Catching Up

Most of the kittens have gone to their new homes, as has Tármus. Cailin had a spectacular day at the Fifé Winners Show, and our lot had good days at both the Yorkshire and the Ulster shows. We will soon hopefully have kittens on the way from Fiona…

Wow, it’s been almost two months since my last update, and plenty has moved on since then.  You’ll be glad to know that everything is fine, though, and the reason for the delay is simply that we’ve been ridiculously busy!

Yorkshire Show

We took three cats to Yorkshire this year: Kia, Grace and Cailin.

Kia showing her lovely head
Kia's lovely head

Kia demonstrating a beautiful Classic pattern
Kia modelling a beautiful Classic pattern

Kia was up for her first Intermediate certificate, which she won, along with Best of Breed, and Cailin also won her Best of Breed and first in her kitten class.  She was nearly awarded Best of Variety kitten, but after several minutes of debating, the judges decided that they weren’t certain enough that we had her colour correctly registered, and so decided not to risk it.  She is registered as a full-expression chocolate silver ticked, but her markings are so dark that the judges wondered if she might actually be a brown burmese restriction silver ticked instead.  I was obviously disappointed that she didn’t get it, but it’s still good to know that they considered her type good enough to bother arguing over the colour!  Grace was just in the ped pets, because she can’t go into competition in the pedigree section due to being a variant.  Both kittens (and Kia, actually), were absolutely fantastic with the judges, giving them cuddles and purrs, which is always lovely to see!

Cailin in her pen with her rosettes
Cailin with her rosettes

Grace sleeping amongst her prize cards
Grace sleeping amongst her prize cards

As is often the case, we had Elisabeth and her cats with us, but this time also Karen Hettman and her cats.  Once again, Zach had a fantastic day, winning the Imperial and then Best of Breed and finally Best Foreign Neuter again!

Zach looking handsome with his rosettes and prize cards
Zach looking handsome with his rosettes and prize cards

Anita drove up from Rugby to meet us at the show, and she took Cailin home from there.  Within a few hours, she was completely settled in and sleeping curled up with Anita’s new baby Ocicat boy, who is only a couple of weeks older than she is.  Keela wasn’t too sure what to make of the newcomer, because Keela has always been Anita’s baby, but Cailin is straight onto Anita’s lap the minute she sits down.  Keela seems to be coming around, though, and if our experience of Tiffs is anything to go by, they will end up being the best of friends.

Dàrna’s Kittens

Dàrna’s kittens had their first vaccinations the week after that, so we had to choose names to be able to put something on their vaccination cards!  The girl’s pet name is Quinn, short for Harlequin, due to the pattern on her face.  She is a typical naughty tortie, so her pedigree name is Dòrlach, which is gaelic for ‘handful’.  The boy’s pedigree name is Deathach-Donn, which is gaelic for brown smoke, and his pet name is Donny, from the latter part of his name.  I’m hoping that he does indeed turn out to be a brown smoke, rather than just a brown, or his name is going to look pretty silly!!  Both kittens are growing well, and at a bit over 11 weeks, are 1.25 and 1.15kg, which is pretty well bang-on the expected weight.

Donny and Quinn playing with Grace

Ulster Show

The first weekend this month saw us heading over to Belfast for the Ulster show, which involved a slightly crazy 26-hour round-trip, leaving our house at about 23:30 on the Friday, and getting back at about 01:30 on the Sunday morning.  Like last year, we had Kate Ekanger and Elisabeth with us, but this time we also had Karen’s two Russian boys instead of one of Sarah Davidson’s lot.

Kia looking very laid back in her pen
Kia looking very laid back in her pen at the show

Grace lolling in her pen
Grace proving that she is her mother's daughter

We had a great day, with Kia winning her second Intermediate and Best of Breed, Grace winning first in her Ped Pet class, and Best of Colour, then going on to be chosen as overall Best Household Pet, and Annas winning her Best of Breed and the first Olympian certificate ever awarded to a Tiffanie!  Kate’s two both won their respective classes and their Best of Breeds, and Karen’s boys won the Reserve Imperial and the Imperial, and in the case of Zach, also the Best of Breed and then Best Foreign Neuter!  Some of our friends also had a very successful day, with their boy Coen (Glendavan Roderick-Jaynes) winning his fifth and qualifying Olympian, to make him the first ever shorthair Olympian.  The star of the show, though, was Elisabeth’s little Lucy (Zach’s daughter), who won her class and Best of Breed, then went on to take first Best Foreign Kitten, then overall Best Foreign, and finally overall Best in Show!

Annas scowling in her pen
Annas with her Olympian and Best of Breed rosettes

Elisabeth and Lucy at the Best in Show pens
Elisabeth holding Lucy after her Best in Show win

Maltech’s New Home

Maltech was neutered the week after my last post, and I took him to his new home the day after the Ulster show.  He is now living with a lovely family in Bridge of Allan, and is to be called Simba, after the Lion King, which it suits him perfectly!  Since Maltech/Simba and Tármus had become close, and she was being bullied by Xaria, we asked if his owners would be interested in taking the two of them, and after meeting her, they agreed.  The wee girl whom he is living with had a toy snake on a stick, and she and Simba ran around playing together the entire time I was at their house.  Tármus was less sure of herself, and just sat on the sofa with one of her new owners stroking her.  When it came time for me to leave, Simba was so busy playing that I didn’t even get a second glance, but when I went over to stroke Tármus, she rolled over onto her side and immediately started purring, which set me off into floods of tears.  I’m sure it’s the right thing to do for her, but it doesn’t make saying goodbye a great deal easier.

Maltech cuddled up next to me in bed on the day he left
Maltech cuddling up to me in bed on his last morning with us

Cailin’s Win

That evening, I had a very excited phone call from Anita, telling me that she had manage to get a last minute pass to take little Cailin to the Fifé Winners Show (Fifé being an alternative to the GCCF), and that she had only gone and won overall Best in Show New Breed!  I knew that Anita was planning to take Cailin on exhibition, but she hadn’t told us that she had managed to get her into competition.  The show’s organisers had made an exception this year, to allow kittens between four and six months to enter the show without qualifying, whereas all other exhibits had to have qualified at a previous show.  Little Cailin was too young to have managed to qualify, but she delighted the judges and their decision to have her as Best in Show was unanimous!  I am absolutely delighted for Anita!

Cailin being judged at the FiFe Winners Show
Cailin being judged at the FiFe Winners Show

Cailin being held up as the BIS Winner
Cailin being held up as the BIS Winner

As a random aside, alongside the photos from the Winners Show, Anita also sent me some photos of Cailin and Keela at home, which I thought you might like to see.

Cailin exploring in Anita's secure garden
Cailin exploring outside and loving every minute

Cailin looking gorgeous on the wall
Anita has a secure garden where they can play in safety

Keela trying her Houdini act on the fence
Keela trying her Houdini act

Keela on her first birthday
Keela on her first birthday

Supreme

We then had a couple of weeks off before the Supreme, where we had Annas on exhibition for the Asian Group Cat Society and Bombay & Asian Self Clubs.  We also had Xaria up for her second UK Grand certificate, and Dàrna along because I wanted a pen to put pretty pictures of our kittens on top of!  As it happens, the judge debated for ages over whether to give her the Best of Breed, which he didn’t do in the end, but just the fact that he considered it made me very happy!  Both girls placed second in their UK classes, which was better than I thought Dàrna might manage, but rather disappointing with Xaria.

Darna in her pen at the Supreme
Dàrna with her pen topper showing photos of our cats - the real reason she was taken to the Supreme!
Xaria in her pen at the Supreme
Xaria in her pen

Keela was also there, and placed third in a class of five lovely girls, which wasn’t too bad.  I also got to meet Luna, who is almost a full sister to our first litter – she has the same sire, and her dam is a full sister of Katie’s.  Luna looks very like Lainni, which isn’t surprising given their pedigrees!

What’s Next?

Fiona is due for mating, and since we were so pleased with Cailin and her brother, we decided to take Fi to their sire, Kagura Shogun.  Unfortunately, Sarah has had someone ask if she can take back a cat that she sold a while ago, due to a change in their circumstances, and she was trying to decide where to put this other cat.  We came up with the solution that we have Shogun ‘on loan’, so that she can use his pen to house the returning cat, and since he has never sprayed, we are able to have him in our spare room and let him mate Fi in the comfort of her own home!  She’s not keen on strange cats, so we weren’t sure what the introduction would be like, but she must fancy him, because there wasn’t even a hiss, and she started flirting within him almost as soon as they were introduced.  We also have Keela here at the moment, having brought her back from the Supreme so that she could go to him as well!

Hopefully both girls will soon have kittens on the way, which would be the first generation born to a Cagaran parent…

Shows & Kitten Update Week 10

The kittens continue to grow, and also have their first bath – the first couple have homes booked now. We have a good day at both the Ulster show and the Supreme.

It feels like months since I last posted a blog update, rather than just over three weeks. As you might expect, plenty has happened in that time, both with the kittens and the rest of the household.

Shows

At the end of my last post, I mentioned that we were heading over to Ireland for a show the following day. That was a tiring, but very enjoyable experience.  There was a special deal on the ferry, meaning that we could take two others with us for the same price.  We took Elisabeth, obviously, and also Kate Ekanger (Cloudborn Devons & Laperms).  In addition, Sarah Davidson (Karakoram Asians & Burmese) asked if we would mind taking one of her cats over as well, which of course we were happy to do.

Kate drove to our house first, and we headed off at about 22:45, collected Elisabeth en route, and drove down to Stranraer for the 03:30 ferry.  We arrived in Belfast around 06:30 and grabbed about an hour’s sleep, before the show day began around 08:00.  The day went really well for our three, with Coimhlion winning her 2nd Grand Prem, Katie winning her 1st Grand Champ and Xaria winning another Reserve Imp.  Katie and Xaria both also won their Best of Breed awards.

Xaria with her rosettes at the Ulster show
Xaria

Katie with her rosette and Grand certificate at the Ulster show
Katie

Coimhlion with her Grand rosette at the Ulster show
Coimhlion

Kate’s LaPerm girl hadn’t been to a show before, but took the whole thing totally in her stride and won an Intermediate, which counts towards the forward progression of that breed.  The girl whom we had taken on behalf of Sarah also did really well, picking up an Imperial.  We got the 20:00 ferry back to Stranraer, finally getting back to our house at about 01:30 on the Sunday morning – almost 27 hours after leaving the house!  Poor Kate still had another couple of hours further to go after us!

Coming forwards a fortnight, we were down in Birmingham for the Supreme last weekend.  Once again, we were taking Elisabeth with us, but this time we also had the RACCS (Russian & Abyssinian Cat Club of Scotland) stand to set up on the Friday, so we travelled down first thing that morning, spent the afternoon setting up the stand and then stayed with Richard’s parents overnight.  Richard and I have travelled down and stayed with his parents the night before the Supreme the past two years as well, because it means that we have a rather civilised 50 minute journey in the morning, instead of several hours!

This year I was unbearably nervous, because the two cats we were taking, Annas and Xaria, were both entered in the prestigious UK Grand classes – the highest available.  The winner of each UK class (thankfully they were in different classes – Annas against the Asian Group, and Xaria just against the Russians) wins a UK certificate, and two UK certificates affords the cat a UK title, which means that they have to take the certificate in two separate years.  I was particularly nervous about Annas’ result, because she won the certificate last year, meaning that a win this year would give her the title – the last thing she has left to win!

Both girls showed themselves beautifully, and did us proud by winning not only their UK certificates, but also their Best of Breed awards – an impressive feat against the quality of cats who are seen at the Supreme.  Annas’ win made her the first UK-titled Tiffanie, but also only the third cat in the whole Asian Group to win the UK title, and also just the second in the group to hold both the UK and Imperial titles!  Xaria’s win was also significant, though, because it made her the first Scottish-bred Russian to win a UK certificate, and was also the first cat bred by Elisabeth to win a Supreme BOB!  Needless to say, we were both a bit teary that day!

Annas being judged at the Supreme 2010
Annas being judged

Xaria in her pen at the Supreme 2010
Xaria in her pen

Kittens

Now onto the bit that you are probably actually reading this for – the kittens…

Maya aged 9 weeks
Maya dancing around instead of standing nicely

Ben aged 9 weeks
Ben looking worried about the clicking of the camera

Ghost aged 9 weeks
Ghost taking a break from playing to stare suspiciously at the camera!

B-B aged 9 weeks
B-B finally sitting still for a second but still pulling a silly face

Tassy aged 9 weeks
Tassy looking adorable

Fiona aged 9 weeks
Fiona posing beautifully

When Dàrna was first taken away from them,  they had a bit of a ‘wobble’ weight-wise, particularly B-B, who was the least weaned.  However, they have come along beautifully since, and even little B-B was over 930g last night (at a day under 10 weeks), with all the others now being over 1kg, and Ghost, who is the largest, being over 1.3kg!  Their first vaccinations are booked for Monday, and we have our first visitors coming to see them the weekend after that.  At the moment it looks like we have homes for all three of the girls plus at least one of the boys, though nothing is definite yet.

We still haven’t decided which of the ‘cream’ girls we want to keep – Maya has the personality that I like the best, but Fiona might turn out to have the better type, so I will probably hold off making a decision as long as possible.  Whichever one we are not keeping is hopefully going to go and live with one of her cousins, which would be lovely for her, and the people sound ideal!

At the moment it looks like B-B will have the best type of the lot, so I am hoping that he has found a show home, again living with another Tiffanie, but also a Persian and a moggy.  Again, his prospective owners sound perfect, so I’m really hoping that goes ahead.

B-B side-on, pulling a silly face
B-B pulling a silly face - nightmare to photograph because he won't sit still!

Tassy has two separate families interested in her, but obviously the ones who asked first will get the first call.  She was the first whom we received an enquiry about, but that was a few weeks ago now, so it is possible they have found another kitten by now.  I am hoping to hear from them in the next few days so that they can come through and meet her if they are still interested.

Tassy tucked into the covers
Tassy tucked in, looking adorable

Wherever possible, I like people to meet the kittens at least once before they take them home, because it gives them a chance to form a bond early-on.  That’s me being needlessly sentimental, of course, because Tiffanies will always bond to whoever their ‘family’ are (including other pets), regardless of the age they move at – it just tends to be less traumatic for them as youngsters!

Just like human babies, kittens are exceptionally good at getting themselves in a mess, whether by jumping in their food (a common occurance during play), or managing to stand in something unpleasant in the litter tray.  The weekend before last, they had managed exactly that, so we filled a bath with warm water and popped the whole litter into it.  At that age, they have absolutely no fear of the water, and just seem to see it as an interesting warm place – Ben was even playing with a ball floating on the surface!

The kittens enjoying their bath, and afterwards getting dry with the assistance of Dàrna (their mum) and Kia (our Ocicat Classic girl)
B-B in the bath
Soggy B-B in the bath
8-week-old Tiffanie kittens drying after a bath
The kittens finishing the drying process on the radiator after their bath(from left to right: Ben, Ghost, Maya, Tassy, B-B, Fiona)

As you might expect by now, I still haven’t made up my mind about colours.  Tassy still looks like a chocolate tortie ticked tabby, and B-B like either a chocolate burmese self or a chocolate burmese smoke.  I think Ghost is a lilac burmese but I’m not sure whether he’s a silver ticked tabby or a silver shaded (or even if he’s definitely silver, frankly).  Ben is definitely silver, and I’m now leaning towards him being lilac, but whether he’s a smoke or a ticked tabby I’m not sure yet.

Ben, Ghost & B-B
Ben (centre), Ghost (right) & B-B (left)

That leaves the ‘cream’ girls, whose colour is now getting ‘hotter’ by the day, making it less likely that they are cream.  Their nose leathers are now slightly different colours, though, with Maya’s being pale pink and Fiona’s a pink so pale it is almost white.  I’m wondering, therefore, whether Maya is a red silver shaded and Fiona an Apricot silver shaded.

Maya & Fiona
Maya (left) & Fiona (right) - you can just see the difference in nose leather

Thankfully, Steve Crow (Kagura Asians & Burmese), who is a very well-respected judge, with many years experience breeding Asians and Burmese, is going to come and stay with us the night after the West of Scotland show in a couple of weeks.  He is often consulted by other judges at shows, if they are unsure of a cat’s colour, so we are very lucky to have him coming to give us his thoughts on this litter.  I am also hoping that he can perhaps give me a hand in the dilemma of which girl to keep for ourselves!!

Other News

Unfortunately, Breckin doesn’t seem very happy at the moment, so we have taken the difficult decision to have her spayed, and see if that makes a difference to her.  Obviously, that means we will be one queen down, but we still have the beautiful Kia to breed from.  I am hoping to take her down to stud in January, now that she has had plenty of time to recover from her miscarriage, so we will be hoping for one litter of Oci babies next year anyway.

The next show is the West of Scotland, and I am hoping to see at least one of Katie’s kittens there, though I haven’t actually checked about entries.  After that, we’re round to the New Year, and the Asian Group Cat Society’s show, which I’m hoping to take some of Dàrna’s babies to.  Must decide soon, though, because the closing date is in just a few days…