Richard (right) and me (centre), with our
friend Elisabeth (Dushenka Russian Blues)
Cagaran is a GCCF-registered prefix owned by Heather and Richard McRae. We live in a village just outside Falkirk, basically in the centre of the triangle made up of Glasgow, Edinburgh and Stirling.
We are both 34, and met at Lancaster University, where I was studying Management and Richard was studying Physics. I am originally from Falkirk and my parents still live there, about 15 minutes from our current home. Richard is originally from Loughborough, in the East Midlands, but decided to move North with me when we finished at Uni and I was offered a job in my family's business (GMS Music) in Scotland.
Richard had finished at Uni before me and started running a gardening business: nothing to do with Physics but far more enjoyable, and something that he had been passionate about since he was a child. When I was offered the job in Scotland and we decided to move, Richard had to leave his clients behind in Lancaster. Luckily for us, we met Eddie, who was retiring from his gardening business and looking for someone to look after his clients. He and Richard hit it off straight away, and Richard took over the business in 2007. They are still friends today, and Richard now has a loyal client base across the Falkirk area from Bo'ness in the East to Bonnybridge in the West. His business is called Ochilview Garden Services.
We were more inclined to be 'dog people' before our first cat, Tiger moved in with us in Lancaster (we didn't really get a choice in the matter). Until that point, I thought that cats were stuck-up and vindictive, like the two Siamese in the Disney film 'Lady and the Tramp', so although they came under my general fondness for animals, I had never wanted to own one of my own. However, Tiger became very much my cat and I was absolutely distraught when we had to have him put down due to cancer, in 2005. Over the years since his illness, we have built up a 'family' of cats, and now couldn't imagine being without them. Although we would still like a dog at some point, it'll definitely have to be one that's capable of being 'cat-friendly'!
'Our Cat Family - How One Became Many!' tells the story of how one cat became two, then four, then seven, and onwards to our current total of 18. We have had our ups and downs along the way, particularly when we brought in a cat with an infection called Tritrichomonas foetus ('Tritrich' or 'TF'), which infected all of our other cats, and took a year of hard work and determination to clear from the household. If you are interested in our experiences with Tritrich in particular, you can read about the (hellish) process that we went through to clear this nightmare infection, on the 'Clearing Tritrichomonas foetus' page. Thankfully all of our cats are now fully clear of the infection, and we now test any cat coming into our household, to ensure that we cannot get it back.
As well as breeding our cats, we also show them all over the UK, generally attending a show every two to three weeks throughout the year. Through this hobby, we have met a lot of wonderful people, and most of our closest friends are now 'cat folk'. If showing interests you, do come along and say hello at the next show in your area. If you want to know which shows we will be doing, get in touch, and we will be happy to let you know.