We are probably best described as the mad cat folk in the valley! Well at least that is out in the open!
Both of us are qualified adult and sick children’s nurses. John is currently still in practice however I have moved into the dark side of NHS IT management.
We both have kept a variety of pets, however cats have always been the cornerstone of my life. I have kept cats for over fifty years and I am still surprised by them. Our first two cats we obtained together lived well into their 20s and after a short period of mourning we started to build a collection of mostly Norwegian Forest Cats. We have rescued some moggies from irresponsible owners and three from an elderly gentleman whose Alzheimer’s became too progressed to allow him to safely look after them. So, overall, we have a happy, furry, slightly mad household.
About Our Norwegian Forest Cats.
We started off with three purchased locally that were clearly either crossbreeds or cats not part of a breeding programme. We call these our Norwegian Lites. However, they had enough of the ‘personality’ and phenotype to pique our interest. As a consequence, we have purchased a number of full pedigree Norwegian cats.
Our Ethos – Evidence Based Practice
Over the last half a century I thought I had learned a significant amount of how to care for a cat. Not so when you bring pregnancy and litter care into the picture. Luckily I was supported by the practice of a small group of passionate breeders. They gave me a significant leg up the knowledge tree. From there I was also lucky enough to partner with some excellent and committed vets who helped support my quest for knowledge. Since my days as a nurse I was never satisfied with the care I provided. I was always reading the latest research and written text hoping it would provide answers to: – Should I always do this? Does this benefit the cats or kittens? Can I do what I do better? Should I use this? Now there is some ‘spurious’ research out there but also some gems. Like medical and nursing care, veterinary and breeder care must constantly question itself and move with the proven changes i.e. evidence based practice. ‘We have always done it this way’, is not care but a failure to care as everything we do should be backed up by solid research.
The Breeding Programme
We do not breed for breeders or to please show judges. Our aim is to produce the most beautiful, healthy, well behaved (mostly) and emotionally responsive pets. Kittens that will become at one with you and your household and provide you with years of love & happiness. There are champions and grand champions in our bloodlines however our breeding programme is based on feedback from our kitten owners and our own experience. Other than our studs all our cats live in the house with us. We believe that this creates cats and therefore kittens that are loving and love to be in human company. This is supported by our visitors through the years. The studs don’t miss out either. You will often find one of us nodding off, cuddling a stud in their cozy, heated chalets.
We are committed to supporting all the breeders round the world that are striving to maintain the traditional Norwegian Forest Cat. Unfortunately, the Norwegian Forest Cat breed description is currently being challenged by some breeders and judges who feel that they have the right to impose their personal views on how the breed should look. This is changing fundamental aspects of the Norwegian Forest Cat such as the overall size, placement and size of ears, eye shape. We disagree and do not support this trend.
Not a big issue for us but we do not show our cats. Respect to the breeders who do however our cats do not like to travel. I will not put my cats through an unnecessary trip that they will hate so that I can win a ribbon. I know my cats are beautiful and that is all I need together with the lovely feedback we get from our visitors and kitten owners.