days of our marriage we had cats but then 13 years ago we decided to leave our office jobs to set up our pet-carers business. ”We’re both animal lovers but sadly, because a large part of our business involves looking after other people’s dogs at our home, it would be unfair to have a cat now. ”We love having the dogs and we have our own dog, Jake, who is amazing, but at first I really missed not having a cat at home. Then we built up a good base of cat clients. Now, I get my cat fix from all the lovely cats I look after. I have about 20 cats that I visit – one of my clients has seven cats! “My clients all know that I’m a cat-lover without a cat of my own and I think that brings an extra dimension to my work. They know I’ll spend time with their cats, fussing them or scratching them behind the ears, if that’s what they like. ”I also know that one day we’ll have our own cat again. But, for the foreseeable future, a job looking after other people’s is definitely the next best thing.”

Maggie out with the dogs

Volunteering for cat cuddles

Marcus and Iliana go cuddling

Iliana Koutsou and her boyfriend Marcus Lawrance are both students and currently live with Marcus’s mum in North London. “Where I come from in Greece there are lots of stray cats so when I came to Britain I was quite shocked at the number of cats who end up in rescue – this being a nation of animal-lovers!” Iliana exclaims. ”Both Marcus and I love cats but because we don’t have our own place at present and we don’t know exactly where we’ll be in the future, it’s not the right time to have a cat. ”Instead, we decided to spend time with cats who don’t have a home by volunteering together at a local rescue centre. We go at the weekends between our studies, helping to clean out pens and giving cuddles. It’s so rewarding, especially when you build up a bond with the cats. In fact, now we don’t feel the need to have a cat of our own at all.” So, if you’re reading this with your furry friend curled up next to you, give him a cubble on behalf of your fellow cat-lovers who can’t have their own puss. And if you’re one of the cat-less, don’t despair. You’re not alone and there are many things you can do to bring cats into your life, if not your home.

More ways to connect with cats • Volunteer to look after a neighbour’s or a friend’s cat • Start a pet-sitting business or work for one • Volunteer for CP! See get-involved/volunteering-home • Work in a cat-facing role for a vet or cat charity

20 The Cat  Winter 2012


Following in defiance Living to disappoint can sometimes backfire as John Walker’s Dexter never seems to learn


ne of the great joys of a cat as studiously defiant as Dexter is that sometimes his determination to do the opposite of what I’d expect backfires. It would be lovely if he’d, say, curl up in my lap and purr sweet nothings as I watch TV, rather than sit in front of a nearby wall and shout at it for half an hour. Or perhaps if he were the kind of cat that slept faithfully on my feet at the end of the bed, rather than having to be shut out of the bedroom at night because of his incessant need to pull all of my wife’s clothes out of the wardrobe. Dexter, as the saying goes in our house, lives to disappoint. It is with a stunning precision that he always manages to stop doing that amazingly cute thing the very moment the called person enters a room to see it. Throw a toy for him to chase and you can be certain he’ll stare, shrug, and walk off – but instantly pounce on it the moment you’ve left the room. And you can be certain that if there’s a big, scary spider sat immediately in front of him, rather than rescue me he’ll sniff it, roll his eyes in indifference, and leave. If there’s a way he can avoid doing the one thing you want him to do, he’ll find it. And that includes not following me when I’m trying to walk to the bus stop. But this is where it backfires for him. Clearly somewhere in his perverse little brain he has got it into his head that it must be somehow defying my wishes when he follows me outside. Certainly this is an enormous pain if I’m trying to go somewhere a cat can’t be. Heading out of the house, I’ll see his middle-aged belly swinging back and forth beneath him as he trots toward me, meaning everything has to be abandoned as I scheme to get him back inside the house for long enough to get away. He’ll instantly be on to this, of course, and refuse to follow me back in. “No! I’m out here!” he’ll protest, not

knowing why he’s out there, nor why he wants to stay out there. Reason be damned, he’ll sit just under the wheel of that car for the entire afternoon if that’s what it takes to not have to go back inside for two minutes. Since I’m usually running late, this ludicrous routine is all the more maddening, as I’m reduced to standing in the front hallway making noises like I’m about to give him tuna. “Huh! Wossis?!” I’ll shout-whisper, in the voice that ordinarily makes him ludicrously over-excited. “Dexter! Wossis?!” You can see the processing. He knows it’s probably a trick. It’s usually a trick. It’s been a trick every other time, why wouldn’t it be a trick this time? But what if it’s not a trick? What if there’s actually tuna this time? There probably isn’t any tuna, but imagine if there were tuna and I sat here and didn’t go in and get the tuna and then I wouldn’t get the tuna and then WAIT I’M COMING! And in he runs. And there goes my bus. But it backfires for him, because it means that I also have a cat that comes for walks with me. For him it’s an act of rebellion. For me, it’s about having a cat that trots along at my heels as my neighbours stare in confusion. Where I lived before this was often a walk to the shop, where Dex would sit outside and wait – too scared to go in after the owner once caught him inside – and then rejoin me for the walk home. The looks on people’s faces were always stunning. I’d adopt a look that said, “Well of course,” and walk past proudly. Now with a railway between our house and the shops, Dexter’s walks tend to just be around the block, perhaps down to the playground. He’ll still find ways to ruin it, if at all possible. Perhaps he’ll find a puddle to roll over in, or pick a fight with a dog seventeen times the size of him. Or most likely, realise I’m not objecting and turn into a surly teen, refusing to walk within ten feet of me, but never letting himself get further away either. But it doesn’t matter. It still works. He’s still going for a walk with me, no matter how sure he is that I don’t want him to.

Illustration: Rus Hudda

A day in the life of a cat behaviour counsellor

Are home extensions really such Grand Designs? V  icky Hallsinvestigates…


o many people these days are building extensions rather than moving house, giving them the space or the change they need without the demands of buying and selling in a challenging market. One such family I visited recently carefully planned such an extension that incorporated a large, modern glass box on the back of the house and the creation of a massive kitchen and family room with a light and airy feel. Sadly the one member of the household that wasn’t consulted was the resident Siamese…this is how his story may have unfolded. Thai, a four-year-old house-bound Siamese, was perfectly happy with his home. He loved to sit on the window sill in the kitchen and watch the great outdoors – and that scary cat from Number Seven – from a position of height and relative safety. One day, without warning, the kitchen door was sealed up and all his worldly goods were moved upstairs to a spare room. He didn’t see that favourite part of his world again for three months. This felt like an eternity to Thai; strangers were in and out of the house during the day, everything had a strange smell, there was a lingering dust in the air and constant vibration. He turned to his family for reassurance but they seemed distracted, moody and inconsistent. Thai started to feel very uneasy and found it hard to fill his day with any degree of pleasure. Then one day, having reluctantly adapted to his shrunken world, something quite dramatic happened. The plastic seal came down, the kitchen door opened and he was suddenly exposed to a frightening new world. Where the kitchen used to be there now was a large expanse of shiny floor and an uninterrupted view of the garden. It was hard to tell what was home or outside any more. Where could he hide? How could he protect himself from the cat from Number Seven?

Vicky Halls is a registered Veterinary Nurse, a member of the FAB’s Feline Behaviour Expert Panel and author of several best-selling cat counselling books. For further information regarding these please visit her website: Vicky also hosts a cat behaviour Facebook Group and you can join in the cat discussions by searching for ‘Vicky Halls Cat Behaviour’ from within Facebook.


The Cat  Winter 2012

Thai did the only thing that he could think of under the circumstances. He systematically went round and anointed each glass panel along the perimeter with small sprays of urine in a desperate attempt to restore some sense of security in this newly-created danger zone. He also sprayed a shiny new – and very pungent to Thai’s sense of smell – leather sofa, the only possible camouflage in this barren wilderness.

A comfortable compromise This was where I came in, as the owners had visited their vet regarding this distressing state of affairs. I had the difficult task of explaining to them that, despite the obvious beauty and light of their new glass box extension, it certainly wouldn’t have been something Thai would have drawn up with the architects. Thai had lost the sense of a divide between outside (dangerous) and inside (safe) and therefore felt that he could no longer ensure that the cat from Number Seven would not penetrate his defences and annihilate him forever. Thai was showing his emotional response to this new, scary environment by using a means of communication appropriate to the circumstances of conflict and threat. Depositing small amounts of pungent urine provides the individual with a personal scent reassurance in dangerous places. We had to change this perception to enable cat and human to live in harmony once again. I had to make the glass box feel safe. What Thai needed was a reinstatement of some form of solid divide between him and the enemy and some clutter to hide behind to observe without being seen. He wanted a high perch where he could act as lookout without being attacked. However it is practically impossible to ask someone to cover expanses of glass and introduce clutter when they have just spent a fortune on “light and minimalism”, just to please the cat. We therefore settled on decorative, opaque plastic film. This adhered via static rather than adhesive, so no mess, on the lower part of the glass panels. The owners also chose a tasteful piece of cat furniture with scratching pillars and a few strategically-placed storage boxes, all of which were appropriately anointed with synthetic feline facial pheromones* (Feliway®, Ceva). This would provide Thai with sufficient clutter to render him invisible, when necessary, and therefore impervious to harm.


Cats can be unsettled by home improvements

We cleaned areas that required it and restored a predictable routine for Thai around feeding, cuddles, play and general entertainment. The couple also installed various non-harmful deterrents in their garden; feeling it was probably one angst too many for Thai to see the neighbours’ cat on a regular basis. Over the next few weeks Thai adjusted well to these modifications and, as he felt more secure with the new environment and routines, he returned to his previous exemplary behaviour.

Assumptions of adaptability This doesn’t mean however that all cats will find minimalistic living impossible or that they will dissolve emotionally at the first sign of a DIY catalogue. They are incredibly adaptable creatures and will soon find a way to work with (or around) their new environment. However I don’t think this means we should take advantage of their inherent adaptability, I think we should consider their sensitivities when we plan any building work or changes to our homes. There are many things you can do to help your cat adapt: • Decorating work and new flooring represent a major change to your cat. The smells are strong and unfamiliar and the texture underfoot will feel strange. Make the transition more gradual by laying old rugs or pieces of old flooring or carpet over the new for a few weeks until your cat has become accustomed • If building work or decorating is a short-term project and it is being carried out in a room or part of the house where your cat spends a great deal of time, consider a little holiday in a cattery during the disruptive period

• Set up a single room or safe area away from the commotion for more long-term structural work. Keep all your cat’s important resources – litter tray, feeding bowls, water, toys, bed – in easily-accessible places and maintain his or her daily routines • If your cat goes outdoors, garden makeovers may also be challenging. Are you changing or removing his favourite toilet site? If so, consider providing an alternative, suitable outdoor area or provide him with an indoor litter tray. • Don’t forget the significance of changes in your neighbours’ gardens too; this may also be an important part of your cat’s territory and therefore potentially a concern. Whatever he can’t enjoy in your neighbour’s garden now should be provided for in yours! A small area of ground in a discreet corner, dug over with 50/50 sand and compost, would be ideal • Familiarity is the key so, when it is time for your cat to see the new environment, make sure there is something that he recognises as familiar scent is the key to a calm re-introduction • Beware! Some cats thrive on the excitement and novelty of household disruption but it may be worth any tradesmen keeping an eye out for their equipment and tool bags; the cat may not be quite thatthrilled and demonstrate the fact with pungent urine! * The feline facial pheromones are chemicals released from glands in the cat’s face that are used to mark territory as safe and secure.

The Cat  Winter 2012


vets Ask the

Have you got a question? Send your questions to: ‘Ask The Vets’, The Cat magazine, National Cat Centre, Chelwood Gate, Haywards Heath, RH17 7TT or email:

CP’s team of veterinary experts tackle your feline-related questions…

My wife has got a new job abroad and so we’re looking to move our entire family, including our two cats, early next year. We’re beginning the research into how to make this as easy and pain free as possible for all concerned. However, our cats have never been good at travelling, even in the car to the vet. My brother suggested that we get them some pills for the journey to calm them down and I was wondering what kind were available? They’re going to have a long time in the plane with all that noise and I know they’ll be distressed. Jim Davies, Manchester A move is always a stressful and worrying time and it’s important to try and minimise that for both you and the cats. Firstly, have a chat with your vet about the nature of the journey and how your cats are likely to adapt to the new environment and climate if this is likely to change. Dependent on this discussion about your cats’ health and temperament, you may decide that taking them abroad may not be in their best interests and perhaps look at rehoming options instead. However, if all goes to plan, regarding the journey it would be worth consulting with your vet about the types of travel sickness medication available for cats. She/he will also be able to discuss the possible use of sedatives but be aware that this is not always advisable. If travelling by air, it’s worth checking with your airline about this too. They’ll also be able to tell you about their process of transporting pets and they can answer any specific questions you may have. The Live Animals Transportation by Air website ( sets the standards for transporting animals by commercial airlines and might give further information and advice on air travel. As you will be moving to another country it is extremely important that you comply with the Pet Travel Scheme requirements. Again, your vet can assist you with the paperwork and we would also recommend contacting the Department of Environment Food and Rural Affair’s (Defra) PETS helpline on 0870 241 1710 for more information about the Scheme or look at their website on: wildlife-pets/pets/travel/ There are pet courier companies whose staff are experienced in transporting pets and can organise your cats’ journey for you. On to the actual journey! It’s always a good idea to get your cats used to being in a carrier for something other than just going to the vets. Let your cat become accustomed to the carrier or travel crate well before the journey. Try and make it a pleasant place to be – try feeding them cat biscuits inside it and make a bed from familiar smelling bedding which


The Cat  Winter 2012

can be used on the journey. Try leaving the cage door open and allow free movement in and out and eventually they may even be happy to have a little sleep in it! Then, when it comes to the actual journey, the cat is at least familiar with its immediate environment, which will hopefully make the experience a little less stressful. As you have more than one cat it may be better to give them separate carriers to allow better air flow, more room and less chance of overheating. Also being in the same carrier may be a bit of a strain on your cats’ friendship and may lead to disagreements! Prior to the journey withhold food for about four to five hours before the journey in case the cat is sick while travelling – obviously this is an approximate time frame and should be discussed with your vet as your cats may have different requirements. Offer water up to the time you leave and again during the journey if possible. You may be able to get special non-spill bowls that attach to the cage. If your cats do not normally wear collars it may be a good idea for them to get used to wearing a quick-release collar with their new address on prior to the journey. Also, investigate re-registering your cats’ microchip details in the country of destination, before you go – your cat’s current microchip database should be able to help. On reaching your final destination, keep your cats in one designated room, which is secure and comfortable, and ensure they are surrounded by familiar smells on furniture and bedding. Offer them water and some food and settle them into their new environment. Do not allow the cats to go out for at least a week and ensure they are identifiable if lost. It would be a good idea to let your cats out initially perhaps just prior to feeding times as they will hopefully be less likely to roam too far. Finally, don’t forget to investigate whether you can update/transfer your pet’s insurance cover to the country of destination and register your cat with a new vet as soon as you can. Also remember recommendations for basic care such as parasite control and vaccination may vary in different countries, dependent on the types of feline diseases present in those countries. I have four indoor cats, a mother, Whiskey and her two kittens, Bramble and Poppy. They have a secure back garden with cat-proof fencing which they have access to all day as we’re not always home until the evening. A while back Bramble had to go in for a few days to the vet for an operation. When he came back, Poppy suddenly attacked him. The attacks were so ferocious and constant we have to

HEALTH CHECK keep them separated. Thankfully he was able to remain with his mother who still got on with him. This is causing great problems at home as they are house cats and we have to keep them apart. Mrs E Downey, Truro We are sorry to hear of your current situation, it must have been a shock to see Bramble attacked by Poppy. In the wild, cats are not social and they function happily on their own without a social structure around them and domesticated cats still have this inherent solitary blueprint. However, there are situations where cats can form close bonds and live together in harmony, such as cats in some feral colonies, often where the colony consists of related individuals, or between particular individuals in a multi-cat household such as yours. Behaviours such as grooming each other, rubbing against each other and sleeping together touching are signs that cats are in the same social group. Scent is the most important of the cat’s senses in terms of communication and well-being. You may have seen your cats rubbing up against each other to exchange their scents and this eventually results in a mixed scent or communal scent that is familiar to all cats in that group. The cats will use this scent to identify the members of their group. If one cat in that group is taken away for a period of time, the scent will gradually fade and be replaced with new smells, perhaps transferred from Bramble’s time at the veterinary practice, that will not be recognised the next time the rest of the group meet him. This can result in rejection from the group, as seems to have happened in this case. Therefore, we would suggest that you try to reintroduce Bramble as if he were a new cat to the household. In the initial stages, it is best to keep both cats in separate areas of the house as you are already doing. However, if you are not already, it would help to have a room in which you can have all the cats but at different times. The cats can be moved from room to room and petted, fed and played with in these areas. This means that scent signals tell each cat that another is around, but that there is no direct threat to the incoming kitten. After a week or so, depending on the cats’ reactions to each other’s scent, you can start to mix and spread scents by stroking each cat in turn with a soft cloth. Gather scents from around the cats’ heads by gently stroking them then dab it around your home and furniture. This will effectively mingle their individual scents to begin the process of producing the mixed scent, where all members of the same household smell alike. Additionally, vets can supply a product containing a synthetic form of the facial pheromones. This creates a reassuring environment for the cats and may help with the integration ( The next step would be for the cats to see each other but not be able to get to each other, such as seeing one another through a glass or mesh door. This will allow Poppy to smell Bramble through the mesh. You can use biscuits to encourage the cats to stay near each other and accept the other’s presence, making it a positive experience. You want the cats to associate each other with pleasant happenings, not shouting or chasing. Introductions like this should be short and sweet. A few minutes’ controlled exposure, several times a day as you can manage, is far better than long periods. After this time, or when you cannot supervise them fully, the cats should be put back in separate rooms. Watch both cats’ body language closely while an introduction is going on and note when they appear to become more relaxed in each other’s presence. At this stage you can start to feed the cats at opposite ends of the room. When it is time to introduce your cats, ensure that easy escape routes are available for all cats where they won’t have to run past each other. After this, only time and patience will tell if your ground work has paid off. Character differences play a great part in all social interactions and resulting friendships, and cats are certainly no exception to this rule. Good luck with the re-introduction and we hope Bramble and Poppy get back on good terms soon.

The experts Maggie Roberts BVM&S MRCVS After qualifying at Edinburgh University in 1986, Maggie went on to work primarily in private practice. Maggie first worked for CP as Veterinary Officer from 1997-99; her interest in feline medicine brought her back to the charity as Head of Veterinary Services in 2006. She has three cats, Trevor, Frankie and Ronnie. Beth Skillings BVSc MRCVS Beth qualified at the University of Liverpool in 1998 and went on to work in general veterinary practice until 2005 when she joined CP as Head of Veterinary Services. Beth moved into a new role as Clinical Veterinary Officer in November 2006. Beth has two CP cats, Starsky and Vincent. Lisa Morrow BMLSc DVM MSc(BE) MRCVS Lisa graduated from the Ontario Veterinary College at the University of Guelph, Canada in 2000. Lisa first worked with CP as an Adoption Centre Vet at Derby Adoption Centre and was CP Head of Veterinary Services from 2003-2005. Lisa recently rejoined CP as Field Veterinary Officer in the northern region of the UK. She has two elderly cats called Ginger and Skinnie Minnie. Karen Hiestand BVSc MRCVS Karen graduated from Massey University in New Zealand in 2001 and spent two years in mixed practise in her home country. Since then, she has interspersed locumming around the UK with volunteer veterinary work. She has one cat called Dexter. Our veterinary surgeons have provided the advice on these pages, but for specific cases and health concerns it is important that you consult your own vet who will be able to look at your cat’s history and do a clinical examination.

The Cat  Winter 2012


Maxim and close shave Janet Revellshares her personal experience of the importance of regular vet checks


es, I knowyou don’t want to go to the vet’s, Maxim, but it’s only for your annual health check and a quick booster. Be thankful you don’t have to go more often!” We have all said something like this to our cats, I think. They rarely enjoy a trip to the vet even for something as innocuous as a health check and vaccination. In Maxim’s case this summer, though, it ended up rather differently. Maxim hates anyone to touch his tummy so I don’t stroke him there – luckily as he’s a tall, big-framed cat there are plenty of other places to choose from. Getting seven kgs of wriggling muscle to stay on the vet’s table to be examined was interesting, though, and I ended up with one hand on forbidden territory under Maxim’s back legs. There, to my horror, I thought I found a lump. Cats seem to be able to turn round inside their coats so I thought it was just a fold of loose skin but I asked the vet to check just in case. It was, indeed, a lump. My throat went dry and I could feel the blood drain from my face. All the implications rushed through my mind and of course I feared the worst. My vet and I talked about options and it was clear that the lump had to go. Within a week Maxim had a shaved tummy, a line of neat stitches and a protective collar round his neck. He was glad to be home but hated the collar. I knew that if I left it alone he would adapt within a couple of days – having worked with vets in the past, I knew that more often it’s the owners who struggle to cope with the impact of these protective collars, rather than the cats! Like any owner, though, I hated to see him confused and bumping into things. So we found a compromise – I got hold of an inflatable collar which enabled him to see around himself much better, but still stopped him getting at his stitches. He was much happier then and could rest more comfortably too. Then came a long, long week waiting for the results of the biopsy of the lump, which had been about as big as an egg. I felt ashamed that I had not noticed it earlier but my vet explained that some lumps grow very rapidly and at least we had found it and were dealing with it as soon as possible. When the result finally came it was not the benign fatty lump I had hoped for – it was a tumour, a type not commonly found in cats called haemangiosarcoma, a cancer of the blood vessels. Unfortunately it is aggressive, sometimes spreading to the lungs. My poor, poor boy. The good news, though, was that my vet had X-rayed Maxim’s lungs which were clear, and he and his surgical team had incised into healthy tissue all

26 The Cat  Winter 2012



around the lump, to give my big lad the best chance possible. Also, the cancer had been operable because it was subcutaneous – under the skin – rather than in one of the vital organs such as his heart or liver, in which case the prognosis would have been very different. So it was not all bad news. Maxim’s wound healed well, we celebrated the removal of the stitches – and the inflatable collar – by sharing a tin of tuna. Cats often have extraordinary powers of recovery; within two days of surgery which would have laid a human flat for a couple of weeks, Maxim was bouncing around, getting cross because I would not allow him outdoors. We resumed our quiet confidential chats and he remembered how to purr. When he was allowed out again, he patrolled the entire garden, leapt on and off the fences – I shuddered at the effect of all that jumping on his fragile new scar – he saw off the neighbour’s cat who had claimed the garden in Maxim’s absence; said “boo” to a couple of squirrels and gave his favourite post a good scratch. My big lad was back and in style. But what about the cancer? Would it come back, too? We just don’t know. Three weeks after the stitches came out, he went for a check up and there was no sign of any regrowth. Apparently it is more likely to recur in the same area, so now Maxim has to put up with me fumbling about in his nether regions once a week. He would rather I didn’t, but we’ve both got used to it now. So, though technically he is in remission rather than actually cured, life with Max goes on as normal. I will take him for a check up every three months for the next year or so, to be on the safe side. In the meantime we will enjoy each other’s company for as long as he remains well. Maxim doesn’t know there is a question mark about his future so there is no point in me worrying about it: easier said than done, of course, but letting myself get stressed about it won’t help my handsome lad. Over the years I have sometimes wondered whether it is worthwhile keeping my cats’ vaccinations up to date. They seem healthy and fit and are apparently not at high risk of exposure to disease. Or are they? Who knows what local stray cats may be carrying? Cats are very good at hiding pain and discomfort, too, so there may be something wrong but they are just not showing signs that I can see. Since I became aware of Cats Protection and have come to trust their expertise about cats, I have kept taking my cats for their annual health check – six monthly for my older cats – and taking my vet’s advice about their vaccines. Thank goodness I do; without that visit for a health check and vaccination, Maxim’s cancer might not have been found until much later and I might be telling a very different story. Thanks to that check up, a good vet and Petplan, who paid for the treatment, Maxim is now back to normal, enjoying life and as happy as can be. If there is a moral to this tale, it is: if you don’t take your cat for an annual health check and take your vet’s advice about vaccination, please think carefully about it. Apart from the protection the vaccination gives against some very nasty diseases, the annual health check can give early warnings of problems which you may not be aware of and which can be better solved the earlier they are tackled. Better for the cat and probably better for your pocket. Without that early warning, I might have lost my lovely boy. The annual health check usually includes examining the cat’s eyes, ears, mouth, the skin/coat, feet/claws, heart/lungs, a weight check and palpation of the abdomen. If you are not sure that your vet has done all these when you take your cat in, please don’t hesitate to ask the vet about it. The check is usually included in the cost of the vaccination and it is the vet’s opportunity to make sure there isn’t anything needing his attention – and perhaps even to save the life of a good friend.

The Cat  Winter 2012


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Out in the wild How ferals fend for themselves

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Unsinkable Sam A serving sea cat of the Second World War

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Cats, bats and butter

Alison Princehas bats in her attic…


n the summer, when all the windows are open and the cats go in and out to the balcony and walk around on the roof, the house is a delight. In the winter, it’s just plain draughty, so when the government offered free cavity wall and loft insulation, it sounded like a good idea. A man in a suit inspected the house and agreed that it was fairly breezy. Two men in overalls then turned up with a ladder. One of them climbed a halfway up and opened the trapdoor to the attic. Then shut it again. “The place is full of bats,” he said. Well, how was I to know? The man looked contemptuous. “It’s bedlam up there. Didn’t you hear them squeaking?” Silly idea. Nobody older than about 32 can hear supersonic bat-squeaks. The man in a suit who’d inspected the house hadn’t heard them – but admittedly, he was wearing a hearing aid. Insulation-wise, bats were the kiss of death. They are a protected species and must absolutely not be disturbed. However, my bats took the arrival of the top half of a man in their attic as a gross disturbance. They started invading other parts of the house. They careered about like mad bits of fluttering carbon paper in the evenings and Mitzi turned into a one-cat circus act, doing a wall-of-death performance as she hurtled round the room after these astonishing black toys. Fingal, thankfully, was out hunting, but Mitzi was in bat bliss – or blitz. Books cascaded from shelves, plants were toppled, pictures sent flying in a crazy cat-bat aerial ballet. The only solution was to switch the light off and open all the windows, so the bats could find their way out. As mere humans, we need to see where we’re going, but bats need the dark. Light seems to muck up their navigation system completely. Pipistrelle bats (my kind) can get through a gap as small as a centimetre. And they did. They turned up all over the place. I came down one morning to find Mitzi and Fingal trying to dislodge one that was clinging to the inside of a curtain. I shut the leaping and mewing cats in a downstairs room, then set about bat rescue. It was terrified of daylight, of course – it would want to go back in the attic. I enclosed it carefully in a handful of dry kitchen roll and pulled gently, but it clung to the curtain with a tight grip. Barely more than three inches across, it had little

Illustration: Alison Prince

hooky thumbs that wouldn’t let go. When at last detached, it shunted around in my hand like a tiny umbrella trying to fold itself up. I carried it upstairs, stood on a chair, pushed the trap door open and posted it back into the batty dark. The next morning, the cats pointed out another one. Bat rescue set in as a routine – but the pipistrelle hysteria gradually calmed down. A follow-up that may or may not have been due to the bat invasion saw the cats trying to cope with an outbreak of very tiny fleas, far smaller than any I’d seen on a cat – about the size of a full stop. (.) Yes, like that. We went into a frenzy of vacuuming and powdering and Front Lining, and at last managed to get on top of the plague. Whew. Google admitted that bats do have a rather impressive range of parasites, including fleas. It also promised that they migrate in the autumn, so I would only be a bat-host for the summer months. A friend whose attic held a colony of long-eared bats swore that his bats spent the winter just across the sea from Arran, in Kilmarnock. I couldn’t see why they’d want to go there. On the other hand, nobody reports clouds of bats making their way to Tenerife – I mean, they’re not swallows and they don’t seek sun. Perhaps they go north, to somewhere in the Arctic Circle where daylight is restricted to a meagre two hours around noon. No accounting for taste. Anyway, the cats and I are now bat-free and feel happier. Mitzi was particularly happy when she learned how to get the lid off the butter dish and eat the contents – I don’t keep the current butter in the fridge because it’s too hard to spread. I put an inverted aluminium bowl over the dish as Mitzi-proofing, but that was no good. She removed it with contempt and ate all the butter again. So my butter now lives in a cupboard above the bread-board, and Mitzi gives me baleful glances whenever I spread a bit of toast. Well, tough. There are no free government schemes for butter-proofing. You just have to do it yourself.

The Cat  Winter 2012 29

What did you do Steve Ainsworth uncovers the sea-faring past of an indomitable naval cat All cats have nine lives, but some need them more than others. And there’s surely no cat in history who needed a few extra lives more than Unsinkable Sam a feline whose experiences during the Second World War made him the most celebrated cat in the history of the Royal Navy. Unsinkable Sam however began his naval career aboard a German warship as part of the ‘Kriegsmarine’. Astonishingly he would see active service aboard three famous vessels, and, incredibly, survive the sinking of each of them. The black-and-white tom began his war service as ship’s cat aboard the German battleship Bismarck; he was ‘signed up’ in 1940 when he was known as Oskar. The post of ship’s cat aboard the Bismarck was a prestigious posting. Bismarck was the largest battleship ever built by Germany and one of the largest ever built by any European power. Oskar was on board the battleship on 18 May 1941 when she set sail on Operation Rheinübung. The Bismarck intended to break out into the Atlantic

30 The Cat  Winter 2012

through the Denmark Strait between Greenland and Iceland and attack Allied shipping convoys in the North Atlantic. It was to be the Bismarck’s only outing. Within a week Oskar experienced his first action. On 24 May 1941 the Bismarck encountered the British Navy’s battle cruiser HMS Hood. Of the 1,418 crew aboard the Hood only three would survive the Bismarck’s attack. When news of the loss reached London, Churchill issued a terse order to the Royal Navy: “Sink the Bismarck”. Oskar’s time as a member of the Kriegsmarine would last only three more days. On 27 May the Bismarck was sunk after a fierce sea-battle. Of 2,200 crew only 115 survived. Or rather 116: Oskar was found floating on a plank and was plucked from the sea by the crew of the British destroyer HMS Cossack. The destroyer had been escorting Convoy WS-8B to the Middle East: Cossack and four other warships had broken off from the convoy on 26 May and headed towards the area where Bismarck had been reported.

Giving his rescuers-cum-captors nothing more than the name, rank and number expected of prisoners of war Oskar then made the sensible choice of enlisting in the Royal Navy.

A transfer of allegiance Oskar, now Oscar, served on board HMS Cossack throughout the summer of 1941 as she carried out convoy escort duties in both the Mediterranean and north Atlantic. In the autumn, however, Oscar would use up yet another of his remaining lives. On 24 October 1941, as HMS Cossack was escorting a convoy from Gibraltar to Britain she was hit by a torpedo fired by the German submarine U-563. The explosion blew off a third of the forward section of the ship, killing 159 of the crew. Survivors, including Oscar, were transferred to the destroyer HMS Legion and an attempt was made to tow the badly listing Cossack back to Gibraltar. Worsening weather conditions however meant the task became impossible. On 27 October HMS Cossack had to be abandoned.


in the war, puss?

Under attack…again Returning from Malta on 14 November 1941, the Ark Royal was attacked in her turn. Another German U-boat, U-81, had seen the Ark Royal in the cross hairs of its periscope and fired a torpedo which hit the aircraft carrier amidships. A 130×30 ft hole was blown in the ship’s starboard side and bottom. The deep-running torpedo had struck the bilge keel and detonated inside the vessel. The hit caused flooding

of the starboard boiler room, main switchboard, oil tanks and over 100ft of the ship’s starboard bilge. With his ship listing badly, the Ark Royal’s Captain, Loben Maund, ordered the vessel to be abandoned. Attempts were made to tow Ark Royal to Gibraltar, but the unstoppable inflow of water through the enormous hole in her side made the task impossible. Some 30 miles from Gibraltar the great aircraft carrier rolled over and sank. Astonishingly, given the extent of damage done to Ark Royal by U-82, only one crew member was killed. The 1,487 officers and crew were picked up by other Royal navy vessels and taken to Gibraltar. Among the survivors was Unsinkable Sam, who for a second time had found himself clinging to a piece of flotsam in the open sea. He was picked up by the crew of a motor launch who described him as “angry but quite unharmed” before they transferred him, for the second time, to HMS Lightning, the same destroyer which had rescued him

after the sinking of HMS Cossack. Sam may have been unsinkable, but sadly not one of the ships he sailed in ever was: HMS Lightning was sunk in the Mediterranean by German torpedo boats in 1943. But, happily for Sam, his maritime career ended with his service on the Ark Royal.

A landlubber at last With exceptional perspicacity someone at the Admiralty realised that Unsinkable Sam was less of a lucky mascot than a jinx. Sam was permanently transferred to shore, first to the offices of the Governor of Gibraltar. He was later sent to the United Kingdom, where he lived out the remainder of the war years living in a seaman’s home in Belfast. Sam died, age unknown, in 1955. Despite his gallant wartime service Sam never received a medal. But he did get one long-lasting accolade: a pastel portrait by the artist Georgina ShawBaker (1860-1951), entitled ‘Oscar, cat mascot of the Bismark’ (sic). The picture is now in the possession of the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich.

The Cat  Winter 2012


Illustration: Sam Roberts

The next day the Cossack sank to the west of Gibraltar. Oscar and the other crew members were handed over to the shore establishment in Gibraltar. Strangely, Oscar now had a reputation as a lucky mascot. He acquired the nickname Unsinkable Sam and soon found a new berth on the aircraft carrier HMS Ark Royal, the very ship from which aircraft which had torpedoed the Bismarck had been launched. Rather than being a lucky cat, however, poor Unsinkable Sam might have better described as a Jonah – as the crew of the Ark Royal were to soon discover.

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Making a difference A variety of

d volunteers unite

by cats

Out in the wild How ferals fend themselves


Can’t have a cat? Unsinkable Sam How to get x your feline ďŹ

A serving sea

nd World War cat of the Seco great giveaways s, bats, cats and

Plus Vital vet check


Treat ’em mean, keep ’em keen Caroline Gaitskell describes life under her cat’s paw


owhere is the mantra ‘treat ‘em mean, keep ‘em keen’ more evident than with our feline Bibi. Since adopting the small bundle of fur from Cats Protection six years ago, we have devoted inordinate amounts of time to catering for her every whim and demand. Is this intense love appreciated? Perhaps. Is this intense love reciprocated? Sometimes – but only if it suits her. At other times she will regard us with the same disdain that she reserves for budget cat food. If Bibi wanders past where I’m sitting, I’ll automatically stretch my hand down to stroke her, only for her to limbo down, choosing to rub her tummy on the floor rather than suffering the horrific alternative of deigning to let any of her well-groomed fur be touched by me. Yet this cold treatment just ensures that I crave Bibi’s affection even more. Occasionally over the winter months she will settle on my lap. All my plans are immediately halted while I try to not move even a miniscule muscle so that our furry diva isn’t disturbed. Unfortunately, the delight I take in this unexpected honour is short lived, because as soon as the central heating switches on she will abandon me and curl up by the radiator, leaving me with the sinking realisation that I was never anything more than a big hot water bottle for her. Bibi seems to believe that I have complete control over the weather and holds me personally responsible if it is not up to her constant requirement of a heat wave. If it is raining and she wants to go outside, she will utter a sad miaow and then give me a look that makes me feel so

Illustration: Rus Hudda

guilty about the conditions that I won’t even be able to meet her unblinking green eyes. Conversely, if there is sunshine, Bibi can be found rolling around the patio. She will be so pleased with me for arranging the weather that I will be granted the highest privilege that can be bestowed upon a cat owner – I will be allowed to humbly rub her tummy. Obviously she maintains the power to withdraw this right at any time. Usually via a swipe of a paw. With claws fully extended. As warm sunny days are a rarity, Bibi will normally be perusing her territory from the indoor comfort of a window sill, her accusatory gaze flickering between the overhead clouds and me. As a peace-offering I will serve her a plate of cat food, and if it’s eaten, a feeling of hunter-gatherer satisfaction rushes over me. Invariably though, Bibi will look down her nose at it, and with a derisive flick of her tail saunter away. This leaves me feeling wracked with guilt that in these austere economic times I have saved money by purchasing a cheaper brand of cat food. Learning from my mistakes, we now eat food clinging onto its use-by date, or whatever the supermarket BOGOF is, but at least we can be assured that premium cat food – with its accompanying premium price tag – is well-stocked in the kitchen for our little madame. Bibi’s days are full of catnaps. She looks so sweet that I won’t be able to resist fussing and kissing her. Sometimes my outbursts of affection are met with purrs. At other times she will dramatically get up and move just out of reach before settling down again, demonstrating that actions will always speak louder than words. Or should that be purrs? Come night-time, Bibi demands that she occupies prime position on our bed. This means in the middle and at right angles to our legs – which end up in all manner of positions as we try to accommodate her. Consequently, my husband and I are perched either side of the bed on thin strips of mattress, neither of us completely covered by the duvet. This results in us both being awake for half of the night, while we listen to our cat snoring. How do we feel about this? Completely honoured of course! Bibi chose to grant us her company for the night. This ensures that we start the day eager to please her and therefore her mantra remains unchallenged.

Our vital, vibrant

volunteers Many different types of people volunteer for Cats Protection. R  ebecca Evanstalks to some of the charity’s dedicated helpers


ats Protection helped more than 235,000 cats last year. This wouldn’t have been possible without the tireless work of our 8,721-strong band of volunteers. These dedicated people gave up around 4.5 million hours last year to help the charity, from fundraising at fairs to caring for cats. They were responsible for an impressive three-quarters of our rehoming work. The charity clearly benefits enormously from its hardworking helpers. Volunteers say they get much out of volunteering, too. Greater confidence, new skills, more friends, the satisfaction of doing good work – these are just some of the advantages mentioned by our volunteers. Our helpers are a varied bunch, drawn from different age and interest groups and from all sorts of backgrounds. From schoolchildren to racing drivers, there’s no such thing as a typical CP volunteer. Georgina devotes one day a weekend to fundraising


The Cat  Winter 2012

Georgina: Fundraising sixth-former While her friends are shopping, playing sport, or just relaxing at the weekend, teenager Georgina Smith-Woods is often to be found doing something very different. On many evenings – after school – and every weekend, Georgina volunteers for CP’s Gloucester Branch. “I normally give up one day of my weekend to go out fundraising if we’ve got an event on,” says the 17-year-old sixth-former. “If we haven’t, then I’ll be organising something for the future.” Supporting CP runs in the family, as Georgina’s mother Miranda works as a Regional Development Assistant for the charity and also volunteers for Gloucester Branch. Georgina first became involved with CP by helping her Mum foster cats and kittens, including after-school trips to the vet. In January, Georgina took on an extra challenge, helping to organise fundraising events such as stalls, fairs and quizzes for the branch. “I’ve organised events: finding volunteers and running the stall,” she says. “I’ve also arranged a quiz night for later this year.” For Georgina, nothing beats spending the day at a fair or show then coming home and counting up the funds raised. “You realise that you’ve actually helped cats and will be able to pay for those that need special treatment,” she says. While she recognises that many teenagers think regular volunteering is too much commitment, she suggests those considering helping out simply offer whatever hours they can. “Even if you only give up one day a month, that still helps.” As well as the sense of satisfaction that comes from helping cats, Georgina says volunteering has boosted her confidence. She has recently taken on a part-time job in a school uniform shop and says that she’s more assured with the customers, thanks to her volunteering experience. She’ll carry on volunteering when she leaves home, too. “I’m looking around at universities at the moment and I’m already finding out about the CP branches in each area,” she laughs.

FEATURE Jim: Daredevil driver Jim Tiller has a strong claim to being Cats Protection’s speediest volunteer. That’s not because the Co-ordinator for Lewes, Seaford & District Branch is unusually fast at feeding cats or particularly prompt with paperwork. No – it’s something much more daring: Jim has reached 197 miles an hour in his vintage sports car, speeding along the Bonneville Salt Flats of Utah, US. “It was amazing, driving at that speed,” says the 78-year-old racing enthusiast. “The car’s completely out of control because it’s on loose salt. I spun the car at 165 miles an hour and again at 185. You’re told to take your hands off the steering wheel when that happens, because you could lose a thumb.” Jim’s prize vehicle, an extensively-modified Allard made in London in the middle of the last century, is now considered the fastest of its marque in the world. He races it regularly. “Most people of my age are doing the roses or mucking about in wheelchairs,” says the two-time winner of the Brighton Speed Trials. “I don’t know how long I’m going to be able to drive at those speeds so I keep the car running.” Jim admits that racing sucks up lots of time and money – he doesn’t smoke or drink and rarely goes on a proper holiday – but for him it’s more of a passion than a hobby. Luckily for Jim, his wife Sheila, who is also Branch Treasurer, shares his enthusiasm. She has her own Allard and was a keen racer herself until she switched to rallies in 2000. The pair pursue their petrol-driven passion together, too; in the summer, they drove their vintage Wolseley to France with a local classic car club that Jim founded. Jim’s friends were unsurprised when, 25 years ago, he volunteered to run the then-new branch in East Sussex. “They never know what I’m going to be doing next,” he explains. As well as racing and rallies, he and Sheila run a private cattery from their home; they’ve fostered CP cats in dedicated pens; Jim’s an artist and keen watercolour painter. With so many interests, Jim explains that running the branch is simply one part of his fulfilling and busy life and something that he does to the best of his ability. “We’ve got a stable group that have been together for many years,” he says of the branch. “We’ve had some wonderful legacies, and yes, there are some affluent areas around here, but we wouldn’t have got those legacies if we hadn’t been doing a good job.” The branch has achieved much, he says, from fundraising to feral work, but Jim is particularly glad whenever an older cat is rehomed. “I’ve got a soft spot for elderly cats…People find kittens adorable but I like the cats that have lived for many years. They’ve had battles and struggles, avoided getting run over and sometimes survived abuse from humans. They have a certain dignity about them.” Considering Jim’s daredevil nature, it’s perhaps not surprising he prefers cats that, like him, have survived a few scrapes.

The Cat  Winter 2012


FEATURE Gill: Mad Moggy Run biker

Danielle: From care to caring

When she’s not working hard as a Cat Care Assistant at CP’s Derby Adoption Centre, or volunteering as a Fundraiser, Gill Andrew can be found roaring around the country on her motorbike, a powerful Honda CBR 600, accompanied by her partner Ian. “We do runs and weekend rallies all over the country as much as we can,” she says. “It takes up a big chunk of our lives.” Two years ago, Gill dreamt up a way of combining her two passions, cats and bikes, and the Mad Moggy Run was born. She organised the first fundraising motorbike ride in 2011. The second, held this May, raised £1,800 and boosted the centre’s profile. And one of the centre’s cats was rehomed after one of the bikers took a shine to him. Gill’s love for motorbikes goes back a long way. She sat on a bike for the first time at six months old. When she was 16, she had a moped. “Then I discovered cars and never took my interest in motorbikes any further.” She rediscovered her passion for two-wheeled transport in her thirties. “If you go to rock clubs, you know people with bikes.” She hasn’t looked back since passing her test in 2000. Even though it’s only two years old, Derby Adoption Centre’s Mad Moggy Run has become so well-known in the local biker community that Gill is committed to carrying on with it. This means devoting hours of her free time to organising the run in the six months beforehand. It’s worth every minute of effort, says Gill. “The atmosphere at this year’s run was buzzing…I was back marker and going down a Gill pictured hill and up again I could see all with colleagues 70 bikes. And I thought: ‘Yes – (l-r) Ray I’ve done that!’”

Twenty-year-old Danielle Tanner has been volunteering at CP’s Bridgend Adoption Centre in South Wales, since she was 18. Danielle, who was in care from her mid-teens, first found out about CP through her advocate, who knew of her interest in animals. Danielle enjoys everything about her four-day-a week role. “I like to spend time with the cats and know that I’m helping them settle and feel as comfortable as possible,” she says. She gets stuck in with all sorts of things; home visits, open days and admitting cats to the centre. “I like the atmosphere at the centre and feeling part of the team,” Danielle adds. Danielle feels she’s benefitted in many ways from volunteering. Her friends are proud of her, she’s made lots of new mates and has gained the confidence to use public transport. “My confidence has grown and Volunteering I’ve matured since volunteering,” has boosted she says. “I used to be very shy and Danielle’s found it hard to speak to people confidence but now I’m happy to talk to visitors at the centre and the people that come to the open days.” Unsurprisingly, given her positive experience of volunteering, Danielle would not hesitate to recommend it to other young people. “Go for it, it’s one of the best things I’ve done,” she says.

Hopkins and Andrew Burke

Freya: Cat cuddling schoolgirl Freya Johns is not yet old enough to volunteer for CP by herself, but the nine-year-old Sussex schoolgirl didn’t let that stop her. She simply persuaded her family to come along, too! “We were on the waiting list for quite a long time,” says her Mum Rebecca. “Freya kept asking me to phone up and check whether we could come and cuddle the cats yet.” Since she became a CP Cat Cuddler this summer, Freya has shown true dedication. She persuaded Mum to take her to the National Cat Adoption Centre at Chelwood Gate every day during the summer holidays. Freya, who has a tabby cat, Phoebe, at home, says she likes tabbies and tortoiseshells the best. When she’s old enough to volunteer independently – at 14 – Freya would like to try different volunteering roles. “When I’m older, I’d like to work with animals,” she adds. Now the school term has restarted, Freya is restricted to cat cuddling at weekends. But she’s already plotting how to fit more volunteering in to her life. Freya volunteered “When she starts her new every day of the school, the bus will take her summer holidays past the Adoption Centre,” says Rebecca. “She’s already asking if she can get off the bus after school and go cat cuddling!”

What could you do? Cats Protection welcomes volunteers with open arms. We have many volunteer vacancies waiting to be filled from cat care to fundraising, shop work to paperwork. Whether you’re young or older, male or female, there’s bound to be a role in the charity for you! For more information visit get-involved/volunteering-home and search for nearby volunteer vacancies.

36 The Cat  Winter 2012

You can help cats every time you hit the shops, thanks to the Cats Protection Credit Card from MBNA.

0% for up to 12 months* from the date your

You’ll not only receive an attractive rate, but you’ll also benefit from our free 24-hour customer service helpline, secure online card services and no liability for loss, theft or fraudulent internet use.†

0% for up to 12 months from the date your

account is opened, on balance transfers made in the first 90 days (3% handling fee) account is opened, on money transfers into your current account in the first 90 days (4% handling fee)

0% on card purchases for 3 months from the date your account is opened.

Don’t delay – phone us on:

0800 028 2440 quoting Cats Protection

Representative example 16.9% p.a. (variable) on card purchases. This is equivalent to 16.9% APR representative (variable) based on a credit limit of £1200.

† If your card is lost or stolen, you’ll incur no liability for fraudulent use of your card provided you notify us as soon as you realise your card is missing or you notice any unusual transactions on your account. Promotional rates will no longer apply from the beginning of any statement period during which you have breached your terms and conditions, for example if you haven’t paid on time or have gone over your credit limit. You cannot transfer balances between MBNA accounts. The credit card is issued by MBNA Europe Bank Limited. Registered Office: Stansfield House, Chester Business Park, Chester CH4 9QQ. Registered in England number 2783251. MBNA’s consumer credit activities are licensed by the Office of Fair Trading and MBNA’s general insurance activities are authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority. Credit is available, subject to status, only to UK residents aged 18 or over. Calls may be monitored and/or recorded for quality and training purposes and for compliance with regulations.

Take a look at our selection of top products and great giveaways for the winter months, for both you and your cat


Multi-purpose cat pods

Colourful collars

Softer solution

Calligraphy cats

If your cat is recovering from surgery or a minor injury, then a ProCollar could help stop him scratching or biting the affected area. The inflatable collars are an alternative to the buster collar (sometimes known as a lampshade collar). They allow pets to see around them, helping to reduce stress. The ProCollar is available in six sizes and we have one prize of two collars, an extrasmall and small, to give away. Just quote the phrase P  roCollar. To see the products, and for more information, see

The Japanese Shop sells gifts such as kimono robes, kokeshi dolls, organic incense and a large collection of very cute lucky cats (known in Japan as maneki neko). In Japan, they are placed at the entrance of houses and in store windows to bring good fortune and prosperity. The Japanese Shop is offering one lucky reader a Cats in Love print from its exclusive new range of calligraphy Lucky Cat prints designed by the Japanese artist, Saren Nagata. Enter in the usual way, using the phrase J apanese Print. View the range online at, visit the company’s showroom in Harrogate, or phone 01423 876 320.



The Cat  Winter 2012

Photo: Valerie Richardson

PetzPodz can be used in many ways. With a change of the front panel, each UV stablised plastic pod can be used as an indoor bed, or outdoor shelter. The pods have dual-wall insulation to keep your cat cool in the summer and warm in winter, and the pods are easy to clean, with a hinged top and drainage holes in the base. Lowvoltage heat mats and colour-coordinated beds are available from the same company at

The Natural Pet Toy Company sells beautiful cat collars in lively striped designs that won’t clash with your cat or your décor! The company only makes small quantities of each pattern and it changes the colours regularly. The adjustable collars are handmade in England and feature a snap-release fastening that will come apart if your cat gets caught in anything; a removable bell and a D ring. All collars are stitched, not glued, so are durable and safe for cats and kittens to wear. They are presented in a cotton bag so make a lovely gift too. We have three collars to give away, and winners will be able to pick their preferred colour. Quote N  atural Pet Toy Companywhen you enter. Visit to see the full range available.


OUR FAVOURITE THINGS Don’t get in a flap!

Cat conundrum

If you or your cat has suffered the trauma of an intruder through the cat flap, then the launch of SureFlap’s cat flap back in 2008 will have been a great solution. It is a cat flap that will only recognise your cat’s microchip so he is the only cat that will be able to gain entry. SureFlap is about to launch its new pet flap, the SureFlap Microchip Pet Door. The door has not only increased in size to allow for both cats and small dogs, but SureFlap has added extra features – a curfew mode and double-lock mechanism. The Microchip Pet Door is powered by batteries and is compatible with all microchip formats worldwide. It will retail at £119.99 and is available through SureFlap or phone 01234 227 158.

Coiledspring Games has three cute kitten jigsaw puzzles to offer readers of The Cat. When the weather’s chilly, why not spend some time in the warmth, solving this 1,000 piece Schmidt puzzle which shows a lively kitten at play? You could even get the whole family involved! To enter, quote the phrase C  at Jigsaw. If you can’t wait, then you can buy the puzzles online at Amazon or

SureFlap’s new door is big enough for small dogs, too!



cat’ s miaow Sip in style

Bold beakers


Encouraging younger children to drink plenty of fluids can be a challenge, but these brightlycoloured beakers from TumTum are a fun solution. Aimed at children between one and three years old, each beaker has a wide, antitopple base and a flexible straw so children can drink every last drop. The beakers are free of BPA, phthalate and PVC and are dishwasher safe, too. TumTum has five beakers featuring its Sardine the Cat character to give away. Just use the phrase TumTum Beakers when you enter. For more information and products, see

Curling up with The Cat, your cat and a cuppa is one of winter’s pleasures. It’s great news then, that Royal Worcester has three Cat’s Whiskers mugs to give away. Each fine bone china mug features a fun feline design by Caroline Gardner and is dishwasher safe. Enter in the usual way, quoting the phrase C  hina Mugs. And see to view the full range.


For a chance to win one of our brilliant giveaways, send your name and address plus the prize phrase on a postcard or sealed envelope to: The Cat magazine, National Cat Centre, Chelwood Gate, Haywards Heath, Sussex, RH17 7TT. You can also send your entries via email to: Don’t forget to include the giveaway phrase in the subject header so we know which competition you’re entering, and remember to include your name and address in the email body. Occasionally, we may need to pass details of competition winners to the prize suppliers for products to be posted direct. The closing date for all giveaways is 1  1 January 2012.

The Cat  Winter 2012 39

Together for For Sharyn Wood, teamwork is the key to a successful branch. But the Co-ordinator of Arbroath & Carnoustie Adoption Centre has taken her collaborative approach a step further, as she explains to Rebecca Evans


t’s tough to get Sharyn Wood to talk about herself. The Co-ordinator of Cats Protection’s Arbroath & Carnoustie Adoption Centre is a confirmed team player. “You can have ideas, but you can’t put them in place without everyone else being on board,” she says. Arbroath & Carnoustie has achieved much since Sharyn became the centre’s Co-ordinator in 2004, including rehoming an impressive 300–400 cats a year. In its best year so far, the Scottish centre rehomed 450 felines. Sharyn’s collaborative approach extends much further than her immediate team, though. Her centre is part of a network of CP branches in north-east Scotland that help and support each other in their work, reflecting CP’s One Charity ethos. “We don’t have borders between our branches; they’re completely blurred,” she explains. Because of this wider team approach, more than half of the cats rehomed from Arbroath & Carnoustie come from other branches. Even Sharyn’s ascension to the Co-ordinator role was something of a collective decision. She’d first volunteered in 1997, taking cats to the vet from the centre, which is set in countryside three miles north of Arbroath, a small harbour town on the North Sea coast. Then, in 2004, the Branch Co-ordinator role became vacant unexpectedly. The centre volunteers, recognising Sharyn’s leadership potential, encouraged her to accept the position.

40 The Cat  Winter 2012

“At that point, I said I’d only do it if everybody else took a role as well. We divided up all the roles and I took the Coordinator’s role,” she says. So Sharyn found herself in charge of the Arbroath & Carnoustie Adoption Centre, which now has 12 pens, an isolation unit, kitchen and office. At that time, though, it was just “a few pens dotted about and a shed”. While Sharyn had plenty of business experience, as she owns a care home with her husband Nick, she quickly discovered she’d need to adapt her approach for volunteers. “When I started as a Co-ordinator I had my ‘dealing with employees’ hat with me, and I had to leave that at home very quickly. Tact is the biggest lesson I learnt.”

Volunteers welcome Sharyn, who has always loved cats, knew that to help more felines she would have to increase the centre’s volunteer base. Initially, she used word of mouth to persuade more people to join her team. “The volunteers that we had were all very enthusiastic so we asked them to put out feelers and bring along friends… After a year or so we decided to expand and put an advert in the local paper. Lots of volunteers have come along since then.” There’s no such thing as a typical team member at the centre. Some are long-term helpers, others are unemployed and looking for something to keep them occupied. A number


“We don’t have borders between our branches; they’re completely blurred”

cats of the centre’s volunteers have been animal care students looking for practical experience, others were completing their Duke of Edinburgh award. Sharyn says: “If they come to us and say they can only give us help for the next six months then we welcome them with open arms. The more people we have here the more our story is put out.” Sharyn now has a 50-strong band of helpers, with 30 of those on adoption centre duties. Every day of the week, two or three volunteers do the morning shift, feeding the cats and cleaning their pens. Others cover the afternoon shift, including the two hours, 2pm–4pm, the centre is open to the public. Later on, volunteers do what Sharyn calls the “tuck-in service”, looking after the cats’ needs in the evening. The centre also has off-site maternity pens, looked after by volunteer Brenda Reid. Once duties have been allocated and discussed, Sharyn is happy to let her team get on with their tasks. “I’m not going to look over everyone’s shoulder all the time,” she says. As she grew her band of volunteers, Sharyn also started to raise awareness of the branch in Arbroath and further afield. Her team attended fairs and festivals, taking along all the information they could about the centre and its activities. Every day, volunteers update the centre’s website and Facebook page with details of cats and kittens, helping to reach potential owners near and far. As well as general awareness-raising, Sharyn has made sure to get the word out about specific activities. Arbroath & Carnoustie is one of many CP centres and branches that offer financial help with cat neutering. This help is particularly important in Arbroath, which has economic challenges.

Sharyn works closely with other CP Co-ordinators

“Arbroath is an area where there’s an awful lot of unemployment,” says Sharyn. “People sometimes can’t afford to keep animals. We try to alleviate that by advertising everywhere that if anyone’s on benefits, on low income or would have difficulty neutering their cat then please get in contact.” She adds: “We do a lot of free neutering. These people would not be able to afford the vet fees. It’s in our best interests to prevent unwanted kittens.” Under Sharyn’s guidance, the centre has pushed its message into the local community, reaching schools, colleges and social groups. Volunteer Brenda Reid, who also looks after the centre’s off-site maternity pens, gives talks for schools and social groups; these are publicised by their friendly local librarian. Brownie and Scout groups have visited the centre. And an exciting new partnership is under discussion; the volunteer trainer Margaret Miller is in talks with Angus College to agree a scheme for animal care students to visit the centre for classes and work experience. The arrangement should be in place by the end of the year. As well as raising awareness, Sharyn has set about looking for more and better opportunities to raise funds. The centre has two volunteers in charge of fundraising, Margaret Miller and Laura Robertson, and the hard-working pair have their own team, too. They organise at least one cash-generating event a month. The highlight of the centre’s fundraising calendar is its Open Day in June, held in a field at the back of the centre. This year’s event featured stalls, a bouncy castle, barbeque, strawberry cream teas and face painting. Reflecting on her achievements over the past eight years, Sharyn says: “I think people are far more aware of us now.”

The Cat  Winter 2012


BEHIND THE SCENES Pulling together But the efforts of Sharyn and her team in transforming the centre’s performance are only half the story. Because Sharyn regards the centre as part of an even wider team; Arbroath & Carnoustie is one of seven CP branches and centres in north-east Scotland that regularly help one another. Last year, around 54 per cent of the cats homed from Sharyn’s centre came from other branches. In 2010, that figure was 67 per cent. “The cats have gained from it,” she says of the inter-branch co-operation. Every quarter, the north-east Scotland network group meets up for a chat over a cup of tea. The seven branches help each other in all sorts of different ways. Rehoming, for instance. If a visitor from outside of Arbroath wants to rehome a cat from the Adoption Centre, Sharyn will check with the Co-ordinator of the visitor’s nearest branch that they’re happy for the rehoming to go ahead. Sharyn explains: “Usually, what happens is they ask us for help because we have the adoption centre…we probably have too big a facility for our area…any Co-ordinator that’s having trouble or has an emergency can phone up and ask if we’ve got an empty pen. We don’t believe in keeping our pens empty.” Sharyn says this flexible approach fits the way people now look for a cat. “Because of the internet, people are looking and seeing a cat they like from miles away. People will travel if they’ve seen a cat.” And, because of increasing web use, the centre’s reach goes even further than north-east Scotland. Sharyn has rehomed cats to and from Edinburgh and the West Coast with the help of local branches. Once a cat is transferred to Arbroath & Carnoustie, whether directly or from another branch, Sharyn’s team do everything they can to find him a good home. This happens relatively quickly; so far, no cat has stayed at the centre for longer than six months. And this length of stay is rare. “We’ve very proactive in finding new homes,” says Sharyn. “The way we advertise the cats is intended to bring people in to meet them.” When visitors ask to see a particular cat, the volunteers encourage them to meet all the mogs. Then if the cat they come to see isn’t suitable, they can consider another. Centre volunteers only carry out home visits to potential adopters by exception. In Arbroath “everyone knows everyone else” says Sharyn, so, for local homings at least, volunteers usually already know if the potential adopter’s house is suitable for the cat. Her team encourages new cat owners to stay in touch by uploading photographs to Facebook of their cat relaxing in his new home. These adopters often go on to recommend the centre to their friends so the rehoming successes continue. Sharyn’s work has not gone unnoticed. In 2008, she won CP’s first Volunteer of the Year award for


The Cat  Winter 2012

helping Arbroath & Carnoustie Adoption Centre find homes for an impressive 350 cats and kittens in 2007. At the same ceremony, she also received the Extra Mile accolade for helping neighbouring branches. The charity praised Sharyn for having “all the ideal qualities that Cats Protection appreciates in a volunteer – hard work, team spirit and a strong commitment to giving unwanted cats a second chance in life”. She almost turned down the award. “I found it difficult to accept because we’re a team here.” Still, when pressed about her proudest achievements, she mentions her part in building up branch co-operation in north-east Scotland. “That’s been really good and the cats have gained from it. It relieves a lot of problems.” Sharyn also says the centre has changed “since the early days when this place was just a few pens dotted about and a shed, to what I think is quite a professional set up now”. Characteristically, she adds: “But I couldn’t have done it without everyone else doing it too.”

Sharyn’s seven-day schedule Being a Co-ordinator is an all-encompassing role says Sharyn; even on her free days she’ll often end up on CP tasks. “If the phone rings at home my husband shouts miaow,” she adds.

Monday Morning: At home Afternoon: At the centre, takes cats to the vet Evening: Checks centre’s voicemail messages from home; prioritises tasks and delegates to volunteers

Tuesday Day: Volunteers for Citizens Advice Bureau Evening: Checks centre’s voicemail messages

Wednesday Morning: Visits Fife care home that she owns with husband Nick Afternoon: Back at the centre, catching up with volunteers. Evening: Checks centre’s voicemail messages

Thursday In theory, this is Sharyn’s free day, but she often ends up at the centre anyway, catching up with volunteers among other tasks. Evening: Checks voicemail messages

Friday At Citizens Advice Bureau all day Evening: Voicemail messages

Weekend Mornings: Picks up cats that are coming into the centre Afternoons: At the centre for the public opening hours from 2pm–4pm

Make him the promise of a lifetime At Cats Protection, we have been saving injured, starving and abandoned cats and kittens since 1927. Thanks to our promise never to put a healthy cat to sleep, we have changed the lives of hundreds of thousands of cats, giving them all a second chance at life. You can help us keep our special promise and care for even more cats by leaving us a gift in your will. If cats are close to your heart, make sure your kindness continues to change their lives for many years to come. Ask us for your free information booklet today.

01825 741 271

(Mon – Fri, 9am – 5pm) or email Find out more with our free information booklet Order your free copy of our booklet today. Simply complete and return this form to: Matt Vincent, Legacy Department, Cats Protection, FREEPOST SEA 7678, Haywards Heath, RH17 7BR. No stamp needed.




Postcode: Tel:

It really helps Cats Protection if we can keep you informed about our exciting work, campaigns, activities and fundraising. If you would prefer us to not contact you by post or telephone, please phone 08707 706827, email: or write to us at the Freepost address: FREEPOST SEA 7678, Cats Protection, Haywards Heath, RH17 7BR. Reg Charity 203644 (England and Wales) and SC037711 (Scotland)

LA1243 LA72

Feeding the 500 We join Tracey Wilson in CP’s bid to build a future for cats in Leeds


n Thursday 27 September I found myself lying on cold, hard concrete outside the art gallery in Leeds city centre, surrounded by 500 cat bowls. How did I end up here? As Cats Protection’s Capital Appeals Fundraiser, I have been raising funds for our new homing centre planned to open in Gildersome, Leeds in 2013. The public launch of our fundraising appeal – to raise £50,000 to allow us to complete the build – was planned for September. We needed to do something that would raise awareness of the desperate need for the centre, generate funds and not cost very much to put on. There are thousands of cats in Leeds that need our help and the new centre plans to find homes for 500 cats and kittens each year. It is hard to picture just how many cats this is – with this in mind we decided to display 500 cat bowls, with each one representing one of the cats the new centre will rehome in its first year. We called the event “Feeding the 500”. Feedback from our volunteers in the area about a good location to hold the event was unanimous, we had to be in the city centre. After contacting Leeds City Council we secured Victoria Gardens, the space in front of the Leeds Art Gallery. Now we had our venue, I just had to organise 500 cat bowls, helpers for the day, press coverage and promotional materials – not forgetting praying for good weather, as the event was to be held outside. My wonderful colleagues volunteered to come along and help on the day and our PR agency got to work with getting us some media coverage. To raise funds we decided that each of the bowls Tracey gets on display would be available for people to work to sponsor by either making a one-off donation or setting up a direct debit. Regular donations by direct debit are extremely important as they allow us to plan for the future. The fundraising will not stop once the centre opens – we will still need to work hard to raise funds to make sure it stays open. To thank people that donated on the day we wanted to give them the opportunity to write a message or dedication that could be placed in one of the bowls and then put on display at the new centre when it opens. I spoke to our Design team about the best way to do this and they came up

44 The Cat  Winter 2012

FUNDRAISING Bertie Bassett

An outstanding team effort

with an amazing idea – a leaflet in the shape of a cat that folded around the bowl and looked like it was eating from the bowl.

Rain, rain go away The week of “Feeding the 500” arrived and I sat looking out of the window at the torrential rain with a heavy heart. Everything was organised to the last detail, the only thing I could not control was the weather. The forecast predicted the rain would continue until Wednesday and then stop on Thursday, I really hoped this would turn out to be true. I was delighted to wake up on Thursday to blue skies. We drove over to Leeds and set up our gazebo quickly with much-appreciated help from some passers-by. Having never laid out 500 bowls before I hoped I had allowed enough time – thankfully my colleagues pulled together and got it done in no time at all. The event started and a photographer arrived from the Y  orkshire Evening Post. This is where I ended up lying on the floor, having lots of photos taken with my 500 bowls. It was well worth the discomfort as we got some great shots, generated lots of interest and had some great local media coverage over the days following the event. Thank you to everyone that supported us at “Feeding the 500”. We signed up over 20 new direct debits which will provide essential ongoing funding for the new centre when it is open. If you were unable to attend the event but would like to help us feed the 500 please visit /five-hundred. For more information about the Gildersome Homing Centre Appeal visit or phone me on 01606 74991.

Photos: Mulberry Studios

Building a future for cats

One of our branches in the Leeds area told me about a rescue mission they undertook just a few days before the time of writing this article. For me it is a shocking but amazing story, for them it is what they do on regular basis. They visited the home of a man who had cats, allowed them to breed and sadly then found he could not manage. To begin with five older kittens were caught – a tricky task as it is likely they hadn’t been handled much since birth. They then discovered the mother cats with three new-born kittens under the bed. After one last look around to make sure they had all the cats, they found one last kitten who was very cold and close to death. Our volunteer put him under her jumper and turned up the heat in their van in an effort to save him. The vets were ready waiting to warm up the kitten – who has been named Bertie Bassett – by injecting warm fluid under the skin and syringing glucose into him. Thankfully soon after this, the blanket covering Bertie started to move – he was responding to treatment. Bertie and the rest of his family were all covered in fleas so they were promptly deflead. Bertie was given a couple of drops of milk and the vet nurse took them all home. By midnight he was much stronger and could even suckle from his mother, unfortunately she didn’t have much milk and the other kittens soon moved him away as they were hungry. This meant Bertie had to be syringe fed until the other kittens were taken away for a few minutes allowing Bertie to have his turn. The next day the whole family were moved to one of our volunteer Fosterers, she continued to syringe feed Bertie every two hours and gave the mother as much food as she could eat. Her milk is now flowing and she is able to feed all four of her kittens. Bertie just needs supplement feeding every four hours and will hopefully be able to cope on his own very soon. The mother looks so content to just lie there in peace and quiet in a comfortable, warm bed with plenty of food. She can now concentrate on raising a healthy family in a safe place. Later she will be neutered and loving new homes will be found for her and her kittens. Bertie was very lucky our volunteers found him when they did – another hour and he would have died. It is such a relief that we have these dedicated volunteers carrying out this essential work in an area where a story such as this is not unusual. Our new centre in Gildersome will offer essential support to our volunteers and it plans to find new homes for around 500 cats and kittens each year.

The Cat  Winter 2012


Give your feet a rest and exercise your mind

Ten-minute crossword Purr ‘n’ Fur Café Neko in Vienna

Across 1 Flabbergasted (6) 4 Venom (6) 8 Expel, force out (5) 9 Pivot (7) 10 Colonist (7) 11 Chess piece (5) 12 Never dying (9) 17 Confess (3,2) 19 Repeat (7) 21 Leaf vegetable (7) 22 Gloss (5) 23 Motor fuel (6) 24 Shortness of sight (6)

Down 1 Relaxed (2,4) 2 Tipped off (7) 3 Praise highly (5) 5 Slanting (7) 6 Twilled fabric (5) 7 Calling (6) 9 Immediately (9) 13 Placate (7) 14 Drastic reorganization (5-2) 15 Thrown carelessly (6) 16 Rupture (6) 18 Ingenuous (5) 20 Prose composition (5)

To win one of these three beautiful Rosina Wachtmeister tealights, complete our crossword correctly, rearrange the shaded letters to find the name of a famous foreign news correspondent. Write the answer, plus your name and address, on a letter or postcard, and send to: Crossword Competition, The Cat, NCC, Haywards Heath, Sussex, RH17 7TT. Alternatively email the answer with your name and address to us at with Crossword in the subject header. Winners will be drawn on 12 January 2013. The prizes are kindly sponsored by The Cat Gallery. Visit or phone 01904 413 000 to request a catalogue. Last issue’s winners: Tessa Elliott, Adrian Welborn and Miss Beck. Answers to autumn crossword on page 67. The famous daughter was Mia Farrow, whose mother was Maureen O Sullivan.

46 The Cat  Winter 2012

The first cat café opened in Taipei, Taiwan in 1998 and word soon spread to Japan where the first opened in Osaka in 2005 and there are now (2012) nearly 40 in Tokyo alone. The idea is for a themed café where patrons pay a fee so as to be able to watch and interact with cats. Their popularity in Japan arises probably because so many apartments in the overcrowded city forbid pets, and because cats provide relaxing companionship in what can be a stressful and lonely urban life. There are strict rules in order to conform to animal welfare and health-and-safety laws, and so that the feline residents are not, for example, pestered by unruly children or disturbed when sleeping. In May 2012 the first cat café in Europe opened in the centre of Vienna, Austria’s capital city, and is called Cafe Neko (nekomeans ‘cat’ in Japanese). It was opened by long-time Vienna resident Takako Ishimitsu, a 47-year-old woman originally from Nagoya in Japan, who had gone to Vienna some 20 years previously. She said she decided to open a cat café in order to introduce some aspects of Japanese culture to Vienna — but she had to spend three years negotiating with city officials over hygiene issues before it was allowed to trade. Says Ishimitsu: “Showing unknown Japanese concepts is good for Austria. And at the same time, I can do something good for the Vienna animal shelter that I have been supporting for years.” Customers can stroke and interact with five feline hosts; all are quite young and came from city animal shelters. They roam freely about the café and take naps when they choose. “Surprisingly, more than 99 per cent of the reactions have been positive,” says the owner. “One of our goals is to provide some happiness to people who cannot have cats on their own, because of their jobs or because family members suffer from allergies.” For more extraordinary feline tales go to Patrick Roberts Want a cat but can’t have one? Read our feature on pages 18-20


Amusing Heather Heather Cook plays Happy Families Generally speaking, the residents of our feline Special Needs Unit are a collection of individuals rather than a finely honed team. Nobody could ever accuse Miss Isabelle of being on anybody’s team. If she thought for a moment that one of the others might want to sit on the sofa, she would do her level best to occupy all three seats – quite a challenge when you’re not much bigger than a teapot. Miss Elizabeth is quite chummy with the ancient Bonnie Bun-Bun, but I suspect that this has more to do with the fact that the old tabby coat hanger has several extra meals a day than sisterly bonding. When we adopted our little black kitten, Stumpy Malone, we were very conscious of the fact that all the other cats were considerably older than him and worried that he might be lonely. Stumpy was born without hind paws, but is a lively lad and loves to play. The first time I walked into the lounge and saw our huge black cat, Lucio, rolling Stumpy over and over, I panicked and dragged the great lump off the squealing kitten. Within seconds, Stumpy was racing after Lucio and they were rolling around again, so I made my apologies and left. Our other black cat, Evie, is – to put it mildly – a bit of a diva and the last cat in the world that I would ever have described as maternal. Imagine my surprise when I found her poking toy mice towards Stumpy and encouraging him to play. I couldn’t have been more amazed if I’d encountered the Loch Ness monster reading stories to a group of tiny tots. Stumpy is over a year old now and loves playing in the garden, where he is frequently to be found with his doting ‘parents’. Lucio provides the fatherly input of wrestling and chasing games, while Evie supplies a constant stream of real mice for Stumpy’s entertainment. We do try to rescue the mice, but Stumpy has learnt his lessons well and is often just a small black blur as he disappears deep into the undergrowth with the unfortunate mouse dangling from his jaws. We love cats for a host of reasons, but their endless ability to surprise us must rank high on the list. Each and every time I see Stumpy chasing round with Lucio and Evie, I marvel at the difference this most unexpected bonding has made to the life of our plucky little boy.

Evie’s Diary by Heather Cook is an ideal Christmas stocking filler. Evie is a bad cat with a bad cat’s view of life. She is small, smart and black and lived wild until she was caught by the lumpy, old cat rescuer who ended up adopting her. The book costs £7.99 and £1 will be donated to Woking & District Cats Protection Branch for every copy purchased. Books can be obtained by emailing, or phoning Heather on 01483 740815.

Sudoku Fill in the empty cells so that the digits 1 through to 9 appear: • only once in each row • only once in each column • only once in each 3x3 box (shown by the thicker lines)

Answers appear on page 67.

The Cat  Winter 2012


How can we help?

03000 12 12 12

As the leaves slowly slide from the trees and the ground starts to freeze we should spare a thought for the thousands of feral cats that cannot escape the approaching winter. It is difficult to imagine when we are curled up under our blankets, with a steaming hot cuppa and a cat resting by our side, that there is a very different kind of cat roaming in the dark. On a frosty winter’s eve, a feral cat begins the hunt; with sharp eyes and swift reflexes he soon pounces upon his prey. His prize is food but his true victory is his ability to conquer his terrain. The feral cat is resourceful and adaptable, but in rural areas where the land is more deeply affected by harsh weather it may be harder to find an outbuilding or structure that has not been buried by snow. Thankfully, feral cats are not always forgotten and, in winter, Cats Protection’s Helpline often sees an increase in calls from concerned members of the public who want to find out what they can do to help a feral cat survive in the cold. “It’s particularly bad when we have snow,” says Helpline Supervisor, Elanna Webster. “People want to know if feral cats have any shelter or can find food as easily”. It may sound as though there are not many options for the feral cat but we are here to advise people that there are always ways to help.

What you can do There are many differences between a feral and domestic cat, and while a feral cat may not desire the company of a loving owner or a house to call their own, basic needs such as food and shelter remain the same. If you are looking after a feral cat or one that spends most of their time outdoors, you could consider making an outdoor shelter for them. You can make a simple shelter using a box which you should fill with thermal blankets and then partially cover in plastic sheeting to keep the rain out.

48 The Cat  Winter 2012

Many pet stores even sell outdoor cat kennels and if you are considering this option then please ensure that you purchase one that is sturdy and waterproof. Feral cats are often timid and do not approach people unless tempted with food. Consequently, any shelter should be located as far away from human activity as possible, such as in the far corner of a garden or next to some dense shrubbery. Placing strong-smelling food like salmon or pilchard near the entrance may encourage the cat to enter. Putting down food for feral cats is often a good idea in general during winter as food may be scarcer or less accessible in the snow and heavy rain. If food is not an option then you can always provide a fresh bowl of water. But remember to check regularly to make sure bowls have not frozen in the low temperatures. The provision of basic resources such as these will help ensure that a feral cat makes it through the winter almost as comfortably as your own – and probably with a lot less fuss!

HELPLINE Sometimes we receive calls from people who are frustrated because rehoming organisations appear reluctant to take in feral cats. Part of our job is to help such people understand the difference between a feral cat and a domestic one. We care deeply about all cats and while reluctance to take in a feral cat may seem harsh or uncaring, confining any wild animal to a small pen in an environment that is swamped with human activity can be overwhelming. It is far less distressing for a feral cat to allow him to remain free to roam in his own established territory.

Cats Protection branches will often go out to established feral colonies in order to trap and neuter them. After neutering, a vet will then often remove the tip of the ear to show to other vets that the cat has already been neutered. Removal of the ear tip is a safe, surgical procedure, carried out under anaesthetic. It is essential as a feral cat has no owner to speak for them and no cat wants to be neutered twice! Unlike domestic cats, there are no owners to provide for the cost of neutering which is why we need your help. Cats Protection cannot continue to neuter feral cats without support from fellow cat lovers. Without your support, feral colonies will continue to grow and more cats will be forced to endure winter in its entirety.

There are occasions when returning a feral cat to their territory is not practical or safe. Instead, Cats Protection branches and adoption centres will find a suitable alternative environment, such as a farm, or a place with a large area of land eg an orchard, woodpiles, outhouses, feed stores. If you or any one you know could offer such a place then please get in touch with your local Cats Protection or call us here on the Helpline. We’d love to hear from you and while we cannot guarantee you’ll find a furry new lap warmer, they do make incredibly good groundskeepers!

We hope that reading this article has helped to increase your appreciation for the trials faced by the feral cat. Please rest assured that while you continue to support us we will help to ensure our furry feral friends continue to thrive. From all of us here on the Helpline, thanks for reading and have a perfect Christmas!

Snipped and tipped True feral cats are the offspring of stray or abandoned domestic cats and should, where possible, remain neutered in their territory. Many people are already aware that Cats Protection can help owners on a low income neuter their cats. Responsible cat owners will have already taken their cat to the vets for a snip and chip but you may not know that there is a similar option available for feral cats.

Illustration: Sam Roberts

What we do

To contact Helpline, please phone 03000 12 12 12 or email If you see a cat, or indeed any animal, that you think is being mistreated or neglected then do call the relevant animal authority on their cruelty helplines: England and Wales RSPCA 0300 1234 999 Scotland SSPCA 03000 999 999 Northern Ireland USPCA 028 3025 1000

The Cat  Winter 2012 49


A selection of tales from our branches and adoption centres...

New start for Narla


By Gwent Branch

Murphy’s law By Horsham & District Branch Murphy had only been with his owners for two weeks when they let him out; unfortunately he was hit by a car resulting in a dislocated hip. He needed a major operation but the owners did not want to pay so asked that he be put to sleep. The vet contacted us and we agreed to pay for the operation, even though it would put a severe dent in our funds and happily Murphy is now on the mend. He has started jumping up on the shelf in his pen and is an extremely affectionate little chap. He needs to build up muscle but this is difficult at the moment when he is confined to a pen. We would be very grateful for any donations towards Murphy’s vet’s costs and after-care. Cheques payable to Horsham & District Cats Protection can be sent to Branch Secretary, PO Box 466, Horsham, RH12 1XN.

Narla came to us through a local vet. She had broken her leg after jumping out of a bedroom window and landing on a metal bench. Her owner had asked for her to be put to sleep as they were unable to afford her treatment. Narla's badly broken leg cost Gwent Branch over £1,000 to pin and plate but we wanted to save her leg from amputation. She is recovering very well from her surgery, but the cost of her operation and caring for the huge number of kittens we have had to deal with has left our funds severely depleted. Any help you are able to give toward Narla's operation costs would be very much appreciated. Please send cheques, payable to Cats Protection Gwent Branch, to PO Box 623, Newport, Gwent NP20 3ZX. Thank you.

Help gentle Ella get better By Barnsley Branch Barnsley Branch’s homing officer, Anne, spoke to a lady in Elsecar who was feeding a group of feral cats, one of which had curled-over ears. Anne went to see the cat and realised that that cat was suffering from skin cancer. After veterinary advice the cat, named Ella after the lady who’d been looking after her, was booked in for removal of the affected ears plus dental treatment, including the removal of some teeth. She was fostered by Janet and has just been adopted – her new family say she is a people-loving cat! The cost of Ella’s operation and treatment has depleted branch funds so any help would be greatly appreciated. Please send cheques/POs (made payable to Cats Protection Barnsley Branch) to The Treasurer, 15 Bourne Walk, Staincross, Barnsley, S75 6JQ or use our donation button on the branch website at

50 The Cat  Winter 2012

Deadlines All branches are encouraged to send in their success stories and diary dates for every issue. The deadlines for the next three issues are: • 7 December – Spring 2013 • 15 March – Summer 2013 • 14 June – Autumn 2013 Individual stories should be max 250 words and may be edited for clarity and length. Please send CP in Focus and Diary entries as separate documents. Images should be attached to the email separately, not embedded into a document; minimum requirements for print publication are 300dpi (high resolution) in jpg or tif format. Original digital camera photographs are usually better than those taken on a mobile phone. Please email your submissions to or post your entries to: CP in Focus, The Cat magazine, Cats Protection, National Cat Centre, Chelwood Gate, Haywards Heath, Sussex, RH17 7TT. Thank you.

Ways we help: Rehoming • Neutering • Raising awareness


Success stories

Yorkshire cat found in Suffolk A cat from Yorkshire has been reunited with her owner after being found 170 miles away in Suffolk. Ginger tabby Kitz was discovered among a group of stray and feral cats by Alison Lardner, a volunteer for CP’s Breckland branch. An elderly lady had been feeding the cats that passed through her Mildenhall garden. The branch was called in to help trap, neuter and return them to help control the population and prevent the spread of disease. Something about Kitz’s healthy appearance and friendly manner convinced Alison that she was not a feral or longterm stray. The vet found a microchip – showing that she was registered to an address in Leeds! “I was so happy to hear that they’d found her,” said Kitz’s owner, dance teacher Jason Williams. “But I didn’t expect them to say Kitz was in Suffolk – that’s a three-hour drive!” Jason had never before visited Suffolk and has no idea how Kitz ended up in the county. Kitz had gone missing from her Leeds home in May and Jason and his partner searched everywhere for their cat. “We still had hope that she was all right because she was microchipped,” said Jason. And Jason was right – so in August, after getting the call about Kitz, he travelled from Leeds to Suffolk to pick up his adventurous cat. Kitz is now settled back at her old home. “She constantly wants to go out,” said Jason. He added: “I’m really glad I got her microchipped.”

Second chance for cast-off cats A cat and her three kittens that were abandoned in a forest have been given a second chance at life, thanks to Reading & District Branch. Mother cat Lucy and her three eight-day-old kittens were tied up in a bin bag and dumped in a wood. The abandoned cats were found by a passer-by who took them to the vet. CP’s Reading & District Branch took the cats into their care – they bloomed under the care of Jane, their Fosterer. Two of Lucy's kittens were homed together when they were 10 weeks old which left Lucy – only about a year old herself – and her remaining kitten, Olive, still looking for a new home. Mother and daughter were close and the branch wanted to rehome them together. Luckily for the pair, a couple who were looking for a mother cat and kitten contacted the branch. “All four are being spoiled rotten in their new homes,” says branch Volunteer Cilla. “Every now and again a story like this restores our faith in the power of good over evil.”

Photo: Judith Wakelam

Posh pad for fortunate ferals Four feral kittens found a stylish new home, thanks to a branch of Cats Protection in the south-east of England. Maidenhead, Slough & District Branch took a call from a member of the public asking to adopt two outdoor cats. On the same day, the branch took another call – this time from a home owner asking the charity to rehome a feral mother and five kittens he’d been feeding in his garden. The owner agreed to keep and look after the mother cat and one kitten, leaving Ray with the dilemma of how to rehome the remaining four kittens. Luckily, the lady who’d phoned earlier asking for two outdoor cats agreed to take four! Within five days the feral mother and her kittens had been checked over by a vet, treated and neutered. Four of the kittens were taken to their new home which has two acres of lawn, trees, hedges and snug sleeping quarters between the hedgerows.

Find your local Cats Protection: 03000 12 12 12 •

The Cat  Winter 2012



A selection of tales from our branches and adoption centres...

Success stories cont…

Kitten pair pull through By Gwent Branch Seren was a six-week-old kitten that came into our care from the Newport area with her brother and sister as an emergency. A local housing officer had called about sick kittens at a property; nine had been born to two cats and six had died. The three surviving kittens were very weak, cold and unwell. They were taken straight to the vet and admitted as the two females’ temperatures were so low they didn't even register on the thermometer. Unfortunately the weakest of the females had to be put to sleep. The little black male, named Lucky, was the strongest and after three days he was discharged; he is now eating on his own and is doing well. His much smaller sister Seren (Welsh for star) spent a week on fluids at the vets and was then discharged. At six weeks Seren weighed only 210g; we would normally expect a kitten of this age to weigh a minimum of 500g. She was hand-reared by her Fosterer, is doing well and is a little fighter! She has now been in our care for two weeks and her weight is now 300g so although still small she is growing. She has started eating on her own and is a real character.

Branch tends plant pot kittens

New homes for hotel kittens Cats Protection has found new homes for some unwanted hotel guests – a mother cat and her eight kittens! Our Fareham & Waterlooville Districts Branch in Hampshire, England, was called out to a hotel at the end of July. A guest had complained about noise coming from the roof and, on checking, the hotel’s caretaker discovered a litter of kittens in the eaves. Branch volunteers stepped in to help rescue the tiny cats. “The maintenance man crawled into the roof space and handed the kittens out to me,” said Eric Silverberg, Branch Trapping Volunteer. “Imagine my surprise when I received eight kittens estimated at about eight to 10 days old. They were tiny – one only weighted 98 grams.” Eric took the kittens home where his wife Inga, a kitten Fosterer for the branch, bottle-fed the hungry mogs. Fortunately for the kittens, branch volunteers managed to catch the mother cat soon after and the feline family was reunited at Eric and Inga’s home. “She was a lovely mother, a beautiful, gentle cat who never put her claws out once,” said Inga. “But she didn’t have enough milk to feed all eight kittens so I was helping her


The Cat  Winter 2012

all the time.” While Inga is used to looking after kittens she admits that having eight was a bit like having a herd in the flat! A local newspaper, the Portsmouth News, ran three stories on the hotel kittens and soon the branch had a “queue of people” interested in rehoming them. All the kittens went to their new homes in mid-September once they were old enough. Their mother, Molly, has been rehomed too; she’s also been neutered, saving her from the hard work and health risks of having another litter! And the branch had so many enquiries from the newspaper coverage that they’ve homed other cats and kittens too. While Inga admitted it was a wrench to let the kittens she’s cared for go, she’s pleased they’ve all found great new homes. “There’s always another litter looking for a rescue,” she said. “And if I kept them, I wouldn’t be able to help any others.” She added: “It feels brilliant that this has had such a happy ending, it’s absolutely wonderful.”

A Cats Protection branch has homed four kittens found nestled in a plant pot. Our Stoke & Newcastle Branch in England’s Midlands was called out to a rented house in early September – the tenants had been feeding a stray cat then discovered her litter in their yard. At that point, all the branch Fosterers’ pens were full so Welfare Officer Alan Bentley created a temporary shelter to keep the kittens safe with their mother while homes were found for them. Branch volunteer Tracy Slater uploaded Alan’s photos of the kittens – one tom and three queens – to the branch’s website and Facebook page. “To promote some interest I started asking people how we should name them,” said Tracy. Tracy first posted about the plant pot kittens on 12 September – by 28 September, new owners had come forward for all of the kittens. They were named Zero, Fifi, Pip and Milo. “I was so elated when I heard that they’d all been found homes,” said Tracy. While the new owners were sought, Alan

Ways we help: Rehoming • Neutering • Raising awareness


had visited the kittens regularly and phoned the tenants frequently to check on the kittens’ progress. All of the kittens are now settled into their new homes and Alan visited the kittens’ new owners regularly during the first few weeks of adoption to give them a helping hand. The kittens’ mother, named Lady by the branch, was taken for neutering then adopted by a neighbour, ensuring a happy outcome for both mother and kittens.

Success shorts

A frail stray cat hanging around a local chip shop was reported to M  ontrose & Brechin Branch. Mr Chips, as the branch named him, was a very thin cat with a painful, injured eye. After various treatments Mr Chips has gone from a very unhappy, uncomfortable cat to a friendly happy chap that is hoping to find a new forever home.

Puss among the pipes By Outer Aberdeen Branch Outer Aberdeen Branch was asked to neuter and relocate a feral cat living around the yard of a transport company as the firm already had its own yard cat. The feral was female and when she was taken for neutering the vet said she had recently weaned kittens. We began hunting for the little ones! We located one, but it wasn’t easy to find him as the sound travelled through the pipes in the yard. Volunteer Karen searched through cobwebs and mud, eventually catching the kitten as he made a dash between the pipes. Seven-week-old Kennedy became the newest addition to her ever-growing feline family. Separately, the branch had a call from a landfill site about a colony of feral cats living there. The branch still has a few cats to trap but so far has rehomed 15 kittens and trapped, neutered and returned seven adults, treating one of the adults for bite wounds. Paris and Hilton (pictured) are two of the kittens that were rehomed.

Hannah has been rehomed by the North Ayrshire Branchas her original owner felt she had too many children and pets to care for. This is a situation they are hearing more and more frequently. She is now totally relaxed in her new home and loving the peaceful surroundings far more suited to her personality. A perfect match!

Pudding was dumped outside the Bristol & District Branch charity shop. Shop manager Wendy Box looked after the cat until Branch Co-ordinator Lesley Ellett arrived. Pudding was taken to the vet to be checked over and the vet helped out by keeping her until we had a space. She wasn't with her Fosterer long – a new owner came forward after an appeal on Facebook! The branch has also rehomed Millie, a stray with a badly-damaged leg. The vet had to amputate her leg but Millie has recovered well.

Find your local Cats Protection: 03000 12 12 12 •

The Cat  Winter 2012



from your local Cats Protection...

Spike and Crispi are not related but were brought up together as kittens and need to be homed together. Spike, a large apricot tabby, is a placid and friendly lap cat while Crispi is a shy, dinky black cat who likes to go exploring.

Looking for a home Bedford, Biggleswade & District


Downham Market

Vinnie and Roger Males, 16 years old

Female, three years old

Reading & District


Female, two years

☎☎ 01728 723 499


Newcastle upon Tyne


Female, six years old


Shy but very sweet and affectionate girl looking for a home where there are no young children or dogs, but would be happy to share with another cat. Would like a garden to explore but in a home away from busy roads as she is not very streetwise.

☎☎ 08442 496 911

Bracknell & Wokingham Districts

Tigger and Splodge

Female, male, three years old

These brothers were brought in because of a change in the owner’s circumstances. They still enjoy getting out and about so a home with a garden is essential. They would happily live with older children (over 12 years) and would be a lovely addition to a family home.

☎☎ 01366 382 311

Meg’s previous owner sadly died, leaving nine cats behind. All have since been rehomed apart from Meg. She only has a few teeth left but eagerly crunches her biscuits. She also loves an ear scratch and tummy tickle, then she purrs like an outboard motor. Her ideal home would be with elderly experienced people who have the time and patience to bring her out of her shell.

Framlingham and Saxmundham

Spike and Crispi


Male, one year old Splodge


☎☎ 0845 371 4212


The Cat  Winter 2012



Male, four years old

North Ayrshire

Males, around four years old


☎☎ 08452 602 395

☎☎ 08453 712 732


This sister and brother are very shy, as they were born outside with no people interaction until they were older kittens. Although they will always be nervous, they should settle and bond with someone who has the time to invest in them. They must be homed together.

Angel is a lovely young lady with a beautiful tortoiseshell-and-white coat. She is friendly and affectionate, enjoying a fuss and a stroke and sitting on laps. She would settle best in a cat-experienced household without very young children. She is not confident around other cats.

Jarvis was a stray so we don’t know his story. He is a stunning cat, but has been frightened by his life so far and is slowly learning to trust his Fosterer, with the aid of some calming medication. Jarvis will be a lovely pet for a patient owner.

Teardrop is a large, handsome, boisterous white-and-ginger boy with really unusual markings. He came into care when his owner suddenly passed away. His ideal home will have a large garden for him to explore. His party trick is standing on two hind legs and waving his front paws together – it looks like he’s clapping!

☎☎ 01902 651 173

☎☎ 08453 714 218

Ways we help: Rehoming • Neutering • Raising awareness


Join the team  asingstoke & District Branchhas opportunities in the B area of fundraising, from the odd couple of hours with a collecting bucket in store or helping with street collections, to running a whole event. Whether you have limited time or all the time in the world we can use your talents. We need an Events Organiser, someone who can book events, contact and provide volunteers to help at those events and to arrange for the setting up and packing away before and after the events. If you have already provided us with your details you are still invaluable to us and will be needed. Self-motivation and enthusiasm will help, as will the ability to provide your own transport but we do pay travel and other expenses. Please contact Hilary, the Branch Co-ordinator if you are interested in any of these opportunities on 01256 346 743 or  edford, Biggleswade & District Branchis looking for B volunteers to help in the following areas within the branch: • Indoor Fosterers to look after cats until they find new homes. (You will need a spare room in your home to dedicate to this. Expenses are covered and full support/training given) • Home Visitors to visit potential new homes in the MK40MK45 and SG15-SG19 postcode areas. (Need to be willing to use own transport. Full training given) • Fundraisers who can help run stalls at our events or volunteers to help at our charity shop in Kempston • Publicity Officer/Assistant to help us advertise our events and cats needing homes, and raise general awareness of the branch Please contact us on 08442 496 911 or if you are interested in helping in any of these areas.  racknell & Wokingham Districts Branchis looking for: B • A Duty Line Officer who can answer the duty line telephone during the day in their own home (9am to 5pm on a week day). Full training will be given. • Fundraising helpers to assist the branch in selling goods at our outside events. In particular, we are also looking for someone who could spare a couple of hours every month to help us with the packing and unpacking of goods at our regular Woodley Pagoda event, and also at other fundraising events. If you would like to volunteer, please contact us on 08453 714 212 (9am–5pm, Monday to Saturday).

 ast Northumberland Branchwould love more volunteers E and particularly need more Fosterers in the Seaton Delaval and Blyth areas. If you are at all interested please email or ring the helpline on 07749 713 142; evenings are best, but if you leave a message we will get back to you.  rome & District Branchis looking for a Treasurer to join F our committee. If you have empathy for cats, want to meet like-minded people and help make a difference we would love to hear from you. The role will include general bookkeeping and accounting, including VAT claims and annual audits. The branch is also looking for additional fundraising volunteers to help organise events and activities in the Frome, Trowbridge and Warminster areas. For more information on these roles please contact Lynette Preston, Regional Fundraiser for the South West and Mid West on 01934 524 956 or email The G  reat Amwell & District Branchof Cats Protection is looking for a volunteer Fostering Co-ordinator and volunteer Indoor Fosterers in the SG11-14 and EN10-11 postcode areas of Hertfordshire. The costs of food, litter, consumables and any veterinary care are met by the branch and usually a cat is with a Fosterer for only a few weeks, but it can be longer. Could this rewarding experience be for you? Contact Great Amwell and District Cats Protection on 0845 371 2736 or  tockport Branchis looking for a volunteer Secretary to S carry out tasks such as arranging and taking minutes at our committee and group meetings, which take place quarterly. This would be a good opportunity to gain work experience for anyone interested in an administrative role. If you are interested, would like to know more about the post or chat to other members of the group, please call Jacky Goodman on 0161 439 1274, email or come to one of our events.  eignbridge & Totnes Branchwould like to recruit T more volunteers to assist with general administration and distributing collection boxes in the TQs 7–14 & EX6–7 areas. Neither task should take up too much of your time so if you can spare a few hours occasionally please phone Barbara on 08453 712 727.  elford & District Branchis looking for Fundraisers, T Fosterers and Home Visitor volunteers. More information can be found on our website,, or contact our Co-ordinator Ginette on 08452 601 502.

 erby and District Branchhas many volunteer D vacancies. We desperately need Fieldworkers/Vet Runners as we only have a handful of these. We also need CatLine Operators. This job would suit someone who is at home for most of the day. We need an Assistant to the Vet Liaison Officer, again mostly an administrative post which can be done from home. And lastly, we need volunteers at both our charity shops in Derby and Wirksworth. Full training and support will be given to the successful applicants for all of the above vacancies. If you are interested, please contact our Cat Line on 01332 206 956 (voicemail) or and leave your details so we can send you an application form and job description.

Find your local Cats Protection: 03000 12 12 12 •

The Cat  Winter 2012



from your local Cats Protection...

Thank you…  asildon, Brentwood & District Branchwould like to say B thank you to all the kind people who made donations to fund Henry’s two knee operations (featured in the Autumn 2012 issue). He has had his first operation and is recovering well. Our vet will soon decide when will be the best time to have the operation on his other leg.

A sad farewell… Nancy Holloway We have received the sad news that Cats Protection Trustee Nancy Holloway died at the beginning of October, a year after being diagnosed with a brain tumour. Nancy was appointed as a Trustee of Cats Protection in 2005 and became Chairman of the charity’s Audit Committee. Originally from the USA, Nancy decided to move permanently to the UK in 1972 having previously spent a year here at university. She worked in the private sector, worked in the commercial side of the BBC and later in the Civil Service in a range of HR/Learning and Development and Finance positions, including working as Director of Resources for the postal regulator, Postcomm. She volunteered for many years for Women in Management, helping women to change careers and get back into work. After retirement she became a career coach. Heather McCann, Chairman of the Board of Trustees said: “Throughout her time as a Trustee Nancy consistently showed her deep love of cats and of the charity and drew on her considerable experience to help the charity in many aspects of its work.” Fellow Trustee, Wendy Bosler, said; ”As the inaugural chairman of the CP Audit Committee, Nancy’s role in establishing and guiding the committee has been invaluable and we will miss her expertise and experience as well as her wit and wisdom.” Everyone at Cats Protection extends their condolences to Nancy’s family and friends and our thoughts are with them.

role, always insisting it really was a ‘team effort’. She never wanted to be in the limelight and she accepted the award for branch and not for herself. Marjorie would inspire, just by her presence those around her to go that ‘extra yard’- in a way they wouldn’t realise was actually happening! She was runnerup too for the Legal & General Volunteer of the Year award in 2011. Marjorie was totally dedicated to the cause. She loved volunteering and carried it out with a wonderfully sublime determination. She remained calm no matter what was going on and had a subtle, yet quick, sense of humour, which endeared her to those that knew her. She would almost singlehandedly arrange and prepare for the branch’s 110 fundraising events attend each year. Marjorie would book events, prepare stock, organise volunteers and everything else needed. She would then attend many of the events; some events being two or three days long and eight to 10 hours long each. This she was doing right up until the day she sadly passed away, at the age of 85. Marjorie and all of our volunteers have worked extra hard this year, arranging additional events for our Shop & Cat Havens Appeal. We are all very upset and disappointed that she won’t be with us to celebrate the opening of our Shop and eventually our Cat Havens. Marjorie was unique and irreplaceable. To her friends and the branch, she was a truly inspirational lady volunteer and friend and we will miss her terribly. Karen Murray, Publicity Officer

Marjorie Jennings Volunteers and Supporters of Crawley, Reigate & District Branch of Cats Protection were saddened by the sudden death of their Head of Fundraising, Marjorie Jennings – 20 May 1927 to 4 October 2012. Marjorie was an amazing and inspirational woman whose warmth touched everyone who met her, a true friend to all. She inspired us all, not only within the branch, but within the local charity community. She was one of the founding members of the branch in 1978 and worked tirelessly and consistently without fuss or complaint for 34 years. In July 2008 Marjorie Jennings received a People’s Choice Award organised by a local newspaper as part of our town’s 2008 Mayor’s Awards – Marjorie was never one to seek plaudits, or credit, she was utterly selfless about her own

56 The Cat  Winter 2012

Marjorie Jennings

Ways we help: Rehoming • Neutering • Raising awareness

Diary of events ENGLAND BERKSHIRE Bracknell & Wokingham Districts Meetings To be held at 8pm at Our Lady of Peace (OLOP) Church Hall, Wokingham Road, Earley (Earley Cross Roads), RG6 7DA 28 January 2013 25 February 2013 25 March 2013 Shows 16 March: Spring Fair – Carnation Hall, Chavey Down Road, Winkfield Row, Bracknell, RG42 7PA. Doors open 1pm–4pm

Reading & District Jumble sale 8 December: All Saints Parish Hall, Downshire Square, Reading RG1 6NH, 1–3pm Book stalls The branch also regularly holds a book stall at Reading Farmers' Markets on the first or third Saturday of the month and at Purley Farmers' Markets each second Saturday. Further confirmatory details appear shortly before each of these events on the branch website www.

BRISTOL Regional event 29 November: Firewalk at The Tobacco Factory, Raleigh Road, Southville, Bristol, BS3 1TF. For more information and registration forms please contact Lynette Preston, Regional Fundraiser South West and Mid West. Tel: 01934 524 956 or email

BUCKINGHAMSHIRE Milton Keynes & District Fairs 1 December: Christmas Fayre, 11am–1pm, United Reformed Church, Newport Pagnell. Home-made cakes, refreshments, tombola, CP merchandise and more 9 December: Stall at Dickens of a Christmas, Olney. All day

Find out what’s going on near you...

CUMBRIA West Cumbria Event 3 December: Prize bingo, Kells British Legion, Hill Top Road, Whitehaven. Admission 20p. Doors open 6.30pm for 8.00pm start. Lots of great prizes plus raffle and tombola

DEVON East Devon Fairs 25 November: Stall at Kenton Christmas Bazaar, Kenton Village Hall near Exeter. From 2pm ­­– 4pm 1 December: Mince pie coffee morning and bazaar. From 10am­–12noon at All Saints Church Hall, Sidmouth

Exeter Axhayes

1 December: Coffee and mince pies at the centre

Teignbridge & Totnes Fairs 24 November: Christmas Fair at Methodist Church Hall, Bovey Tracey from 10am–noon 25 November: Stall at Exeter branch Christmas Fair, Kenton from 2–4pm 5 December: Stall at Victorian Christmas Fair, Newton Abbot Market Square from 5pm–9pm. Events 10 December: Pub quiz to be held at Bay Horse Inn, Totnes at 8pm Our AGM will be held in on a Saturday during Jan/ Feb 2013 – please look on our website in early 2013 for the exact date www.

Torquay & District Fair 8 December: Christmas Fayre, Scala Hall, Brixham, 10am–1pm. Stalls selling CP goods, bric-a-brac and refreshments

ESSEX Basildon, Brentwood & District

Basildon SS15 5AD Also on 5 January, 2 February, 2 March Events 1 December: Stall at Brentwood Lights Up Event, Brentwood High Street from 12noon to 6pm 2 December: Stall at Billericay Christmas Market, Billericay High Street. All day from 10am 6 December: Stall at Corringham Christmas Festival, St Johns Way, Corringham from 4pm onwards 8 December: Christmas Fair, 9am to 12noon, Christchurch Hall, near the Coop, Wickford

Rayleigh, Castle Point & District Homing shows 8 December: Homing show, Methodist Hall, Eastwood Road, Rayleigh, 10.30am–1pm 12 January: WRVS Hall, Benfleet, Richmond Avenue, Benfleet, SS7 5HE, 10.30am–1pm 2 February: Methodist Hall, Chapel Lane, Hadleigh, SS7 2PQ, 10.30–1pm 9 March: Methodist Hall, Eastwood Rd, Rayleigh, SS6 7ED, 10.30am–1pm Fairs 1 December: Christmas Fair – Richmond Hall, Benfleet, 10.30am–1pm

GREAT MANCHESTER Stockport Fairs 1 December: Fair at Woodley Civic Hall, Hyde Road. 10am–12.30pm 9 February: as above We have a wide range of events being planned for 2013. Please telephone 0161 439 1274 (evening and weekends), email us at or take a look at the Events section of our website, uk, for details of the 2013 events.

Shows 1 December: Cat Homing Show, 10.30am–1pm at Holy Trinity Church Hall, Wickhay,

Find your local Cats Protection: 03000 12 12 12 •

LONDON Ealing Animal Welfare Bazaar (non-CP event) 2 March: 10.30am–4 pm at Hanwell Methodist Church, Church Rd, Hanwell, London, W7 1DJ. Many participating societies and free admission. Phone 020 8567 6739 for more details or see www.

SHROPSHIRE Telford & District Much Wenlock Christmas Fayre 1 December: We will be having a stall at this free event. There will be a wide variety of stalls and festive entertainment. For more information on our events, please see our website

SUFFOLK Breckland Homing shows 15 December: St Cuthberts Church Hall, Thetford, 9.30am to 1.30pm. Please come and visit the cats/ kittens, have fun on the tombola, browse the bric-a-brac, books, crafts and clothes and buy your calendars and diaries.

Framlingham & Saxmundham Homing shows 8 December: From 10am– 12noon. The Market Hall, 29 High Street, Saxmundham, Suffolk, IP17 1AF

SUSSEX Worthing & District Fairs 8 December: Jumble sale, Emmanuel URC Hall, Heene Road, Worthing. From 10am.

SCOTLAND AYRSHIRE North Ayrshire Collections 28 December: Bag pack and coin collection, Sainsbury's Saltcoats

The Cat  Winter 2012


Contacts England South East Bredhurst Kent *Matts * Hill Road, Hartlip, Sittingbourne, Kent, ME9 7XA ☎☎ 01634 232 471 Friends of Bredhurst Kent Adoption Centre Chelmsford & District *Willow * Grove, Deadmans Lane, Galleywood, Chelmsford, CM2 8LZ ☎☎ 01245 478 389 Eastbourne *63 * Marshfoot Lane, Hailsham, East Sussex, BN27 2RB ☎☎ 01323 440 101 Friends of Eastbourne Adoption Centre Haslemere *Chase * Lodge Studio, Upper Hammer Lane, Haslemere, Surrey, GU27 1QD ☎☎ 01428 604 297 Friends of Haslemere Adoption Centre National Cat Adoption Centre *Chelwood * Gate, Haywards Heath, Sussex, RH17 7TT ☎☎ 08707 708 650 Friends of the National Cat Adoption Centre North London *135 * Junction Road, Archway, Greater London, N19 5PX ☎☎ 0207 272 6048 Basildon, Brentwood & District ☎☎ 01268 285 778 Bexley & Dartford ☎☎ 01322 611 911 Bromley ☎☎ 0208 402 8860 Camberley & District ☎☎ 08453 712 745 Canterbury & District ☎☎ 01227 266 838 Chelmsford & District ☎☎ 01245 478 389 Chichester, Bognor Regis & District ☎☎ 08453 712 760 Chiltern ☎☎ 08452 602 396

Find your nearest CP branch, adoption centre or charity shop...

Croydon ☎☎ 0208 763 0072

North Hertfordshire ☎☎ 01438 228 877

Caterham, Redhill & East Surrey ☎☎ 08453 712 739

Paddington Rayleigh, Castle Point & District ☎☎ 01268 750 831

Eastbourne & District ☎☎ 01323 440 101

Romford & District ☎☎ 01708 451 341

Eltham, Sidcup & District ☎☎ 07772 679 854

St Albans & District ☎☎ 08453 712 064

Epsom, Ewell & District ☎☎ 08452 601 387 Folkestone & Hythe ☎☎ 01303 237 744

Southend & District ☎☎ 01702 710 630 88www.catsprotectionsouthend

Great Amwell & District ☎☎ 08453 712 736

Sutton & Cheam ☎☎ 0208 330 0176

Greenwich ☎☎ 0208 8538 666

Swale ☎☎ 08453 712 755

Guildford & Godalming ☎☎ 01483 422 529

Tendring & District ☎☎ 08453 712 742

Harlow, Epping Forest & District ☎☎ 01992 579 539

Tenterden & District ☎☎ 01797 366 379

Hastings & District ☎☎ 01424 754 328

Three Rivers & Watford ☎☎ 01923 283 338

Hemel Hempstead & Berkhamsted ☎☎ 08453 711 851 Hendon, Finchley & Mill Hill ☎☎ 0208 952 1350 High Wycombe & South Bucks ☎☎ 01494 448 849 Hillingdon ☎☎ 01895 443 637 Hornchurch & District ☎☎ 01708 755 211 Horsham & District ☎☎ 08453 712 749 Lea Valley ☎☎ 08453 134 746 Lewes, Seaford & District ☎☎ 01273 813 111 Maidenhead, Slough & District ☎☎ 01628 620 909 Maidstone ☎☎ 08453 712 758 Medway Towns ☎☎ 08453 712 757 (Neutering only)

Thurrock & District ☎☎ 08453 712 752 Tunbridge Wells, Crowborough & District ☎☎ 01892 516 377 Welwyn Hatfield & District ☎☎ 08453 711 855 Woking & District ☎☎ 01483 721 700 Worthing & District ☎☎ 01903 200 332 Chichester, Bognor Regis & District *7a * Crane Street, Chichester, West Sussex, P019 1LH ☎☎ 01243 774 737 Colne Valley **75 High Street, Halstead, Essex, CO9 2JD ☎☎ 01787 274 667 Cricklewood *70 * Cricklewood Broadway, Cricklewood, London, NW2 3EP ☎☎ 020 8450 4878 Croydon *13 * High Street, Purley, Surrey, CR8 2AF ☎☎ 0208 763 9898

Colne Valley ☎☎ 08452 601 384

Mid Sussex ☎☎ 01444 414 884

Caterham, Redhill & East Surrey *20 * Chipstead Valley Road, Coulsdon, Surrey, CR5 2RA ☎☎ 0208 660 7475

Crawley, Reigate & District ☎☎ 08453 712 734

Milton Keynes & District ☎☎ 01296 738 558

Ealing & West London *3a * Albert Terrace, Pittshanger Lane, Ealing, W5 1RL


The Cat  Winter 2012

☎☎ 0208 998 3940 Eltham, Sidcup & District *14 * Tudor Parade, Well Hall Road, Eltham, London, SE9 6SX ☎☎ 0208 859 6009 Folkestone & Hythe *139a * High Street, Hythe, Kent, CT21 5JL ☎☎ 01303 238 661 Greenwich *18 * Old Dover Street, Blackheath, London, SE3 7BT ☎☎ 0208 858 2220 Hastings & District *43 * London Road, St Leonards-on-Sea, East Sussex, TN37 6AJ ☎☎ 01424 203 778 Lea Valley *145 * Chase Side, Enfield, Middlesex, EN2 0PN ☎☎ 0208 367 4813 Medway *34 * Canterbury Street, Gillingham, Kent, ME7 5TX ☎☎ 01634 571 270 *142 * Franklin Road, Gillingham, Medway, ME7 4DG ☎☎ 01634 578 436 Sutton & Cheam *16 * The Broadway, Cheam, Sutton, Surrey, SM3 8AY ☎☎ 0208 642 1575 Tenterden & District *Lakehurst * House, Unit 1, 94c High Street, Tenterden, Kent, TN30 6JB ☎☎ 01580 765 277 Worthing & District *35 * Rowlands Road, Worthing, West Sussex, BN11 3JJ ☎☎ 01903 200 332

South & South West Exeter Axhayes *Little * Hill Cottage, Clyst Honiton, Exeter, Devon, EX5 2HS ☎☎ 01395 232 377 Isle of Wight *122 * Marlborough Road, Ryde, Isle of Wight, PO33 1AW ☎☎ 01983 562 609 Newbury & District *Heatherpine, * Curridge Road, Curridge, Thatcham, Berkshire, RG18 9DH ☎☎ 01635 200 111 Cornwall *Point * Road, Carnon Downs, Truro, Cornwall, TR3 6JN ☎☎ 01872 870 575 Ferndown Homing Centre *51 * Cobham Road, Ferndown Industrial Estate, Wimborne, Dorset, BH21 7QZ ☎☎ 03000 120 175 Andover & District ☎☎ 01256 892 019 Barnstaple & District ☎☎ 01271 860 787

Ways we help: Rehoming • Neutering • Raising awareness


Adoption Centre

Homing Centre


Charity shop

Basingstoke & District ☎☎ 08451 771 364

Mere & Gillingham ☎☎ 01747 840 621

Yeovil & District ☎☎ 01935 412 755

Bath & District ☎☎ 01225 835 606

Midsomer Norton & Radstock ☎☎ 01761 436 486

Blandford & Sturminster Newton ☎☎ 01258 858 644

Minehead ☎☎ 08453 712 761

Bournemouth & District *333-335 * Charminster Road, Bournemouth, Dorset, BH8 9QR ☎☎ 01202 530 757

Bournemouth & District ☎☎ 08453 712 762

Newbury & District ☎☎ 01635 200 111

Bracknell & Wokingham Districts ☎☎ 08453 714 212

Okehampton & District ☎☎ 08453 712 751

Bridgwater ☎☎ 01278 684 662

Oxford & District ☎☎ 01235 221 147

Bristol & District ☎☎ 01179 665 428

Plymouth & South Hams ☎☎ 08453 712 753

Cheltenham ☎☎ 08453 712 730

Portsmouth ☎☎ 08453 712 743

Cherwell ☎☎ 07716 596 212

Reading & District ☎☎ 08452 602 395

Cirencester, Tetbury & District ☎☎ 01285 657 894 88

St Austell & District ☎☎ 01726 817 837

East Devon ☎☎ 01404 811 089 Exeter ☎☎ 01392 276 291 Falmouth, Helston & District ☎☎ 08453 712 729 Fareham & Waterlooville Districts ☎☎ 08452 601 504 Farnham & Wey Valley ☎☎ 01252 334 644 Forest of Dean ☎☎ 01594 841 511 Frome & District ☎☎ 07733 390 345 Glastonbury & Wells ☎☎ 01749 850 660 Gloucester ☎☎ 07891 112 654 88www. Gosport Town ☎☎ 02392 582 601 Holsworthy, Bideford & District ☎☎ 08453 712 717 Honiton ☎☎ 01404 452 41 Launceston & District ☎☎ 01566 773 814

Salisbury & District ☎☎ 08453 712 068 Southampton ☎☎ 08453 712 718 Stroud ☎☎ 01453 828 326 Swindon ☎☎ 01793 644 536 Taunton & Wellington ☎☎ 08452 602 397 Teignbridge & Totnes ☎☎ 08453 712 723 Torpoint & Rame Peninsular ☎☎ 01752 829 104 Torquay & District ☎☎ 01803 557 014 Truro & District ☎☎ 08452 601 386 Weymouth & District ☎☎ 01305 262 737 Weston-Super-Mare & District ☎☎ 08453 712 066 Winchester & District ☎☎ 01962 883 536 or 01962 884 468 Wootton Bassett & District ☎☎ 07928 674 433

Bristol & District *272 * North Street, Bedminster, Bristol, BS3 1JA ☎☎ 0117 963 9028 Cheltenham *20 * St James Street, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL52 2SH ☎☎ 01242 234 494 East Devon *72 * High Street, Sidmouth, Devon, EX10 8EQ ☎☎ 01395 513 394 Forest of Dean *28a * Newerne Street, Lydney, Gloucestershire, GL15 5RF ☎☎ 01594 841 848 Honiton *137 * High Street, Honiton, EX14 1LW ☎☎ 01404 423 12 Mere & Gillingham *High * Street, Gillingham, Dorset, SP8 4AA ☎☎ 01747 833 669 Reading & District *11 * The Triangle, Tilehurst, Reading, RG30 4RN ☎☎ 0118 945 3733 Taunton & Wellington *48 * Bridge Street, Taunton, Somerset, TA1 1UD ☎☎ 01823 322 244 Truro & District *23 * Pydar Street, Truro, Cornwall, TR1 2AY ☎☎ 01872 276 351 Waymouth & District *31 * Great Western Road, Dorchester, DT1 1HF ☎☎ 01305 213 358

Central Birmingham *Packhorse * Lane, Hollywood, Birmingham, West Midlands, B47 5DH ☎☎ 01564 822 020 Friends of Birmingham Adoption Centre Evesham *c/o * Dogs Trust Kennels, 89 Pitchers Hill, Wickhamford, Evesham, Worcester, WR11 6RT ☎☎ 01386 833 343 Hereford *Cobhall * Villa, Allensmore, HR2 9BP ☎☎ 01432 277 543 Friends of Cats Protection Hereford ☎☎ 07787 434 756 Mansfield *Mansfield * Road, Warsop, Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, NG20 0EF ☎☎ 01623 845 846

Find your local Cats Protection: 03000 12 12 12 •

Nottingham *The * Gate House, New Farm Lane, Nuthall, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, NG16 1DY ☎☎ 0115 938 6557 Ashfield & Amber Valley ☎☎ 01246 825 165 Bedford & Biggleswade ☎☎ 08442 496 911 Burton on Trent ☎☎ 01283 511 454 Corby & District ☎☎ 08453 714 209 Coventry ☎☎ 02476 251 491 Evesham & District ☎☎ 01386 833 343 Halesowen & District ☎☎ 08453 712 062 Leicester & District ☎☎ 01162 881 318 Lichfield & District ☎☎ 08453 712 741 Luton, Dunstable & District ☎☎ 08453 712 746 Mansfield & District ☎☎ 01623 845 846 Mid Warwickshire ☎☎ 01926 334 849 Northampton ☎☎ 08447 003 251 North Birmingham ☎☎ 08452 601 503 North Shropshire ☎☎ 08452 602 389 ☎☎ 07792 165 437 Nottingham ☎☎ 01159 386 557 Rugby ☎☎ 01788 570 010 South Birmingham ☎☎ 08453 711 854 Stafford & District ☎☎ 08452 601 509 Stoke & Newcastle ☎☎ 08452 601 385 Stourbridge, Dudley & Wyre Forest ☎☎ 08448 848 520 Telford & District ☎☎ 08542 601 502

The Cat  Winter 2012 59


Adoption Centre

Homing Centre

Walsall Borough ☎☎ 01922 682 005

Breckland ☎☎ 01842 810 018

Wellingborough & Rushden ☎☎ 08453 714 209

Bolton & Radcliffe ☎☎ 07760 780 759

Wolverhampton ☎☎ 01902 651 173

Bury St Edmunds ☎☎ 01284 850 887

Worcester & District ☎☎ 01905 425 704

Cambridge ☎☎ 01223 241 371

Bedford & Biggleswade *12 * The Springfield Centre, Kempton, Bedfordshire, MK42 7PR ☎☎ 01234 840 827

Chatteris, St Ives & District ☎☎ 01480 465 226

Coventry *34 * Far Gosford Street, Coventry, CV1 5DW ☎☎ 02476 222 105 Halesowen & District *9* High Street, Blackheath, Rowley Regis, West Midlands, B65 0DT ☎☎ 0121 559 3135 Hereford *13 * Commercial Road, Hereford, HR1 2BB ☎☎ 01432 278 016 Ludlow & District *5* Old Street, Ludlow, Shropshire, SY8 1NW ☎☎ 01584 878 606 Mid Warwickshire *27 * Regent Street, Leamington Spa, Warwickshire, CV32 5EJ ☎☎ 01926 338 250 Pershore *Royal * Aracde, Pershore, Worcestershire, WR10 1AG ☎☎ 01386 550 440

Dereham & District ☎☎ 01362 687 919 Ely & District ☎☎ 01353 699 430 Framlingham & Saxmundham ☎☎ 01728 723 499 Grimsby & District ☎☎ 01472 399 810 Haverhill & Stour Valley ☎☎ 08453 719 599 Horncastle & District ☎☎ 01526 388 535 Ipswich ☎☎ 08453 712 069 Milton Keynes ☎☎ 01296 738558

Stafford & District *Market * Stall 48, St John’s Indoor Market, Stafford

North Walsham & District ☎☎ 01692 535 858

Stourbridge & District *27 * Lower High Street, Stourbridge, DY8 1TA ☎☎ 01384 422 208

Norwich & District ☎☎ 08454 941 900

Telford & District *75 * High Street, Broseley, Telford, TF12 5EX ☎☎ 01952 884 388 Wolverhampton *54 * Warstones Road, Penn, Wolverhampton, WV4 4LP Worcester & District *53 * St Johns, Worcester, WR2 5AG ☎☎ 01905 426 748

East Dereham *Hoe * Road Farm, Hoe Road, Longham, Dereham, Norfolk, NR19 2RP ☎☎ 01362 687 919 Friend of Dereham Adoption Centre Downham Market *Wards * Chase, Stowbridge, Kings Lynn, Norfolk, PE34 3NN ☎☎ 01366 382 311 Friends of Downham Market Adoption Centre

Peterborough & District ☎☎ 08453 712 750 St Neots & District ☎☎ 01480 476 696 Scunthorpe & District ☎☎ 01652 651 001 Skegness, Spilsby & Alford ☎☎ 01754 830 621 Sleaford & District ☎☎ 01529 488 749 Spalding & District ☎☎ 01775 725 661 Stamford & District ☎☎ 01778 571 343 Waveney ☎☎ 08453 714 202 Cambridge

60 The Cat  Winter 2012


Charity shop

*172 * Mill Road, Cambridge, CB1 3LP ☎☎ 01223 566 997 Ipswich *184 * Bramford Lane, Ipswich, IP1 4DP ☎☎ 01473 742 226 Lincoln *381 * High Street, Lincoln, LN5 7SF Norwich *193b * Plumstead Road, Norwich, NR1 4AB ☎☎ 01603 438 820 St Neots & District *10 * Cross Keys Mall, Market Square, St Neots, PE19 2AR ☎☎ 01480 476 696 Waveney *2* Blyburgate, Beccles, Suffolk, NR34 9TA ☎☎ 01502 713 167

North Derby *White * Cottage, Long Lane, Dalbury Lees, Ashbourne, Derbyshire, DE6 5BJ ☎☎ 01332 824 950 Friends of Derby Adoption Centre St Helens *100 * Chester Lane, St Helens, Merseyside, WA9 4DD ☎☎ 01744 817 718 Warrington *Animal * Village, Slutchers Lane, Bank Quay, Warrington, Cheshire, WA1 1NA ☎☎ 01925 411 160 York *582 * Huntington Road, Huntington, York, North Yorkshire, YO32 9QA ☎☎ 01904 760 356 Atherton & Wigan Metro Areas ☎☎ 01942 888 693 Barnsley ☎☎ 01226 762 658 Beverley & Pocklington ☎☎ 01482 861 866 Blackburn & District ☎☎ 01254 260 107 Boston & District ☎☎ 01406 424 966 Burnley & Pendle ☎☎ 01282 693 400 Burscough & Liverpool Bay ☎☎ 0151 526 5999 Calder Valley & District ☎☎ 01706 810 489 Carlisle & District ☎☎ 01228 540 330 Chesterfield & District ☎☎ 08453 712 754

Crewe & District ☎☎ 01270 588 710 Culcheth & Glazebury ☎☎ 01925 764 604 Derby & District ☎☎ 01332 206 956 Dewsbury, Wakefield & District ☎☎ 01924 261 524 Doncaster ☎☎ 01302 840 777 Durham City & District ☎☎ 01388 720 689 Gateshead & District ☎☎ 0191 420 3180 Halifax, Queensbury & Brighouse ☎☎ 01484 711 728 Harrogate & District ☎☎ 01423 889 598 Hull & District ☎☎ 01482 790 284 Lancaster & Morecambe ☎☎ 01524 850 112 Macclesfield ☎☎ 01625 667 966 Newcastle upon Tyne ☎☎ 0191 296 3512 North Sheffield ☎☎ 01142 456 371 Northumberland East ☎☎ 07749 713 142 (6–9pm) Preston ☎☎ 08451 770 708 Rochdale ☎☎ 01706 522 440 Sheffield Hallam ☎☎ 01142 493 330 South Wirral ☎☎ 0151 355 9813 Stockport ☎☎ 0161 439 1274 Teesside ☎☎ 01642 589 090 Trafford ☎☎ 0161 610 2189 or 0161 969 0331 Wear Valley & Darlington ☎☎ 07792 699 918 West Cumbria ☎☎ 01946 590 079

Ways we help: Rehoming • Neutering • Raising awareness


Wharfe Valley ☎☎ 08451 947 292 York ☎☎ 01904 760 356 Barnsley *95 * High Street, Wombwell, Barnsley, S73 8HS Chesterfield & District *13 * Stephenson Place, Chesterfield, S40 1XL

Colwyn & District *28 * Sea View Road, Colwyn Bay, LL29 8DG ☎☎ 01492 535 655 Swansea & District *85 * Brynymor Road, Swansea, SA1 4JE Wrexham & District *60 * Chester Street, Wrexham, LL13 8BA ☎☎ 01978 310 555


Fort William & District ☎☎ 01397 772 071

Stewartry & District ☎☎ 01557 339 233

Fraserburgh ☎☎ 01771 637 744

Stonehaven ☎☎ 01569 739 396

Giffnock ☎☎ 01416 385 110

Stranraer & District ☎☎ 01776 840 619

Glasgow ☎☎ 08453 712 722

Strathspey ☎☎ 08453 712 725 Tain & District ☎☎ 08453 712 737

Derby & District *31 * The Wardwick, Derby, DE1 1HA ☎☎ 01332 360 080 *Institute * Buildings, North End, Wirksworth, Derbyshire, DE4 4FG

Arbroath & Carnoustie *15 * Kinaldie Holdings, Arbroath, DD11 5SH ☎☎ 01241 434 605

Huntly & Keith ☎☎ 01466 760 311 Inverclyde ☎☎ 01475 529 462

Tomintoul & Glenlivet TNR ☎☎ 01807 590 573

Lancaster & Morecambe *4-6 * Regent Road, Morecambe, Lancaster, LA3 1QG ☎☎ 01524 850 112

Clackmannanshire & Stirling *The * Marion Hunter Cat Adoption Centre, Ochivale Terrace, Fishcross, Alloa, Clackmannanshire, FK10 3HT ☎☎ 01259 720 555

Inverness ☎☎ 07815 910 861

West Fife ☎☎ 01383 419 975

Inverurie & Alford ☎☎ 01467 625 695

West Lothian ☎☎ 08453 712 719

Isle of Arran ☎☎ 01770 820 611

Central Aberdeen *96 * King St, Aberdeen, AB24 5BA ☎☎ 01224 634 894

Leeds *Suite * 26, Bramley Shopping Centre, Leeds, LS13 2ET Newcastle upon Tyne *162-166 * High Street East, Wallsend, Tyne & Wear, NE28 7RP ☎☎ 0191 2627 377 Teesside *7–8 * Ramsgate, Stockton-on-Tees, Cleveland, TS18 1BS ☎☎ 07432 379 292

Dundee & District *102 * Foundry Lane, Dundee, DD4 6AY ☎☎ 01382 450 035 Glasgow *Cardyke * Farm, Kirkintilloch, Glasgow, G66 5LD ☎☎ 0141 779 3341

Isles of Lewis & Harris ☎☎ 01851 830 749

Friends of Glasgow Adoption Centre

Isle of Skye ☎☎ 07817 943 072

Shetland *Gott, * Shetland, ZE2 9SH ☎☎ 01595 840 517

Lanarkshire ☎☎ 08453 714 213

Alness & District ☎☎ 08453 714 204

Montrose & Brechin ☎☎ 08453 712 738

Ardnamurchan & Mull ☎☎ 01967 431 203

Moray ☎☎ 07837 342 646

Barra & Uist ☎☎ 07050 121 586

Nairn ☎☎ 08453 712 714

Caithness ☎☎ 08453 714 217

North Ayrshire ☎☎ 08453 714 218

Aberystwyth & District ☎☎ 01970 822 120

Central Aberdeen ☎☎ 01224 749 568

Orkney Islands ☎☎ 01856 771 642

Cardiff ☎☎ 02920 369 138

Clackmannanshire & Stirling ☎☎ 01259 720 555

Outer Aberdeen & District ☎☎ 01224 705 252

Carmarthenshire Fundraising

Cumnock & Doon Valley ☎☎ 08453 714 219

Peebles & Biggar ☎☎ 0707 4357 228

Deeside ☎☎ 07837 342 660

Perth ☎☎ 08458 622 206

Dundee & District ☎☎ 01382 450 035

Peterhead & District ☎☎ 07791 834 226

York *13 * Walmgate, York, YO1 9TX ☎☎ 01904 620 361

Wales Bridgend *Green * Acres, Pant Hirwaun, Bryncethin, Bridgend, Mid Glamorgan, CF32 9UJ ☎☎ 01656 724 396 Wrexham *Alma * House, Madeira Hill, Wrexham, Clwyd, LL13 7HD ☎☎ 01978 313 574

Colwyn & District ☎☎ 01492 660 221 Gwent ☎☎ 08453 712 747 Newtown & District ☎☎ 01686 670 277 Swansea & District ☎☎ 08452 179 648 Wrexham & District ☎☎ 01978 313 574

East Neuk of Fife ☎☎ 08453 714 210 Ellon & District ☎☎ 01358 721 204 Eskdale & District ☎☎ 01387 376 738

Renfrewshire ☎☎ 0141 876 4133 Shetland ☎☎ 01595 840 588

Clackmannanshire & Stirling *The * Marion Hunter Cat Adoption Centre, Ochivale Terrace, Fishcross, Alloa, Clackmannanshire, FK10 3HT ☎☎ 01259 720 555 Dundee & District *102 * Foundry Lane, Dundee, DD4 6AY ☎☎ 01382 450 035 *5* Reform Street, Monifieth, Dundee, DD5 4BA ☎☎ 01382 534 316 Orkney Islands *85-87 * Victoria Street, Stromness, Orkney, KW16 3BS ☎☎ 01856 850 919 Outer Aberdeen & District *187 * George Street, Aberdeen AB25 1HZ ☎☎ 01224 658 565 Turiff & District *6-8 * Duff Street, Macduff, Banffshire, AB44 1TL ☎☎ 07847 395 017 West Fife *6* Arberlour Street, Rosyth, Fife, KY11 2RD ☎☎ 01383 417 548

Northern Ireland Belfast *270 * Belfast Road, Dundonald, Newtownards, Northern Ireland, BT16 1UE ☎☎ 02890 480 202 Friends of Northern Ireland Adoption Centre Armagh ☎☎ 07709 483 550

South Ayrshire ☎☎ 08453 714 216

Find your local Cats Protection: 03000 12 12 12 •

The Cat  Winter 2012


Welcome to Kids’ Corner! We love to hear from our younger readers so please send in your cat-themed letters, jokes and drawings. Every picture printed wins a prize for both you and your cat! Write to us at: The Cat magazine, National Cat Centre, Chelwood Gate, Haywards Heath, RH17 7TT or via email Don’t forget to tell us your name, age and address. Remember that you can also submit drawings and photos of your cats to the Cats for kids website. Also, have you seen our behind-thescenes video blogs? Check them out at

Tiny tabby survives 2,000-mile journey

A six-week-old kitten survived a nine-day journey from Turkey to England as a stowaway in a lorry. The tabby was only discovered when the vehicle arrived at Dartford, Kent, after a journey of around 2,000 miles. She gave the staff and the driver a bit of a surprise! Cats Protection’s Croydon Branch has offered to find the cat, that they’ve called Yonda, a new home once she’s completed her stay in quarantine. Heather McCann, of the branch, said: “We can only imagine she jumped into the trailer to find somewhere warm to sleep – I’m sure she never expected to wake up in England!” We’re sure it won’t take long to find this adorable puss a new home! Yonda isn’t the only cat who has completed an incredible journey! Here are some more epic feline adventures: • Cats Protection helped rehome Nutmeg in 2006 after the tabby-and-white cat had been discovered in aircraft hand luggage that had travelled 2,800 miles from Iran to Newcastle • A kitten survived a 400-mile journey trapped inside a car bumper travelling from Phoenix to Canyon County, California

Name that TV cat!

Do you think you know your cartoon cats and animated mogs? Why not test your knowledge against our quiz? Answers at the bottom of the page.

1 Which cartoon cat hangs out with his gang in the streets of Manhattan? 2 What is the name of The Simpsons’ pet cat? 3 Which animated mog loves lasagne? 4 What’s the name of the heroic cat sometimes featured in Charlie and Lola? 5 Which famous cat just loves to chase Jerry the mouse? 6 What is the name of the cartoon cat that lives with Ren, a bad-tempered Chihuahua? Answers: 1. Top Cat 2. Snowball 3. Garfield 4. Bat Cat 5. Tom 6. Stimpy

62 The Cat  Winter 2012

This colourful ginger-and-white mog (left) is the creation of nine-year old Freya, a keen cat cuddler from Sussex who is “cat mad”! And the pen pictures of a cat purring are from eight-year-old Yasmin from Glamorgan. “Cats Rule!” she says. Thank you, girls, for your pictures, you both win a JellyCat.

Win-a-cat wordsearch

This issue’s wordsearch is all about activities that cats get up to during the day. Can you find them all? Words may be printed forwards or backwards, vertically, horizontally or diagonally. Once you’ve found all eight words, there will be eight letters left. Rearrange these to make up a word that describes a particular type of tabby marking on a cat. Write this word and your name, age and address on a postcard or sealed envelope and send to The Cat magazine, National Cat Centre, Chelwood Gate, Sussex, RH17 7TT. Or you can email the answer and your details to competitions@ with Kids’ Corner in the subject heading. The deadline is 11 January 2013. Three lucky winners will get a JellyCat for themselves and a Kong prize for their cat!





































1. Sleep 2. Eat 3. Purr 4. Hunt 5. Play 6. Groom 7. Drink 8. Mew Illustration: Rus Hudda

Thanks to Kong who provide our cats’ prizes for Kids’ Corner. Kong design toys and grooming products for both cats and dogs.

The Cat  Winter 2012 63


Sapphire Blue Mary Cockerham pays homage to her stalwart Siamese


his is a tribute to our very brave and courageous Siamese cat, Sapphire Blue. Our daughter found out that the RSPCA were going to put her to sleep as no one would adopt a 19-year-old blind cat. Amazingly we already had an 18-year-old rescue Siamese cat called Sapphire. How could we say no to another Siamese called Sapphire? And so Sapphire Blue came to stay. Our first impressions were of a beautiful but very frightened Siamese cat, all skin and bone with painful eyes. She just clung to me, purring her heart out and an immediate bond was formed between us. We thought that, at her age, we would just cherish her for her last few months. Wrong. We had her for five-and-a-half amazing years. Although she had no sight, her beautiful eyes became pain free and opened through applying eye drops daily. She put on weight and looked magnificent. Within one week she knew her way around the whole downstairs of our house. By using her whiskers, she walked around the perimeter of a room and when there was no wall, she knew that she was at a doorway with another room to explore. Her sense of smell told her where her food, beds and litter trays were situated. We put a gate across the bottom of the stairs to prevent her going up and possibly falling down. How stupid could we be? We are talking about Sapphire Blue, a unique cat who was a survivor; she had not only been thrown into a river in a sack when she was past breeding age, but had also suffered a massive stroke which rendered her suddenly blind at the age of 18. This courageous cat squeezed through the stair gate, explored upstairs and quite confidently walked downstairs again. She now had access to the whole house and she even managed to climb up onto our bed each morning. We had a large step down at our kitchen door leading to the garden. Each day she would stand at the door and stretch down with her paw as far as she dared. Bingo! One day her paw touched the ground and then she had sufficient confidence to lower herself. Our little miracle had discovered how to go outdoors. In 2007, we moved up to Orkney with both elderly cats and our Shitzu dog who could not imagine life without her Siamese companions. Obviously we were very worried about Sapphire Blue but, as long as she could touch and smell me, she took everything in her stride. When we moved into our new home, there were boxes everywhere. We always kept a clear route between beds, food and litter trays. Nothing daunted her - this amazing cat could handle everything. In no time at all, she knew her new home and ventured into the garden whenever I was with her.

She slept in the kitchen beside the warm storage heater. She loved the heat and was in her element with the addition of a hot water bottle wrapped in a towel. One morning we found her fast asleep, snuggled among the tea towels in a kitchen drawer. Imagine having to buy a baby-proof lock for a drawer because of a 20-year-old blind cat! She had me totally wrapped around her little paw. When she wanted a cuddle, she would howl her head off, totally ignoring the attention of my husband, Barry, until I picked her up. Her life revolved around my touch, voice and smell. She would even howl for cuddles between mouthfuls of food if she sensed that I was in the room. Her morning routine was to howl, cuddle and scratch the post while I prepared her food. Once it was ready she would eat while I filled her hot water bottle and wrapped it in her towel. She would then return to bed, purring her heart out, and I could finally shower and dress. In the evenings, she exercised by walking in a circle around the lounge. That way she did not bump into anything. We wondered if that was how she exercised when kept in a breeding cage. When she was in her 25th year, she had a series of horrendous fits. We knew that the time had come to say goodbye. The vet came to our house and she passed away on my lap, surrounded by love. A year later, we still close doors and put shopping bags and laundry baskets on the table to keep the floor uncluttered. It is hard to break the routines built up over five wonderful years. We feel so privileged to have been part of her courageous life and our lives are so much richer for having known her.

Illustration: Rus Hudda

Remembering cats through helping others This section offers readers the chance to pay tribute to a beloved cat by helping others. Donations go towards pens for our branches, which help house cats and kittens while they wait for new homes. Please send your donations to: R  emembering Cats, The Cat magazine, National Cat Centre, Chelwood Gate, Haywards Heath, RH17 7TT. C  heques should be made payable to ‘Cats Protection’. Tributes will be printed in the next available issue. Please note that this is an increasingly popular page and we cannot guarantee that your dedication will appear in a particular issue. Please print your tribute clearly to avoid errors (no more than 20 words). Thanks to readers of The Cat, 312 pens have now been bought.

To honour the life of a homeless cat, TOMMY, died 21.12.07, and his girlfriend DAISY, died 23.07.08. Never forgotton. Love lives. In loving memory of M  INDY– a very special loyal and much loved friend who will always be remembered. Passed away 08.00. TANSY– Her gentle presence filled our lives for 18 years. Now reunited with her Dad. I miss you both. Audrey xxx BIANCA– 08.96 – 07.12. Beautiful tortie/white girl. Came to us from Battersea 12 years ago with her daughter. Sadly missed.

S  ANDY– the kindest most gentle cat I have ever known. Disappeared one September day – remembered always. Gwen POLLY– PTS 04.08.12. Heartbroken without you. Always love you angel. Meet you at Rainbow Bridge. Love Mum and Dad xx

G  ERRY– 28.06.12 aged 18. Our precious little sweetheart. We miss you so much. Mary and George

 RIC– 01.11.03. You have E left some huge paw prints on my heart, Big Tab. Love always, The Bid TINY– our Wimbledon cat, much loved and missed, John and Bridget Egan FELIX J– remembering our special boy – a beautiful bundle of love and fun. Always loved, always missed. Also in loving memory of JIMMY LONG LEGS. Aileen, John and Jean xxx CLAUDIUS– Our little emperor for over 20 years. Ruled our home, our garden, our flat and our hearts. Love you always, Kay and Stephen OEDIPUS– Psalm 73:23 ‘I am continually with thee’. Don

S  MUDGE– 21.11.2004 aged 15 years. Our gentle black-and-white boy who gave us love for 15 years. Missed so very much. Now reunited with his Mom A  NGEL. 12.12.1995. Sheila and Ivan xx In loving memory of GIZMO– 13.01.06 – and T  EDDY– 04.12.06. Loved and sadly missed. Always in our thoughts and hearts. Love Mummy, Daddy, Leo

 EPPER– little stray, cast P aside by real family. Our brave girl, lived two more years as adored adoptee. RIP sweetheart. Mum, Dad, Ponsonby x

 WIGLET– PTS 04.10.12. T Best cuddler, mouser and friend. Dearly loved and greatly missed – Amanda and Michael.

SMUDGE– PTS 17.09.12 at the amazing age of 22 years. You gave so much to so many – loved always. Mummy

died 10.11 age 9. Still heartbroken. Till rainbow bridge darling angel. Love Mummy, Daddy, Shane, Twix.

M  OSESPTS 30.12.11 aged 13/14 years. A loving and much loved cat. Miss you every day, my darling boy. Also remembering S  CRUFF, PTS 26.02.1998. Penny KITTY– 06.08.92 – and her kitten BUNTY – 03.07.95 – joined by SAMMY24.12.07. More than yesterday, less than tomorrow, we miss and love you all. Kimmins family. ANGEL SMOKIE, loving, gentle. If tears could build stairways, heartaches lanes, I would walk up to Heaven to bring you back. Mummy GREENEYES, MABEL, Z  SA ZSA, STEPHEN, T  ED, F  IGARO,  ABBY, T P  INGERand  AUL, G all the loving cats I have known. Mum

H  EN, our beautiful girl

M  EL– Our special ginger girl PTS 19.06.12 (17 years). Our best friend, miss and love you forever. Love Mummy and Daddy xxx JOLLEY– 17.11.04 – and INKY– 14.02.01. Precious friends forever in our thoughts – the years may pass but memories of you will never fade. Mam & Ev SUSIE– Our brave little soldier. PTS 21.09.12, aged 12 years, following a short illness. Loved and missed by Ray and Cynthia. In loving memory of

M  OWIE1977 – 21.01.00. A loving friend, asleep in his favourite garden. Till we meet again, Peter

The Cat  Winter 2012 65

B k reviews Looking for a great book about cats? Check out our reviews before you buy...


by Eat, Sleep, Sniff Are you looking for an antidote to Christmas schmaltz? This unusual illustrated tale, fresh from the imagination of T  he Cat’stalented designer Rus Hudda, could be just what you need. Princess follows the eponymous heroine and her feline guardian Yco in hurried flight from their home city. Fans of Rus’s distinctive drawings, showcased on, will enjoy his depiction of the Princess and Yco’s world – including the terrifying, salivating creatures that stalk the forest! And anyone who’s owned a fearless cat will see something of him in the endearing Yco. Princess raises more questions than it answers, leaving the reader wanting to find out more about the characters; there’ll be more to come on the pair in future! Princess, a touching tale with darker, magical elements, would make an offbeat present for comic fans of any age; a bonus postcard print will be sent with each comic bought. Rebecca Evans Princessis available to buy from

Cats’ Miscellany 

Atticus Claw Breaks the Law 

by Jennifer Gray ‘Atticus had never been to a police station before. He didn’t like it.’ And so the best-laid plans backfire for Atticus, cat burglar extraordinaire. Summoned by a messenger pigeon to assist the dastardly magpies in a major jewellery theft, Atticus embarks on an exciting adventure, foiling the eccentric Lord and Lady Toffley and befriending the Cheddar children, Callie and Michael. Will he ultimately align himself with the kniving birds or help the humans solve the curious crime? This book is beautifully and wittily written and is amusing and dramatic in equal measure. The pages are interspersed with accompanying illustrations which add a sense of fun. As the initial book in a series, it will make the first of many perfect Christmas or birthday presents for children over seven – and may well also prove to be something of a boomerang gift from parents! We have five copies to give away, see p41 for entry details. Petra Coghlin Atticus Claw Breaks the Law(£5.99) is published by Faber & Faber ( ISBN 9780571284498)


by Lesley O’Mara This book is packed full of the feline facts that every cat lover will want to know. It includes true stories, famous cats, quotations, statistics, legends as well as practical advice on cat care. Did you know that whereas humans have six muscles to control each ear a cat has 32? There’s also advice on how to photograph your cat, which plants are toxic, facts about cat skin and fur – cats can have freckles, you know! This is a book that you could read enthralled in one sitting or dip into whenever you need a cat fact to casually drop into conversation. It’s the cat’s whiskers…all 24 of them. Francesca Watson Cats’ Miscellany(£9.99) is published by Michael O’Mara Books Ltd ( ISBN 9781843179696)

What your cat wants 

by Francesca Riccomini A refreshing look at understanding cats’ needs, Francesca Riccomini takes owners through the seven key skills that can help improve the relationship with their cat. Beautifully presented with lovely photographs and clear, concise sections, this book has the right balance between cat care and behaviour to help owners see things from the cat’s perspective. Full of hints and tips to inspire those light-bulb moments, this fantastic book is a must for any cat owner whether they are just getting their first cat or have owned cats for years. Nicky Trevorrow, CP’s Behaviour Manager What your cat wants(£9.99) is published by Hamlyn ( ISBN 978-0600624622)

Books received

The Ginge Club(Kindle) by George Collingwood My Cat diary 2013by Jenny Smedley S elf Portrait with Catby Yasmin Donlon The Cat Puzzlerby Patricia King A cat called Tessby Russell Turner Tell Tailsedited by Wendy Greenberg FBI’s most wanted catsby Mark Leigh Mac’s Christmas starby Margaret Hamish McHamish of St Andrewsby Susan McMullan. Forrester and Sandra Klaassen

66 The Cat  Winter 2012

Follow Cats Protection on Twitter & Facebook

ANSWERS Autumn 2012 crossword answers Across: 1 Undo, 3 Amicable, 9 Harbour, 10 Abler, 11 Asset, 12 Oxygen, 14 Angler, 16 Unwell, 19 Hawaii, 21 Taunt, 24 Loire, 25 Precise, 26 Treaties, 27 Pest. Down: 1 Upheaval, 2 Darts, 4 Mirror, 5 Crazy, 6 Believe, 7 Euro, 8 Bottle, 13 Ill-treat, 15 Granite, 17 Nutmeg, 18 Ripple, 20 Avert, 22 Unite, 23 Plot.

This issues sudoku answers

The Cat Winter 2012  

The official magazine of Cats Protection, the UK’s leading feline welfare charity. Learn more

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