Time has certainly run away with us here judging by the lack of omissions for the past 8 months: will try to recap what has been happening with cats and kitties. Having had no luck with my American boy and therefore becoming stagnant in terms of progress, I sought assistance and found a fantastic genuine breeder in the south of the UK, Dee Marsland-Round of Catbalu who has a wealth of information not only about the breed, but also cats in general. Her energy and enthusiasm is infectious and I feel very fortunate that she has shared some of her lines with me here in Ruralpaws. We had the gorgeous Catbalu Creme Royale (aka Roy) arrive for his holidays and a change of scenery, producing some stunning kittens with some of the girls here, of which we have kept 2 girls and 1 boy (Lizzie, Peaches and Marbles).
We have also had a startling revelation in the discovery of a pregnancy between Mr T and Kiwi: this after over 20 months of no pregnancies was discovered the evening prior to Mr T being booked into the vets for neutering - talk about cutting it fine! His litter whilst a complete surprise and unplanned, produced our stunning girl Georgia Brown and we are over the moon with her type. We now look forward to seeing his stamp with other females here at Ruralpaws before being allowed to live a full and active pet life.
It has been months since we have had any kittens as we had been trying our new handsome stud boy with our girls but Mr T has been unable to get any of the girls pregnant. He is taking some time out at the moment and my Selkirk girls have been divided between my silver Selkirk stud (Diesel) and others will hopefully be receiving new attentions from a new visitor to us - watch this space.
Meanwhile we finally have a Selkirk litter, albeit only 2 in the litter and both straight-haired but what a fantastic mum Bubbles and just how pretty are your babies. This is a mating I will be repeating in due course. Our 2nd litter which is a BSH Black-tipped mating is very special because Tia is one of the nicest girls from our dear friends Sue and Terry of Tershee and this litter was my first litter of BSH black tipped. Weaning the kittens has split the group - the 2 boys can't get enough food wheras the girls are picking and needing lots of encouragement. I will get them as round as their brothers though!
A surprise litter: Fifi, my truly scrumptious puddy delivered 2 babies to my surprise after kick starting the birthing process on my lap and I wasn't even aware she was pregnant (talk about a sly crafty mating!!!). We have 2 silver and white kittens, 1 straight-haired, 1 curly. Hmm, you certainly gave me a surprise Fifi!
I'm not sure where the time has gone but we have been kept busy here in the house. So much has happened over the past 6 months that I can only briefly catalogue the events here: our long awaited stud boy made his journey to us from the USA and wow, what a stunning boy too; after one hiccup after another and with a really heavy heart, we have had to give up our plans for Ragdolls. Millie was spayed after her only litter of Ragdolls and with only one baby girl and now 2 boys we could not afford to bring in any further girls so we relocated our handsome stud boy and both the young kittens were homed as pets. This has left us with more than enough to concentrate on with our new lines in the Selkirks but it has been a sad chapter we have had to draw to a close.
This coming year will see lots of new kittens (hopefully) for us as the girls will be siring their first litters as and when they are fully mature and ready. I am looking forward to seeing Mr T's stamp upon our type. I guess watch this space.
Monday 3rd August 09.
We have had a fairly tumultuous time over the past few months with some tough decisions that had to be made. Saffy who was such an incredibly affectionate character became increasingly stressed and unhappy after her neutering that we had to make the difficult decision to re-home her. She has found a superb home with Rachel and I hope we have frequent updates as to her 'many' pampered moments. Dottie was also incredibly intolerant of the kittens and she too has found a great forever place with Lisa and Owen.
Millie our Ragdoll, finally gave birth to our first litter of Ragdoll kittens ever. We have waited with baited breath for this litter and have everything crossed that all continues well. We had hoped we would have had another Ragdoll female in our group by now as we had introduced Elsa last August 08 only to discover she too carried a genetic fault which whilst not detrimental to her health, could quite well carry to her future kittens and so upon the recommendation of our vets, the GCCF SOP and advisory notes recommending the removal of 'known' genetic issues, we made the decision to pet home this girl and found her a lovely new home. We now have to resolve this situation with the original breeder through arbitrary means - highly disappointing that valuable energy has to be poured into this unnecessary situation but we felt a 'bigger' issue was at stake and more importantly, we were not prepared to compromise our standards, our values, and our ethics in order to breed from 'anything'. This is a hobby and the pedigree cat world is fraught with all sorts of pitfalls - shamefully some of those are other breeders. On a brighter note, not all breeders have the same gains in mind and we have met some fantastic highly knowledgeable and generous warm associates whom I am proud to call my friends. Soapbox over.
Thursday 30th April 09
There comes a point I think with all breeders when they are truly tested and feel like little is going right. Chloe's litter brought an incredible amount of joy amidst a cloud of apprehension and worry and it really has been a pleasure to watch these kittens grow and develop their own personalities. We had no intentions of keeping a girl however Flora chose us and I could not part with her now. Just as this litter is making preparation sto move on to their new homes, we are struck by the news that Saffy our foundation Selkirk has to have an emergency operation for a fairly 'rare' condition called pyometra. We were devastated. This operation however saved her life and for that we will be incredibly grateful. Only 3 days later and another of our girls had the same condition and Boo had to be neutered. Just as both girls appeared to be making a good recovery, Boo had a dreadful experience and had to be euthenised. Both Andy and I are completely shell-shocked as she was such a young girl and had a pretty horrific ordeal in the end.
Monday 22nd December 08
As the year draws to a close we look back over the trials and tribulations of the past few months. There has undoubtedly been a sense of success as charted in the progress and development seen in some of the kittens raised over this past year, however this path has had a rocky centre and there have been a couple of setbacks, along with some pretty devastating losses: part and parcel when dealing with nature but that doesn't soften the blow at the time.
We have brought in a seal tortie tabby c/pt BSH aka Tibbles, for our Selkirk c/pt breeding programme alongside Indie, the most attentive BSH I've ever met, and who delights all who visit us by licking them to pieces.
We have brought in our potential Ragdoll stud boy and look forward to watching him thrive and develop. We have 2 potential Ragdoll females also looking to join us here and we look forward to them also. We have forged links with breeders abroad and seeking opportunities of Ragdoll imports...2009 is going to be a busy year for our Ragdoll development.
Our Selkirks have developed into handsome creatures which are exceptionally friendly and adored by most. I am grateful for the great start we have had with them and look forward to the development of our c/ptd Selkirks.
Sadly, we have moved our Blue BSH group on to new pastures, grateful for news that all are thriving in their new environments...thank you.
Wednesday 24th September 08
Due to a bout of illness within the family(bronchitis) some of our BSH Blue kittens were delayed gettingt their vaccinations until this week. Both the 10.5 week old kittens and the 9 week old babies all had 1st vaccinations. Just 2 girls are awaiting theirs but because they are a little on the small side, we are delaying them for another week to ensure they cope with the vaccine.
Cocoa our Black Smoke Selkirk girl gave birth to 4 gorgeous kittens: these are now 2 weeks old. We have 2 curly boys and 2 Variants-1 girl and 1 boy. Hair length is undecided yet.
Boo and Dottie returned to us from the Wotmore cattery: they have been well cared for and hopefully managed a little mating in their holidays! A huge thanks to Jean.
Saturday 23rd August 08
Today we took 2 of our boys to be shown for the first time: Ollie, our Black-tipped BSH won his class claiming his first CC, BOB, and came 3,4,5th in his side classes...we were chuffed to pieces for him. Diesel our young apprentice is our Selkirk and he did not disappoint (not that he could) winning his class, BOB, 2nd in his 3 side classes and finally Best of Variety Kitten...we knew he was stunning in our eyes but catching the attention of the judges was pretty special...a big thanks to Liz for him. The day was long and yet both our boys handled it really well. We hope there will be other opportunities to take them out again.
Saturday 16th August 08
How time flies! We had our third and final litter of Blue BSH to hit the nursery from Hattie to Winston and all are doing well. Katie needed to return to her steroid medication so we shared her kittens out amongst our two blue girls and both mums took to the kittens straight away. Katie was neutered as this was the only fair option for her. She has had the good fortune to be re-homed with 2 of the most genuine caring animal lovers I've had the pleasure to meet and I don't doubt she will be fully pampered as she so deserves: a huge thank you to Mark and Jen. The beginning of this month saw our latest arrival which was our gorgeous chocolate tortie point BSH, Indie. After meeting Kirsty and her children, there was no doubt I was going to get a kitten which had been well and truly socialised with lots of handling and confident enough to join our existing group of felines...she really is great and many thanks for allowing us to have her. Indie will be one of 2 girls we are looking to use in order to develop our colour-point line within the Selkirks.
Monday 7th July 08
Glutton for punishment and/or poor planning on our behalf (more to do with not knowing if our BSH stud boy was 'working' yet) but Betty gave birth to 4 Blue BSH boys 4th July. Just 2 days later and Katie gave birth to 5 BSH: 4 girls and 1 boy. These look to be a combination of blues and blue/creams. All doing well. Four weeks time is going to be interesting!!
Thursday 19th June 08
Chloe, our tri-coloured Selkirk girl gave birth to 3 gorgeous girls in the early hours of Sunday 15th June. Dad is Ollie. Mum is absolutely besotted with them and all looks well so far. We have one curly girl and 2 Variants-nice to see we have a tri-colour to continue her lines.
Sunday 1st June 08
Saturday 31st May saw our first litter of Selkirks for the year: Saffy gave birth to 4 beautiful babies. I was sure there was another inside to arrive later however more than 24hours have passed and it seems we have the just the four. All are looking gorgeous with 2 curlies and 2 straight-haired: I am allowed to give high praise because I'm biased.
29th May 2008
Diesel, our gorgeous little silver shaded Selkirk Rex boy has arrived and after a matter of hours, has made himself truly at home. What a spritely friendly kitten he is with an incredibly affectionate personality - he will be a great asset to the development of our Silver Selkirk lines. Thank you.
22nd May 2008
Our Ragdoll Millie, produced her very first litter of 9 kittens (no wonder we thought she was very big in pregnancy) just 2 days ago. We lost one kitten as it was born but the remaining 8 are doing well. For an 'accidental' litter we have some beautiful spotties. Millie was a real professional during labour and took the whole event in her stride without making one sound. She adores her babies and it is fantastic to see such an array of dots and spots snuggled up to her.
13th April 2008
Selkirks due May/June.
Our new potential Selkirk Rex stud boy-to-be Oscar had to be put to sleep early this month. At not quite 6 months old we are both devastated at his loss. Whilst our goal is to develop our own successful breeding programme, our cats are still very much our pets.Whether it is a cat that has been bred by ourselves or in this case, a kitten bought to further our own programme, the loss is still the same. We had only owned Oscar 3 months before his liver failure proved fatal: such a short time to own a cat who was such a lovable warm chappy that anyone would easily adopt.
30th March 2008
We have a new stud boy who joins us: Ollie is a gorgeous black-tipped BSH proven stud and will be used to help develop our silver lines in the Selkirk Rex programme. Thank you for trusting us with him. His photo will join 'Our Cat Family' soon.
Disappointment with our Ragdoll Millie who continues to baffle us with potential kittens-alas not on this occasion. A recent scan proved what we had thought for the last week or so-no Ragdoll kittens yet.
Oscar, is still a little sickly chap but hanging in there-our fingers are still crossed.
Due to changes in our programme (having lost our SR stud boy to be), then we have a blue SR Variant available BOO(suitable for sale to a breeding home, otherwise a very special pet home is required).
Poppy is a blue SR Variant who is also available to a loving pet home. Please get in touch if interested.
We receive news that Oscar our beautiful new potential Selkirk Rex stud boy, is very unwell with a liver condition and his future is quite uncertain. We hope with treatment he can be stabilised and live out his life as a very pampered puss in our home. Oscar will not be able to be used in our breeding programme which is very disappointing as he is a gorgeous little chap with some striking features and would have made some great contributions to the breed.
New arrival: our beautiful Blue Spotted Selkirk Rex stud boy joined us in the New Year and what a softie he is...see Oscar hitting the pages of 'Our Cat Family'.
Millie has gone on her holidays to a luxury 5 star hotel and will hopefully return bearing news of her forthcoming litter...keep you posted for end March 08.
Latest additions: Poppy (blue-silver SR Variant); Dottie (blue spotted SR Variant) and sister Cocoa (long-haired Black Smoke Serlkirk Rex) are all Saffy's litter and are staying here with us.
Our new BSH blue stud boy joined us in October...Winston 'Rule Britannia'. Photo added to 'Our Cat Family' section. He is absolutely beautiful with a gorgeous round head and will hopefully continue to develop his dad's strong good looks.
Betty gave birth to 5 healthy British Shorthairs on 28th June 07. All of these kittens have now gone to their new homes.
Chloe gave birth to 6 beautiful Selkirk Rex kittens on 26th August 07: she had 4 curlies and 2 straight-haired. These kittens have found their new homes.
Saffy's litter arrived in the early hours of September 7th. We have 3 beautiful kittens, one of which is a long-haired curly. Silvers are visible amongst them. These kittens are staying here and will hopefully help to assist in developing our silver/spotted curly SR programme. Photos will be posted soon on 'Our Cat Family' page.