First Cagaran Title and More Kittens

Dàrna’s kittens have arrived, and the older kittens continue to do well. Fiona won her third and qualifying CC at the Teesside show, giving us our first Cagaran title.

It’s been about ten days since my last update, and things have certainly moved on in that time. Katie’s kittens are almost eight weeks, Kia’s are six and Dàrna’s were born on Wednesday of last week as expected.  We also had an exciting day on Saturday, at the Teesside show…

Teesside Show – First Cagaran Title

Fiona with her CC
Beautiful Fiona with her CC

We have a bit of a soft spot for the Teesside, both because it was the first all-bred show we did (with Annas, three years ago), and because they were the club who sponsored our prefix application.  It therefore seems somehow fitting that it should be the Teesside that witnessed the first title for that prefix – little Fiona won her third CC, making her officially Champion Cagaran Beannachd-Fionn!!  Breckin also had a good day, winning her third and qualifying PC, making her now a Premier as well as the Champion title that she won before being spayed.  Elisabeth had a good day as well, with Zach winning his Grand Title, then going Best Foreign Neuter again, and one of her kittens receiving a Best in Show nomination!

Breckin with her rosette and BOB plaque
Breckin with her 1st Open rosette and Best Of Breed plaque

Elisabeth's Basil
Eilsabeth's Basil looking handsome, with his rosettes and plaque

Dàrna’s Kittens

We were expecting Dàrna’s kittens around the middle of last week, and sure enough she delivered bang on  schedule.  Unfortunately, she did indeed only have two.  Earlier in the year we treated all three girls for an infection, but the only treatment available is an off-license drug that has therefore not had any studies undertaken on it.  We had to sign forms to say that we understood that when the vets prescribed the treatment, and it looks like there has been some sort of effect on Fertility.  With three girls now having had markedly smaller litters than would have been expected, I don’t think there can be much doubt.  We just have to hope that the effects don’t last.

The boy at birth
The boy just after birth

Dàrna with her kittens today
Dàrna with her kittens today

On a more positive note, however, both kittens are looking very nice, with lovely rounded heads, short muzzles and good nose breaks.  We have one of each gender, but as usual are not sure on colours, beyond the certainty that the girl is a tortie of some description.  It is possible that the boy is a brown smoke burmese pattern, and the girl a blue tortie smoke burmese pattern, but we won’t know for a while yet.  Both parents are burmese pattern, meaning that the kittens have to be, and Graham doesn’t carry the chocolate gene, so the kittens can’t be chocolate.  Were that not the case, at birth I would have guessed them to be full expression: a chocolate self and a lilac tortie self.

Dàrna's kittens
Dàrna's kittens at one day old - girl on the left (tortie face), boy on the right

Most litters are produced overnight, so we expected Dàrna’s to be the same.  Instead, they were already there when I arrived home from work – tucked up in the bed of course, meaning that sheets and duvet had to be washed, instead of the still clean towels in the birthing box.  Fi had been living with her mum in the run-up to the birth, as company, but we had planned to remove her to give Dàrna the privacy that most queens prefer.  We would have taken her out that evening, but since the kittens arrived during the day, Fi was still there, and was busy cleaning her mum, and toileting the kittens.  We tried taking her out to give Dàrna peace, but Dàrna just stood at the door and shouted until we put Fi back in, and she has been making a fab job of sharing the mothering duties ever since.

The Older Kittens

The Oci boy
The Oci boy

The first Oci girl
The first Oci girl

Foghorn with the others in the background
Foghorn with the others in the background

The two Tiffs and two of the Ocis cuddling together
The two Tiffs, the Oci boy and the first Oci girl cuddling

On Friday we decided to move Kia’s kittens into the front bedroom with the two Tiff kittens, since five is a much better number for playing together than a two and a three!  The Tiffs were very interested in the new arrivals, but the Ocis were not enamored with the move, and spent that first evening growling and hissing under a chest of drawers.  The following morning they had started venturing out, but there was a sort of invisible line across the room, which the Tiff kittens seemed to more-or-less stay on one side of, and the Ocis on the other.  By yesterday the kittens were playing alongside eachother, with the demarcation gone, but they still weren’t playing together.  Today, however, they were playing together and curling up with eachother to sleep.

The first Oci girl and Katie's son cuddling
The first Oci girl and Katie's son cuddling

Katie's daughter with some of the other kittens
Katie's daughter looking up from a kitten heap

Katie was delighted at the prospect of more kittens to mother, though whether or not she recognised them as the ones whom she suckled as tinies, there is no way to tell.  The Ocis initially rejected her advances as well, but today has seen two of them feeding from Katie alongside Katie’s own kittens, so it looks like they have decided to be one big family!

Katie with all the kittens
Katie with all the kittens - 'Foghorn' at the front, and then the other two Ocis and Katie's daughter feeding from her, and her son asleep on the right

We have had interest in all of the older kittens, and with the Tiffs having their first vaccinations this coming Friday, they should be getting their first visitors in the next couple of weeks.  We’ve already been introducing them to various friends and family members to make sure that they are well socialised, and I plan to introduce some of our other cats later this week, as well!  Fingers crossed that we can find homes for these, that are just as wonderful as those we found for last year’s litters…

Lainni and Tabh together
Two of last year's kittens - Katie's daughter, Lainni (right) and Dàrna's son, Tabh (left). They enjoy access to a cat-secure garden area

Rafa relaxing
Another of Katie's kittens from last year, Rafa (whom we knew as Soolay). This is what Katie's current boy will look like when he is older!

Kitten Update – Four and Six Weeks

The kittens are continuing to do well, and are all past or approaching the 600g mark. Kia’s are now starting to show their ticking, and all five are becoming very lively and playful.

The kittens are all doing really well, and I actually made time to use the proper camera this week.  Admittedly, you wouldn’t know that the photos were taken on a better camera, because the kittens won’t sit still, but at least I tried!

Katie's kittens together
Katie's kittens

Kia's kittens together
Kia's kittens

Katie’s Kittens

Katie’s kittens do indeed appear to be Tiffanies, and both are actually turning out to be quite promising, in spite of my previous misgivings about the girl.  Unfortunately, the boy’s jaw set is not correct, so he won’t be able to be shown, but the girl has come on leaps and bounds, and is developing a beautiful expression.  Her head has also balanced up a lot, so that her eyes don’t look too small any more.  She really doesn’t like to sit nicely for photos, though!

Katie's daughter
Katie's girl almost sitting nicely

Katie's daughter looking silly
... and the moment is over

Both kittens are now completely adapted to using the litter trays (without a single accident!), and are readily eating solid food, though still suckling from their mum at night.  Both are over 600g, and have continued to exceed their weekly growth targets.

Katie's son face-on
Katie's boy looking cute

Katie's boy side-on
Showing off his beautiful little nose

They are increasingly playful, so we have moved them down to the front bedroom, where they have more space and lots more toys.  That also frees the kitten room for Dàrna to move into.  We will start introducing some of the other cats into the front bedroom for short periods, so that the kittens can get used to interacting with adults.

I have their first vaccinations booked for a fortnight tomorrow – I never fail to be amazed at how fast the time goes.  One minute you’re collecting a girl from stud and crossing your fingers that she’s pregnant, and the next the kittens are having their vaccinations and ready to start meeting potential owners!

Katie's kittens posing together
Katie's kittens posing together

Kia’s Kittens

Kia’s three are all developing lovely ticking now, and the first girl can look so like her mummy that it’s freaky.  At the moment the boy is longer in the head, and has a more oriental eye set than the girls, so I prefer the two girls to him (which is good, since we want to keep a girl!).  Their appearance is changing by the day, though, so we shall see.

Kia's girls together
Kia's girls together - 'Girl 1' in front, 'Foghorn' behind

All three are still growing like weeds, and the boy is already over 600g, with the girls not far behind.  The boy started taking his mum’s biscuits on Monday, and at least one of the girls has now followed suit.  We had the first ‘deposits’ in the litter tray yesterday as well, so the kittens are pretty advanced as well as huge!

Kia's boy
Kia's boy

Kia's First Girl
'Girl 1' looking adorable

We actually had Kia and her kittens away with us for four days at the end of last week.  Back in April, I arranged with my parents that we would join them for a short break, and although I had friends and colleagues coming in to check on the cats and kittens multiple times each day, we didn’t like the idea of leaving the younger kittens, particularly given Kia’s previous scatter-brained behaviour.

Kia's First Girl
'Girl 1' again

Kia's Second Girl - Foghorn
Foghorn being quiet for a change

We debated back and forwards for several days about whether to cancel, and in the end decided just to pack them up and take them with us.  Kia seemed to love being away, and the kittens were quite happy curled up in their little travel basket with a twice-daily run around the room to keep them amused.

Foghorn shouting
... and one reminding us why she's nicknamed 'Foghorn'

Foghorn shouting again
... and another - she looks like she's going to eat the polar bear!

Back in the house, they’ve figured out how to jump onto the platform that I weigh them on, and are starting to try and clamber out of the front of the pen.  I think we might need to raise the front tonight to stop them escaping.  Kia obviously thought that it was time for them to start learning to hunt as well, because there was a toy mouse in the pen yesterday evening, which the kittens were merrily attempting to tear apart.

Ticking coming in
The ticking starting to show

Trout spotting on the boy
The 'trout spotting' that appeared first

Dàrna – Pregnant or Not?

It looks like Dàrna is pregnant after all, but she still feels very soft, so I’m not sure that she’s carrying many.  I’m hoping to be proved wrong, though, because I’d like more than the litters of two and three that we’ve had so far this year!  Assuming that everything goes as expected (when does it ever?!), she is due the middle of next week, so keep your fingers crossed…

Kitten Updates and Rexfest Show

The kittens continue to do well, with the older ones now litter-trained and starting to eat solids, and the younger ones becoming more active by the day. We had a great day out at the Rexfest Show on Saturday, winning both Best Non-Pedigree and Best Pedigree Pet, and therefore obviously Overall Best Household Pet as well. Keela also did well at a show down south, winning her CC, BOB and having a red card day!

It’s been a busy few days since my last post, but everyone is doing well.  No decent photos today, I’m afraid, because I haven’t had time to take any using the ‘proper’ camera, so I’ve only got the ones I’ve taken on my phone…


Katie with her sleepy kittens
Katie with her sleepy kittens

Katie’s kittens are five weeks this evening, and are now much more active and responsive. They are now using their litter trays, so have been given the run of the whole kitten room, and the girl comes rushing out to greet you when you walk into the room. The boy is still a lot quieter, but will come out and put his little paws on your foot if you stand beside his pen.


Both kittens are starting to take (very mushy) ‘solid’ food, but the boy is particularly interested in it, slurping away at the dish when it is put down. The girl will take some, but she is still going to be a while yet before she’s convinced of the idea!  The boy looks to have the better head at the moment, because the girl seems to have slightly small eyes, unfortunately.

Katie's kittens cuddling up
Katie's kittens cuddling

Kia's boy
Kia's boy looking impish

Kia’s kittens were three weeks at the weekend, and are still gaining weight at an impressive rate. The boy is only a few grams behind Katie’s son, and even the smallest girl isn’t more than 100g behind Katie’s daughter. They are already starting to examine their mum’s food, and will lick at wet food, so I think they’re going to be quite quick to wean. They are also incredibly steady on their feet, given their age, and are able to play pouncing games that I wouldn’t expect for at least another week or so.

Kia's first girl
Kia's first girl

Kia's second girl
Kia's second girl

Naomi Johnson (Vervain Burmese, Asians and Ocicats) was staying up here over the weekend, having judged at the Rexfest on Saturday. She called in today on her way home, to visit the kittens. She agrees that Katie’s daughter is a chocolate silver shaded (full expression), and thinks that both kittens are probably Tiffanies!  We did have a look at the Oci babies, but they’re changing so much at the moment that it’s difficult to say anything much about which is better.  At the moment the boy looks the best because his muzzle is stronger, but a few days ago, the girls had much better muzzles than he does, so who knows?!

Rexfest Show

Richard was working on Saturday, so I went to the Rexfest show myself, for the first time.  We obviously don’t have any Rexes now, but it’s a great show with a completely unique atmosphere, so we decided to enter Ali and Jinny again.  Elisabeth Stark (Dushenka Russian Blues) is training to be a pedigree judge, so had been asked if she would like to be one of the Household Pet judges (anyone can judge HPs).  When I heard that, I couldn’t resist winding her up by entering Xaria as a Pedigree Pet.  The hardest thing was remembering not to mention that we were entering, but thankfully I managed, because Elisabeth had absolutely no idea that any of our cats were going, let alone Xaria!

Ali rubbing against his pen door
Ali 'paddle-pawing' and rubbing his head on his pen door - he is so cheery at shows!

Jinny disappearing behind her rosettes
Jinny in her Best in Show Pen, disappearing behind her awards - she was curled up, virtually oblivious to all the attention

All three did well, Ali and Jinny winning their Grand certificatess and Best of Colour awards, and Xaria winning the Master Cat certificate and her Best of Colour as well!  That was Jinny’s third Grand, so she is now officially Grand Master Cat Jinny, and topped off the day by going Best Non-Pedigree again.  Xaria also went for the big one, taking Best Pedigree Pet, and then going one better and beating Jinny for Overall Best Household Pet (not chosen by Elisabeth, I hasten to add!).  Elisabeth didn’t know whether to laugh or cry at seeing her first-bred Imperial-titled cat winning the Household Pet section, and said that she wasn’t sure whether to tell anyone.  After I had pointed out that it is an indication of excellent temperament, however, she felt better, and decided that she would tell people about it after all!

Xaria in her BIS pen
Xaria in her BIS pen with her rosettes - lilac is Xaria's favourite colour, too

Other News

We weren’t the only ones showing on Saturday – Anita was out at the Eastern Counties with Keela, who won her first CC and Best of Breed, and then went on to have a red card day, winning first place in all of her side classes.  She is the third Cagaran Tiffanie to win a certificate, which is rather exciting.  Anita texted me Keela’s results just after Best in Show had been decided at the Rexfest, so I was a bit overwhelmed!

Dàrna should be seven weeks pregnant at the moment, but we’re not sure.  She does look pregnant, having gained weight in the right place, but we’re not convinced that she’s actually carrying anything other than extra fluid, so it could be a false pregnancy.  If she is pregnant, the kittens should start moving in the next few days, which would obviously confirm the pregnancy.  On the other hand, if it is a false pregnancy, those often stop at about this stage, so either way we should hopefully know soon.  Watch this space…