Aby-a-Day – 2 Juli: Sketches in London (Cartoon Tuesday)

Even though the posts have been coming regularly every day, Björn and I have been in London since last Thursday evening. We came mainly because I got tickets for both games of the two-game series of MLB games between the Yankees and the Yankees, the first time major league baseball has been played in Europe. Even though Boston was the official home team for both games, and despite there being more Red Sox fans in attendance than there were Yankees fans…the Evil Empire ended up winning both games. But it’s been a lot of fun, and we’ll be home Thursday afternoon.

When we weren’t at the games, of course, we have been doing a lot of sightseeing and shopping. One necessary stop, of course, was Harrod’s. Whilst in the souvenir shop, there was a display of pens, 3 for the price of 2. Whilst Björn hunted for pens, I decided to test them out on the provided pads.


First, I drew Jacoby…but I didn’t like the way it turned out; the ears were too small. So I tried again, with Izaak. This one turned out much better. Still not as good as I’d have liked…but then, the pen I was using wasn’t the best.

Harrod’s is known for its souvenir shopping bags. I bought a rather generic one back in 2002 the last time I visited…but this time I found something much, much better! And, not to mention, Cartoon Tuesday-appropriate.

One last thing: at the first baseball game, we were sitting just in front of a Red Sox fan, Charles, from Connecticut who had come all the way to London to see a game. After the first inning, he started sketching, saying he was “a bit bored.” He was a wonderful artist! Here is the drawing he did of the game; Björn is in it, but I am not…the lines to buy merchandise were insane, so I sucked it up and went to stand in those. For four innings! If you ever happen upon this post, Charles…it was great to meet you!

Other People’s Singas: Noodle the paddle boarder, Paolo the Brave and his brother, Keiko

This really awesome video of a Singapura paddle boarding with her human in the UK popped up on Facebook yesterday. Noodle and her human, Nigel, go paddle boarding regularly on rivers in Essex and Sussex. They even have an Instagram page.

But as cool as this story is, it gets cooler. Noodle (Singaneko Artemis) comes from a British cattery, and her father is Bakardi Minimali*PL (“Keiko”). Kinsey, the breeder, has also written two children’s books about Keiko and his littermate brother Paolo (Bolt Minimali*PL). I discovered – and bought – these books last year after we got Logan, delighted to find any books starring Singas.


Of course, you know that our Izaak also comes from Minimali*PL. But if you look at Paolo’s, Keiko’s and Zak’s pedigrees, you’ll find that all three boys’ parents are Tinytoy Rus Mafoj*PL (father) and Angelina Minimali*PL (mother)…so Zak is Paolo and Keiko’s full brother, and Noodle is his neice! Paolo and Keiko are three years older than Zak…but how amazing is it to discover that Zak’s brothers are children’s book stars!? And his neice is a famous paddle boarder!? I guess Zak has a lot to live up to.

Singas are Super: Bruce Lee dials 999

(Photo from the Daily Mail)

It’s not often you find a news story about a Singapura, but back in 2013 a Singa kitten in London named Bruce Lee managed to dial 999 and summon the police.

Next they’ll be wanting their own iPhones.

Abys are Everywhere: A Quite Interesting Aby

Since moving to Sweden, I have been watching a lot of BBC Brit. I have fallen in love with the comedic panel shows, especially

Abys in Need – Rocky in PA and Two Gentlemen in the UK

A couple of Abys need homes…first this fine American fellow:

“This is Rocky, he is available for adoption through Northeast Abyssinian Rescue. I am fostering him in the greater Philadelphia area. He is a beautiful boy full of Abytude who loves to give me lots of head bumps and purrs. He is a bit on the high strung side and will do best in an adult only home or one without small children. His thoughts on dogs are unknown. He enjoys visits from my Abys so I believe he will do fine with other cats. He is 7 years old, just had a dental and is in good health. If you’re interested in Rocky please email us at NEAbyRescue@yahoo.com and we will send you an application.”

And then, in England, we have these two elderly gents:

“Two 15 year old neutered males desperately needing a new home.

There are two 15 year old Abys in very urgent need of a new home as their owner is getting remarried and his new partner is allergic to cats. The Abys are currently in a cattery awaiting their new home. One is blue and one is sorrel. One has IBS well controlled with diet, and the other arthritis. The cats are in Gloucestershire, but the owner is prepared to deliver them if necessary.

If you feel you could offer these two a home for their retirement, please contact the Abyssinian Club Welfare Officer, Harriet, by e-mail: welfare@charriet.co.uk or ring her on 0208 669 1655

Aby-a-Day – April 7: Kitten Crazies (Cartoon Tuesday)

Everyone knows kittens are cute. But Abyssinian kittens take it to a completely different level.

This cartoon is inspired by Morag Richardson of Eskarina Abyssinians and her Esme’s most recent litter of three little Aby nutcases, Edith, Wilfred and Vera.


The kittens’ full names are: Eskarina Wilfred Owen, Eskarina Edith Cavell and Eskarina Vera Brittain – they were named after a poet. a nurse and a writer from WWI. An interesting thing about these three: Wilfred and Edith were born on 18 February…and then, at 2am on 19 February, little Vera was born!

My cartoon is based on this video…because even I couldn’t make up a kitten turning a tissue box into a go-cart!

But really, the cartoon was inspired by Ann Cook McCall’s comment: “I can’t get over Edith chowing down. I came imagine her cheeks completely full saying, ‘Best day ever!'” So, of course I had to sketch that! And like Topsy, it just grew. Also, a funny thing about the tissue box Wilf is pushing: It’s Tesco Balm Mansized Tissue box!

(Click cartoon to embiggen, or you can view all cartoons in Slideshow mode on Flickr.)

Abys are Everywhere: ResQ Thread’s Winston & Aby Cushions at Primark

Check out this awesome “Adopt” T-shirt from Res-Q Threads!

They don’t say it’s an Aby, but come on, look at those eyes! His name is Winston the Winter Cat…and if you buy his T-Shirt, $10 will go to the animal rescue of your choice (Which, interestingly, includes the Yolo County SPCA…the county I grew up in)!

If you want a shirt with Winston on it, you’ll need to move quickly – he’s only available through 16 February! So hurry over to Res-Q Threads now before they run out of your size!

Alsom, Abyfriend Sanna-Leena found these awesome cat cushions at Primark, but before you get all excited, Primark only has stores in Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Ireland), Portugal, Spain, the Netherlands and the UK, and they don’t have an online store, so they can’t be ordered or shipped. But if you live in one of those countries or know someone who does, you’re in luck!

“Feline tired of your stale cushions? This cat cushion is purr-fect!”

And they’re only £4 each! Although shipping would probably cost more than the pillows. Of course, if it helps, you can always tell yourself it’s a cream and white British Shorthair or a cream European Burmese, not a red/sorrel Aby…

Found Sorrel/Red Boy in Surrey, UK

Someone in Britain is surely missing this handsome man! And just look at that tail! That’s not Photoshopped!

“He is around 12 – 18 months old, a neutered sorrel male, not microchipped and had no other means of identification. He turned up in a back garden around the middle of June, in Camberley, Surrey.

We brought him into foster care at the beginning of July and have named him Lisso. We have had him vet checked, he is in excellent health and has been well cared for. He is very affectionate, definitely a “people” cat…He plays well with the cats in the foster home, except for another young male who he terrorises!

As you can see from the photo he has a extremely long tail, which he seems unaware of, in that if he walks along a shelf, everything will be knocked to the floor by his tail!

If anyone does recognise him, we would be extremely grateful for any information regarding his background and original home. We will be rehoming him, but will be listing him with the Abyssinian Cat Club rather than using our normal methods. We are always careful with rehoming pedigrees, as they can fall into the wrong hands so easily,.

If anyone needs to contact me, it would be better to use my personal mobile no 07785 724194.

If you need any further info, please let me know.

Kind regards
Clare Burch
Operations Director”

I know I have some readers in the UK, and every little bit helps. I think this boy just decided to have an adventure and went on walkabout, but his humans are probably besides themselves with worry.

I’m not certain of the rescue he’s with, but I suspect he may be with Camberley & District Cats Protection; I don’t have an email, so if you think you know where he belongs, it’s probably best to phone the number above. I hope he finds his way home soon!

Abys in Need: 9 Elderly British Abys in need of homes

Via Facebook; copied from the Abyssinian Cat Club welfare page:

We have just been notified of nine Abys in need of rehoming due to their owner’s current ill-health which is continuing to deteriorate. All are aged aged between 12 to 15 and need a quiet life. All are neutered or spayed. Apparently these guys are not up to date on their vaccinations.

They are:

Golly – blue male – 14 1/2

Zadie – blue male – 14

Tweedle – fawn female – 14

Leelee – fawn female – 12 1/2

Apra – fawn female – 13 1/2

Jellybaby – fawn female – 14

Ephbe – fawn female – 13 1/2

Wilson – fawn non-agouti male – 13 1/2

Bean – fawn non-agouti male – 13 1/2

All are indoor only cats. If you feel you could offer them a good home please contact Harriet Patey on 0208 669 1655 or email her.

No photos, yet. Hopefully there’ll be some added soon!

Extra! Extra! Read all about it! Jacoby in the October Issue of YourCat Magazine

Back in July, the following email was forwarded on one of my Aby mailing lists:

Good morning
I am writing a feature for Your Cat magazine to promote your breed and wondered if you could complete the following asap please:

What I love about the breed is….
The most interesting thing about the breed is….
I keep my cats entertained ..
I keep my cat/s in tip top condition by…
My top tip to a potential owner is…
The most challenging aspect about keeping this breed is…
If you have this breed you must have….
Any further comments/tips for anyone thinking of buying a cat ….
Other breeds that are compatible are…

Many thanks,

Of course, I responded with answers about Abyssinians:

Hello Angie
I got your Aby questionnaire through an Aby email list I’m a member of. I also do a blog about Abys and couldn’t NOT answer your questions!
Hope this is useful:

What I love about Abyssinians is…they’re so interactive! I can’t do anything without my Aby, Jacoby, “helping” me. He also always sleeps on the bed with me, touching me in some way. They’re also so loyal and protective; Jake will hear someone outside the door and growl as he runs up to see what’s going on.

The most interesting thing about Abyssinians is…they’re the oldest breed of cat not started by a genetic mutation (long hair, short/no tail, thermo-retrictive semi-albinism, and the oldest breed bred on purpose by humans and documented. This, I believe, is why they’re more attuned to people and more “dog-like” – they’ve simply been bred for this sort of personality longer than other types of cats.

I keep my cat/s entertained…by walking into the room. Abys love laserpointers, and they love playing fetch. But the thing they most love to do is assist you with whatever YOU are doing!

I keep my cat/s in tip top condition by…proper diet and outings on the leash in nice weather. Plenty of water available in spots away from the feeding area, and tooth brushing and grooming to keep their fur glossy.

My top tip to a potential Aby owner is…remember that they’re very active and want to be involved in absolutely everything you do! These are not decorative cats, these are cats of action! Read up on Abys as much as you can – Your Cat has some lovely articles, and there are several Aby-specific websites and blogs with lots of real stories about real Abys. Yes, they really do do all those things!

The most challenging aspect about keeping Abys is…Well, they ALWAYS want to help you. Always. Especially if you’re making their food. Or other cats’ food. Or any other animals’ food. Or pretty much any food at all. They will steal whatever they can. Jake stole broccoli out of a Chinese takeaway we left unattended thinking that there was only broccoli, it should be safe.

If you have Abyssinians, you must have…patience, a sense of humour (they have both, so you’ll need it, too) and the ability to live with a cat that wants to be with you all the time.

Any further comments/tips for anyone thinking of buying a cat …with cats, much of the time, I’ve found they live up to your expectations. If you expect to have a cat who’s antisocial, nervous, hides when people come over, will only eat one brand of food and won’t let you clip claws or brush teeth, well, then that’s what you’ll have. But if you expect your cat to know some basic words (we have to spell “c-a-n” in our house), to understand what not to do and what’s okay, and be a member of your family rather than just an accessory or a decoration, that’s what you’ll have.

I’ve seen it with my dad’s cats and my cats. I raised his Scottish Fold kitten for several weeks before he could take him, and he was well on track for becoming an extroverted, leash-trained, fearless cat. But after he’d been with my dad for a while, he sort of “shut down,” and became the sort of cat who hides and doesn’t like strangers, doesn’t like to go outside EVER, hisses if you try to pet him…in short, the poor kitten grew into the cat that my dad always complains about! But because that’s all he ever expected of the kitten, that’s what the kitten became.

People always, always ask why my cats are so great, why they’re so friendly, relaxed and outgoing even at the vet, playful into old age, smart, etc. and I tell them it’s because that’s the sort of cat I wanted.

Other breeds that are compatible with Abys are…Burmese and Siamese work well, I’ve found. But they seem to get along with all breeds of cats…and dogs!

I was surprised to receive the following reply to my response:

Thanks so much for your email. Having looked at your blog, Jacoby is amazing! Can you please tell me a little more about you and him, his personality, places you have been, how he and other people react etc, and send me some hi res photos of you two out & about. I’d love to feature you both in the ‘at home with’ section of the article.

I wrote back to Angie immediately, of course, and after a few days’ correspondence, Angela and her editor created a two-page feature in the October issue of Your Cat, which was also going to feature a spotlight on the Abyssinian breed!


And look! There’s a photo of Jake in Boston Common on the cover!

6-7 photo feature AT2 ch2 chsp OK.indd

The feature itself is amazing – they used so many great photos of Jake, and they even mention my blog. It’s amazing; Your Cat calls itself “Britain’s Largest Cat Magazine,” and it’s distributed all over Europe. It’s also available in Canada and the States at bookstores that carry foreign magazines. Soon, Jacoby is going to meet a lot of new people!

Calling all Aby people! “What I love about Abys is….” for Your Cat Magazine

Your Cat magazine in the UK (Where Abys come from!) is doing a breed feature on Abys for an upcoming issue, and they’ve asked all Aby people to respond to the following questions and send them to Angela Kenny, Deputy Editor:

What I love about Abyssinians is….

The most interesting thing about the breed is….

I keep my cats entertained ..

I keep my cat/s in tip top condition by…

My top tip to a potential owner is…

The most challenging aspect about keeping this breed is…

If you have this breed you must have….

Any further comments/tips for anyone thinking of buying a cat ….

Other breeds that are compatible are…

I know there’s a few of you out there who have some awesome stories to tell in response to these queries!

Abys in Need: Tigger in Oxfordshire, UK

Would you believe…another homeless Aby? At least this guy isn’t declawed!


An urgent home is needed for this boy who is currently in a vets in Woodstock (Oxfordshire). He was found as a stray, is about 9 years old, and neutered. Tigger is friendly and outgoing and doesn’t have any health issues that the vets could find.

Contact Chris at Merrydancer Abys if you can help this lovely man.

UPDATE: I’ve just heard that Tigger has a home! “This lady from Oxford, so near Woodstock, rang me this morning to say that she is picking Tigger up on Monday. She has been to see him, and he is very friendly, and she is so pleased to be having him. She had contacted me several weeks ago, wanting a kitten from me, but my girl turned out not to be pregnant. I suggested maybe she would like to consider an older boy, and she must have contacted you straightaway. She said that the vets at Woodstock had made every attempt to contact the owner, as Tigger had been microchipped. They had to find a book on cats to discover his breed!”

You have to love a story with a happy ending!

The internet is a series of tubes, and those tubes are filled with Abyssinians

What would we do without the internet?

Cat World is a great UK cat magazine, but it’s really expensive to get here in North America. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t read its articles! Not sure how long this is valid, but right now you can download an Aby feature article Cat World online for £1.99. You get a printable, savable PDF file, and it’s a pretty good article, with a focus on all the silver colours as well as the Big Four. It’s also got a bit of UK breeding history about the first half of the 20th Century.

This was also published on I Can Has Cheezburger’s CoMixed site:

I believe it!

Other People’s Abys – The UK’s first Abyssinian Olympian

I have to confess, I know little to nothing about how other cat registries work. While Tessie is (and Patrick was) registered with TICA, and Jacoby is also registered with the CCA, I still pretty much only know how the CFA works.

However, this is interesting: The Governing Council of the Cat Fancy (GCCF), the UK’s main cat registry, implemented a new show class this past June: the title of “Olympian.”

Coen main stage

And, this past weekend at a show in Ulster, Northern Ireland, Imperial Grand Premier Glendavan Roderick-Jaynes (Coen) was the first short haired cat of any breed in the UK to achieve the Olympian Bronze. Not only that, but he did it five straight shows. As I understand it, the Olympian award slightly different to other awards as all cats from all sections compete for one Olympian at each show (Olympian wins seem to be, basically, the equivalent of an overall best in show). There is, however, a split for champions/premiers and males/females. So, for Coen to get the Olympian he will have been up against Perisans, Burmese, Siamese, etc. to get it. The title is awarded when a cat earned five certificates from five different judges; The first five certificates equals the Bronze, then they start over and go for Silver and then Gold.

You’ll also notice that the GCCF has similar titles to those used in the CFA, and also more of them. In the CFA, once a cat has achieved Grand (Champion or Premier), there isn’t really much more to do; sometimes you’ll see “Double Grand,” “Triple Grand,” and so on, but I’m not sure these are officially used in CFA (although they are in other registries). In the GCCF, there is also the title of “Imperial Grand,” which sounds very regal; I kind of wish the CFA did that.

Another thing I kind of wish the CFA did was these title medals; aren’t they snazzy? I couldn’t find a photograph, but I did find one of the “old style” medals online; I have to confess that I’m quite smitten with the idea of a Grand medal!

Mrs Denny judging Coen

Isn’t it wonderful that the first shorthair breed to receive this new honour is an Abyssinian?