Archive for Cats

Poor Forest pussycat gets caught in a snare

We have had Forest now since October and he is a much home loving cat. Throughout the Winter his favourite place has been to sleep on the chair next to the fire in the dining room, very contented, very happy.


On Monday morning we came downstairs and he was no where to be seen.  As the day progressed and he did not appear we got more and more worried.  We kept calling him, and went outside looking for him.  By the time evening came and he still had not appeared I started ringing the nearest neighbours.

Then at 9pm he slunk in and lay on the floor.  I got down on the floor to stroke his head and talk to him and thought he looked very subdued.  Then I spotted a piece of wire from round his neck.  I thought he had got something caught in his collar, but on closer examination found it was a piece of wire tightly wound round his neck.  I called out to Neil to get pliers to cut it free, but then I managed to loosen it, as the wire was through a loop.  He had been caught in an illegal snare all day and had finally managed to chew his way through the wire.


He was so lucky not to have been killed.  Sometimes these type of snares can tighten the more the animal struggles and eventually kill them.  I think he must have used one of his 9 lives.

We put down soft food and he immediately woofed it all up, but we were still concerned about his neck swelling, or damage to his teeth or gums where he had gnawed through the wire.  So Neil took him to the vets to get him checked over, but she said he was fine, there was no lasting damaged, so we were very lucky indeed.

We circulated a note to the neighbourhood watch email round robin, and a letter has been forwarded to our local parish magazine warning of these snares.  We can’t prove where it has come from, although we have a suspicion of  who might be setting these snares.

Neil has gone to the police about it too, as this type of snare is illegal and no one should be putting them down.

So Forest was lucky this time, but the next animal might not be so lucky, which is why we are doing everything to stop these snares.

Comments (3)

One week with “Forest”

Our new pussycat “Forest” has been with us for one week now.  He is a timid cat and is taking time to get used to us and the house.

When we first brought him home and let him out of the travelling box, he shot out of the box and through the lounge, up the stairs and disappeared.  We searched all over for him and couldn’t find him, then eventually we saw him on top of some bags under our bed.  When we went out to choir in the evening, he came down for some food but he didn’t use his litter tray for over 24 hours, he must have been crossing his legs!!


As you can see Forest is a black semi long-haired pussycat and we got him from Ferne Animal Sanctuary.  He is 2 years old and we don’t know much about his history except he came from a house with lots of cats and they were unable to look after them all.

After a day or two Forest decided to explore a little more and befriend us.  He is very affectionate, has a gentle purr and loves having his tummy tickled.  He’s not at all aggressive, hasn’t put his claws out at all, but is just lovely and soft and soppy.  However he seems to be scared of noises, and runs away at the smallest thing, an opening door squeaking or a carrier bag rustling.


Ferne told us to feed him pouches of meat in jelly, but he turned his nose up at Prawn in jelly and Rabbit in jelly, and wouldn’t eat until I cleared it away and replaced it with chicken!!.  Oh dear  – a fussy eater!! Our other cat eats whatever you put in front of her and Tarquin did too, so I am not used to a fussy cat.

Yesterday we opened the door into the dining room and Forest met Tia for the first time.  He seemed fairly nonplussed with her as he had been living with other cats at Ferne, but she growled and hissed at him as if to say “Who are you in my house?”  I’m sure it will take time for them to come to some happy living arrangement.

Forest is back under our bed as I write.  I think he feels this is a safe place and this is where he runs to.  Gradually we will introduce him to the rest of the house and eventually to outside, but not in a hurry.  We don’t know what has made him a timid cat and only with patience and time will he settle into our home and life.

We still have some vacancies in the B&B in October so contact us for more details.

Look us up at

please “like” our facebook page at

our smart phone friendly website is

Leave a Comment

RIP Poor old Tarquin

Yesterday was a sad day.  We finally had to make the decision to have poor old Tarquin put to sleep.  He had been getting thin and bony and was having difficulty walking, dragging his back legs.  Yesterday afternoon he couldn’t stand properly and we knew we could not put it off any longer.

Here he is in full health some time ago.


Him and his twin brother Theo came into our lives as little bundles of fluff in June 1995.  We had only been married a year and we felt that 2 cats would make us feel more like a family.  Sadly Theo was run over by a car on a wet January evening when he was just 7 years old, but Tarquin stayed with us right through to old age.  He was 18 and a half years old, about 95 in human terms.

Tarquin loved to climb into a box, so much so that we made a box for him right by the fire so he could keep warm in Winter.  It was one of his favourite places to sleep.


He was a real lap cat, very much Neil’s cat and would take every opportunity to climb onto Neil’s lap when ever he could.  Since we have lived here in the country  and Neil has not been out to work, he has spent a lot of time just being with us.  He loved being groomed, especially with the “zoom groom”.

He had his health problems, surviving a thyroid removal operation, and then being on medication for high blood pressure and latterly also for arthritis.  Recently he took to just lying around and not venturing too far at all.


In his time he was a good mouser and even had a squirrel and brought a live magpie into the house, much to the disconcertment of our decorator back then.

Here he is just 2 weeks ago in Neil’s arms.


So yesterday afternoon we took him to the vets for his final injection.  The vet was lovely with him, and he gradually just slipped away.  We brought him home and wrapped him in one of Neil’s old sweatshirts and then we buried him in the garden, in the back border.  I planted anemone bulbs, pansies and california poppy seeds over the top so that in the Spring it would be a blaze of colour where Tarquin was.  We also placed a light there to mark the spot.


So here’s to Tarquin  March 1995 to Sept 2013.

Comments (6)

More fun in the snow

After lunch today we went to clean the chickens out.  Even though the snow is still thick, it had to be done.  Because the chickens aren’t venturing too far into their run at the moment, they really don’t like treading on the snow, Neil managed to pick up Big Chook.  This was one of our chickens hatched from an egg last Summer which has grown into a hen one and half times bigger than all the other hens, hence its name.  We still don’t know if it is a hen or a cockerel, although it is not showing any signs of being a cock. It’s a beautiful bird.


Tia followed us all the way down the back.  She is polydactyl, ie has extra toes, so she is also known as little big foot.  Of course she is ideally suited to walking on the snow as she has her own “snow shoes”.  I also call her my little snow tiger.


As we walked towards the woods there were lots of animal footprints.  I think these are from a fox, although luckily he had stayed away from the chickens as they have an electric fence around their enclosure.


This was the sight as we walked down into the woods, just beautiful….


We noticed that a couple of trees had broken boughs where they had cracked under the weight of the snow.  Perhaps they were old trees anyway and not in a very healthy condition, but Neil will have to go in with his chainsaw when the snow has melted and cut them down.


The sun was just shining weakly through the trees and the snow was just melting a little bit.  You can just see our well to the left of this picture.


I really liked the look of these branches with snow on.


Look us up at

please “like” our facebook page at

our smart phone friendly website is

Leave a Comment

Cats in a basket

The cats are feeling the cold too.  It was minus 5 degrees C last night and although what little snow we had has been and gone, we have had some severly frosty mornings when we have had to break the ice on the hens’ water.

Anyway last night Tarquin our big old black cat was curled up in front of the woodburner.  I had been using a Ghanian woven basket to carry logs into the lounge and it was now empty.  So what does he do but climb in it?

Tarquin in the basket

He didn’t stay long, before deciding to go back in front of the fire.  About 10 minutes later along comes Tia and does exactly the same, jumps into the empty basket.

Tia in the basket

She promptly curled up and fell asleep.  So cute!!  I have never seen either of them in that particular basket before and both climbed in within 10 minutes of each other, how funny!!

If you want to meet Tarquin and Tia in person visit us at

Leave a Comment