TH BOOK OF THE CAT
By Frances Simpson
1903

CONTENTS

INTRODUCTION
CHAPTER I. CATS OF THE PAST
CHAPTER II. CATS OF TODAY
CHAPTER III. CARE AND MANAGEMENT
CHAPTER IV. HOUSING OF CATS
CHAPTER V. EXHIBITING
CHAPTER VI. THE 'POINTS' OF A CAT
CHAPTER VII. LONG-HAIRED OR PERSIAN CATS
CHAPTER VIII. SOME NOTABLE CATTERIES
CHAPTER IX. BLACK PERSIANS
CHAPTER X. WHITE PERSIANS
CHAPTER XI. BLUE PERSIANS
CHAPTER XII. SILVER PERSIANS
CHAPTER XIII. SILVER TABBY PERSIANS
CHAPTER XIV. SMOKE PERSIANS
CHAPTER XV. ORANGE PERSIANS
CHAPTER XVI. CREAM OR FAWN PERSIANS
CHAPTER XVII. TORTOISESHELL PERSIANS
CHAPTER XVIII. TORTOISESHELL-AND-WHITE PERSIANS
CHAPTER XIX. BROWN TABBY PERSIANS
CHAPTER XX. ANY OTHER COLOUR PERSIANS
CHAPTER XXI. NEUTER CATS
CHAPTER XXII. MANX CATS
CHAPTER XXIII. SIAMESE CATS
CHAPTER XXV. SHORT-HAIRED CATS
CHAPTER XXVI. SOME FOREIGN CATS
CHAPTER XXVII. CATS IN AMERICA
CHAPTER XXVIII. MAINE CATS
CHAPTER XXIX. CAT PHOTOGRAPHY FOR AMATEURS
CHAPTER XXX. REARING OF KITTENS
CHAPTER XXXI. COLOUR BREEDING
THE CAT'S PLACE IN NATURE: ITS ANCESTRY, CLASSIFICATION, STRUCTURE, AND DISTRIBUTION

 

INTRODUCTION

Fanciers have long felt the want of a work dealing in a popular manner with cats, and it was therefore with great pleasure that I undertook to write The Book of the Cat, and to give the results of a long experience in as simple and interesting a form as possible, so that the book might be instructive to cat fanciers, and also readable to that portion of the community which loves cats for themselves and not only for their prizes and pedigrees. It is possible that the beautiful reproductions in this work may result in the conversion of some cat haters, who, seeing the error of their ways, may give poor puss a corner in their hearts. Dogs are more essentially the friends of men, and cats may be considered as the chosen allies of womankind.

In the past, as I have endeavoured to show, many noted celebrities of the sterner sex have shown a sympathetic feeling for the feline race. At the present time the number of men fanciers on our cat club lists and exhibitors at our shows tends to prove that the cat is gradually creeping into the affections of mankind, even in this busy work-a-day world. I have given a full description of the various breeds, and have suggested advice as to the feeding, housing, and general treatment of cats. The chapters on the management of shows, containing also simple rules for the guidance of exhibitors, will, I trust, prove useful and instructive.

In my work I have received most valuable assistance, for which I am deeply grateful, from Mr. H. Gray, the well-known veterinary surgeon, whose chapter on the diseases of cats will, I am sure, be very interesting to breeders and fanciers. To Mr. H. C. Brooke I must tender my sincere thanks for his chapter on foreign cats, and to Mr. E. N. Barker for his excellent survey of the American cat fancy, and to Mrs. Pierce for her notes on Maine cats. Mr. Robert Holding's chapter on the anatomy of the cat, with its excellent diagrams, forms a valuable addition to the work. To Mrs. S. F. Clarke I am greatly indebted for the number of clever photographs with which she has so kindly supplied me.

To many of my "catty" friends I offer grateful thanks for interesting items, paragraphs, and pretty photographs; and last, but not least, I have to thank that veteran, Harrison Weir, for his kindly encouragement, and I feel I cannot do better than quote from his letter, received on the completion of my work - enclosing a few remarks for my preface:"Miss Frances Simpson has kindly dedicated her labour of love, the fascinating Book of the Cat, to me, and truly the honour is great. Words cannot convey my feelings, but out of its fulness the heart speaketh - Thanks! I carry my mind back to the long, long ago, when the cat was a god or ideal, and worshipped. Then later, 'our gentle Will' called it 'the harmless, necessary cat,' and that it has ever been, and more than that to many. It is a lonely home without a cat; and for awhile - and I hope for long - cats are the fashion. Thirty years ago it was apparent to me that cats were not valued at their true worth, and then I suggested a show of cats! Let anyone try to start anything new, though novelty is said to charm! Many were the gibes, jokes, and jeers that were thrown at me then. But nothing succeeds like success. Now, if I may without offence say a few words as to present-day shows, it is that they have not answered my expectations.

Why? Because particular breeds are catered for and run after. Why such breathless talk all about long-haired cats, be they blues or silvers? This is not cat breeding. I want, I wish, and, if I live, I hope to see far more of the 'harmless, necessary cat' at our shows; for a high-class short-haired cat is one of the most perfect animals ever created.

"Far more I might, and perhaps am expected to add; but my life's work is well-nigh done. He who fights honourably the good fight sinks at last. Miss Frances Simpson has rendered me her debtor; and others, beside myself, will tender her grateful thanks for her work in the cause of the cat and for the welfare of the fancy. Adieu!"

Mr. Harrison Weir's words are precious to me, and now that my "labour of love" is ended I can only re-echo his wish and express a hope that the many pages I have devoted to the "harmless, necessary cat," whose fireside friendship I have enjoyed all the years of my life, may awaken and arouse a greater interest in and admiration for these gentle, complex creatures, who in return for a little understanding will give a great deal of love.

Frances Simpson.
Kensington,
August, 1903.

CHAPTER I. CATS OF THE PAST

THE origin of the cat has puzzled the learned, and the stock from whence it sprang is still, in the opinion of some, a mystery for the zoologist to solve.

Historians tell us that the feline race came into existence about the same time as the horse. Reference is made to the cat in Sanskrit writings over 2, 000 years old, and still earlier records are found in the monumental figures, inscriptions, and cat mummies of ancient Egypt. These carefully-preserved relics of the past assist us in answering the question as to how this least tameable of animals became domesticated. There are many legends concerning Puss and the manner in which she first sprang into existence. A surprising account of the cat's creation is found in the works of an Arabian naturalist. It is as follows: "When Noah made a couple of each kind of animal enter the Ark, his companions, as well as the members of his family, said to him, 'What security can there be for us and for the animals so long as the lion shall dwell with us in the same vessel?' The patriarch betook himself to prayer and entreated the Lord God. Immediately fever came down from Heaven and seized upon the king of beasts, so that tranquility of mind was restored to the inhabitants of the Ark. But there was in the vessel an enemy no less harmful - this was the mouse.

The companions of Noah called his attention to the fact that it would be impossible for them to preserve their provisions and their clothes intact. After the patriarch had addressed renewed supplications to the Most High, the lion sneezed, and a cat ran out of his nostrils. From that time forth the mouse became so timid that it contracted the habit of hiding itself in holes."

So runs the legend, and in an old Italian picture representing the departure from the Ark we may observe a big brindled cat leading the procession of animals with an air of dignity and self-satisfaction. According to the Arabic scholar Damirei, there was no cat in the Garden of Eden. It is a singular fact that nowhere in the canonical books of the Old Testament nor in the New Testament is the cat mentioned, and if we take into consideration the number of books connected with the life, manners, customs, and religions of the Egyptians, this omission is the more striking. The only Biblical reference to cats occurs in the Book of Baruch, chap. vi., v. 22. This is a letter by Jeremy to the Children of Israel, who were taken captive by Nebuchadnezzar to Babylon. Some Hebrew scholars have asserted that the animals that prowled and cried among the ruins of Babylon were jackals, and not cats.

But however much the origin of the feline tribe is wrapped in mystery, we are certain that more than 3, 000 years ago the cat lived and was loved along the banks of the Nile. The ancient city of the Pharaohs paid her homage; she was admitted into the ranks of sacred animals, she was worshipped in the temples. Jewels were placed in her ears and necklaces about her neck. Figures of cats were kept in the home and buried in the tomb. Trinkets representing both the goddess and the cat were worn upon the person, to indicate special devotion on the part of the wearer. There seems but little doubt that the ancient and well-beloved cat of the Egyptians was a barred or marked animal, answering to some extent to our homely tabby. Paintings and statuettes of this type frequently occur, and therefore we may it take for granted that the Egyptians, who were so realistic and true to Nature when dealing with the animal world, would have presented cats of other species had they existed.

According to the historian, animal worship was first introduced into Egypt by Chores, the second king of the Second Dynasty.

The Egyptians made gods of many living creatures of all kinds, amongst others the bull, the crocodile, the ibis, the hawk, the beetle, and the asp; but the cat appears to have held the highest place in their hearts. Not only was it preserved from injury, beloved and venerated during life, but at its death it was buried with all respect, and everyone mourned for it with outward and visible signs of grief, even to the extent of shaving off their eyebrows. The Egyptian's idea of a correct burial involved mummification, so that all the parts might be preserved and thus kept from annihilation against the day of resurrection. A rich man's cat was very elaborately mummified. Different coloured stuffs were twisted round and round the body, forming curious patterns in two colours. The head would be carefully encased and sometimes gilded; the ears were always standing upright. These curious mummies look something like bottles of rare wine done up in plaited straw. Sometimes the mummy would be enclosed in a bronze box with a statue of a cat Seated on the top. Mummies of cats with painted faces have been found in wooden coffins at Bubastes, Speos, Artemidos, Thebes, and elsewhere.

Here is an illustration of a kitten brought to me from the Boulak Museum. The picture gives but little idea of the care and neatness which must have been employed in wrapping up the dear little dead bodies. The linen used is of the finest. The ears of the tiny kitten are each separate and distinct, and the muzzle of the creature shows distinctly through the delicate wrappings. Scarcely a good museum in the country now that has not some specimens of cat mummies. In some of these we notice that eyes have been added after the mummy has been encased and the embalmment completed. Most of the cats that died in the far-away time were thus embalmed and sent for burial to the holy city of Bubastes, near Thebes, on the banks of the Nile.

The Temple of Bubastes, according to Herodotus, was the fairest in all Egypt, and here special reverence was paid the cat. The local goddess of this city was Pasht, who was represented as a woman with a cat's head. Cats were kept in the temples sacred to them, and doubtless the head cat of the Pasht's temple was a very splendid specimen, who, living the life of great luxury, would be buried with the pomp and magnificence of a royal personage. It was at Bubastes, on the banks of the Nile, that an annual festival in honour of the goddess Pasht was held. We are not told whether the cats took any part in the proceedings. From the towns and villages within hail, pleasure parties were sent in boats up and down the river to the city, and on their passage the men and women who crowded these boats made merry all the long summer day. The women clashed their cymbals and danced, and the men played on their flutes. Seventy thousand people, it is said, assembled at this feast, and they sacrificed victims and drank a good deal of wine.

Perhaps the cats were treated to an extra dish of some dainty to mark this red-letter day in the annals of their patroness and goddess.

A curious custom, which probably had its origin in these pilgrimages to the sacred shrine,. had until recent years survived amongst the Egyptian Moslems, who when they were starting on their way to Mecca always set apart one camel for the conveyance of several cats, and some ancient dame was told off to take charge of the precious animals. She was honoured with the title of " Mother of Cats." Her office was not an enviable one, and probably it was found that a woman was unable to wrestle satisfactorily with the refractory travellers, for at a later date a man was substituted to carry the pussies to the Holy City.

Thebes appears to have been a favourite burying-place for cats, and also a place called Beni Hasan, one hundred miles from Cairo. A few years ago some excavations were made near this town, and thousands of little mummied bodies were found that had rested peacefully for centuries. Their graves were desecrated, their burying-ground plundered, and tons and tons of mummied forms were carted away to the neighbouring fields to serve the useful, if not romantic, purpose of manure ! According to Horopollo, the cat was worshipped in the temple of Heliopolis, because the size of the pupil of the animal's eye is regulated by the rising and waning of the sun. Plutarch, however, states in his treatise on "Isis and Osiris" that the image of a female cat was placed at the top of the sistrum as an emblem of the moon. "This, "says the historian,

"was on account of the variety of her fur, and because she is astir at night; and furthermore, because she bears firstly one kitten at a birth, and at the second two, at the third three, and then four, and then five, until the seventh time, so that she bears in all twenty-eight, as many as the moon has days. Now this, perchance, is fabulous, but 'tis most true that her eyes do enlarge and grow full at the full moon, and that on the contrary they contract and diminish at the decline of the same."

Among other fables of classic naturalists and historians may be mentioned the following by Herodotus: "If a fire occurs, cats are subject to supernatural impulses; and while the Egyptians ranged in lines with gaps between them, are much more solicitous to save their cats than to extinguish the fire, these animals slip through the empty spaces, spring over the men's shoulders, and fling themselves into the flames. When such accidents happen, profound grief falls upon the Egyptians."

Whether these frenzied cats did or did not commit suicide is open to doubt, but that they would plunge fearlessly into water is an acknowledged fact. This is attested by paintings representing sporting scenes in the valley of the Nile. Men and women used to go out on fowling excursions in a boat to the jungles and thickets of the marsh land, or to lakes in their own grounds, which abounded with wild fowl, and there among the tall reeds knock down the bird with a stick. Into these happy hunting grounds they took a cat who would jump into the water and retrieve the game as it fell. There is a painting taken and brought from a tomb in Thebes, which is now in the British Museum, and Wilkinson, in his "Manners and Customs of Ancient Egyptians," writes as follows: "A favourite cat sometimes accompanied the Egyptian sportsmen on these occasions, and the artist intends to show us, by the exactness with which he represents the animal seizing the game, that cats were trained to hunt and carry the water-fowl."

One of the earliest representations of the cat is to be found in the Necropolis of Thebes, which contains the tomb of Hana, who probably belonged to the Eleventh Dynasty. There is a statue of the king standing erect, with his cat Bouhaki between his feet. The large basalt statues, of which there are so many in the British Museum, both seated and standing, are examples of great interest. They have mostly the disc of lunar divinity above their heads and the royal asp above the forehead.

M. Champfleury, in his delightful book, "Les Chats," gives a good deal of information regarding the cats of ancient Egypt, and mentions the existence of funerary statues of women which bear the inscription Techau, the cat, in token of the patronage of the goddess Bast. Frenchmen occasionally call their wives ma chatte without attaching any hieratic association to that term of endearment.

According to ancient documents in the Louvre, we are enabled to surmise the name by which the cat was known in Egypt. It was Mau-Mai, Maau, or Maon. A tablet in the Berlin Museum, bearing the representation of a cat, dates from 1600 B. C., and another, two hundred years older, has an inscription in which the word "Mau" appears.

Amongst old Egyptian images in bronze and earthenware, we may often find the cat crouching with the symbolic eye, emblem of the sun, engraved upon its collar. In the British Museum there is a curious example of a toy in the shape of a wooden cat with inlaid glass eyes and a movable lower jaw well lined with teeth.

There is a tradition that Cambyses devised a scheme for the capture of the town of Peluse, which, if true, is one example among many of the devotion of the Egyptians to cats. It was in the fourteenth year of his reign that this king of Persia tried to effect an entry into Egypt, and he is said to have hit upon a clever strategy. Knowing that the garrison of the town was entirely comprised of Egyptians, he put at the head of his army soldiers each carrying in their arms a cat. The Egyptians, alarmed lest they might injure the sacred animals when destroying their enemies, consented rather to be vanquished. But for their scruples they might perhaps have repulsed the invaders, for the Persian soldiers could not well have done their share of the fighting while clasping in their arms restless and terrified cats!

It is strange that the cat was almost neglected by the Greeks and Romans. It is true that Grecian art working on such grand sweeping lines might fail to follow the insignificant yet graceful curves of the cat.. Therefore no Greek monument is adorned with a figure of the idol of Egypt, and Homer never gives a passing mention of the cat. Among the Greeks the cat was sacred to the goddess Diana. Mythologists pretend that Diana created the cat in order to throw ridicule upon the lion, an animal supposed to have been called into existence by Apollo with the intention of frightening his sister. This he followed up by producing a mouse, which Hecate's cat immediately ate up. A cat was often emblazoned on the shields and flags of Roman soldiers. That the cat was known at an early period in Italy we have proof in the curious mosaic in the Museum at Naples, which depicts one pouncing upon a bird. The date of this has been fixed at about one hundred years prior to the Christian era. In the Bordeaux Museum there is a tomb of the Gello-Roman period with a representation of a girl holding a cat in her arms and with a cock at her feet.

In those days the playthings and domestic animals belonging to children were buried with them.

From some of the oldest Indian fables we learn that the cat was domesticated in that country at a very early period. Her first appearance into China would seem to have been about 400 a. d. There is a curious ancient Chinese saying to the effect that "A lame cat is better than a swift horse when rats infest a palace."

Amongst the curious freaks in the natural world are mineral lusus. These are stones, agates, or marbles, which, by the action of the soil, air, or water during thousands of years, have assumed various forms, which we may interpret to represent human heads, trees, animals, and so forth. This illustration of a mineral lusus is taken on a reduced scale from a book by Aldrovandus, an Italian naturalist of the seventeenth century. The figure of the cat occurs, he says, in a slab of marble. It was also reproduced by Athanasius Kircher, the Jesuit, who copied many of Aldrovandus's engravings.

I think the most casual observer would pronounce this illustration to be the representation of a cat; and if, as we are led to believe, this and other figures are really the result of natural causes, we can only marvel at the wonderful correctness of outline and form in which through countless ages the substances comprising the specimen have arranged themselves.

We have no record that the cat became domesticated in Great Britain and France before the ninth century, when it would seem that she was by no means common, and considered of great value; for in the time of one of the old Princes of Wales, who died in 948, the price of a kitten before it could see was fixed at a penny, after it had captured a mouse, twopence; and if it gave further proofs of its usefulness it was rated at four-pence. This same prince, Howel the Good, issued an order that anyone who stole or killed a cat that guarded the prince's granary was to forfeit a milch ewe, its fleece, and lamb, or as much wheat as when poured on the cat suspended by its tail (the head touching the floor) would form a heap high enough to cover the top of the tail.

This is not only curious, as being an evidence of the simplicity of ancient customs, but it goes far to prove that cats were not aborigines of these islands. The large price set on them - if we consider the high value of specie at that time - and the great care taken of the improvement and breed of an animal that multiplies so quickly, are almost certain proofs of their being little known at that period. No doubt wild cats abounded in our islands, and this creature is described by Pennant as being three or four times as large as the house cat. The teeth and claws are, to use his expression, "tremendous," and the animal is altogether more robust. The tail of the wild cat is thick and as large at the extremity as it is in the centre and at the base; that of the house cat tapers to the tip. This ferocious creature, well named the British tiger, was formerly common enough in the wooded and mountainous districts of England, Scotland, and Wales, but owing to the attention paid to the preservation of game it has gradually become almost if not entirely exterminated. In olden times, when wild cats were hunted and captured, the principal use they were put to was to trim with their fur the garments of the ladies in the various nunneries scattered over the land.

A writer of the Middle Ages says: "The peasants wore cat skins, badger skins, etc." It would appear that lambs' and cats' skins were of equal value at that period.

Harrison Weir, in his work on cats, tells us that in 1871 and 1872 a wild cat was exhibited at the Crystal Palace by the Earl of Hopetoun; he also mentions that as late as 1889 Mr. Edward Hamilton, M. D., writing to the Field, gives information of a wild cat being shot at Inverness-shire. He states: "A fine specimen of a wild cat was sent to me on May 3rd, trapped on the Ben Nevis range. Its dimensions were: from nose to base of tail, 1 foot; height at shoulders, 1 foot 2 inches. "In July, 1900, a paragraph to the following effect appeared in the Stock-Keeper: "The Zoological Society have just acquired a litter of wild cats. This is the only instance where a whole litter has been sent to the Gardens. It was taken not far from Spean Bridge, Inverness-shire."

The late Professor Rolleston, in an article on the "Domestic Cats of Ancient and Modern Times" (Journal of Anatomy and Physiology), has well explained much of the confusion about cats in former writers and their so-called interpreters. He shows how loosely now, as long ago, the word "cat" and its classic equivalents may be employed. Just as we still speak of civet cats and martens. Up to the beginning of this century the wild cat was wrongly thought to be the original of the tame species. Yet apart from more exact evidence this is shown to be an error if we note the value set upon domestic cats in former centuries. The Rev. Dr. Fleming, in his "History of British Animals" (1828), points out some of the distinctions between the two species. He also alludes to the spotted variety, termed the Cypress Cat, as noticed by Menet, who wrote the earliest book on British Natural History in 1667.

"It is a curious fact," says Mr. J. E. Her-ting, an eminent naturalist, "that in Ireland, notwithstanding reports to the contrary, all endeavours to find a genuine wild cat have failed, the so-called 'wild cat' of the natives proving to be the 'marten cat,' a very different animal."

In the early Middle Ages, according to tradition, cats were utilised in a strange manner. The illustration on p. 7 depicts a German fortress which it was desired by the enemy to set on fire. Not being able, one may suppose, to effect this by treachery, the foes pressed into their service both biped and quadruped. On the back of the pigeon and cat alike, a flask of inflammable matter is attached, and furnished with a time fuse to ignite at the proper moment. There is a broad road for the cat to travel, and we must presume that the gate of the fortress was left open for her entrance. The pigeon would be supposed to cut the cord of the flask with her beak when just over the magazine and let it drop at an auspicious moment. This cut is reduced from a coloured drawing in an unpublished manuscript volume dated 1575, in which is a great variety of illustrations of fireworks for war and recreation.

It is strange that the cat, which was an object of worship and adoration to the Egyptians, should, during the long, dark years of mediaeval history, be looked upon as a diabolical creature. The only pleasant legend handed down to us from the Middle Ages is that of "Dick Whittington and his Cat." There are records to show that this worthy citizen was thrice Lord Mayor of London, and we have always been led to believe that it was to his cat he owed his wealth and prosperity. At all events, so long as London is London, Whittington will ever be associated with his cat.

Innumerable are the legends that gather round the cat during the Middle Ages. It was believed that the devil borrowed the coat of a black cat when he wished to torment his victims. Sorcerers pretended to cure epilepsy by the help of three drops of blood taken from the vein under a cat's tail. At numerous trials for witchcraft, puss figured as the wicked associate of the accused. Cats were offered by sorcerers as oblations to Satan, and they were flung into the fire at the Festival of St. John. All praise to Louis XIII., who as the Dauphin interceded for the lives of these poor pussies thus annually sacrificed. It was thought to bring good luck to a house if a cat were cooked alive in a brick oven, and in Scotland she was roasted before a slow fire as a means of divining the future.

The mania of witchcraft had pervaded all ranks, even the holy profession, whose duty it should be to preach peace and goodwill. Hundreds of wretched old women were sent out of life "in a red gown" (the slang of that day for being burnt "quick" or alive), after undergoing the most excruciating tortures to make them confess the impossibilities for which they suffered.

In 1591, when King James of Scotland was crossing from Denmark, a great tempest arose at sea. This was supposed to have been caused by a "christened cat" being placed in the vessel by witches. The following is an extract from an old pamphlet: "Againe it is confessed that the said christened cat was the cause that the Kings Majestie's shippe had a contrarie wind to the rest of the shippes in his companie, for when the rest of the shippes had a fair and good winde, then was the winde contrarie and altogether against his Majestie." Thus, in the past as in the present day, blame was laid upon the poor harmless puss, where no blame was due.

In an old book called "Twenty Lookes over all the Roundheads of the World," published in 1643, we read:"In the Reigne of Oueene Mary (at which time Popery was much exalted) then were the Roundheads (namely, the monks and friars) so odious to the people, that in derision of them a cat was taken on a Sabbath day, with her head shorne as a Fryer's and the likenesse of a vestment cast over her, with her feet tied together, and a round piece of paper like a singing Celse between them; and thus was she hanged in a gallows in Cheap-side, neere to the Crosse, in the Parish of St. Matthew. Which cat, being taken down, was sent to Doctor Pendleton (who was then preaching at St. Paul's Cross), commanding it to be shown to the congregation. The Round-head Fryers cannotabide to heare of this cat."

At the coronation of Elizabeth there is an account given, in the Hatton correspondence, of an effigy of the Pope being carried through the streets and afterwards burnt with several live cats, which, we are told, "squalled in a most hideous manner" as soon as they felt the fire.

After a famous French trial in the seventeenth century, a woman condemned as a murderess was hung in an iron cage over a slow fire, and fourteen poor unoffending cats were made to share the same fate. It is difficult to conceive by what train of thought civilised beings could arrive at such a pitch of wicked and horrible cruelty. Why should a gentle, shrinking, graceful little creature be thus made the savage sport of devils in human form?

There seems, however, to have been one haven of rest for poor persecuted pussy during the Middle Ages, and that was in the nunneries. Here, at least, she would be kindly treated, let us hope. It is said that this fact has something to do with the cat's traditional association with old maids.

And now let us quit this dark page of history, where the shameful treatment of an innocent race makes the lover of the poor pussies sorrowful and indignant. It was in France that, after the period when the cat was given over to the ways of the witch and the sorcerer, we find her yet again taking her proper place in the home and the heart of the highest in the land. Writers of natural history and others frequently denounce the cat as an animal incapable of personal attachment, yet puss has wooed and won the friendship and affection of many notable men.

Cats, the most politic, the most polite, and in proportion to their size the most powerful of beasts - realising almost literally Napoleon's favourite maxim, "Iron hand in velvet glove" - have the permanent fame of being loved by that most eminent of Frenchmen, Cardinal Richelieu, who delighted to watch the frolics of a number of kittens by which he was generally surrounded in his leisure hours. In this tendresse he resembled a still more famous Churchman! A cat went to sleep once, we are told, on the sleeve of Mahomet's robe. The hour of prayer arrived, and he chose rather to cut away his sleeve than to disturb the slumbers of his beloved Muezza.

Chateaubriand makes frequent mention of the cat in his "Memoires." He received a present of a cat from the Pope. Moncrieff wrote a series of quaintly worded letters on cats, and the book has some curious illustrations. In this we read of the pussies of many grand dames of the French Court of that day. We give an illustration taken from this book, which represents the tomb of a cat which belonged to Madame Lesdiguieres, and bears this inscription: Une Chatte Jolie. Sa maitresse qui n'aima rien L'aima jusques a la folie. Pourquoi le dire ? On le voit bien.

Moncrieff had to suffer an immense amount of ridicule on account of his charming "Lettres sur les Chats," which the author himself calls "a gravely frivolous book. "

Victor Hugo had a favourite cat he called "Chanoine," and Gautier's cat slept in his bed, and always kept him company at meals. Petrarch loved his cat as he loved his Laura. Dr. Johnson used to indulge his cat Hodge with oysters, which he would go out himself to purchase. Chestei-field provided for his cat in his will. Sir Walter Scott's love of dogs did not prevent him delighting in the company of a "conversable cat," and Hunse, of Hunsefield, seems to have possessed a large share of the great man's affection, and when he died his master wrote thus to Richardson: "Alack-a-day! my poor cat, Hime, my acquaintance, and in some sort my friend of fifteen years, was snapped at even by that paynim, Nimrod. What could I say to him, but what Brantome said to some ferrailleur who had been too successful in a duel: 'Ah, mon grand ami, vous avez tue mon autre grand ami.'" Amongst famous French novelists several have been cat lovers, especially Dumas, who in his "Memoires" makes notable mention of "Le Docteur." Cowper, Shelley, Wordsworth, Swinburne, and Matthew Arnold all wrote lovingly of cats. But Shakespeare, although he makes forty-four distinct mentions of cats, never has a good word for poor pussy. In "All's Well that Ends Well" he gives vent to his dislike.

Bertram rages forth: "I could endure anything before me but a cat, and now he's cat to me."

In "Cymbeline" occurs this passage: - "In killing creatures vile as cats and dogs"; and in "Midsummer Night's Dream" Lysander is made to exclaim: - "Hang off, thou cat, thou burr, thou vile thing."

Romeo cries out: " Every cat and dog And little mouse, every unworthy thing. "

From these quotations alone we may infer that, at any rate, dogs and cats were not favourites with the great bard. There is only one mention of cats in Dante. He compares to cats the demons who, with their hooks, claw the "barterers" (i. e. abusers of their office as magistrates), when these sinners try to emerge from the hot pitch wherein they are punished. He says of one of these wretches: - " Tra male gatte era venuto il sorco." (Inf. XXII., 58. ) Translation: - "Among wicked cats the mouse came."

In the "Westlosthcher Divan" of Goethe, written in his old age, but full of youthful spirit and of the freshest allusions to Eastern things, the cat is called one of the four" favoured beasts," i. e. animals in a state of grace, admitted into Paradise, in a verse very near the end of the poem, which being literally translated, reads thus: "This cat of Abuherriras" (a friend of the prophet Mahomet) "purrs about the Lord, and coaxes. Since he is ever a holy beast whom the Prophet stroked."

Robert Liston, who, as everyone knows, was the leading London surgeon in the middle of the nineteenth century, was passionately attached to his cat, and used to introduce it to his guests at the dinner parties which, according to the custom of a past generation, he gave his medical friends. On these occasions the cat would gravely walk round the dinner table during dessert to be admired by the guests in succession, and it once happened that the top of its tail got into the wineglass of Dr. Anthony Todd Thoruson, Liston's famous colleague at University College Hospital. This man promptly struck the animal. Liston was so enraged that he started from his seat and denounced his guest in language more forcible than elegant.

Jeremy Bentham, who introduced by their names to Lord Brougham the cats seated on chairs round his table, deserves honour, not only as the foremost of modern jurists but also because, in his "Principles of Morals and Legislation," he had expressed better than others the claims of brutes to kind treatment.

The great scholar and eminent writer, St. George Mivart, has given the world a wonderfully comprehensive work on the Cat, and has used the maligned feline as his type for an introduction to the study of back-boned animals. It is he who remarks: - "We cannot, without becoming cats, perfectly understand the cat mind. "

Perhaps the unkindest picture given to us of a cat is from the pen of the naturalist Buffon. "The cat" (says this unsympathetic student)" is an unfaithful animal, kept only from necessity in order to suppress a less domestic and more unpleasant one, and although these animals are pretty creatures, especially when they are young, they have a treacherous and perverse disposition, which increases with age, and is only disguised by training. They are inveterate thieves; only when they are well brought up they become as cunning and flattering as human rascals."

Chateaubriand, referring to these scathing remarks, says: - "Buffon has belied this animal. I am labouring at her rehabilitation, and hope to make her appear a tolerably good sort of beast."

A charming reference to the ways of cats occurs in a curious and interesting book by a once famous Jesuit, Father Bougeant, who lived in the first half of the eighteenth century. There is an English translation of this work, which has passed also into other languages and several editions. This is the passage translated:-

"Such is one of those big-whiskered and well-furred torn cats, that you see quiet in a corner, digesting at his leisure, sleeping if it seems good to him, sometimes giving himself the pleasure of hunting, for the rest enjoying life peaceably, without being troubled by the events which agitate us, without tiring his mind by a thousand useless reflections, and little caring to communicate his thoughts to others. Truly it needs only that a female cat (une chatte) come on the scene to derange all his philosophy; but are our philosophers wiser on such occasions ? "

The cat, as the emblem of independence and liberty, has been used in heraldry, statuary, and signboards. In the sixteenth century a well-known firm of printers named Sessa, at Venice, adopted the device of a cat surrounded by curious ornamentation, and Dibdin in one of his works tells us that whenever you see Sessa's cat you may be sure the book is a good one and worth reading. Ever since the days when the Romans carried on their banners the design of a cat, this combative and courageous animal has been a favourite symbol of warriors and nobles. The wife of King Clovis, Clotilde, had a cat sable upon her armorial bearings, springing at a rat, and on the famous Katzen family's shield was a cat holding a mouse in its mouth. In Scotland the Clan Chattan was known by the emblem of a wild cat with the significant motto, "Touch not the cat, but" (meaning without) "the glove." Their chief was called Mohr au chat, or the great wild cat.

M. Champfleury, dealing with cats in heraldry, tells us that the French Republic resumed heraldic possession of the cat and added it to its glorious shield of arms; and an illustration is given in his book of the republican painter's figure of Liberty holding a pike surmounted with a Phrygian cap, and at her feet is seated a cat.

In past, rather than in present, days the cat was used on signboards, especially in France. We read of "La Maison du chat pelote" (i. e. which rolls itself up), and "La Maison du chat qui peche. "In the Lombards' quarter of Paris, "Le Chat Noir" was formerly a familiar figure above restaurants and confectioners. In England we often come across "The Cat and the Fiddle" as a signboard to old country village inns, and in Cassell's "Old and New London" a writer says:- "Piccadilly was the place in which 'The Cat and Fiddle' first appeared as a public-house sign. The story is that a Frenchwoman, a small shopkeeper, had a very faithful and favourite cat, and that in lack of any other sign, she put over her door the words: 'Voici un chat fidele. 'From some cause or other, the ' Chat Fidele' soon became a popular sign in France, and was speedily Anglicised into 'The Cat and Fiddle,' because the words form part of one of our most popular nursery rhymes."

Many are the popular traditions, maxims, proverbs, and superstitions connected with the cat. In olden days her every movement was looked upon as a sign of ill-omen or of good luck. Old nurses would drive a cat out of the bedroom with much significance of manner, that it might not "suck the child's breath." There is a superstition that a cat will not remain in a house with an un buried corpse.

M. Presse d'Aveunes gives an account of a curious cat superstition. "When a woman gives birth to twins, boys or girls, the last born of the two, whom they call 'barecy' (sometimes both), has at times, and it may be all its life long, an irresistible craving for particular eatables; and in order to satisfy more easily its gluttonous desires, it assumes the shape of different animals, and especially that of the cat. During the transmigration of the spirit into another shell, the human body is as a corpse, but when the spirit has satisfied its desires it retakes its proper form."

He continues: "Having one day killed a cat which had made inroads upon my larder, a druggist of the neighbourhood came to me in a great fright and entreated me to spare all animals, for he said he had a daughter who had the misfortune to be a 'barecy,' and that she was often in the habit of assuming the shape of a cat in order to eat the sweetmeats served at my table."

Milton tells us "that when the cat washes her face over her eares, we shall have a great store of raine. "A cat sneezing is supposed to bring luck to a bride on her wedding day. Sailors have in all times been prone to superstition as regards cats. A black cat's appearance on the ship foretells disaster, but if a cat should disappear overboard the greatest consternation is caused amongst the crew.

Very plentiful are the nursery rhymes, fairy tales, and stories concerning cats - a good-sized book would not contain them." The cat, " says M. Champfleury," is the nurse's favourite and the baby's earliest friend. It plays its part in little rhythmical dramas, cunningly presented to the drowsy child, who falls asleep with a familiar image parading fantastically through his brain. "French nursery rhymes are much prettier than English. For instance, this bald and commonplace statement is not calculated to catch the attention of the juvenile mind: "Great A, little A, bouncing B, Cats in the cupboard, and can't see me. "

How much softer and daintier are the following lines:

"A, B, C,
Le chat est alle
Dans la neige; en retournant
II avait les souliers tout blancs."

In passing, I should say it is strange that to the French a cat is always masculine, and to the English feminine.

In the days of good Queen Anne the story of pussy's venturesome journey to London was put into verse, and what child has not listened eagerly to these lines from that time down to our present day?

"'Pussy-cat, Pussy-cat,
Where have you been?'
'I've been to London
To see the Queen.'
"'Pussy-cat, Pussy-cat,
What did you do there?'
'I frightened a little mouse
Under her chair.'"

In "Alice in Wonderland" Lewis Carroll has given the world "a childish story" which will never cease to delight both young and old. In this we read of the "Cheshire Cat" which grinned down upon the guests assembled at the royal croquet party, and having incurred the anger of the Queen, was in danger of having its head cut off by order of the infuriated monarch. The other volume by the same author - "Alice Through the Looking-Glass" - opens with a description of the way in which Dinah the cat washed her children's faces: - "First she held the poor thing down by its ear with one paw, and then with the other paw she rubbed its face all over the wrong way, beginning at the nose." Then follows an animated conversation between Alice and the kitten. All the world knows of the love Lewis Carroll had for children, and I can assert he had an affection also for cats, for when a child he spoilt and petted me and my kitten. I only wish I could remember the deliciously impossible stories he was wont to tell me of fairies, goblins, and pussy-cats.

Harrison Weir, in his book on cats, has gathered together a number of curious cat proverbs. Some are very familiar, such as: "A cat may look at a king"; "Care will kill the cat"; "When the cat is away the mice will play," and a very significant one is: "When the maid leaves the door open the cat's in fault. " The quaint saying, "When candles are out all cats are gray" is a very expressive one. When we consider the cat in art, it is among Eastern painters we find the most delicate and skilful studies. Next to the Egyptians, the Chinese and Japanese have excelled in the artistic treatment of animals. In many of the Dutch interiors given to us by Flemish artists, the domestic cat may be seen curled up on the hearth, or sitting erect, bearing somewhat the appearance of being stuffed with bran.

In many of the early Italian sacred pictures we find the cat depicted, but great painters, like Titian, Velasquez, and Murillo, seem to have preferred the dog as an adjunct to their portraits. Raphael and Salvator both considered puss a worthy subject for their brush. In M. Champfleury's interesting book on cats he gives a facsimile from the powerful pencil of Mind, whom Madame Lebrun has termed "the Raphael of Cats." The attitudes are so true to nature that the cat seems alive. Mind was a native of Berne, and in 1809, on account of a scare of madness amongst cats, eight hundred were put to death. This was a heartbreak to the cat-loving painter, who, however, managed to save his favourite pet Minette from the wholesale massacre.

Very quaint reproductions of cats have been made in the following wares: Whieldon, Salt Glaze, Agate, and Staffordshire. With Chinese and Japanese cat figures we are all familiar; they are grotesque rather than beautiful.

Coming down to the cat artists of the present day, we would mention Madame Henriette Ronner, who has justly deserved the great reputation that she has acquired in her own country as well as ours. It is in depicting kittens in their ever-varying moods that Madame Ronner most excels. Whether playing havoc with antique lace, as in "Un Bout de Toilette," scattering an artist's materials, as in "Mischief," or dragging jewels from a casket, her kittens are instinct with vitality, and are portrayed in a manner implying knowledge of their anatomical structure, as well as in a most appreciative perception of their youth and beauty. Most lovers of cats are acquainted with Madame Ronner's artistic volume containing so many faithful and lovely reproductions of several of her best pictures, and an interesting account of her life and work written by Mr. M. H. Spielmann.

Another famous painter of cats is M. Eugene Lambert, who may be said to divide the honours with Madame Ronner in portraying with fidelity and artistic taste the feline race. Among English animal painters we have none who can come anywhere near to these two celebrated French artists in their marvellous delicacy of touch and subtle skill in depicting cat and kittens.

In these latter days who is there amongst us, young and old, who has not enjoyed a hearty laugh over the comical cats of Louis Wain? In his particular line, he is unique, for no one has ever portrayed cats in such various attitudes and with such deliciously expressive countenances. The adjectives and adverbs of the Cataract of Lodore would not suffice to describe the varied emotions of these funny felines. A Christmas without one of Louis Wain's clever catty pictures would be like a Christmas pudding without the currants!

To Harrison Weir cats and cat lovers owe a debt of gratitude. He has done much to raise the standard of the feline race, and in his excellent book called "Our Cats," he thus writes in his preface: "Longages of neglect, ill treatment, and absolute cruelty, with little or no gentleness, kindness, or training, have made the cat self-reliant; and from this emanates the marvellous powers of observation, the concentration of which has produced a style analogous to reasoning, not unmixed with timidity, caution, wildness, and a retaliative nature. But should a new order of things arise, and it is nurtured, petted, cosseted, talked to, noticed, and tamed with mellowed firmness and tender gentleness, then in but a few generations much evil that bygone cruelty has stamped into its wretched existence will disappear, and it will be more than ever, not only a useful, serviceable helpmate, but an object of unceasing interest, admiration, and cultured beauty, and thus being of value, it will be profitable."

It was Harrison Weir who instituted and carried out the first Cat Show held at the Crystal Palace in 1871, and since then he has taken an active part in the cat world. Of late years, however, he has been failing in health, and it was suggested that some testimonial should be offered to him in his declining years by his many admirers and cat-loving friends. Our Cats, that popular weekly publication, opened a list in their columns, the result being a handsome piece of plate, which the veteran F. R. H. S. was asked to accept. In his reply acknowledging the gift, he writes: - "Kindest and best wishes to those warm-hearted and truly unforgetful friends who have contributed towards the very handsome testimonial." Then he goes on to allude to the first cat show and to his prophecy regarding the growing popularity of the cat family: - "Did I expect the outcome to be what it is Yes, and no. I fully expected large shows and more of them, and a 'Cat Press,' and in the papers cat columns for the universal and worthy favourite cat.

But in another way I am disappointed, and that is for the neglect of the short-haired English cat by the ascendancy of the foreign long-hair. Both are truly beautiful, but the first in intelligence, in my opinion, is far in advance of the latter. "Therefore, with a hope that Harrison Weir may yet live to see the English short-haired cats still more widely loved and appreciated, and given better classification at our shows, I will pass on to my chapter on present-day cats and cat clubs, and the many other institutions and societies which are the outcome of the rapid strides that have been made in the cat fancy since the day when Harrison Weir was laughed at by his incredulous and astonished railway companion as they travelled together to the first Cat Show held at the Crystal Palace in 1871.

CHAPTER II. CATS OF TODAY

THE term "Cat" is applied in its widest sense to all feline animals. The following are the various names by which the cat is known in different countries, and it is curious to note that, with two exceptions, they all begin with a "C" or a "K," and differ very little in pronunciation: Irish and Scotch, Cat; French, Chat; Dutch, Kat; Danish, Kat; Swedish, Katt; German, Katti or Katze-; Italian, Gatto; Portuguese and Spanish, Gato; Polish, Kot; Russian, Kots; Turkish, Keti; Welsh, Cetti; Cornish, Katt; American, Katz. In the English house and home we call her "puss," and it is the name which appeals most to our hearts. No woman likes to be called a "cat," but to be likened to a puss or pussy is suggestive of something or someone soft and pretty, with gentle, winning ways. Archbishop Whately has said that only one English noun had a true vocative case, "Nominative, cat; vocative, puss." I do not think that in any other country there is a pet name for the cat, just as there is no word in any foreign language that breathes the same tender truth to the hearts as "home." Puss and home! The terms seem so closely connected with each other, and suggest peaceful happiness and restful repose.

Truly, the history of the cat has been a strangely chequered one. Perhaps, because she is such a secret, complex, and independent creature she has remained somewhat of a puzzle to humankind, and is therefore to a great extent misunderstood; but those who will take the trouble to consider the cat and try to understand her, will find that puss is none of those things she has been accused of being. It is only those who are in constant contact with cats who understand how intelligent they really are; although their intelligence is quite in a different mould from that of the dog. I may mention that the household cat outnumbers, it is said, the household dog in London by the proportion of four to one. This fact may be accounted for by the non-taxation of cats. The question of the taxation of cats has very often been raised, and I do not think that anyone who really values his cat would object to pay a yearly tax; but the proposal is as unpractical as it is ridiculous, and it is certain that taxation would not help in exterminating the poor, disreputable, half-starved members of the feline tribe, who have no fixed abode and whose only means of existence is by plunder. The figure and number nine seems to be an important one in connection with cats. There is a popular saying that a cat has nine lives. The expostulating tabby in Gay's Fables says to the old beldame:

"'Tis infamy to serve a hag,
Cats are thought imps, her broom a nag;
And boys against our lives combine,
Because, 'tis said, your cats have nine. "

Cats probably owe this reputation to their extraordinary powers of endurance, and certain it is that they have a greater tenacity to life than any other animal. At the Battersea Home a dog and a cat have been placed in the lethal chamber, and it was observed that the dog died in five minutes, whereas the cat breathed for forty minutes longer. A short time ago I received the following letter from a cat fancier: "At 11 p. m. two kittens, a few hours old, were placed in a pail of water, and left there for rather over ten minutes. Seeing them at the bottom with their mouths open, it was taken for granted they were dead; the bodies were then transferred to the ashpit, and early next morning they were discovered to be alive and quite chirpy. Restoring them to the mother, they have grown nice, strong, healthy little kits, and have just left for comfortable homes. "

In Thistleton Dyer's interesting book on "English Folk-lore," reference is made to-this subject. "Cats," he says, "from their great suppleness and aptitude to fall on their feet, are commonly said to have nine lives; hence Ben Johnson, in 'Every Man in his Humour,' says,' 'Tis a pity you had not ten lives - a cat's and your own.'"

"In the Middle Ages a witch was empowered to take cat's body nine times," so writes an eminent old zoologist.

The "cat-o'-nine-tails" is a dreaded object to some light-fingered and heavy-handed miscreants. I have heard a magistrate remark that he considers this form of punishment the best way in which to give hints to the wicked. Garrotting was virtually stamped out by its use. Wife-beating would be less common if the brute-husband were treated to a taste of the cat-o'-nine-tails. This implement of torture consists of nine pieces of cord put together, and in each cord are nine knots. Consequently every stroke inflicts a large number of long and severe marks not unlike the clawing and scratching of a savage cat, producing crossing and re-crossing wounds.

In my long and varied experience of cats, I have noticed that more of these creatures succumb to the common enemy at about nine years of age than at any other period. We have heard of cats attaining the age of twenty years, but the following account surpasses all previous records of longevity in the feline world: - To the Editor of the Stock-Keeper, Sir, - Seeing you have a column in your paper devoted to cats, I thought it might interest your readers to hear that in our village there is a cat thirty-one years old. She is quite lively, and looks like living a few more years. It belongs to a poor widow, who told me she had it as a kitten when she married. (Her husband lived twenty-seven years, and has been dead four. )
Newbury, Bucks. W. B. Herman.

It is strange that the poor dead bodies of cats have often been used as objects of foolish and vulgar so-called sport. Dead cats and rotten eggs were, and are sometimes still, considered legitimate missiles to make use of at borough and county elections.

All sorts of stories are related of pussy's superhuman intelligence, but the most uncanny one of very recent date I will refer to here. It may be remembered that in the winter of 1901 a vessel named the Salmon was wrecked. On the morning of the accident, this vessel was lying alongside the Sturgeon, and her two cats, who had all their lives shown the most perfect contentment with their home and surroundings, made desperate efforts to get on board the Sturgeon. The crew drove them off again and again, and the ship's dog attacked them, but they would not be deterred, and when the Salmon at last cast off, the two cats landed with one frantic and final spring on to the Sturgeon's deck. It seems absurd to argue that those cats knew of the coming disaster, yet why should they take such a sudden and utterly unreasonable aversion to the ship which had always been their home ? And why should they insist on making their way to another vessel from which they had been so inhospitably repulsed? We have many proofs of the extraordinary extent to which a cat's sense of hearing and smell are developed. On my voyage out to Australia flying fish would sometimes fall on to the deck. The cats that are always somewhere about the ship might be comfortably curled up asleep below, but the peculiar sound would fetch them up in a great hurry, and they would rush to secure the prize. The crew used to amuse themselves sometimes by trying to imitate the noise in various ways to deceive them; but the cats were not to be "had" - they could distinguish the peculiar thud of the flying fish from all other sounds. Various theories have been put forward to account for the marvellous instinct which a cat possesses, enabling her to find her way home although miles and miles of untraversed country lay between her and the place from which she has been taken. It is contended that a cat which is conveyed in a bag or blindfolded will have its sense of smell in full exercise, and will, by this means take note of the successive odours encountered on the way, and that these will leave in its mind sufficient information of the route so as to make it an easy matter for the animal to find its way back again. Be this as it may, many of us can state facts which are even stranger than fiction of mysterious reappearances of cats who, with a homing instinct as true as any carrier-pigeon, return to the haven where they would be.

The instinct of maternity is, perhaps, more largely developed in the cat than in any other animal. No creature shows such anxiety for the safety and welfare of her offspring as she does, and often her natural timidness will give place to bold and fearless courage when her little ones have been in any difficulty or danger. Mivart tells us of a cat that plunged into a swiftly running stream and rescued her three drowning kittens, bringing them one by one in safety to the shore. During a fire in a London theatre, which took place a few years ago, a poor cat with her family was left forgotten at the back of the stage. Three times the faithful mother rushed into the flaming building and reappeared each time with a kitten in her mouth. But alas! with fatal persistence the devoted creature returned to rescue the remaining one, and that she reached the spot was proved, for after the fire was extinguished, the charred bodies of mother and child were found lying side by side.

A clever writer has stated that "the human race may be divided into people who love cats and people who hate them; the neutrals being few in numbers." This is very true. There are also differences of opinion as to whether cats are desirable inmates of a household or not, but there can be no question as to the great utility of these animals, and it is only natural to suppose that they were created for the purpose of suppressing rats and mice and other vermin. There is a popular notion that if a cat is petted and well fed she will become less useful as a mouser. This is a fallacy, for the cat's inclination is to hunt the mouse or rat, not for food, but for sport, and an animal that is enfeebled by neglect and starvation is not in the best condition to successfully catch its prey. This love of sport is not, however, inherent in all cats, but is hereditary in the feline tribe as it is in the human race.

It may not be generally known that the Government pays annual sums for the purpose of providing, keeping, and feeding numerous "harmless, necessary cats" in their public offices, dockyards, and stores, thereby attesting to the worth and capability of pussy's services.

In the National Printing Office in France a considerable number of cats are employed in keeping the premises clear of rats and mice which would otherwise work havoc amongst the stock of paper always stored in large quantities. In Vienna, cats are placed on active service in the municipal buildings. At many of our great railway stations there is a feline staff engaged in the various warehouses and offices. The farmer will readily admit the usefulness of puss in his barns, stables, outhouses and fields Farmers are notorious grumblers, but they would have grater cause for discontent and disappointment if rats and mice were allowed to live and thrive, and breed and multiply on their premises. The newly sown peas and corn stacks would suffer to a terrible extent, and the broods of ducklings and chickens would speedily vanish if puss did not keep a vigilant eye and silently but surely fulfil the duties of her calling.

In the live stock department of the Army and Navy Stores in London, an orange Persian cat may be seen strolling about amongst the cages of birds of every sort. The attendant informed me she had been on the premises three or four years, and had saved the company a "tidy sum." Previous to obtaining her services the packets of bird-seed disappeared like magic, for they were demolished wholesale by the swarms of mice. Now rarely one is nibbled, and every morning dozens of lifeless bodies are cleared away. Curiously enough these dead mice have their tails eaten off, for apparently this cat has a weakness for the appendage, whereas, usually the head is considered the delicate morsel amongst the feline race. It seems that although the cat is left alone with all the fluttering birds at night, she never has attempted to molest them in any way. I lately had occasion to visit one of our London theatres during the daytime, when it was empty; and observing a big brown cat walking about amongst the stalls, I made some remark about him to the official who accompanied me. He said they found it quite impossible to get along without a cat; they had tried, but the place became overrun with mice. During pussy's occupation of the empty playhouse plenty of bodies were discovered, but never a live mouse had been seen disporting itself.

The cats in Government service in America are very numerous. The army has a regular corps of them kept at the commissary depots of the great cities. It is customary for the officer in charge of each depot to submit to the War Department a request for an allowance for the cats of meat and milk. More than three hundred cats are in the employ of the Post Office Department, distributed among about fifty of the largest offices.

The New York City office expends sixty dollars annually in cats' meat. At Pittsburg, there is a "cold-storage" breed of cats, which has special qualifications for enduring extreme cold. These cats are short tailed, with long and heavy fur, and their eyebrows and whiskers are extraordinarily long and strong. It is said they do not thrive when transferred to an ordinary atmosphere.

A Ping-Pong Cat

The following extract from the Daily Mail of February 1st, 1902, gives us an account of a most exemplary, well trained, and up-to-date cat, and opens up a fresh field for the utility and agility of our domestic pets - not an absolutely fresh field indeed, if one recalls the fact that Puss was already a "retriever" in ancient Egypt.

Hunting for balls is undoubtedly the one great drawback to ping-pong. Might I suggest a novel and easy method of accomplishing this difficult and unpleasant task ?

My cat is now an expert in the art of finding ping-pong balls. Immediately the ball touches the floor the cat is after it, and brings it from its hiding-place to the side of the table at which I am playing, thus saving me from unnecessary exertion. F. S. W.

The thought suggests itself that pussy's teeth and claws might work serious havoc amongst the ping-pong balls, and that some of these would be produced in a mutilated condition.

Of all animals the cat appears most to resent being taught or trained to do tricks. Puss has a natural antipathy to be forced to do anything, or remain anywhere against her will. Hence the few exhibitions of really clever performing cats in comparison with the marvellous feats achieved by dogs. It has been stated that the cat is the hardest animal to teach; it takes years to train a cat to perform some simple trick which a dog would learn in as many weeks. Once a cat is trained, it becomes a very valuable possession. We have all seen the Happy Family, consisting of monkeys, guinea-pigs, canaries, pigeons, and mice, whilst a cat is seated demurely in the midst of this incongruous assembly. No doubt some training was required to cause puss to disregard the natural instincts of her race. The cat is a most cleanly creature, and perhaps more particular about her appearance than any other animal. As Miss Agnes Repplier, in her delightful book, "The Fireside Sphinx," says: "Pussy's adroitness is equalled only by her delicacy and tact. Her cleanliness and her careful attention to her toilet show respect for herself and for us." One of the strangest and most profitable trades in London is the wholesale and retail business of horse-meat for cats.

In barrows and carts the hawkers of this horse-flesh cry their wares throughout the city and suburbs, and find a ready sale for them. It is stated that 26, 000 horses, maimed, or past work, are slaughtered and cut up every year to feed our household pets. Each horse means on an average 275 pounds of meat, and this is sold by pussy's butcher in half pennyworths skewered on bits of wood. The magnitude of this trade can be estimated by the fact that it keeps constantly employed thirty wholesale salesmen. I may here mention that a cats'-meat men's supper was organised last year in London by the editor of Our Cats, assisted by Mr. Louis Wain and others; and a most successful entertainment was given at the City of New York Restaurant. The applications for tickets were so numerous that 400 men had to be refused; and when the 250 guests were seated, it was clearly proved that every available inch of accommodation had been utilised. Having been present, I can testify to the excellent supper and entertainment provided for the cats'-meat men of London.

The most casual observer cannot have failed to remark the wonderful development of late years in "Catty" Christmas souvenirs, thus giving proof of the growth of love and admiration for pussy. We have cat almanacks, cat calendars, and cat annuals, and I can testify to the innumerable Christmas cards with designs of cats of all sorts and conditions which have found their way into my hands expressive of good wishes at the festive season.

The official mind would probably frown at the suggestion that the census returns should be enlivened with incidental humour. However, after the last census, the following statement appeared in the press: "An enumerator in going over a return paper found that the household cat had been included as a member of the family. It was described as 'Jim,' the relationship to the head of the family being 'lodger.' The entry then stated that he was of the male sex, single, aged one last birthday. His occupation was also given - ' mouse-catcher, worker on his own account. ' "

A description of the ordinary domestic cat is hardly necessary, but before I pass on to mention matters of general interest concerning cats of to-day, I will give a quotation from a Board School boy's essay, which speaks for itself: "The house-cat is a four-legged quadruped, the legs as usual being at the corners. It is what is sometimes called a tame animal, though it feeds on mice and birds of prey. Its colours are striped, it does not bark, but breathes through its nose instead of its mouth: Cats also mow, which you have all heard. Cats have nine liveses, but which is seldom wanted in this country, coz' of Christianity. Cats eat meat and most anythink speshuelly where you can't afford; This is all about cats."

Perhaps my readers may think that after such a lucid description of the subject in hand, further comments are unnecessary!

I will proceed, however, to give a glance round at the Cat Fancy in general before mentioning particulars of Clubs and Cats of the present day. The question has often been asked whether the Cat Fancy will ever become as popular and fashionable as the breeding of dogs, poultry, and birds? I think this question may be answered in the affirmative, when we consider that during last year a dozen and more large cat shows have been held in different parts of England and Scotland, to say nothing of numerous mixed shows where a section for cats was provided. Every year the number of fanciers increases, and although this particular hobby is almost entirely confined to the gentler sex, yet it is really surprising to find how many more men are beginning to take an interest in the pussies, and are keenly excited in the winnings of the household pet or the king of the cattery. As a friend once said to me, "You know what men are; if only the cats win prizes, my husband does not mind, but it is a different matter if I return from a show with no award; then he declares we must get rid of all the cats!" I am afraid that cat fanciers must be looked upon as a rather quarrelsome set, and there is no doubt that petty jealousies and spiteful gossip retard in many ways the development and improvement of the fancy.

Another question that is often asked is whether cats can be made to pay - or, in other words, whether cat breeding is a profitable undertaking. From my own experience, which has extended over a number of years, I can unhesitatingly say I have derived not only much pleasure but a good deal of profit from keeping cats, and also I have started many friends in the fancy who have gone on and prospered. The dangers that beset beginners are many, and the chief difficulty is to know how to limit the number of our pussies and so avoid overcrowding, or retaining poor stock which will not prove creditable or profitable. Cat keeping on an extensive scale means a large outlay, followed by constant and untiring attention. I do not intend, however, in this chapter to enter into any details as to the care and management of cats, for this and other subjects connected with their interests will be fully dealt with later on.

In my preceding chapter I (Cats Of The Past) alluded to the first Cat Show held at the Crystal Palace in 1871. This exhibition of cats has become an annual fixture, and year by year greater interest has been manifested, better classification given, and a larger number of cats exhibited. It was, therefore, considered advisable to have some definite organisation, and the National Cat Club was instituted in 1887, with Mr. Harrison Weir as president. I will now proceed to give a list, which I believe to be complete and correct, of the various other clubs and societies in England and America which have been organised and which are all at this present time in thoroughly good working order.

List Of Cat Clubs And Societies

The National Cat Club, founded 1887. Hon. sec., Mrs. A. Stennard-Robinson, 5, Great James Street, Bedford Row, London, W. C. Annual subscription, 1 guinea.

The Cat Club, founded 1898. Hon. sec, Mrs. Bagster, 15a, Paternoster Row, London, E. C. Annual subscription, 1 guinea.

The Northern Counties' Cat Club, founded 1900. Hon. sec, Mrs. Herbert Ransome, Altrincham. Annual subscription, 10s.

The Silver and Smoke Persian Cat Society, founded 1900. Hon. sec, Mrs. H. V. James, Back-well, near Bristol. Annual subscription, 5s.

Black and White Club. Hon. secs., Miss Kerswill and Miss White Atkins. Entrance fee, Is.; annual subscription, 4s.

The Blue Persian Cat Society, founded 1901. Hon. sec, Miss Frances Simpson, Durdans House, St. Margaret's-on-Thames. Annual subscription, 5s.

The Siamese Club, founded 1900. Hon. sec, Mrs. Baker, 13, Wyndham Place, Bryanston Square, W. Annual subscription, 4s.; to working classes, 2s. 6d.

The Orange, Cream, Fawn and Tortoise-shell Society, founded 1900. Hon. sec, Miss Mildred Beal, Ronaldkirk Rectory, Darlington. Annual subscription, 10s.

The Chinchilla Cat Club, founded May, 1901. Hon. sec, Mrs. Balding, 92, Goldsmith Avenue, Acton. Annual subscription, 5 s.

The Short-haired Cat Club, founded 1901. Hon. sec, Mrs. Middleton, 67, Cheyne Court, Chelsea.

The Scottish Cat Club, founded 1894. Hon. sec, J. F. Dewar, 2, St. Patrick Square, Edinburgh. Annual subscription, 5s.

The Midland Counties Cat Club, founded at Wolverhampton, 1901. Hon sec, Miss Cope, 136, Bristol Road, Birmingham. Annual subscription, 5s.

The British Cat Club, founded 1901: Hon. sec, Sir Claude Alexander, Faygate Wood, Sussex. Subscription, 5s.

The Manx Cat Club, founded 1901. Miss Hester Cochran, Witchampton, Wimborne. Subscription, 5s.

The Beresford Cat Club (Chicago), founded 1899. President, Mrs. Clinton Locke; corresponding secretary, Mrs. A. Michelson, 220, East Sixtieth Street, Chicago. Annual subscription, resident members, 2 dollars; non-resident, 1 dollar.

The Chicago Cat Club, founded 1899. President, Mrs. Leland Norton, Drexel Kennels, Drexel Boulevarde, Chicago.

The Louisville Cat Club, founded 1900. Corresponding secretary, Miss E. Converse. Annual subscription, 50 cents.

The Pacific Cat Club, founded 1900. Corresponding secretary, Mrs. A. H. Brod, 114, Brodcrick Street, San Francisco. Annual subscription, 1 dollar.

The Atlantic Club, founded in New York, 1902. Corresponding secretary, Dr. Ottolengui, 8o, West Fortieth Street, New York.

Since the formation of the National Cat Club, many changes in its constitution have taken place. On the retirement of Mr. Harrison Weir from the presidency, Mr. Louis Wain was appointed, and still holds the office. The N. C. C. is fortunate in having so energetic a hon. sec. and treasurer as Mrs. Stennard-Robinson, whose name is so well known in the "doggy" world. The following is a list of officers of the National Cat Club at the time of writing, and a summary of the objects for which the Club was organised

The National Cat Club

Patron : H. H. Princess Victoria of Schleswig Holstein.

President : Her Grace the Duchess of Bedford.

Vice-Presidents : The Right Hon. the Countess of Warwick, The Viscountess Maitland, The Marchioness of Dufferin and Ava, The Countess of Aberdeen, The Lady Hothfield, Lady Willoughby, Lady Reid, The Hon. Mrs. McLaren Morrison, The Lady Granville Gordon, Lady Decies, The Hon. Mrs. Baillie, Madame Ronner, Mr. Isaac Woodiwiss, Mr. Sam Woodiwiss.

Committee : Louis Wain (President), Lady Decies, Lady Alexander, The Hon. Mrs. McLaren Morrison, Mrs. Vallance, Mrs. Balding, Miss Hamilton, Dr. Roper, Mrs. Herring, Mrs. Ransome, Mrs. G. H. Walker. Hon. Sec. and Treasurer. - Mrs. A. Stennard. Robinson, 13, Wyndham Place, Bryanstone Square, W. (Telegraphic address - "Bow-wow, London. ")

The National Cat Club was organised

(1) to promote honesty in the breeding of Cats, so as to ensure purity in each distinct breed or variety;
(2) to determine the classification required, and to encourage the adoption of such classification by breeders, exhibitors, judges, and the committees of all Cat Shows;
(3) to maintain and keep the National Register of Cats;
(4) to assist the Showing and Breeding of Cats, by holding Cat Shows under the best sanitary conditions, giving Championship and other prizes, and otherwise doing all in its power to protect and advance the interests of Cats and their owners.

The National Cat Club is also a Court of Inquiry and Appeal in all matters relating to Cats, or affecting the ownership of Cats, and so saves the expense to its Members of litigation.

The National Cat Club founded its Stud Book some twelve years ago, and it is the only reliable source of information concerning the pedigree of Cats. The Registration Fee is 1s. for the Register of Names, but for the Stud Book the fee is 5s. for Approved Cats exhibited under N. C. C. Rules.

The two principal shows of the National Cat Club are held annually at the Botanical Gardens in connection with the Ladies' Kennel Association in June, and at the Crystal Palace in October. In 1901 the total number of cats shown at the Palace was 601, and the entries numbered 1, 021. There were 106 classes provided for long- and short - haired cats. The following is the definition of the classes:

Definition Of Classes

Open Classes : Open to all Cats, Prize-winners or Novices.
Limit Classes : For Cats of any age that have not won Three First Prizes.
Novice Classes : For Cats of any age that have never won a First Prize at any Show.
Special Novice Cats : For Cats or Kittens over 6 months that have never won a Prize of any sort at a Crystal Palace Show.
Neuter Classes : For Gelded Cats.
Stud Classes : For Male Cats that have sired Kittens which are entered and on exhibition in this Show.
Broodqueen Class : For Queen Cats whose Kittens are entered in this Show.
Selling Class : For Cats of any colour or Sex to be sold at a price not exceeding 3 guineas in Long-haired or 2 guineas in Short-haired and Foreign.
Ring Class : For Cats shown in collar, and lead.
Kitten Classes : Single entries to be over 3 months and under 8 months, unless otherwise stated.
Brace : For 2 Cats, age over 6 months.
Team : For three or more Cats, age over 6 months.
No Cats can be entered in brace or teams unless also entered in one other class.

The money prizes in each class are First, 1; Second, 10s.; Third, 5s. The list of special prizes, including Challenge Trophies and medals, numbered 262 at the last Crystal Palace Show in 1901.

In addition to the two regular fixtures of the N. C. C., other cat shows are held in different places in connection with the Club and under its rules.

The National Cat Club reigned alone until 1898, when Lady Marcus Beresford started and founded the Cat Club. This ardent cat lover has done more for pussy than anyone in the fancy. She is most lavish in her generosity and unwearying in her efforts to promote the welfare of the Club. It was Lady Marcus who first started the idea of holding cat shows in aid of charity. The Cat Club's first show, held at St. Stephen's Hall, Westminster, in 1899, was in aid of the Children's Guild of the Deptford Fund. In 1900 the families of the soldiers and sailors who had fallen in the Transvaal were benefited to a large extent by the proceeds of the show. In 1901 the Children's Hospital, Great Ormond Street, was the charity selected to receive a handsome donation of 100. The Westminster shows have always been splendidly managed, a noticeable feature being the wonderful array of beautiful special prizes offered for competition. The following is the list of officials connected with the Cat Club:

The Cat Club

(Founded by Lady Marcus Beresford. )

The objects of the Club are the general good of the Cat, the promoting of true breeding of Cats, the holding of a Winter Show, so that Cats may be exhibited at their best, and taking other steps that shall be for the welfare of the Cat. The annual Subscription is 1 1s., payable on election, and on the 1st of January in each succeeding year.

A Stud Book and a Register of Cats are kept by the Club.

Presidents : Lily, Duchess of Marlborough; Edith, Duchess of Wellington; Lord Marcus Beresford.
Vice-Presidents : Isabella, Countess Howe; Viscountess Maitland, Viscountess Esher, Lady Ridley, Lady de Trafford, The Hon. Mrs. Bampfylde, Lady Lister, Lady Gooch, Mrs. Barnet, Mrs. Alfred Bles, Mrs. Walter Campbell, Mrs. Chaine, Mrs. George Dawkins, Mrs. Cary Elwes, Mrs. C. Hill, Mrs. King, Mrs. Nicholay, Mrs. Tottie, Mrs. Peston Whyte, Lord Walter Gordon Lennox, A. E. Bateman, Esq., Colonel Chaine, Henry King, Esq.
Committee : Lady Marcus Beresford, Mrs. Vary Campbell, Mrs Dean, Mrs. Paul Hardy, Mrs. C. Hill, Miss Anderson Leake, Mrs. R. Blair Maconochie, Mrs. Neild, Mrs. Simon, Mrs. Mackenzie Stewart, Mr. L. P. C. Astley, Mr. Gambier Bolton, Rev. P. L. Cosway, Mr. W. R. Hawkins, Mr. E. W. Witt.
Hon. Treasurer : Lord Marcus Beresford. Hon. Secretary : Mrs. C. J. Bagster, 15A, Paternoster Row, London, E. C.

There is really ample room for two parent clubs, as the Fancy is making such rapid strides, and, no doubt, well-appointed shows with good classification do a great deal to benefit breeders and assist fanciers. Between the National Cat Club and the Cat Club there is one point of serious disagreement, namely, as regards registration. At present members are expected and required to register their cats in each club if they exhibit at the respective shows. It would be a great benefit to the cat world in general and to the exhibitor in particular if some arrangement could be made whereby one independent register should be kept, and that both clubs might work together and assist each other in endeavouring to scrutinise and verify all entries made in the joint register, so that inaccuracies should be detected and fraud prevented.

The Northern Counties Cat Club is affiliated with the N. C. C., and has quite a large number of members. This enterprising club holds two shows in Manchester every year, which hitherto have been capitally managed by the energetic hon. sec. As a natural sequence a Midland Counties Club has lately been started, having its working centre at Birmingham. No doubt arrangements will be made for holding a cat show in this or some other equally central Midland town.

The Scottish Cat Club is in a flourishing condition, and has been steadily working up members since 1894. A show is annually held in Edinburgh, and fanciers over the border are taking a much keener interest in cats.

In America the fancy has gone ahead in a wonderful way. It was in 1895 that the first cat show of general interest was held at Madison Square Gardens, New York. There had previously been some private attempts to have exhibitions of cats in connection with poultry and pigeon shows. In 1896 an American Cat Club was organised, which did some good work. Then Chicago started a Cat Club in January, 1899, and this was followed by a most successful enterprise on the part of Mrs. Clinton Locke, who founded the Beresford Cat Club, called after Lady Marcus Beresford, and now numbering about 200 members. In January, 1900, the club held its first big show. The classification was of a most comprehensive nature, and the list of special prizes a very liberal one. This show is now an annual fixture, and the Cat Club of England sends medals and prizes to be competed for. Many of the best cats exhibited at these shows have been exported from England, and Americans are very keen in trying to procure the very best possible stock - high prices in many cases being offered to induce English fanciers to part with prize-winning specimens.

Beresford Cat Club Of America

The following is a list of officials of the Beresford Cat Club of America Officers : Mrs. Clinton Locke, 2825 Indiana Ave., (President); Mrs. Charles H. Lane, 5323 Madison Ave., (First Vice-President); Mrs. F. A. Howe, 3041 Grand Boulevard (Second Vice-President); Mrs. A. A. Michelson, 220 E. 60th Street (Corresponding Secretary); Miss L. C. Johnstone, 5323 Madison Ave. (Recording Secretary); Mrs. Elwood H. Tolman, 5403 Madison Ave. (Treasurer).
Directors : Mrs. J. H. Pratt, 5816 Rosalie Court; Mrs. Lincoln Nicholson, Lee Centre, Illinois; Miss Louise Fergus, 3229 Sheridan Road; Mrs. Blanch P. Robinson, 6, Langley Place; Mrs. Vincent E. Gregg, 736 North Park Avenue.

At the Cat Show held in January, 1902, as many as 75 classes were provided, and it is plain to see from these that Americans have not the same antipathy for broken colours - that is, cats with white markings - as we have in England, as there are classes specially for orange and white, and black and white cats. In another part of this work I shall refer to varieties and breeds of cats existing in America which differ from those in England. The Beresford Cat Club have an extremely well arranged stud book and register, which is published annually. I am sure that the Cat Fancy in America has a great future before it, and we cannot help being greatly struck with the earnestness, thoroughness, and enthusiasm with which Americans have taken up this hobby. When we consider the great distances in the States and the paucity of good stud cats, and the few opportunities of exhibiting at well organised shows, we cannot fail to admire the energy and enterprise displayed by our American fellow-fanciers.

Specialist Clubs for Cats are of very recent growth. The first was started by an ardent breeder of silver Persians in 1900. It was then called the Silver Society, and it included smokes and silver tabbies. The title of this society has since been changed to the Silver and Smoke Persian Cat Society. In the following year Blue Persian Breeders bestirred themselves and formed a society for this most popular breed. In the same year the Orange, Cream, and Tortoiseshell Society, the Siamese Club, and the Chinchilla Club were inaugurated, also a Manx Club came into existence, and two clubs for short-haired cats were started. Particulars concerning these specialist societies and their objects will be found in future chapters on the various breeds of cats. It will be noticed by the list of clubs given that for brown tabby and black and white Persians no societies have as yet been formed, but doubtless ere long these varieties will be gathered into the fold of specialist clubs.

A good deal of discussion has taken place in catty circles as to the desirability of having specialist societies, but I am sure a vast and marked improvement has taken place in the different breeds since their formation, and the fact of publishing a standard of points has certainly assisted breeders in coming to a more correct idea of what constitutes a good cat of a particular breed. The number of challenge prizes, medals and specials offered by these societies at various shows act as an incentive to exhibitors, and thus entries increase and competition becomes keener. Specialist clubs are not altogether popular with the parent clubs, who regard them with rather a suspicious and jealous eye. They think that exhibitors may join these less expensive societies and yet continue to show and win prizes without subscribing to the club that holds the show. No doubt there is something in this, and specialist clubs should be ready and willing not only to offer prizes for which their members only can compete, but they ought also to guarantee classes, and perhaps give a donation towards the expenses of the show.

There have been quite a number of catty cases in our courts of late years, and these generally seem to cause considerable amusement to the legal as well as to the public mind. At a recent trial, where a lady was wrongfully accused of starving a Persian cat, the magistrate, wishing for information, inquired of the witness (who was a veterinary surgeon) how long a cat could live without food. The reply was, "I am sure I could not say, sir, for cats are the funniest animals we have to deal with." And it is very true that these creatures, being so complex, require to be specially studied, and our principal veterinaries, who lead busy lives, are just a little superior to the many ailments and infirmities of these too often despised animals. It is therefore a subject of satisfaction for cat fanciers that two clever and kind animal-loving men have taken up the doctoring of cats, and by personal experience are learning "pretty pussy's ways" in sickness and in health. Mr. Ward, of Manchester, and "Salvo," of Hertford Heath, are now two household names in the cat fancier's vocabulary. To the many excellent remedies prepared by these clever specialists I shall refer later on in my work.

Suffice it here to say that when in doubt or difficulty about your pussy's state of health I would recommend you to write to either of these common-sense practitioners.

The cat literature of the present day has been steadily on the increase. The first paper to supply special cat columns was Fur and Feather, which, as its title infers, treats besides of birds, rabbits, poultry, cavies, mice. This weekly paper has a large circulation amongst the various fanciers. In 1899 Our Cats was started, and is widely read by the ever-growing circle of cat lovers, and claims the unique distinction of being "The only news-paper in the world solely devoted to cats." In both these papers there are stud advertisements of cats and a register of visits of queens and births of kittens.

In America the chief organs in the cat world are The Cat Journal, The Pet Stock News, and Field and Fancy.

And now a few words on those most excellent institutions which should appeal to the hearts of the animal loving public - I mean the homes for poor stray and starving cats. It is a mercy that there are now several of these refuges in our great metropolis. I have personally visited Gordon Cottage at Argyle Road, Hammersmith, and the London Institution in Camden Town. The objects of both these institutions are practically the same, namely:-
(I) To receive and collect homeless and diseased cats and painlessly destroy them.
(2) To provide a temporary home for lost cats.
(3) To board cats at a moderate weekly charge.

The Camden Town Institution to which Her Majesty the Queen has graciously given Her Patronage, was founded by Mrs. Morgan in 1896, and up to the end of 1901 has received the enormous number of 47, 212 lost and starving cats. The average received weekly is 300, and in one day as many as 91 cats have been taken in. Not a day passes without several wretched cats having to be destroyed at once on admission, and 80 per cent. are destroyed within twenty-four hours of admittance. No charge is made to the poor, and only 1s. 6d. for a painless death in the lethal chamber is asked from those who can afford this most merciful mode of destroying life. The dead cats are cremated at the Battersea Dogs' Home at a charge of 3d. each body. A motorcar is employed to go round and collect stray cats, and will call at any house if due notice has been given to the hon. manageress. It is estimated that the number of cats in London is close upon three quarters of a million, of which from 80, 000 to 100, 000 are homeless. It is during the summer months, when householders leave town for their holidays, that poor pussy is forsaken and forgotten, and no provision being made for her, she is forced to take to the streets, where she seeks in vain to stalk the wily London sparrow or pick up any scraps from the gutter. The humbler folk very frequently manifest vastly greater solicitude for the Tom or the Tabby of their hearths than do their social superiors. All lovers of cats owe a debt of gratitude to those truly noble ladies who have begun and carry on such a merciful work in our midst. To attempt to alleviate suffering must appeal to all; and even those who have an instinctive dislike to harmless cats cannot fail to see the immense benefit to be derived by the public at large from the noble endeavour to clear our London streets, squares, parks, and empty houses of these poor forlorn and friendless creatures.

At the Battersea Home for Lost Dogs there are also splendid arrangements for stray cats, and at a very small charge per week cats can be taken in to board. The catteries are capitally arranged, and the feeding is excellent.

In our sister isle there is a Cats' Home, established sixteen years ago by Miss Swifte in Dublin, and she has most gallantly carried out the beneficent objects with which she started her humane work. No doubt she and other founders of similar institutions have had to suffer a considerable amount of ridicule, for with many human beings the cat is regarded as little deserving of commiseration or kindness. It is, however, a sign of increased justice and benevolence that these homes for cats do exist and obtain public support, although the funds received are, according to all accounts, very inadequate to meet all the expenses. This must surely be partly because these splendid institutions are so little known to the general public.

Our American cousins are not behindhand in their laudable endeavours to cope with the question of lost and starving cats, and an institution similar to our Battersea Home was started in the early 'eighties' in the district of Boston, and is called the "Ellen M. Gifford Sheltering Home for Animals." The lady giving her name to this humane institution left a large sum of money to endow the home, and over the office is a tablet bearing the following extract from one of Miss Gifford's letters about the time the home was opened: -

"If only the waifs, the strays, the sick, the abused would be sure to get entrance to the home, and anybody could feel at liberty to bring in a starved or ill-treated animal and have it cared for without pay, my object would be attained. March 27, 1884."

According to Miss Helen Winslow, the authoress of "Concerning Cats," there is another institution in Philadelphia which does not limit its good work to tending cats and dogs, but cares for all living and suffering animals, bringing relief to the unfortunate creatures by means of a painless death.

It was as early as 1874 that this institution was founded, and in 1889 it was reorganised and incorporated as the "Morris Refuge for Homeless and Suffering Animals," having for its motto "The Lord is good to all, and His tender mercies are over all His works."

The efforts of the charitable ladies who so ably assisted in the establishment of these institutions have been followed by others, and a proposal to found a home for animals in Montreal has, I believe, proved successful. Miss Winslow tells us that there are several cat asylums and refuges in the Far West, and a Sheltering Home at Brighton, Mass. In 1901 a Cat Refuge was started in Chicago by a well-known cat-lover, Mrs. Leland Norton, and probably, as time goes on, some further organised attempt will be made to deal with the question of lost and starving cats in American towns.

The love of the cat still lingers in Egypt, and I have been told that free rations to starving cats are dealt out every day at the Palace of the Cadi and the Bazar of Khan Kheleel; also that a cats' home has been founded in Cairo for the lodging and feeding of homeless cats.

There was a report that in order to cope with the innumerable lost and starving cats the American Legislature had decided to enforce a bill for licensing cats, but if such a law came into existence in any country the result would surely be that thousands of cats with good homes would be thrust out into the streets, and that rats and mice would multiply to an alarming extent. It is estimated that in New York city alone 60,000 cats depend for their daily food on garbage and the mice and rats that they capture. Therefore, if each cat catches three mice or rats a week, the sum total amounts to over 9,000,000 a year!

I have often wondered why some of our numerous "distressed ladies" do not set up private homes for the care of cats. A really comfortable country home for cats is an enterprise in which many a woman, who is hopelessly at sea for some means of earning an honest livelihood in this overcrowded work-a-day world, might thus combine pleasure with profit. Many fanciers feel the difficulty and well nigh impossibility of leaving their catteries for any length of time, and few have a permanent and responsible caretaker on the premises. An opening, therefore, presents itself not only for boarding homes for cats, but for temporary helps who could be engaged by the week or month to take charge of the cattery during the absence of the owner. Of course, such a person should have had experience with cats and kittens, and above all should be an animal lover. To dwellers in any of our large cities the sojourn in some country place would come as a boon and a blessing, and if the owner of the cattery is fully assured of the capabilities of the caretaker, then all anxiety of mind as to the welfare of the pets would be allayed.

There is a secluded corner in Hyde Park known as the Dog's Cemetery, and amongst the many headstones I noticed two or three erected in memory of lost pussies who have been privileged to rest in this quiet burying ground.

When we see poor pussies packed into dirty cages in the shops of dealers of beasts and birds in our great metropolis, and when we are made sad by the sight of the wretched starving cats of our streets, we can breathe no better wish for them than a speedy deliverance from their life of misery, even if it be to embark with the grim ferryman in their free transportation to the Feline-Elysium.

"There shall the worthies of the whiskered race,
Elysian mice o'er floors of sapphire chace,
'Midst beds of aromatic marum stray,
Or raptur'd rove beside the milky way. "

A French writer of the early part of the eighteenth century, a famous Jesuit Father, suggests a very strange theory on the old idea as to the nature of the soul of animals. I am sure that the question of a future existence for those pets who during so short a time in this world have been our faithful and loving companions must have often entered into the hearts and minds of true animal lovers.

A wise and good man - a writer of some of our most beautiful hymns, and who passed to his rest within the last year - wrote and gave me these lines when he lost his faithful dog: SANCHO: AN OLD FRIEND. A large brown Irish retriever: buried in the Vicarage Garden of St. Paul's, Haggerston: a stone to his memory is on the school wall, with this inscription: "In the centre of this lawn lies SANCHO, a gentleman in all but humanity; thorough-bred, single in mind, true of heart; for seventeen years the faithful and affectionate friend of his master, who loved him, and now for him ' faintly trusts the larger Hope ' contained, it may be, in Romans viii. 19-21. He died April 26, 1883. "

Not sparse of friends the world has been to me
By grace of God; sweetness and light to life
Their love has given; many a stormy strife,
Many a pulseless torpor, on my sea,
Through them - their presence or their memory -
Have been or stilled or quickened; and to thee,
My Dog, the tribute, as the term, is due,
My Friend ! not least of all dear, near, and true
These seventeen years - and through the years to be
Sure in my heart of immortality.
Must this be all ? I' the great Day of the Lord,
Shall aught that is of good and beauty now
Be missing ? Shall not each gift be restored ?
Paul says "the whole creation" - why not thou ?

CHAPTER III. CARE AND MANAGEMENT

IN the care, management, and feeding of cats no hard and fast rule can be laid down, for the dispositions and constitutions of these animals differ just as much as do those of human beings. Fanciers must therefore learn to treat their cats individually and not collectively; they must study then-character and make allowances for the fads and fancies of the feline race. I am convinced that a varied diet is the best for cats, and fanciers should bear in mind the importance of regularity in the hours of feeding, whether two or three or four times a day. Fresh water should always be supplied, and unfinished food should not be left standing about. For one or two pet cats the scraps from the table given with judgment will probably suffice; but in the case of a large cattery with several inmates, some sort of system in feeding is necessary. I would suggest that the chief meal for two days a week should be fish, mixed perhaps with rice or Freeman's Scientific Food, raw meat twice or three times a week cut up into fairly small pieces, horse-flesh (if obtained from a reliable source) twice a week. Lights, liver, or sardines may be given occasionally.

Sloppy food in any large quantity should be avoided; but oatmeal well boiled, cornflour, arrowroot, and several of the well-known foods, such as Neave's or Mellin's, make a nice change. Spratt's biscuits of various kinds, soaked and mixed with stock, are relished by some cats. Vegetables should be given frequently, and grass supplied, as green food purifies the blood and keeps the bowels in good condition. Persian cats require special attention as regards their coats, and should be combed and brushed regularly, and, if the fur becomes matted, the knots should be cut away. Avoid washing your cats; there are other means of cleansing their coats, particulars of which will be given in the chapter on exhibiting.

Female Cats And Kittens

As regards the management of female cats, it is necessary to start from the time when they first arrive at maturity, viz. when they are first capable of becoming mothers. This usually takes place - or they "come in season," as it is called - after they are seven or eight months old; and though cases have been known when this has happened before six months, it is very unusual. It may therefore be laid down as a rule that if a kitten exhibits extraordinary high spirits, racing and tearing about, it should be carefully watched, and not allowed its freedom without supervision, either out of doors or in the house.

Queens may be known to be in season by several symptoms, such as rolling on the ground, rubbing up against furniture, increased affection for their owners, and often by the curious cries they utter, at times by a soft note of invitation, at other times by shouts of impatience or distress which resound through the house. Cats should not be mated until they are nine or ten months old at least; twelve months is a better age, though if they are insistent it will not do to put them off more than three times, as there are records of cats who, having been kept back on account of extreme youth, have been seriously ill or have never had families at all.

On the other hand, it is possible these cats may have had the reproductive instinct abnormally strong, though for some cause or another they would always have been unfertile. Powders are sold to quiet cats who are considered too young to become mothers, and two or three small doses of bromide have a decidedly calming effect. This drug should, however, be given with caution, as it is a dangerous one in unskilled hands. Cats come in season about every three weeks during the spring and summer; but in the autumn and early winter months nature seems to intend that they should rest; therefore, as soon as the year has turned, and in very mild winters even before Christmas, no time should be lost in selecting the best sires for the various breeding queens, and arrangements made with their respective owners, so that as soon as ever a queen is ready she may be mated without delay, as some cats go off in two or three days, while others are not safe for a fortnight. If possible, it is well to select a stud cat near at hand, especially if your queen is timid and frightened, as a long railway journey may upset her.

It is most essential that female cats should be freed from worms before being allowed to mate or breed, otherwise the kittens will probably fall victims to these pests by sucking in the disease with the mother's milk. Most cat fanciers know the symptoms which are suggestive of worms; and whenever there is a reasonable suspicion of their presence, then it is best at once to resort to some of the many remedies to be obtained from veterinaries and cat specialists.

A cat's period of gestation is nine weeks, but this is often extended to a day or two longer, so that it is best to expect a litter about nine weeks from the date of the queen's return from visiting the stud cat. An experienced breeder will most likely see symptoms of a cat coming in season, and will then do well to give a worm powder. Salvo's No. 3 powder may be given one morning, and the cat sent off the next day quite safely. Visiting queens should be despatched as early in the morning as possible and insured, to save delay on the road, with the owner's name and address inside package, also the name of the cat, as poor pussie will be far happier if on her arrival she hears herself called by her pet name. Full instructions should be sent as to the return journey; also it should be stated if the cat is kept out of doors or indoors, and what food she is accustomed to have, number of meals per diem, etc. If going a very long journey the queen should not be nailed into a box, or padlocked, as occasional delays occur, and the railway authorities will feed and look after an insured cat if packed in a hamper or box where they can get at the occupant. Boxes or hampers with skeleton lids are by far the best on this account.

If the weather is very cold and a basket is used, it should be lined, and round the sides brown paper is an additional safeguard against draughts, for which all stations are proverbial. A very delicate cat or young kitten finds great comfort in winter from a hot-water bottle placed inside the hamper for it to rest against. Queens should have a good meal an hour or two before starting, as they often arrive upset with the journey, and in their strange new home will not at first touch any food. Do not put any food in the travelling basket. It is not well for a queen to mate just after a heavy meal.

Fish and warm milk, if these agree with the queen, or a small meat meal, may be offered after a long, cold journey, and, if eaten, the queen should be allowed to rest an hour or two before introducing her to the stud cat.

After mating, a queen should be kept quiet for a few days on her return home, as much apart from other cats as possible; but no uneasiness need be felt if the visit does not seem to have quieted the queen, as she will settle down in a few days and cease to think about her mate. With regard to treatment of cats in kitten, some queens are gentle and quiet, and very careful of themselves, others are exceedingly bad-tempered, fighting and quarrelling, while some amuse themselves by climbing up high places and jumping down, behaving in such a wild and excitable fashion that they not only endanger their own lives, but run the risk of bringing maimed and deformed offspring into the world. Cats such as these should be kept isolated, if possible, or at most with only one other quiet queen, and all high shelves or tall articles of furniture should be removed. It is always well to be very careful in handling cats in kitten. They must never be lifted up by their fore legs, but when absolutely necessary to move or carry them, both hands should be used to do so, one being placed under the body by the shoulders to carry the weight, while the other hand gently supports the hind-quarters; but the less a cat is lifted about the better.

All medicines should be given quietly and quickly, so that there may be no struggling. The cat's head should be grasped firmly with the left hand, the fingers and thumb on each side of the corners of the mouth, and forced back on the shoulders with a firm pressure; this will cause her to open her mouth, when medicine can be popped quickly down the throat from a spoon held in the right hand. In the case of a very restless cat, it is advisable to have an assistant in administering medicine. Amateurs would do well to practise giving water in a spoon to queens who are in health, so that they may become used to this simple method of administering medicine. Cats in kit require three or four meals daily of nourishing food - raw meat from four to six ounces night and morning, and fish and scraps and vegetables or biscuit, etc., for the midday meal. Half a teaspoonful of cod-liver oil on their food two or three times a week is very good for the queens in cold weather; but if sickness ensues, of course the oil must be discontinued. Never suffer diarrhoea to go on unchecked. This applies to all cats and kittens of whatever age, sex, or condition, but is especially dangerous when a cat is in kit or nursing her young.

Mr. Ward and Salvo prepare powders which will stop the diarrhoea, and if persevered with will restore the bowels to their normal condition. Change of diet is also very helpful. If the diarrhoea is very violent or persistent, or if no medicine can be procured, a small quantity of powdered chalk, as much as will lie on a sixpence, may be given every hour or two, three or four times: but the primary cause, of which diarrhoea is only a symptom, should be sought out, and if not discoverable, the advice of a cat doctor should be obtained.

Persistent diarrhoea (if not the accompaniment of diseases, such as inflammation of the bowels, etc.), is usually caused by indigestion or worms, and sometimes by a stoppage of fur or food imperfectly digested, which nature in this way tries to get rid of; and if this is the case, or there is even reason to suspect it may be, a dose or two of warm salad oil, a teaspoonful every two hours, will often bring away the obstruction. Cats in kitten frequently suffer from constipation, for which also warm salad oil is far better than castor oil, as the latter is irritative to the bowels, and though acting as an aperient, the after effects are increased costiveness. Warm salad oil, given a few hours before the birth of kittens, is helpful to the mother. For at least a week before the kittens are expected, a nice cosy bed should be prepared in some retired spot; and, to a novice, the caution would not be amiss - do not let a cat in kitten sleep on your bed, or she will either have her kittens there, or will drag the poor little things into the bed the first chance she gets. If a box is to be made ready for the cat, it should be of a fair size (about twenty-six inches by eighteen inches), and should be placed on its side, and a bit of wood about three inches deep nailed on to the bottom of the side, standing up to keep the bedding in its place and the kittens from rolling out. This box may be placed on a table or two chairs, so arranged that the cat can step in and out from another chair.

The floor of the box should be covered with several thicknesses of flannel or blanket in the winter and paper in the summer. Avoid coloured materials, as the dye will come out if they get wet. A bolster may be placed at one side of the box stuffed with straw, or hay or paper torn up very small, to support the cat's back; but should the weather be very cold and the mother delicate, a hot-water bottle covered with flannel may be used instead, and is a great comfort. A covering should be thrown over the box, which may be pulled down to hide the interior, as cats love to be screened from observation; and also it is very essential that the tiny babies should be kept almost in the dark for the first fortnight, after which time, when their eyes are open, the covering can be raised in the day and lowered at night in cold weather. This box must be placed on the ground as soon as the kittens can walk about, but retaining the ledge already referred to, which will keep them from ground draughts to a great extent. A nice little box with run attached is the best house for a cat and kittens; but as these cost about 25s. each, a number of them become costly and beyond the means of some breeders.

The bed described is the next best thing, far better for shy queens than a box or basket used in the ordinary way. An empty drawer makes a good place, but the kittens should be moved out of it as soon as they can see, as it is rather too dark and close after the blind period is past.

A cat should sleep in whatever bed is arranged for her for at least a week before the kittens are expected, and when that day arrives the queen should be carefully watched, as some cats will have their kittens anywhere if not looked after. For the sake of those new to the fancy, it may be as well to remark that cats become very restless, walking about sometimes purring loudly, and looking in cupboards and dark corners, while occasionally the first noticeable indication that the event is about to come off is that the fur behind is wet, and if this should be the case no time should be lost in carrying the cat most carefully to her bed, as the kittens may then be expected any moment. Some animals like to be left entirely alone while giving birth to their young; others, especially pets, prefer to have their owners near to them; but if there is any uncertainty it is better to leave her to herself.

Experienced breeders will know that should the labour be dry or very prolonged it is a great help to a cat to pass the hand firmly and slowly down the side during an expulsive pain, as the pressure will help the mother and hasten the birth of the kittens.

After the first is born, the rest come comparatively easily. Very occasionally there is a cross presentation; but as only those really competent should attempt to do anything in this case, no time should be lost in sending for the nearest cat doctor or veterinary. After the first kitten has arrived - the birth of which is usually heralded by a loud cry of pain from the mother - some milk should be made hot, and as soon as the new baby has been cleaned the mother will gladly drink this; but on no account should cold or even lukewarm milk be given the same day, or, indeed, for two or three days. Novices are sometimes startled at seeing the cat eating a lump of something which they fear may be a kitten; but there is no occasion for alarm, as it is merely the afterbirth, the consumption of which is probably Nature's provision for affording sustenance to the mother, as an animal in a wild state could get no food for at least several hours after the birth of its offspring. If a cat is wild or shy, it is better to leave her alone (with the exception of offering hot milk from time to time) until all the kittens are born, and they should not be examined or handled for some days.

With a gentle queen the first kitten may be taken away when the second is born, well wrapped up in warm flannel and put by the fire, and so on, always leaving one kitten until the last is warm and dry, when the others should be returned to the mother. This plan is most necessary in cold weather (especially if the kittens are born out-of-doors), for if the labour is easy and quick it is quite impossible for the queen to dry one kitten before the advent of the next, and by the time they are all born they are frequently stone cold, and so wet that the mother gives up the attempt to dry them in despair; and many kittens, thought to be stillborn, have died in the night in this way. Kittens quite cold and nearly dead have been restored (and have lived to a good old age) by being taken at once to the fire and warmed and dried, and though at first life may appear extinct, time and patience will work wonders. If the kittens are taken away from the mother at birth as described above, it is a good opportunity for destroying any that are not wanted, because of sex or colour.

When the litter is given to the mother she should be offered milk again, and should after that be left alone several hours; but she will most likely welcome a few kind words and loving pats as a reward for all she has gone through, and will then cuddle down contentedly with her little ones. In giving milk do not take the mother out, or even make her get up to drink it, on the day of her confinement; if she cannot reach it comfortably, raise her head and shoulders with one hand until she can reach the saucer held in the other conveniently, and do not be in a hurry, as she knows well the temperature the milk Ought to be, and will not take it if too hot or too cold. Milk should be given night and morning, and offered during the day, for some days after the kittens are born. Cats that never like it at other times are thankful for it when nursing; but, on the other hand, cats that have been fond of milk will turn away from it at these times. Queens usually come out every few hours for food, and their meat or ordinary meal should be ready for them, as they will want to eat it quickly and return to their little ones.

After the second or third day a warm, clean blanket should be substituted for the one on which the kittens were born, and it is well to do this when the mother is present, as some cats resent interference during their absence.

As soon as the kittens are about a week old, a finger should be passed over their eyes, and if there is a little ridge on the lids, the eye should be moistened with eye-lotion twice daily with a camel-hair brush. If, after ten days, they do not open as is usual, the eyes should be sponged with warm water, as in this case they must have become glued together with mucus, which should be cleared away, and the eye moistened with eye-lotion, taking care a little goes well into the eye. The lid should then be smeared with olive oil to prevent adhesion. It is this adhesion of the lids which causes inflammation, and the eyes must be frequently attended to, so that they may be kept open, avoiding any very strong light.

If the kittens are born indoors in the summer, windows should be kept open during the day, and when the little creatures are about a fortnight old put them out in the sunshine for au hour or so daily. The mother must be as well fed as she was before the kittens were born, but carefully notice if she suffers from diarrhoea, for if this is the case, and change of diet does not cure it, you may be certain that she is nursing too many kittens, and if some of them are not speedily removed you will lose them all.

If a foster-mother can be procured, by all means have one, accompanied by one of her own kittens if possible. Make a cosy bed for her, warming the blanket, and leave her in it till night, when, if she seems settled down, give her two or more kittens as the case may be, removing her own the following night. Do not attempt to interfere with the kittens while the mother is away, and act very gently, talking to, and stroking her so that she may not resent your interference. If no foster-mother can be procured, Mr. Ward, of Manchester, has a clever little appliance which he claims can be used instead of a foster-mother.

Some fanciers may take upon themselves the task of bringing up the kittens by hand, and in that case wrap them up in warm flannel, keeping them by the fire by day, and giving them a hot bottle at night, feeding with weak milk and water about every two hours (this should be about half and half), with a teaspoonful of lime-water to each cup of milk and water. It should be given warm, not hot, and the milk scalded, not boiled. In London or large towns unsweetened condensed milk is better than cow's milk, as the colouring or preservative acids used by dairymen in the latter is very injurious to kittens. This condensed milk should be much diluted, and flavoured with small quantities of salt and sugar. If too strong or too sweet, the food will cause diarrhoea. Kittens will soon learn to suck out of an eggspoon; but do not give too much at once, or force the food down their little throats when they object to take any more.

At about five weeks old the kittens will begin to lap and possibly to eat. Many fanciers are delighted if they will eat and drink before a month old, and some make the serious mistake of trying to coax the little ones to eat solid food at this tender age. Such persons do not stop to think how weak are all the digestive organs of these tiny creatures. The milk of the mother supplies all that is needful for their growth and well-being until such time as Nature makes itself heard in her demands for further nourishment, and if substantial food is given to them too soon, or too strong, it merely goes through the stomach, passing out into the bowels undigested, decomposes, and forms slimy mucus which is the hotbed for worms, even if it does not set up inflammation of the bowels. More kittens die from worms and consumption of the bowels than from any other complaint, and much of this loss of life is directly traceable to strong food at too tender an age.

Lung disease, gastric catarrh, gastroenteritis, are all directly or indirectly set up by the non-assimilation of food; hence the supreme importance of giving nourishment which can be digested easily. After six weeks scraped raw beef may be given (if the kittens want to eat) three times daily in very small quantities, about half a teaspoonful to start with, and they may have warm milk and water with lime in it. This should be followed by Mellin's, or Benger's Frame Food, as directed for infants. It is advisable not to allow kittens to overload their stomachs, but to feed them about four times daily. If healthy they will eat eagerly, but not ravenously; a kitten who is greedy and precipitates itself into the saucer in its anxiety to get its dinner may be suspected of worms, and when about eight weeks old a course of Salvo's No. 1 powders may be given with safety.

As soon as the kittens are about a month old, a shallow tin of dry earth or ashes (I do not recommend sawdust) should be provided for them, and it will well repay their owners to spend some portion of the day with the little ones and lift them into the earth-pan when necessary. If this is done two or three times, the lesson is probably learnt for life. Kittens are naturally clean, and will get out of their beds, and run about crying loudly for some accommodation for their wants; and if this is neglected the seeds of dirty habits are sown, and the poor untaught little ones reap a sad harvest of cuffs and sometimes kicks from servants, who naturally dislike the trouble caused by dirty house pets. Even in catteries cleanly habits in cats are much to be desired. If a cat or kitten gets into dirty ways, it should never be beaten and put into the tin, but should be gently stroked and coaxed into good habits. Those who only keep one or two queens will find that if they spend a few minutes playing with the kittens before their meals, they will be well rewarded by the quicker growth and better digestion of the little ones; but, of course, this is out of the question in a large cattery.

In summer, kittens should be combed daily with a small tooth tomb, as the insects which inhabit their coats not only worry them and cause them to scratch out their fur, but they convey disease from one to another, to say nothing of sucking out so much blood that the poor little creatures become absolutely anaemic, and in this state they fall an easy prey to the first disease that attacks them. Fleas were formerly treated as irritating but otherwise harmless insects; but we are assured on the best authority that they are a dangerous medium of disease, and that tape-worms are generated in dogs and cats by their means. The poor animals, wildly resenting the annoyance of these pests, hunt for them with teeth and tongue, and, swallowing their enemy, may also swallow a number of undeveloped tapeworms, which in their larval or grub state are secreted in the abdomen of the flea. Tapeworms are said to undergo certain metamorphoses or transformations, and require to pass through the body of some other creature than the one they exist in in their mature state of being.

It is a great mistake to keep kittens in heated rooms, and worse still to allow them to be close to a fire by day and then to let the room get cold at night. An even temperature, cold and dry, is better than sudden changes; cats and kittens love warmth and comfort, but, at the same time, all extremes of heat and cold are bad. Never neglect the first symptoms of illness; note the signs, and if you are not able to dose the invalid yourself send off a wire to some competent cat doctor describing the form the indisposition has taken, and while waiting for medicine no harm can be done by giving as much carbonate of soda as will lie on a threepenny-bit in a little water two or three times daily. Salvo has lately advertised a medicine which is said to be very valuable for giving on the first signs of a cat or kitten being out of sorts, and which, he says, will take down fever, stop colds, and modify attacks of bronchitis, pneumonia, etc.; and for such fragile little beings as kittens fanciers would do well to keep this medicine by them.

People often say that their cats and kittens seem ill or out of sorts, and allow this sort of thing to go on quite calmly for a week or so, when one day they wake up to the fact that the poor creature is very seriously ill, and they then send off in a hurry for medicine which frequently arrives too late; and the sufferer may be beyond all human aid.

Double pneumonia, which is perhaps the quickest and most fatal of all diseases, is not so sudden but that it is ushered in by various symptoms, beginning often a week before the attack becomes acute. An animal will seem cold, will creep near the fire, or sit in the fender, mope about, refusing to play, sit in a hunch with its back up, or is very sleepy and stupid; the fur is rough; there may be sickness, and the evacuations are of a bright yellow colour; perhaps it has not quite finished its meals for a few days; and the nose is hot and dry, and, if taken up, the cat feels hot and dry all over. When there are several of these symptoms, no time should be lost in administering the remedies named above every hour or two until suitable remedies can be obtained; but do not rely upon them alone, or think if you give them persistently they will pull the" animal through the illness, for they will not, special remedies being needed for special symptoms and for various stages of disease. No two animals are exactly alike, and the experienced cat doctor will prescribe carefully for each individual cat in the same way as a physician will give different prescriptions to suit the needs of different patients.

One thing should never be neglected, and this is keeping up the strength from the first with beef-tea, eggs and milk, Brand's Essence, or animal Kreochyle - a teaspoonful every hour. As soon as an animal has refused two meals, begin feeding with spoon, as it will have so much more strength with which to battle against disease if fed up well from the first.

People who desire to sell kittens for profit will do well to part with them at about two months old, before they start teething, for at this period of their little lives fresh troubles begin. Occasionally they suffer from fits, but though these are sometimes caused by cutting their teeth, they are oftener due to the presence of worms. If the gums are swollen and inflamed, a quarter of one of Steedman's teething powders will soothe them, or a few doses of bromide, as prescribed before for kittens desiring to mate too early, may be given, and excitable kittens should be kept quiet. If kittens are troubled with diarrhoea, all starchy food should be avoided, as it is never easily digested by animals. The reason of this is not far to seek, when we know that the saliva partly digests starch, while the juices of the stomach act directly on meat.

Animals, instead of masticating their food, by which means the saliva acts upon it, often bolt it, and it goes into the stomach and is passed out into the large bowel practically undigested, where it decomposes, working off in noxious gases which escape through the skin, causing eczema, or in many cases producing inflammation of the bowels or enteritis. Nothing needs more careful attention than the diet of kittens, and nothing is so little studied. It would be no exaggeration to say that all disease, apart from outside or accidental causes, such as draughts, cold winds, contagion, etc., is in the first place set up by undigested food, and even what may be called external causes would often not be harmful to an animal if the digestive organs were in proper working order. Remember, it is not the quantity of food a kitten takes that benefits it. The secret of its health and well-being is in the quantity it digests. A kitten should only digest certain things in certain proportions, and whatever remains undigested produces irritation, and in this case the kitten cannot possibly develop, and is generally weakly and fretful.

Those who have never cared much for cats will be interested and amused if they bring up a family of kittens, and the love and trust of the little creatures will well repay them for all their care.

Stud Cats

A male cat should not be allowed to mate under a year old, and if you wish to keep your stud in good condition do not allow more than two, or at most three, lady visitors a week. There is no doubt that a really reliable stud cat is a very profitable possession. The most essential recommendations are a sound constitution and absolute health, combined with a good pedigree and a list of prize-winning progeny. It is necessary to exhibit your stud cat at the best cat shows from time to time, and thus to keep him before the public. It is also advisable to advertise him in the cat papers, and it is often useful to have a photograph to forward to fanciers who may be unable otherwise to obtain any idea of your cat. Needless to say that for stud purposes a cat should possess the highest possible qualifications of the breed to which he belongs, and a massive frame and broad head are most desirable in all stud cats, It is a good plan to allow the visiting queen to be within sight of the male for a short time before she is put in the stud cat's house, and for this purpose it is convenient to have a small movable pen or hutch to place where the two pussies can hold catty conversation.

A stud cat cannot, for many and obvious reasons, be allowed his full freedom; but it is essential that his dwelling place should have as long and roomy an exercise ground as possible. It is also possible with some male cats to tether them out-of-doors for a short period during the day, in which case great care should be taken to have the lead only as long as will permit of exercise within a safe distance of dangerous pitfalls or spreading trees and shrubs. The best time for mating is about one hour after feeding.

It is most important that stud cats should be in good coat at the time of mating, and that they should be free from worms.

The usual fee for a visit to a stud cat is 1 1s., and this should be sent at the same time as the request for permission to send a queen. A second visit is generally considered allowable if the first one has proved unsuccessful. An additional amount of food may be given to a cat whilst he is being used at stud, and always remember to provide grass in some form or other in your stud cat's house.

There is no universal remedy for all cats, neither can there be any rule for feeding them. Different cats need different treatment, and those which are kept in a captive state, as are stud cats, should not be fed on the same lines as those that are allowed full liberty.

Neuter Cats

Opinions differ as to the best period for a cat to be made neuter, but it is generally considered advisable to have the operation performed between the ages of five and eight months. A male cat can be kept as a household pet till he is about nine or ten months old without any unpleasantness, but after that period he must be relegated to an outside cattery or stud house. It is cruel to put off gelding a cat till he shows signs of wishing to mate, A duly qualified veterinary ought to be employed, and an anaesthetic used. The cat should be kept on a low diet for a day or two before and after the operation. It is very seldom that any evil effects ensue, and after a few days the puss is quite himself again. Neuter cats grow to an immense size, and the Persian varieties develop great length of fur, which is generally not shed so frequently or to such an extent as in the males and females. Neuter cats are very docile, and generally rather lazy-and listless; for this reason they are not accounted such good mousers.

Female cats can also be rendered sexless, but in their case the operation is more likely to be attended with dangerous results. I have heard it stated that a female cat ought to be allowed one litter of kittens before being operated upon. There are not many very fine neuters on exhibition at our shows, and this fact may perhaps be accounted for by reason of fanciers picking out weedy and altogether below the mark specimens of their litters to be gelded because they do not consider them worth keeping to breed from. In this way several poor specimens of neuters are to be seen with indifferent markings, white spots, incorrect coloured eyes, and long noses. For a home pet there is, of course, nothing to come up to a fine neuter cat who will not roam, who does not attract amorous females, and who is content to lie for hours stretched out on the drawing-room rug or the kitchen hearth, the admired of all admirers. From the lips of many noted breeders of Persian cats who have been troubled by wandering males and prolific females, I have heard the exclamation, " I shall end by keeping only neuters!"

Cat owners in general, and lovers of neuters in particular, might do worse than agitate for more consideration to be extended to these grand pets at our leading shows, and I cannot help thinking that a neuter club or society might be formed to assist in this and other objects connected with the general improvement of our neuter cats.

CHAPTER IV. HOUSING OF CATS

THE proper housing of valuable stock is the first essential subject to be studied by the beginner in the cat fancy, and one requiring both careful thought and attention. For I do not hesitate to say that, of all the domestic animals, the cat is the most difficult to keep healthy and happy in the unnatural condition of total or partial confinement. Belonging to the ferae, its original and savage nature still shows glimpses, not wholly tamed, in its independence of character and its roving habits; while yet its civilised side shows the keenest appreciation of the comforts to be found in the home life. A house cat that enjoys its freedom to go out as it pleases, to climb the garden walls, and anon to lie in purring contentment before the kitchen hearth, is a creature ailing little. It is the pedigreed pets, in their luxurious prisons, that too often fall a prey to disease. To establish a cattery, therefore, that shall be a pleasure and a pride to the owner, and not a source of worry and grief over perpetual illness amongst the inmates, it is necessary in the very first inception to study the chief needs of cat nature.

Let us consider these in order. How our typical healthy cattery may be best arranged. It must be dry - was ever a cat yet seen of choice sitting in the wet? It must have ample space, both of houses and runs, and inducements for exercise - a well-branched dead tree sunk in the gravelled run is good, besides divers posts, shelves, and benches. Let the aspect be bright, with lots of sunshine. A cat is a devotee of the sun - it is the life of young growing things, and the greatest destroyer of disease germs; and it is very easy by coverings or the growth of climbing plants to provide temporary shade during the height of summer. For this last, nothing is better than that most useful and least fastidious king of climbers, the Virginian creeper, as it bestows its leafy shade just when required, and harbours no damp, as the growth of thick, tall trees is apt to do.

Lastly, let the outlook of the cattery be cheerful. Do not select a spot so far from the house life that the attendant who feeds and cleans is practically the only person the cats see in the twenty-four hours. A cat loves to observe, preferably from some secure high perch, whence it may see all that passes - to exchange greetings with the dogs, the gardener, the maids, the tradesmen coming to the door, and thus fill its imprisoned hours with interest. If you disregard this, and put your cats out of sight in some back yard, they will mope badly, and also grow very stupid.

These principal requirements being borne in mind, individual fancy of building and arrangement may follow. Every breeder of experience has his own ideas of best design, according to means and circumstance. If a cat fancier is fortunate enough to be able to disregard expense, he can indulge in brick houses with every appliance for comfort and elegance of construction. For others, who can supply a working plan, an intelligent local carpenter (when found) can do much. Occasionally, also, it is possible to convert a portion of existing stabling to very efficient uses. But I must advise the beginner, as regards this last suggestion, to be careful. If the stabling is modern, and possesses the main requisites I have already spoken about (of dryness, and space, and cheerful light), then all is, and will be, well. But if, as is often the case, the stable of temptation is old, perhaps unused for some years, is dark, with more than a suspicion of damp, and a very certain habitat of rats, then our fancier is emphatically warned against making any trial of it, short of pulling down and rebuilding. Let him rest assured, it would in the end mean the loss of money, time, care, and, most likely, breeding stock too, and certain ill-health among the poor inmates.

I know a case in point where a cat fancier thus utilised a stable. A converted portion of old stabling that looked most desirable, and kept scrupulously clean, was used for a number of young kittens. Very soon a peculiar and most violent form of skin disease appeared amongst them, at first as mere scurfy patches, but swiftly assuming the form of contagious fever, which spread with frightful rapidity, infecting every cat with whom they came in contact. Not until after many deaths, and the most cruel sufferings of those who struggled through the disease, was it at last discovered to be acute blood poisoning, produced by the exhalation of sewer gas from an old sewer running underneath the floors. Rats were probably responsible, either by gnawing through the pipes, or coming up into the cattery, themselves stricken with the foul disease.

The site of the cattery selected, the preparation of the ground may be advisable, certainly on all clay soils. To ensure perfect dryness, the top soil should be removed a foot or so and filled in with brick rubble or builders' rubbish. On this foundation, cement concrete or asphalt may be laid down. Personally, for runs and floors, I prefer the cement; it is easier to keep clean - a bucket of water can swill it from end to end, while it dries much faster than the asphalt. Asphalt in outside runs is apt to soften in the summer sun, and depress into holes, and within the houses the smell of the tar remains strong for some months. The cost of the two is much about the same, but in very damp situations the asphalt is preferable, as it prevents all ground-damp rising through.

Now to plan out a medium-size cattery that shall be simple in construction and not ruinous to the modest beginner, let us suppose we have at our disposal a fair length of brick wall - say 60 to 70 feet in length - facing south, on slightly sloping ground. Our first proceeding will be to level and render damp-proof by a foot of rubble, as heretofore suggested, a strip 11 feet wide and about 45 feet along the wall, and to surface this strip with cement or asphalt. Upon this, and against the wall, we will erect our houses, a long wooden shed with lean-to roof, divided into three main divisions by matchboarding partitions, and with a smaller house at either end, as shown in plan.

A, the sleeping-room; B, a playroom for queens and kittens; and C, the third apartment for kittening, or cats it is desirable to isolate awhile. The smaller houses at the outside ends reserved for stud cats. D, doors from one apartment to another of wood. The outside woodwork is of 1-inch feather-edged matchboarding, well-seasoned deal, a roof of wood, felted and tarred, being preferable to the use of corrugated iron, which is very hot in summer and very cold in winter; an annual dressing of sand and tar keeps the felt watertight for many years. Allow good wide eaves, and have gutter pipes all round. Inside, line the walls with wall felt, and limewash; or an inner lining of 1-inch matchboarding, allowing a two-inch space to be packed with sawdust, keeps the house very warm and dry.

For the brick back wall, 1/4-inch matchboarding should be sufficient as lining. The dimensions of the sleeping-room, A, are 12 feet long by 11 feet wide, and a wire frame partition with door subdivides this again into two equal parts. ! Against the back wall, at a height of about 20 inches from the floor, runs a broad shelf 4 feet wide, having inch-mesh wire netting frontage, half to open on hinges, and movable wooden partitions sliding in a slot; these for the sleeping-pens, each 4 feet deep by 3 feet wide, two on either side the wire frame partition, or convertible into one 4 feet by 6 by removal of sliding wooden division. It will be warmer for the occupants if these pens are roofed in at a height of 3 feet. Cover the bench with oilcloth before putting up the divisions. This can be washed over daily if necessary, and will dry in a few moments, thus avoiding the dangers of scrubbing wood in damp weather. As nothing offensive can soak in, a pure atmosphere is preserved, and risk of infection is greatly minimised.

A comfortable sleeping box or basket should be provided for each pen, filled in winter with plenty of sweet hay, and in summer with sheets of newspaper or brown paper. A cat loves to repose on paper, and it has the advantage of being cheaply renewable and easily burnt after a day or two's use. Never use old packing straw for bedding. It is frequently full of infectious germs, and many skin complaints have been traced to its use. Neither are cushions, blankets, old bits of carpet, matting, etc., to be recommended. They are apt to become damp in prolonged wet weather, and retain both dirt and odour. A sanitary tin to hold dry earth or sawdust should be placed in each cat house, emptied and washed out every morning by the attendant, when the floors are also swept out or washed over.

A fair-sized window, to open, must be in the front, and a door, the upper half of which might also be of glass, to open out into a gravel run. Outside wooden shutters for cold nights are a great help in keeping the house warm, and should be provided.

Having arranged our first room, the playing room, B, next must come under consideration. This being the central division, the felt lining could here be dispensed with, and instead the boards can either be plainly stained and varnished - which is also easy to keep perfectly clean - or Willesden damp-proof paper might be nailed over the walls. This paper, made at the Willesden Company's works, Willesden Junction, N. W., is made in several good colours for interior lining, and a house so hung looks very comfortable, and shows to advantage such mural decorations as show prize cards, photos of winners, etc. The frontage of this room is to be entirely glazed, in small panes set in a wooden framework, with a 6-inch high weather board at floor to protect from draughts, the glass protected on the inside by wire netting fastened over it. A window here to open outwards with a bolt, and fairly high up, to ensure fresh air in rainy weather without the wet and damp driving in on a level with the cats; a half-glass door also to run, but no outside shutters will be here needed, the cats not occupying this room at night.

Cover the asphalt floor with linoleum or oilcloth, and put up some shelves 15 inches wide, fairly high up, but within leaping distance, against the walls; a movable bench too, to place the cats upon for brushing and attending to them. Old chairs that can be spared from the house might end their service here; or if the luxury of a plain wicker chair could be permitted, and furnished with one or two cushions in washable slip covers, it would be as pleasant for the owner when making her visits as for the pussies themselves. A ball for the kittens, a reel hanging from a string, will stimulate healthy romps, even amongst the staid grown-up cats, when weary of indoor dozing.

Room C is primarily intended for the interesting occasions when new little prizewinners are expected. This is subdivided by wire as in sleeping-room, but the partition three feet from back wall should be of wood, to ensure privacy to the anxious mother, and to temper the light; oilcloth on floor.

For the littering nests themselves I describe, and advise my friends to make trial of, the following plan. Have a sort of shallow wooden box, or tray with sides, made about 4 feet 6 inches long by 24 inches high and 4-inch sides. This is stained, varnished, and mounted on wooden feet at the four corners about two inches high; a good bed of hay is put in it, the box is put in a quiet corner away from the light, and a truss of new straw placed upright at one end of the box, leaning against the angle of the wall. A little of the straw at the bottom may be pulled out to suggest the idea of a hole to the cat; but as a rule she takes to the notion brilliantly, and will set to work to dig out a nest for herself with the greatest zest. In this the kittens are born, safe in a cosy nest at the end of a tunnel of straw. There is ample ventilation; they are protected from all draughts, so that doors may be left open to the fresh air with impunity; and they are in the dark, as kittens naturally should be till they walk out into the daylight of their own desire to explore the world.

Then the rest of the tray forms a glorious playground for the first week or two, when one adventurous mite finds out he can climb up the shallow sides, and tumble out on a large strange world of floor and trot after mamma. A well-known fancier tells me she has not had one litter with weak or bad eyes since she adopted the straw truss plan.

The Ideal Cattery

One of these trays might be placed each side of the wooden partition, and if necessary to shut a nervous or surly cat up with her family, one might be enclosed in a wire frontage with door, as the sleeping-pens were arranged. Let there be a good large window in this room, as the kittens, when running about, will want all the sunshine and air possible. This run should be of asphalt, for dryness and warmth, with plenty of play places arranged in it. An old barrel with the bottom knocked out affords great games, also the tree I have before spoken of; a tree-stump or two, or a heap of dry brushwood stacked in a corner, will supply those climbing and hiding holes kittens so greatly enjoy, and afford protection from winds.

A grass run and a gravelled one are designed in the plan, each having access to the other, and will allow the cats ample exercising ground according to weather. An oval flower-bed in the centre of the grass plot, planted with some evergreen bushes, is a good idea. It affords shelter, and the cats can dig in the dry earth. For the benches in the gravel run, an old outhouse door, painted and mounted on stout legs, makes a very good one, which the cats love to sit upon.

The stud houses are simple: a wired-in space of 12 feet by 11 feet contains a house with lean-to roof 4 feet by 8 feet long, fitted with sleeping bench and box, wired windows, door for attendant, and small trapdoor for cat. En passant, all doors should be fitted with good locks, and locked up after feeding at night is done. The stud run is gravelled, but a border of grass might be left on two sides - grass is such a necessity for cats in confinement, and they prefer to select it growing for themselves. The design here suggested is capable of either modification or extension. The plan can be enlarged to any extent. For instance, if desired, an attendant's cottage could be built at one end instead of the stud house, and comprise a special kitchen, and also an upper room, fitted with convenient pens for a hospital for the sick members - a very necessary adjunct to the cattery, as a sick cat should be at once removed from its healthy companions and kept in a place quite apart. More stud houses could be arranged at an angle on one side of the chief runs, or, if only a very few cats are intended to be kept, one of the divisions could be dispensed with, perhaps, and the dimensions of the other two made smaller.

But whatever your ambitions may be, great or small, when you are about it have the work well done.

The heating of catteries is a rather vexed question, many famous breeders affirming that stock raised without it are healthier and harder; others maintaining that a certain amount of heat is a necessity for producing a good coat. A very experienced breeder once told me the heaviest-coated kittens she ever bred were reared over some hot-water pipes, in a temperature of 700! With adult cats having partial freedom and allowed to come into the house in severe weather, and with stud cats, I consider the no-heat plan decidedly the best; but I do not think it possible to rear young stock during the colder part of the year in an outdoor cattery without artificial heat. It is the damp of the English winter which proves so fatal, and damp cannot be kept out of the very best constructed houses except by the admission of dry heat.

Kittens that are cold will not play, and if you see them huddled together on a cold day looking listless and uneasy, instead of romping, be sure it is fire heat they need.

A thermometer should hang in each house, and the heat be carefully regulated by that, a minimum of 480 and a maximum of 550 being suggested. In houses where a flue is practicable, a stove of the Tortoise pattern is to be recommended, but it needs a high guard around it. For a long range of brick-built houses, an outside flue and boiler, with hot-water pipes running the length of the cattery, would be found of most service, as it maintains an even and medium warmth throughout, keeps the building perfectly dry, and can be stoked with less trouble. In small wooden houses, very excellent results are given by the use of an oil stove with hot-water apparatus, such as a re supplied for small greenhouses. The lamp will usually burn twenty-four hours without attention, is un-get-at-able by the cats, who can neither singe their tails nor knock it over during the wildest gambols, and if kept clean and looked to with care will not cause the slightest odour. A quart of paraffin in one of these oil stoves will burn twenty - four hours, and heat a building 12 feet by 10 feet to 50. Now, in concluding this little discourse upon catteries, the final word of advice is always to remember the importance of absolute cleanliness.

There should never be the least offensive smell in the cattery, and if such be noticed on entering the houses in the morning, discover the cause and remedy it at once. And do not rely solely upon disinfectants to do this. Too frequently this is but overcoming a bad smell by a stronger, the evil remaining. A good and non-injurious disinfectant should always be used in the water for the daily cleansing of pans and floors, etc. Camphaleyne or Salubrene are both safe and effective, but disinfectants that contain creosote in any quantity, or carbolic, I do not approve of, except in cases of illness of an infectious type, when stronger measures are obligatory.

No dirty food dishes, no unchanged water, no soil of any kind, should ever be left about on flooring or bedding. Let your cattery be kept as scrupulously clean and sweet as a hospital, then will your cats thrive and kittens be healthy and sturdy.

Do not elect to start a cattery unless you yourself intend to bestow both time and trouble upon it. In this, as in every other occupation or hobby, the one golden rule is, "Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with all thy might."

Cat Appliances

In the preceding section on the cattery proper, I have not spoken of the very useful variety of portable houses which are now made a speciality of many firms, considering them more or less as accessories to the well appointed cattery. But in small town gardens, where space is valuable and it is not convenient to build a large permanent structure, it is quite possible to succeed extremely well when two or three cats only are kept by using these portable houses. They also have the advantage of being removable and a "tenant's fixture" in the event of leaving one's house. A very good house is one built by Messrs. Boulton and Paul, of Norwich (sec illustration). It is a very pretty and well designed structure, and would be exceedingly ornamental in a sheltered corner of the garden. In putting up, however, it should be stood upon brick piers to raise it at least four inches from the ground, or the wooden flooring would soon show damp. Cats kept in these small houses, it must be understood, should have their liberty at least a portion of every fine and dry day, the runs being wholly inadequate for a cat to be shut in continuously without further scope for exercise.

Another illustration is a handy portable hutch, intended to be used chiefly in a house or room, although it is also convenient for penning young kittens out-of-doors on a sunny day. the wire run preventing their straying away. It consists of a sleeping-box and small wire run hooked on, and can be made at the cost of a few shillings.

The sleeping-box is 24 inches long by 17 inches wide and 22 inches high, is raised three inches from floor by a false bottom, and has a large door at back opening with a brass catch. In front, two side-pieces reduce the entry to 12 inches. A handle screwed on the top of the box is convenient for carrying. The run is 3 feet 6 inches by 24 inches-, made in four sections, two sides, top and end piece, all fitted and hooked together with 1-inch mesh wire netting that it may be easily taken apart for carrying or storing away. It makes a useful sleeping-pen, too, for young toms that are inclined to quarrel together, and so have to be shut up separately at night. All the woodwork is stained and varnished, and a square of oilcloth laid on the floor of the sleeping-box.

The next appliance to be considered is a somewhat gruesome adjunct to the cattery, and belongs to the darker side of our hobby. In spite of every care, illness and death must enter now and again, when we are fain to retire worsted from the conflict with disease, and the wisest and kindest thing to do is to put our pet to sleep. The illustration given on the opposite page depicts a lethal box, as used at the Royal London Institution for Lost and Starving Cats at Camden Town, and is capable of holding twelve animals at a time.

Mr. Ward, the well-known feline specialist of Manchester, has patented a lethal box of more moderate dimensions. Mr. Ward, not yet having an illustration of it, kindly writes me the description as follows: - "The box inside is 15 inches by 12 inches by 12 inches. A sheet of glass is inserted in the lid, so that the operator may watch the process. The vapour - coal gas passed through chloroform - enters through a tube at end. Two minutes is sufficient time." Fanciers, I think, will agree that this simple peace-giving box is not among the least of Mr. Ward's kindly ministrations to the cats he loves so well. Few amongst us can bear to see unmoved the terrible last pains of a pet who in its days of health delighted us with its beauty.

Feeding utensils we turn to next. For them nothing is more satisfactory than the unbreakable enamelled ware in white or blue - except, perhaps, for the water pans, for which it is scarcely weighty enough, and it not infrequently happens that a gay and frolicsome company of kittens will knock against them, sending them spinning, and the water is spilt upon the floor.

The circular, heavy glazed earthenware dishes, spittoon-shaped, and generally inscribed "Pussy," are excellent, and cannot be overturned.

Besides the plates and saucers for feeding, let the cats have also a saucepan of their own, a deep stewpan-shaped one, of blue enamel, large enough to cook a sheep's head with biscuits. Cook will be far less prone to grumble at the necessary cooking for the cats - I speak here of a small cattery, when no attendant is kept - if her saucepans are not pressed into the service.

But see that all are kept scrupulously clean, nothing "left over" in the saucepan to become sour or tainted in hot weather; and after each meal is cooked, the saucepan should be boiled out with soda and scoured clean.

Earth tins. A great mistake made in these necessary items is having them too deep. I have seen an old zinc footbath supplied to two months old kittens with quite six inches of sawdust in it, and the owner wondered why she could not teach her kittens to be cleanly in their habits !

A 4 inch deep tray is quite deep enough, and this should not be filled more than two thirds full, or the cat rakes so much earth out on the floor. Neither do they require to be very large, as their weight when filled with soil makes them very cumbersome to move, and they get the more quickly knocked out of shape. The best size is about 17 inches by 14 inches and 4 inches deep, made in stout galvanised iron, with a rim round the edge, and these might be painted some light colour with Aspinall's enamel paint. (I advocate "light paint." as any dirt stains are seen at once.) They will then last free from rust, and can be washed out every morning. Two or three tins of smaller size - say, 12 inches by 8 inches by 2 V inches - are suggested for kittens, or for placing in small pens in an emergency. Baking tins answer this purpose.

After washing, it is well to stand these trays in the air to sweeten, as if they smell disagreeable the cats will not use them. Messrs Whiteley supply these zinc tins, or they can be made by any local ironmonger to dimensions given.

Hot-Water Appliances

These are very necessary in the cattery, and should by no means be forgotten.

Many a sick cat's life has been saved, and the critical corner in an illness turned, by the timely comfort and strength bestowed by the hot-water bottle or bag, or even a brick made hot in the oven and wrapped up. In the event of winter litters, too, a hot-water bag should be always in readiness, in case it is advisable to remove the first-born kittens from the mother for a few hours. Heat will restore a seemingly dead kitten, as I have said before. The outside dwellers also, how they appreciate on a bitter winter's night the hot bottle or wrapped up hot brick to keep them cosy!

I know a luxurious stud cat who has a hot-water tin made to fit his sleeping box, which is filled by the maid every cold night and slid beneath his hay bed. Assuredly, there is no greater safeguard against winter's chills and changes of temperature than to provide for your pets sleeping warmly and comfortably at night. The hot-bottle plan has many advantages over the heating of the sleeping houses by stove or lamp during the night. It is better for the animals themselves, as the air is not exhausted, and they are not so prone to take a chill going from heated air to the outside rawness of a w i n t e. r's morning. It is much safer, and it is also much more economical. Personally I prefer the indiarubber bag to the old-fashioned stone bottle, and in the smaller sizes (which are quite large enough) are not much more expensive than the latter. If not filled too full, and wrapped in a washable cover - flannelette is very good - it can be laid flat under the hay, and the cat will remain upon it all night.

In the case of a sick cat the cover should always be of flannel, to avoid any chill as the bag grows colder.

Then, in our list of appliances, proper travelling baskets must come under consideration. I say "proper" advisedly, for how heterogeneous is the collection of hampers, boxes, baskets - I had almost added bundles - one sees brought in by the officials during the receiving hours before a big show ! Every variety of package, very many of which are exactly what they ought not to be. Some unnecessarily elaborate, polished wooden cases with brass fittings - handsome and durable no doubt, but far too cumbersome, and by their very weight inflicting much jar on the occupant when moved about; while others are a disgrace to anyone pretending to care about a cat or even to know what a cat is, many deserving to be straightway brought under the notice of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

I have seen big heavy cats jammed into margarine hampers, a thin wicker receptacle whose sides slope inwards like a flower-pot, where the animal must have suffered agonies of cramp in a veritable chamber of "little ease." Others are sent weary distances in shallow, rough grocery boxes with a few holes bored for ventilation, subject to be thrown about in transit, first on one side then on the other, the lid perchance nailed on, giving thereby much extra trouble to the penning officials. Little wonder if the cat arrives bruised, shaken, frightened nearly to death, and very probably wild and savage.

Now, as evil is wrought by want of thought (and common sense) as well as want of heart, I have thought it well to comment on these very wrong and stupid ways of sending our cats on their journeys before advising better arrangements.

Here are two illustrations of excellent travelling baskets, which fulfil pretty nearly all requirements for cats travelling singly.

The first is made by Messrs. Spratt, and has an inner skeleton lid, which is much to be recommended when sending a vicious or very timid cat that is likely to make a bolt on the basket being opened.

The second, beehive shaped, is designed by Mrs. Paul Hardy, of Chobham. It is of strong white wicker, the lid fastening with a rim of about two inches deep over the body of the basket, apertures in the rim allowing the wicker loops of the fastenings to project; when the cane stick is thrust through these the basket is absolutely secure - not a paw can get out.

This beehive shape has several advantages. The cat can stand up and stretch itself at ease, when tired of lying down. The handle being at the apex, it is carried - even by porters - without the cat being tilted off its legs; whilst the dome top prevents any other package being piled upon it - a disadvantage the flat-typed hamper always has. I line my baskets outside with brown paper or oil baize up to the rim, and inside with curtain serge, leaving the lid free for ventilation. Then, with plenty of hay at the bottom of the basket, the cat will travel from one end of England to the other in comfort and safety, with no danger of taking cold even if left about draughty platforms or in parcel offices. This basket is made by Messrs. Bull, of Guildford, at a very moderate cost, and lasts for years.

These baskets are, of course, intended for one cat only, or a pair of kittens. A really safe and capable travelling arrangement for a litter with the mother has yet, I think, to be devised. I have seen none I think good. The double compartment hamper I much dislike. The handles are perforce at each end, necessitating two carriers - who never do it - so the hamper is dragged by the porter or official with one end tilted (the other cat being nearly upside down), is leant up against other luggage, or dropped flat with a bang. With young kittens inside this leads to fatalities.

A label for the travelling basket seems an insignificant item to mention, but an efficient one is as important as that proverbial nail for whose absence the horse and the kingdom were lost.

I have just made the acquaintance of a first-rate label, devised and sent out by a Mr. Foalstone. at sixpence per dozen, from the Aerefair Engineering Works, near Ruabon. It is a stout linen label, printed "Valuable Live Cat" in big block letters; below is "Urgent" in red - a good idea, red being more likely to attract the casual eye of the railway official. Spaces are left below for line of travel, via, etc., and date and time of despatch. It is reversible, so the sender can fill up with the return address if necessary. I always prefer to fasten the label down at both ends, flat to the basket: it is less likely to be torn away than when left hanging loose from one eyelet.

It is by due attention to the details that cat fanciers can to some extent mitigate the dangers and risks that must necessarily attend the transit of live stock by rail.

CHAPTER V. EXHIBITING

AMONGST cat fanciers there is a laudable . ambition not only to breed good stock but to exhibit it. Certainly there is vastly more gratification and satisfaction in obtaining high honours for cats and kittens that we have bred ourselves, rather than for those specimens which money has purchased. If we consider that our cats have sufficiently good points to merit their being entered for a show, we must bear in mind that all the beauty and form and feature will be thrown away unless our pussies are in good show condition. For exhibition purposes condition means everything, and this is more especially the case with the long-haired breeds. A first-class specimen whose coat is ragged and matted cannot fail to suffer in the judges' estimation when compared with another cat, of inferior quality perhaps as regards points, but yet in the pink of condition, with its coat well groomed, its eye bright, its fur sof1 and silky. In the present day many of the specimens penned are so close together in point of breed merit that a very little turns the scale one way or the other. I have often said to myself, when judging a class of cats, "This exhibit would be a winner but for its condition," and I have had to put it down in the list.

There is no doubt that with long-haired cats a fine full coat will cover a multitude of sins, but it cannot alter a long nose or poor shape and bad-coloured eye; and in urging the importance of condition, I at the same time deprecate the awarding of prizes to cats that have nothing to recommend them but their pelage. Seeing, therefore, that a handsome specimen may go to the wall for the lack of attention on the part of the owner, it behoves all cat fanciers and would-be exhibitors to do everything in their power to make their cats look their very best, so that their pets may be things of beauty in the show pen. In the dog, rabbit, and pigeon fancy a great deal more attention is given to condition than amongst cat fanciers, who need waking up to the fact that nothing goes so far to propitiate a judge as superb show form and general good appearance. There may be standards of points for the guidance of the awards, but assuredly a common-sense judge will look with disfavour on a specimen with excellence of breed and correct colour of eye if his coat is draggled and matted, his tail dirty, and his fur soiled.

We have only to run our minds back to the various exhibits of well-known fanciers at our large shows, and we shall find that the most persistently successful exhibitors have been those who have sent their cats to the shows in the best condition. Some fanciers, wishing to help on entries at a show, will exhibit their Persian cats when quite out of coat. This is a mistake; send your entry money if you like to the secretary, but keep your coatless cats at home. As regards the short-haired breeds, these cats should have coats with a gloss and brilliancy like that of a well-groomed horse, shining like satin; a spiky appearance in the fur denotes poor condition in both long and short breeds.

In getting cats ready for exhibition owners should look to their comforts in every way. Their houses and beds should be kept clean, their coats combed and brushed daily. Attention should be paid to their ears, for if these are neglected a cat will continually scratch them, and thus injure its appearance by tearing out its fur. Some fanciers are in favour of washing their cats, but when we take into consideration the usually delicate constitutions of Persian cats, and the restless, impatient nature of these animals, it behoves us to try to find some other effectual means of cleansing their coats, which in the case of white and silver cats are naturally easily soiled. Experience has taught me that very good results can be obtained by damping the coats with a soft cloth dipped in a weak solution of ammonia and water. Follow this up by rubbing some white powder into the fur and well fingering the parts that are at all greasy. Pears' white precipitated fuller's earth is the best preparation, and is perfectly harmless. To clean away the powder use a fairly soft brush, and after this process has been gone through several times your cat will be fit for show. Another method of cleaning long-haired cats is to heat a quantity of bran in the oven.

Put it into a large bowl or footbath, and stand the puss in it. Rub the hot bran well amongst the fur for some minutes, and afterwards carefully brush it out. This treatment will give a soft and silky appearance to the coat, but for light-coloured cats the powder is more cleansing.

Cats require to be educated to the show pen, and it is very necessary in some cases to give a course of training. For this purpose it is well to obtain a similar pen to those used at shows, and to place your puss in this for an hour or two daily. In time he will learn to come and sit and look out of his temporary prison, and when he makes his debut he will not spoil his chances by crouching at the back of the show pen, or vex his would-be admirers, who may have recourse to the use of an umbrella or stick to make the exhibit move into a more convenient and conspicuous position.

Taking it for granted you have decided to send your cat to a show, the first step is to register it in the club under whose rules the show is to be held. At present the National Cat Club and the Cat Club both require separate registration, the charge being one shilling. It is, however, to be hoped that the earnest wish of all cat fanciers and exhibitors will ere long be fulfilled, and that one register will be kept by an independent person, so that pedigrees can be verified and mistakes rectified, and the confusion caused by a double registration will cease to worry and perplex the cat-loving community. Registration forms are supplied by the secretaries of the respective clubs, and you must fill in the particulars of your cats as set forth on the forms, a sample of which is here given, together with the registration rules of the National Cat Club:

National Cat Club Registration

The registration rules of the National Cat Club are as follow: 1. Every Cat exhibited at a show under National Cat Club Rules must (except such as are exhibited exclusively in Local Classes, or exhibited in Classes exclusively for litters of kittens), previous to the time of entry for such show, have been entered in a registry kept by the National Cat Club at their offices. A charge of is. each shall be made for registration. In such registry shall be inserted the name and breed of the cat, and its breeder's name, the date of birth, names of sire and dam, and of grand-sires and grand-dams, and if the dam was served by two or more cats their several names must be stated. If the age, pedigree, or breeder's name be not known the cat must be registered as breeder, age or pedigree " unknown, " any or all, as the case may be. If the name of a cat be changed, or an old name re-assumed, such cat must be again registered and identified before exhibition in its altered name.

2. A name which has been duly registered in accordance with Rule I cannot be again accepted for registration of a cat of the same breed, without the addition of a distinguishing number, prefix, or affix, for a period of five years, calculated from the first day of the year next after the one in which the name was last registered; but the name of a cat after publication in "Our Cats" and the Stud Book, or which has become eligible for free entry therein, cannot again be assumed.

N. B

The name of a cat that has become eligible for free entry in the Stud Booh in any year shall not be changed after the 31st of December of that year.

Cats do not receive a number on registration. Numbers are only assigned to Prize Winners or cats entered in the Stud Book on its publication, on payment of a fee of Five Shillings, in addition to One Shilling for registration.

The application for registration must be made on a form as follows:

Only one cat must be entered on one form, which must be forwarded with a remittance of one shilling to Mrs. A. Stennard Robinson, Hon. Sec., at 5, Great James Street, Bedford Row, London, W. C.

The various varieties as recognised by the Club are as follow:

Short-Haired Cats

1. Siamese.
2. Blue.
3. Manx.
4. Foreign.
5. Tabby.
6. Spotted.
7. Bicolour.
8. Tricolour.
9. Tortoiseshell.
10. Black.
11. White.
12. Sable.
13. Ticks.
14. Abyssinian.

Long-Haired Cats

15. Black.
16. White.
17. Blue.
18. Orange.
19. Cream.
20. Sable.
21. Smoke.
22. Tabby.
23. Spotted.
24. Chinchilla.
25. Tortoiseshell.
26. Bicolour.
27. Tricolour.

It will be seen that you are requested to give more than one name, and it is very desirable in the first instance to select an uncommon one, which may be considered your cat's exhibition title, but you will doubtless have some short pet name for home use. A prefix, probably the name of the town or village in which you live, can be used to specially identify your cat. For this an extra charge is made. It is well to fill in the pedigree as far as possible, and every exhibitor should strive to obtain correct particulars of date of birth and name of breeder of the cat to be exhibited. It is a pity to label your cat "unknown," if with a small amount of trouble exact details can be obtained. At any rate, it is important to state the names of the two parents. The age of kittens should be counted by months - that is, say, from the 20th to the 20th. Having registered your cat, you receive a notification of such registration, and whether you are intending to exhibit or not it is very necessary and advisable that your cat should be duly registered in at least one of the parent clubs.

A separate fee is charged for each cat or kitten in each class, and the amount must be forwarded at the same time as the entry is made. The following is a copy of the entry form used at the Cat Club's Show at Brighton in 1901, and I may mention that the fee for registration has since been raised from 6d. to Is.:-

The exhibiting rules should be carefully studied, and intending exhibitors must pay great attention to the classification set forth in the schedule so as to determine the correct class in which to enter their cats. If there remains any doubt in the mind of the novice, then it is best to consult some reliable and well-known breeder, giving a full description of the cat you wish to show.

It is a grievous disappointment if through ignorance or carelessness a good specimen is labelled "Wrong class."

It is always stated in the schedules that the entries close on a particular date, and that after this none can or will be received. Experience proves, however, that this is often not a law of the Medes and Persians, for the date is frequently of an elastic nature, and therefore it is always worth while for an intending exhibitor to write requesting that, if possible, his entry may be received, although it is forwarded after the advertised time of closing. Many exhibitors are not aware that by paying an extra shilling they can generally secure a double pen for their cats. It is not usual for the secretary of a show to send a receipt for entries and fees, as the tallies and labels which are forwarded later serve as an acknowledgment for these. When by any chance labels, etc., are not received in time to be used by exhibitors, or they are lost or mislaid, then the hampers should be addressed to the secretary of the show, and a note of explanation enclosed. The entry can then be looked up, and the pen number discovered. If cats are entered in joint names, then it is desirable that the owners should let the secretary know to whom to send the labels and tallies, as if these are only forwarded a day or two before the show to the partner who does not keep the cat, complications may arise.

If litter classes are provided at a show, it is well for the intending exhibitor to send the whole litter, as the number of the family is taken into consideration in judging, and perhaps a large litter of six may take over a smaller litter of three, even though the quality of the trio is in advance of the larger family. As regards pairs of kittens, I would say select two kittens as near alike as possible in colour, size, and quality; they need not be of the same litter, but it is as a "pair" they will be judged, so if one exhibit is much inferior to its fellow then the value of the pair is seriously diminished. A defective eye or damaged tail will tell against a cat or kitten in the show pen, therefore it is useless to throw away entry fees upon these blemished, though perchance dearly loved, creatures.

The question of ribbons to suit the colours of the various cats is one deserving of consideration. Many exhibitors make the mistake of using broad ribbons and making very big bows, but both long and short haired cats present a neater appearance with narrow ribbons, and the bow should be stitched in the centre, so that it cannot come undone and thus give a dishevelled appearance to the puss. The metal tallies will hang more gracefully round the neck if a slip ring is run through the hole of the tally and then the ribbon is put through the ring. Cushions and hangings for the pens are not at all desirable, even if they are permitted. They collect germs and become offensive, and moreover it is much better that all exhibits should be placed on the same footing - namely, a bed of hay or straw.

If owners are unable to accompany their exhibits to the show, it is more than ever necessary that secure, comfortable, and safe travelling boxes or hampers should be used for the transit of the cats. It is not advisable, nor is it generally allowable, for more than one cat to be sent in a hamper to a show.

The question of hampers and travelling appliances has been dealt with in a previous chapter, but I would earnestly impress upon exhibitors not to send their cats away on journeys, long or short, in tumble-down hampers and unsafe packing cases. Whether hampers or boxes, I would here suggest that whichever is used let the fasteners be secure and yet easy to manipulate. Straps should be attached to the box or hamper, as in the confusion and hurry of show work these, if left loose, may get mislaid. The labels should be so arranged that they may be conveniently turned over for the return journey, where, on the reverse side, ought to be the owner's name and full address. It is most important that these should be distinctly written. I recommend all exhibitors to insure their cats when sending them to a show. The charge is 3d. for every 1, and having paid our money we take our chance, which is perhaps a less hazardous one than if this precaution had been neglected.

The arrangements, or rather want of arrangements, as regards the transit of live stock on our railways leave much to be desired, and therefore it behoves fanciers and exhibitors who value their cats for their own sakes and for their intrinsic worth, to do all in their power to mitigate the discomforts of a journey and the risks that must necessarily attend the conveyance of live stock by rail. Some fanciers make it a rule never to exhibit unless they themselves can take and bring back their cats, and though this necessarily entails a great deal of trouble and some expense, yet there is an immense satisfaction in feeling our pets are under our own supervision. There is also an advantage in penning your own cats, and if you arm yourself with a brush and comb you are able to give some finishing touches to pussy's toilet previous to the judges' inspection and awards. Let me recommend a metal comb, and a brush such as is used for Yorkshire terriers, which has long penetrating bristles, but is neither too hard nor too soft.

Disqualification of cats or kittens at shows may arise from various causes. First, if the cat has not been registered, or if it can be proved that the animal has not been in the possession of the exhibitor for fourteen days before the show, or if a wrong pedigree has been given, or the date of birth of a kitten is incorrect. Any attempt at "faking" will disqualify an exhibit, and in some cases the too free use of powder on white and silver cats is a disqualification in the eyes of some judges. Exhibitors have been known to dye the chins of tabby cats and treat white spots on self-coloured cats in the same manner. Such "faking," as it is popularly called, is always risky, as well as a most undesirable operation, and if resorted to ought not to be passed over by a judge who might detect the artifice and yet lack the moral courage to expose the offender. Let me warn exhibitors against the evil practice of over feeding their cats at shows. It is so much better for a cat to starve for two days than to overload its stomach with the plentiful supplies brought by an over-anxious exhibitor.

The sanitary arrangements at present existing at cat shows do not allow of such a course, and if one meal of raw meat and plenty of fresh water is supplied by the show authorities pussy will fare much better than being stuffed with a

Whilst the inmates of your cattery are attending shows it is a good opportunity to give an extra cleansing and airing to their houses, and on their return be careful to destroy the hay or straw contained in the hampers or boxes, and thoroughly disinfect these, leaving them out in the open air for a day or two before packing them away. It is generally advisable to give a slight aperient to grown cats after they come back from a show, for it often happens that these cleanly creatures refuse to make use of the scanty accommodation provided for them in the show pens, and thus complications may arise unless attention is paid to their wants on their return. If many cats are kept, and some are sent to a show, on no account allow these to mix with your other animals on their return. It is a wise precaution to keep then apart for a few days, more especially if you have young kittens to consider.

The prize cards should be returned in the hampers when sent back to exhibitors. If these are soiled or broken on their arrival, a request to the secretary asking for fresh ones will probably be attended to.

Every member of a cat club and exhibitor at a show has a right to lodge a complaint with the secretary and committee of the club under whose rules the show is held, if an injustice has been done to an exhibit in the opinion of the exhibitor. According to the rules a deposit has to be paid, which can be reclaimed unless the complaint is considered "frivolous."

Show promoters cannot afford to give their money away without some return or provisional stipulation, and therefore fanciers must not complain if when a class does not fill it is either amalgamated or only half the advertised prize money is given. This latter plan is by far the more satisfactory. There has probably never been a show of any live stock held where complete satisfaction has been given; but, generally speaking, "grumbling" is a most mistaken and pernicious habit, and exhibitors should strive to become good losers. If they cannot learn this lesson, then the remedy remains in their own hands, and they had better keep their cats at home rather than run the risk of being disappointed themselves and of causing unpleasantness to others. If a judgment is obviously wrong, then the triumph is with the best cat, and we should take our defeat in a sportsmanlike manner.

In July, 1902, a cat section in connection with the annual dog show was held in the Old Deer Park, Richmond. This proved a great success, and entries numbered over three hundred. A few words in description of this show may be appropriate here, especially in view of the photographs (specially taken) which illustrate this chapter.

Its chief features were the twenty-five entries in the litter classes and the ring class for neuters only. Objection is often made to litter classes, and yet these are certainly the most attractive. I think that double pens should be provided, and special food ought to be supplied for the little ones. It stands to reason that very young kittens cannot be fed like the grown cats, and it is only natural that if big pieces of meat are thrust into the pen for the mother the hungry little creatures will make a rush for it. They bolt down the hard lumps, and these remain undigested in their tender little stomachs. It is not to be wondered at if gastritis, inflammation, and other distressing ailments supervene. It is much better to let the mother do without her usual meat rations and content herself with good, nourishing baby food, such as Mellin's or Ridge's, rather than run the risk of providing her with such which will injure her little kittens. With ordinary supervision no evil consequences should ensue from the introduction of litter classes, especially at a one day show. It is not, however, advisable to have litter classes at shows held during the winter months. But in perfect, warm weather no fatalities will be reported.

Certainly the mothers with their families prove a great attraction, and as woollen balls, attached from the top of the pens, are provided for the amusement of the kittens, they delight themselves and their audience with their playful frolics.

The ring class for neuters only was an innovation and proved very successful, and although some of these pet pussies declined to show themselves off to the best advantage, yet they did not "go" for each other as is sometimes the case when the males are within measurable distance of each other. The illustration given is from a photo specially taken for this work, and shows the judges deliberating on the respective merits of the neuter cats. On this occasion a famous Blue Persian owned by Madame Portier carried off the honours.

He behaved very well on the lead, and his grand shape and wonderful coat made him an easy first.

Another illustration shows the judges at work awarding the special prizes, which in many cases have to be decided conjointly. Miss Frances Simpson and Mr. C. A. House are comparing notes and determining which of the first prize kittens is deserving of the special for the best in the show. On this occasion Mrs. Bennet, a well-known breeder of Blue Persians, was awarded the coveted prize.

A general view of one of the rows of pens is given, but on this particular occasion no covering was supplied for the benching, and, therefore, the aspect of the show pens leaves much to be desired. The travelling baskets being placed under the pens, these should be hidden from the public gaze in order to give a neat and tidy appearance to the show. The best material for this purpose is red baize. The custom of allowing exhibitors to pen their own cats enables them to give their pussies a final brush up before they are subjected to the critical examination of the judge. Our illustration represents Mrs. Peter Brown, a well-known breeder of Blue Persians, attending to the toilet of her beautiful "Bunch," who on this occasion repeated her successes at the Botanic Gardens, and carried off the highest honours in the Blue Female Persian class (see page 73). And now to pass on to another portion of our subject.

Cat Club Judging

A standard of points for all long and short haired cats was drawn up by a sub-committee of the Cat Club, of which I was a member; but since specialist clubs have come into existence, having each their own list of points, nothing much has been seen or heard of the Cat Club's standard. It is just as well to have some definite lines upon which fanciers and exhibitors may base their ideas, and so aim at, if they cannot attain to, the height of perfection set forth in these standards. They are really not meant for judges, because I venture to assert that a judge is no judge if he requires anything besides his own personal conviction, experience, and common sense when called upon to decide the various points in the different breeds. A good judge of old china will not search for the mark to know whether the specimen is Chelsea or Worcester. He will tell you "it is marked all over" - that is. he knows a good bit of stuff, even if it should not have the gold anchor of Chelsea or the square mark of Worcester ware. So it is with a good all-round cat.

It appeals at once to the eye of the connoisseur, just as a worthless specimen is at once put out of the ranks of winners.

It is the greatest error not to have thorough confidence in oneself when undertaking to judge cats, or, in fact, in judging any animal, or any thing. No one should undertake to judge if they wish to seek the counsel of others. They must have the courage of their own convictions, and, although some amount of training may be required, I think that judges are born, not made; and people who have not a keen power of observation and a faculty of coming rapidly to a fixed conclusion can never hope to become satisfactory or competent judges. There are many cat fanciers on whose judgment of a cat I should implicitly rely, and who know a good specimen when they see it, but if placed before a row of twenty or thirty cats of a breed they seem to lose their heads and get hopelessly confused, and then the reporter says, "We could not follow the awards." There is no doubt that judges of cats are severely handicapped. Firstly, cats are such terribly timid, shrinking animals that when dragged out of their pens with great difficulty - for the doors are most inconveniently small - they often struggle so violently that, for fear of hurting the animal or of its escaping, the judge will swiftly restore it to its resting place without having obtained much satisfaction from his cursory examination.

Unless judging pens are provided, there is really no chance of making fair comparisons between two cats which may appear of almost equal merit. How is a judge to decide on the form of limbs and general build of a cat when holding it in his arms or seeing it huddled up at the back of its pen ?

An agitation is now on foot for having cats judged in a ring, and, no doubt, in time this will be the order of the day at our shows; but fanciers will have to train up their cats in the way they should go - namely, when quite young they must be accustomed to a lead and also be constantly brought out amongst strangers. As an example, I would refer to the starting gate recently introduced into this country on the racecourse. It was no use to attempt it for the old stagers, but trainers soon accustomed the two-year-olds to the innovation, and I believe many, if not all, the objectors are now converted to the new system of starting racehorses.

In judging a class, I first go round and mark the absent cats; then I note down those that could not under any circumstances take a prize. If there is a large class - say, of twenty to thirty specimens - I mark off all poor and seedy-looking cats until the number is reduced to about eight or ten; then I begin to search for the winners. At this point I take out each specimen, and, if no judging pen is provided, I get someone to assist me, and by bringing out two cats at a time I can make comparisons and note down any remarks in my book for further reference. It often happens that one particular cat will stand out prominently from all the rest in a class. and then there is no difficulty about the first award. It is always well to give a "reserve" and to distribute - but not too freely - the V. H. C., H. C., and C. cards. It does not do to make these too cheap, and scatter them all over the class. V. H. C. might be awarded to a cat in splendid coat, but which failed in head and eyes; H. C. to another specimen with hardly any coat and poor head, but correct in eye; and C. to a promising youngster without any serious fault, only with no striking point of merit.

A good judge must thus weigh the pros and cons and have a reason to give himself or anyone else for each degree of merit, from first prize to the humble C. And here I would mention that there is a nice and a very nasty way for an exhibitor to question a judge's award. To be attacked suddenly with the query, "Why have you not given my cat a prize?" is quite enough to make a judge retire into his shell and refuse any explanation; but if asked to kindly give a reason why a certain animal has failed to win, and to explain why one specimen, apparently a fine cat, should be lower than another, I am sure any judge would gladly give the inquirer the benefit of his larger experience and the reason for his awards. It is a mistake for a judge to distribute the full complement of prizes in a class when and where the exhibits are not possessing of sufficient merit. A first prize cat should be a good specimen of its kind, and it is much better to withhold this award than to give it to a poor representative of his breed. It also reflects discredit on a judge, for an exhibitor wishing to boast of his honours may publish that his "Tommy Atkins" took first under so-and-so, when perhaps there were only two cats in the class.

It is quite legitimate for a judge to ask permission of the show authorities to award an extra prize in a large class with several fine specimens; and if he has withheld others in a poor and badly filled class then there is no extra burden put on to the funds of the club. A great deal should be left to the discretion of the judge, and in the matter of special prizes, if one is offered for, say, the best longhaired white cat, and only one or two specimens are on show, and these are neither of them good types of this breed, then the judge should be empowered to withhold the prize. Such a course may be an unpopular one, but I am sure it is the correct and fairest one, for it is a farce to award first prize and specials to an inferior animal just because he happens to be without other competitors. Anyone who has judged the large classes of blues and silvers which now appear at our principal shows will bear me out in my suggestion that such classes, numbering perhaps thirty and more exhibits, should be subdivided according to age. Such an arrangement would be welcomed by judge and exhibitor alike. At the Crystal Palace Show in 1901 the blue kittens numbered thirty-nine in the class, male and female, the age limit being three to eight months.

How could a judge be expected to satisfactorily award three prizes in such a huge class? And I know that many superb specimens on this occasion had to be content with a V. H. C. card, which it would have gone to my heart as a judge to place on their pen.

If there is a prize offered for the best cat in the show, the judge or judges have not to consider which is their favourite breed or which is the most fashionable colour, but just which cat is the best possible type, which specimen is the nearest perfection, and which is exhibited in the best all-round show condition. In longhaired classes the length and quality of coat and fulness of ruff go a long way towards a high place in the awards, and, as I have before remarked, condition is a most important factor in the judges' estimation. In the self-coloured classes of blues and blacks a judge should make diligent search for white spots on throat or stomach. Formerly cats thus blemished were relegated to the "any other" class, but it has been wisely decided by both clubs that cats with white spots should be judged in their own classes, and that this defect should count as a point or points against them. This is as it should be, for to place self-coloured cats in an "any other colour" class seems absurd. They are black and blue cats in spite of a few white hairs, and should be judged as such.

They may never aspire to a first prize, at any rate at a large show; but surely a really fine black or blue cat, with correct eyes, grand head, and good shape, even with the unfortunate spot, should and ought to score over a poor specimen with green eyes and long nose. In the tabby classes a judge will first consider the groundwork and markings, and to these premier points special attention should be given, as there is a tendency to breed tabby cats which are barred only on heads and legs, the body markings being blurred and indistinct. It is not unlikely that indue time the "any other colour" class will no longer form part of the classification at our large shows. Formerly this used to be the largest class of any, but nowadays the entries are becoming small and beautifully less. It is not worth while for a fancier to keep these specimens - they do not fetch any price, they are not valuable as breeders, and it is quite a toss up whether they can win in such a mixed company. I remember the time when blues were entered in the "any other colour" class, and when blue tabbies were more numerous than silvers or blues. It is really a most difficult task for a judge to give his awards at a local show where all sorts and conditions of cats are placed in the one class.

Such an arrangement is good for neither man nor beast.

And then, again, at our large shows it behoves a judge to be very level-headed to cope with the numerous brace, team, and novice classes, for one cat may be entered in all these, besides being in the open cat and kitten class; and woe betide the unfortunate judge who makes a slip, for the wrath of the exhibitor and the sarcasm of the reporter will be poured out upon him. No doubt it is a grave mistake to reverse one's own awards, and yet judges are but mortal, and "to err is human. It is hard when cat fanciers take to judging the judges and their judgments. A judge may be absolutely ignorant of the owners of the cats, and thus utterly unbiased; yet there will not be wanting those who will pick holes in their characters, and see in their awards clear proof of personal spite and party favour. The intense suspiciousness of some fanciers and the readiness with which they impute low motives to others is greatly to be deplored.

I will here quote from an article by Mr. C. A. House, the well-known editor and judge of live stock. Under the heading of "The Judging of Cats," Mr. House says: - "All my awards are based on the idea that each breed possesses a distinctive feature, and that distinctive feature must be the one to which most consideration is given. After the chief features come others, such as shape, coat, colour, etc., and the premier awards should be given to cats possessing the best all-round properties.... Selfs, above all things, should be pure in colour. For instance, a blue should be blue, and a black, black. Yet a little rustiness of colour should not be allowed to outweigh a host of other good properties. Colour, however, is hard to breed rich and pure, and should at all times be more highly valued than size, or even coat. The same with markings. Only those who have tried to breed markings know how difficult it is to get them anything approaching perfection. Nothing is more fleeting than marking, and nothing more tantalising to the breeder.

Summing up the matter, my own opinion is, and has been for years, that the cat fancy has been hindered and hampered by judges judging the exhibits because they belong to so-and-so, or had won so-and-so under so-and-so.... I was much amused at one incident at Westminster where a big champion had suffered defeat. The fair owner was heckling the judge, and he in reply to her remarks made this answer: 'It makes no difference to me had the cat belonged to the Queen herself; I should then have done the same. I don't judge cats on what they have previously won or because they belong to any particular person. I judge them on their form at the time, and it makes no difference to me if a cat has won fifty firsts or none at all. ' This reply was more than the exhibitor had bargained for, but all honest-minded fanciers must acknowledge the judge was right. What is sadly needed in the cat fancy to-day is more of this sturdy, unflinching determination to judge cats and not their owners. Cat exhibitors have much to learn yet, and the sooner the morale of the judging arena is raised the more healthy will the fancy become and the more quickly will it advance."

Another of our well-known judges, Mr. T. B. Mason, writing on the same subject, says: - "In my judging engagements I have very often come across exhibits with good coloured eyes, but not the correct shape. A small eye, however good the colour may be, will give the cat a disagreeable, sour expression. With this shape of eye we generally see a narrow, long face, which should keep any exhibit out of the prize list in good competitions. Let it, however, be clearly understood, I do not want eyes to have undue weight in the general conditions of cat judging; but they are important, and as such ought to have due and careful attention at the hands of breeders and judges alike. Two things in the judging of short-hairs weigh heavily with me, namely, pale colours and light-marked heads and white lips. These defects, in my opinion, ought to put out of the money those that possess them in good competition. I perfectly agree with Mr. House about the standards. They are useful both to the breeder and judge; but for the judge to take the standards and try to judge by them at any show would be foolish indeed.

All judges are expected to know the varieties they are called upon to judge, and to have the faculty to weigh up the good points and defects of the specimens before them, and place them accordingly."

Management Of Cat Shows

Now to turn our attention to the management of shows, and upon this question I feel I am fairly competent to give an opinion, as I have acted as show manager and as show secretary to some of our largest exhibitions in London and at Brighton. The office is indeed no sinecure, and very few fanciers, exhibitors, or visitors have any idea of the enormous amount of forethought required, to say nothing of physical and secretarial labours, to make a big show run smoothly. The responsibility also is great, for a conscientious manager feels he has valuable live stock in his temporary possession, of which he has, so to speak, to render up account. There are many mixed shows held throughout the country where a cat section is given, and it is to be regretted that in most, if not all cases the poor pussies are badly provided for and generally go to the wall. At a dog and cat show everything goes to the dogs! Secretaries wishing to promote successful cat sections at their mixed shows should secure some well-qualified person to have entire control of this department. It is certainly true that, of all live stock, cats require the most consideration and supervision, and yet to the masculine mind of a show secretary it would appear that the cats can look after themselves.

There is no doubt that the first step towards making a show successful is to engage the services of a competent, energetic, and painstaking manager and secretary. It is also very desirable to appoint a really good working show committee, the members of which should each undertake some particular duty in connection with the show. For instance, one member might superintend the feeding, another could be responsible for obtaining promises of special prizes, another devote him- or herself to verifying the prize tickets placed on the pens, and so on. A system of advertising a show must be decided upon by the show committee, and notices sent to the various journals which are circulated amongst fanciers. The class and prize tickets must be ordered in good time either by the secretary of the club or the manager of the show.

The best time of the year for a show as regards the appearance of Persian cats is in December or January. Then, if ever, these particular cats should be in the best show condition. As regards kittens, the early summer or autumn is the best period, as spring kittens will then be ready to make their bow to the public. It is much to be regretted that the two principal shows of the National Cat Club - namely, the Botanic Gardens and the Crystal Palace Shows - should be held respectively in June and October, when Persian cats are in poor coat.

Quite three months before the date of the show a managing secretary will start work. Catalogues of previous shows must be collected together, in order to ascertain the names and addresses of likely exhibitors.

Special prizes are now a great feature at all cat shows, and a good deal of extra work is entailed by writing to obtain promises of these for the various breeds. If possible, it is well to appoint someone who is in touch with those who are likely to become donors, and to hand over this department. I would advise anyone undertaking this branch of the show to have a book, and to head each page with the respective classes of long and short haired breeds, and then when a special is received - say, for the best black Persian cat - to place this on the page set apart for specials for this particular breed. Keep a separate list for kittens, and decline to accept specials given in the form of stud visits or for cats bred from such-and-such a sire; these savour too much of self-advertisement. There are so many specialist societies nowadays, and as these provide their own specials the show executive is considerably relieved of the duty of obtaining prizes.

Of course, there are always a certain number of challenge cups, medals, and specials given by the club holding the show, and care should be taken to distribute these fairly amongst the various classes. It is usual and advisable to limit the competition of the majority of these special prizes to the members of the club. I do not approve of a special prize being offered for the best cat in the show, as it is almost impossible for the judges to arrive at a satisfactory decision, and considerable heartburnings are generally the result of such a competition. A very useful mode of assisting a show is by guaranteeing classes; and I would suggest yet another plan, namely, to subscribe so much towards the expenses of the show. These are necessarily heavy, and it has been stated that no cat show can ever be made a paying affair.

As regards the specialist societies, I think it seems the correct thing that the club intending to hold the show should instruct its secretary to write to the secretary of each specialist society to ask if he is willing to support the show by prizes or by guaranteeing classes, and to name the latest date for receiving particulars of the support to be given. The specialist societies have their own judges, and it is only natural when they are offering handsome prizes that a claim should be made for first-class judging in the interests of the breed. It is therefore essential, as matters at present stand, for one of the judges from the list of the specialist club to be selected to give awards in the classes connected with the society. It is important to obtain as full a list as possible of special prizes from societies and outside donors in good time for insertion in the schedule, as a tempting list will ensure a better entry. In the schedule the exhibition rules of the club should be printed, and in addition there should be a list of arrangements in a prominent position setting forth details as to the opening and closing of the show, the time up to which exhibits are received, the earliest hour at which they may be removed, and the prices of admission.

The names of the judges, with their respective classes, should be clearly set forth, and it should be mentioned whether classes will or will not be amalgamated or cancelled. A few advertisements of stud cats and trade notices should be obtained, as this means grist to the mill and helps to pay for the printing of the schedules and catalogues.

The question of classification is an all-important one, and needs the consideration of a careful show committee, well versed in the ways of cats and of fanciers. A list of the classification used by one or two big cat clubs has been given. Of course, at smaller shows it is often impossible to give separate classes for several breeds or to divide the sexes; but my remarks in this chapter will refer to the customs and arrangements of large shows, such as those held by the National Cat Club at the Crystal Palace, and the Cat Club at Westminster. I do not think it is good policy on the part of a show committee or management to amalgamate classes. It is much better to advertise in schedules that when entries are fewer than, say, four or five, then the judges are empowered to withhold any of the prizes; or, again, in the case of a very small class, half prize money might be awarded.

Having decided on the classification, and given as liberal and attractive a one as 1 possible and practicable, it is well to consider the number of schedules likely to be required, and then start addressing the wrappers. In each schedule must be inserted two or three entry and registration forms. The entry forms. with fees, are returned to the secretary, and the registration forms to the person who keeps the register of the club holding the show. And here I would remark on the mistake it is to have two registers for cats. It is very confusing for exhibitors, and a double expense, as the National Cat Club and the Cat Club each charge a shilling. Then, again, as the National Cat Club has recently passed a rule disqualifying all cats exhibited at Cat Club shows, the confusion is worse confounded. Some fanciers having large catteries divide their exhibits and send to both National Cat Club and Cat Club shows; but this new registration rule falls heavily on cat fanciers who are keen to exhibit their specimens and anxious for the pleasure of obtaining prizes, and desire to profit by showing their stud cats or having an opportunity of disposing of their stock.

The National Cat Club shows since the passing of this rule have suffered considerably, both from lack of entries and by the absence of some of the fine champion cats that, having been exhibited at the Cat Club show in January, were thus debarred from appearing at the Botanic Gardens and Crystal Palace shows. How much simpler and better it would be if both clubs could and would agree to have one register kept by an independent person, not necessarily a catty individual, and that the fees should form the salary of such a person. A small fee might be charged when reference was desired by fanciers as to the pedigree of any cats. If the secretary7 of a show happens to be acquainted with the members of the cat fancy, he will be able to use his discretion as to the number of entry and registration forms needed. In some cases, where he is sending to a well-known breeder and possessor of a large cattery, more numerous forms will be required. Schedules should be sent out quite a clear month in advance, and the entries should close about ten days before the date of the show. The secretary will have a book in which he will note down each entry as it is received, placing it under the correct class heading, and, of course, these can only be numbered up when entries close.

The entry forms should be filed and kept for reference. Then comes the work of arranging and writing the labels, and placing these with the tallies, entrance tickets, and removal orders in envelopes and addressing them to the exhibitors. These should be posted four clear days before the show.

During this time the secretary will be able to compile the catalogue for the printer, and arrange to have an instalment of copies the night before the opening day of the show, also to draw up the judges' books. Letters should be written to the judges and veterinary surgeons acquainting them with the hour at which they are desired to present themselves at the hall, and a complimentary pass ticket should be enclosed. A pass should also be sent to the representatives of the Press, to the veterinary surgeon, and to those who may be giving their services as stewards. Distant exhibitors will write requesting catalogues to be forwarded to them, and a list should be kept. A secretary will do well to provide himself with strong cord, scissors, brown paper, writing materials, labels, telegraph forms, stamps, and other useful articles.

In these days of specialist clubs it is necessary for the secretary to have a list of members of each society supporting the show, as the prizes being confined to members the judge will have to refer to the secretary's office for information before making his awards.

The day before the show will be fully occupied in superintending the arrangement and putting up of the benching and pens. A conveniently sized glass case should be ordered for the special prizes, and this must be placed in a prominent position. The prizes should all be distinctly labelled with the donor's name and the breed of cat for which each is offered. The case should be one which locks up, and then it is not necessary to have any supervision of the contents. It is best for some two members of the show committee to undertake the arrangement in the case of the special prizes. Two men should be engaged to take the tickets and money at the entrance gate, and in the sales office a clerk will be required to receive purchase money and give receipts. At a large show it is necessary to employ four or six stewards to collect the judges' slips as they complete each class, and take them to those in the office appointed to write out the tickets. These same stewards should also undertake to place them on the pens.

And here let me say how much better it would be if some arrangement could be made for the prize tickets to be fixed in a rack at the top of the pen, instead of being thrust between the wires, where a large number almost hide the cat, and frequently they are torn down by the inmates of the pen.

A good manager will have all in order well before the hour when the cats are received, and if the veterinary engaged is in attendance the cats can be examined and, when passed, placed at once in their proper pens. It is very important to entrust the work of penning to those who are used to handling cats, and no better men can be found than those employed by Messrs. Spratt, who, as everyone knows, are the universal providers at cat shows, as at every other live-stock exhibition. It is a question whether hay or straw is best for bedding. I incline towards the latter if it is the fine wheaten straw, as hay, if it becomes at all damp, will stick to the long-coated cats. I also prefer dry earth at the back of the pens to sawdust, for the same reason. I trust we may ere long be able to provide something better in the way of a cat pen than those at present in use. The doors should open the full height of the cage and two-thirds of the width, so that the cat can be more easily taken out.

There is no doubt that, considering the peculiar nature of cats, some more adequate arrangement should be made in the sanitary accommodation. The earth scattered at the back of the pen amongst the bedding is not all that could be desired. What we want is a false bottom, and an earth pan or tray sunk in it about two inches deep, on the plan of the bird cage, so that it can be drawn out and fresh earth supplied, and replaced. Greater care should be paid as regards the security of the fastenings of the pens, and the wires of some of them are too wide apart, so that young kittens can easily make an exit. It is well known that cats have extraordinary powers of escaping whenever and wherever escape is possible.

I disapprove as strongly as do the cats of any disinfectant being sprinkled or placed inside the pens. Each pen must, of course, bear a number; but instead of the different classes being numbered, it is much better to have them named, and the large placards fixed high about the pens by means of split sticks of Japanese bamboo. Thus anyone seeking the blue or the brown tabby class will have no difficulty in locating it, even without a catalogue.

It is very important that all exhibits should be examined by a qualified veterinary surgeon before being penned, and if a cat is seriously ill the owner should be at once communicated with and the specimen returned. If it is a doubtful case, perhaps a running eye or high temperature, then the cat should be placed apart in a properly arranged, and if possible warmed, hospital room to be again examined. Remember it is always better to disappoint one exhibitor by refusing his cat, than to disgust everybody by bringing their carefully trained and dearly loved pets into contact with disease. It is necessary to appoint an official to check off each exhibit as it is passed, and in the event of pronounced illness or some other objectionable feature to make a note of this for future reference.

As regards the feeding of exhibits, I am in favour of raw beef or cooked meat cut into small pieces or else put through a mincing machine, and water to drink. For many reasons it is not desirable to provide milk; it is apt to turn sour, and it certainly more easily collects germs of disease, and so may prove a fruitful source of evil.

The Cat Club started the idea of having china saucers instead of the usual tins, and these are decidedly better in every way. A one-day show is no doubt best for the cats, but for the exhibitors and the executive a two-days show is really preferable. If the exhibits are allowed to be penned up till eleven o'clock on the morning of the show, the judging ought to be got through and the tickets placed on the pens in two hours with a competent staff, and the show opened at one or 1. 30.

A smart secretary will arrange with his printer to have a list of awards printed with the utmost speed directly after the class judging is finished. This can either be given in the catalogues themselves or a separate sheet inserted in the catalogues. A large board ought to be hung in a conspicuous and convenient position, and the list of class winners and the winners of special prizes entered on it. This is better than having the slips pinned upon a board. They are often very indistinctly written, and are apt to get torn down. Let the closing hour on the first night be eight or nine o'clock, when the hall should be cleared and the pens covered over. I consider one good feed of raw meat ought to suffice during the day, with fresh water continually supplied. The hour for opening on the second day may be ten o'clock, and before then the pens ought to be cleaned out, fresh straw given where needed, and disinfectant sprinkled up and down the passages between the rows of pens - not in them. Careful attention to these points will ensure the show being free from disagreeable odours by the time the public are admitted.

It is a wise plan to arrange and announce that the show closes, say, at five p. m. on the second day, so that exhibitors can, in many cases, get home with their cats the same night. It is unreasonable to expect to be allowed to depart before the time fixed, even though in some cases half an hour would save a train. As regards a one-day show, it is almost impossible for a secretary and manager to get through the necessary work and to open in anything like time. There must be a scramble, and for the exhibitors to be obliged to present themselves and their cats at some unearthly hour in the morning is very trying and most inconvenient. Then a two-days show is, of course, an advantage as regards the entrance money. The Cat Club used to have a stringent rule against exhibitors penning their own cats, but at the Westminster Show this rule was amended, and cats could be penned by their owners or representatives on the night before the show, but not in the morning. No evil result followed this concession on the part of the authorities, and therefore I trust this very natural desire on the part of the exhibitors to see their precious pussies safely into their temporary quarters may always be permitted at Cat Club shows.

In order to facilitate the work of the judges, it is well to have their books carefully and clearly arranged, and this especially applies to the list of special awards. I instituted a plan at Westminster Show, in 1901, which gave great satisfaction, but which entailed a lot of extra work for the secretary. I am sure, however, this special arrangement lightened the labours of the judges, and hastened the appearance of the special prize cards on the pens. I had separate books for the special awards, and carefully cut out of the schedules the prizes pertaining to each judge. Thus, if Mr. A. had black, white, and blue long-haired classes, every challenge medal and special offered for these cats I arranged in order on one side of the page, with the numbering as it appeared with them in the schedule. So in the left-hand page would be, say, "Special No. 10, for best long-haired black," and on the right-hand page " Awarded to No....., " leaving a blank for the judge to fill in the number of the winner. Any prizes that had to be awarded in conjunction with other judges, such as for best long-haired cat in the show, I made a note of to this effect.

Let me add that I gummed the printed portions relating to the prizes, cut from the schedule, into the judging books, so the judges needed neither schedule nor catalogue to refer to. In preparing judges' books it is very helpful to place male and female (M. and F.) after each catalogue number in the mixed kitten classes, to avoid reference for the special awards; and this should also be done in the catalogue itself, as very often the name of the kitten does not indicate the sex, and would-be purchasers are obliged to make inquiries.

I am always an advocate for having selling classes for cats and kittens at shows, where the price should be limited to 5 5s. in the long-haired classes, and 3 3s. in the short-haired classes. It would be an assistance if someone who understood cats, and was also a good salesman or saleswoman, undertook to preside over the selling classes. The 10 per cent. commission deducted by the show authorities is a material help, and often a little pressure and persuasion, combined with useful information, will decide a wavering purchaser. A class I should like to see introduced into our shows is one for kittens bred by exhibitors. I am of opinion that more encouragement should be given to fanciers to keep the best of their litters for exhibition. Lady Marcus Beresford had the happy inspiration of starting breeders' cups for competition at Cat Club shows, and special prizes are often given for the best kitten bred by exhibitors. But these are tiresome awards for a judge to make; he is obliged to make inquiries from someone with a catalogue, and even this reference will not always suffice.

It is always pleasant to win prizes, but an additional pride would naturally be felt if, in a large class of kittens bred by well-known exhibitors, the son or daughter of our own breeding should be awarded first and special.

With respect to a ring class, which is often held at some of the National Cat Club shows, I cannot say that it is very interesting to see a collection of toms, females, and neuters, long- and short-haired, being dragged along by their anxious owners, whilst the puzzled judges try hard to decide which of the motley and mixed assembly is most worthy of honours. I think that for a ring class neuters alone should be eligible, or at any rate until we have trained our young cats to behave properly on a lead. There need be no necessity for the neuters to be entered and penned in the show, but they could be charged a higher fee for the ring class; and I believe that many owners of neuters would not object to their precious pets being on exhibition for ten or twenty minutes, led by themselves into the ring, but who will not let them be cramped up in a pen for two days. Neuters are always at a disadvantage in the show pen - they are generally too large and too lazy to be properly seen, and a ring class for these specimens would be a very attractive feature at our cat shows. A row of chairs should be placed round, and sixpence a seat charged. It is quite absurd to mix up the sexes, and dangerous to allow torn cats to come within fighting distance of each other.

At a recent show great excitement was caused in the ring by the sudden attack of one famous stud cat on another, and it was lucky that nothing worse than a torn and bleeding ear was the result of this onslaught. Another class I should like to see at some of our large shows, and certainly at the summer N. C. C. Show, is a class for stud cats, which should be judged quite irrespective of coat, and special attention directed to form of limb, size of head, and massive build in awarding the prizes. This might not be an attractive class, but it would be an instructive one, and give the veterans a chance of proving of what stuff they are made. A young untried male will often take all the honours in his class, and the stud cat of a busy season is forced to take a back place, probably on account of services rendered. Anyhow, this idea might be carried out as regards the two largest classes - namely, those for silver and blue Persians. In former days there used to be classes at some of the shows in which the cats were judged by weight, but these have wisely been done away with.

The question of open judging at cat shows has frequently been discussed in catty circles, and several fanciers have given their opinions on this subject.

Mrs. Neate, a well-known fancier, writes thus in Fur and Feather: - "It would indeed be a step in the right direction if cat shows were run on (as far as possible) the same lines as dog shows. Much of the absurd mystery that at present envelops our cat shows would vanish if exhibitors were permitted to be present during the judging, and I feel sure that the majority of cat fanciers would not be so wanting in etiquette and good taste as to hinder the judges or any of the officials in discharge of their onerous duties." No doubt there is much truth in these remarks; but, at the same time, I do not think fanciers take sufficiently into consideration the very timid, shrinking nature of the cat when they advocate open judging. It is often most difficult for a judge to properly examine a cat. even when he or she is quietly going round giving the awards; it would be still more trying to man and beast if a collection of strangers were pressing forward on all sides.

What I consider is more practical than open judging for cats is that some arrangement should be made so that judges may be enabled to compare the points of the various exhibits, and for this purpose I consider that judging pens on movable tables should be provided at all shows, as were adopted by the Cat Club at Westminster. By these means the work of the judges would be much simplified, and the cats more satisfactorily and quickly judged.

Supposing a special prize or medal is offered for the best cat in the show, then I think it -is interesting and instructive to have the first prize winning cats placed, if possible, in pens, and to arrange for the award to be given in public during the show by the judges in conjunction with each other. Such a plan was adopted at the last Manchester Cat Show, and much satisfaction was expressed at this innovation.

Having given some suggestions as to the classification, I would again refer to points of management in shows. At the closing hour on the second day the hall should be cleared, and only exhibitors or their representatives allowed to remain. An efficient staff of attendants should at once set to work to assist in packing up the cats belonging to those exhibitors who intend taking them away. After these have all left, then the manager should direct his attention towards those exhibits that should be started by the night mails. The catalogue must be consulted, and a good way is to mark with a cross on the pen tickets those cats that must be packed up; and, having previously ordered the railway vans at a certain time, the precious packages should be sent off as speedily as possible. Those exhibits left over till the following morning should be fed again and started at daybreak.

There is a sense of immense relief when the last hamper has been fastened down and seen off the premises. And here let me say how much exhibitors can contribute towards the speedy and safe despatch of their pets, if only they will provide substantial and well appointed travelling baskets or boxes. Amidst all the hurry and confusion of packing up an immense amount of extra trouble is given by having to lace up a hamper with string, or nail down a box that has no other means of being made secure! I speak from experience, and therefore I plead for more consideration to be extended to the show manager and his assistants, and, above all, to the poor pussies themselves.

At every show that is held there are a number of exhibitors who try the patience and courtesy of the manager or secretary, or both, by requesting to be allowed to remove their cats before the advertised time. Of course, it is only natural that those fanciers residing at a distance should wish to make tracks home and catch early trains tor their own comfort and convenience and the welfare of their pussies. But, looking at the matter from a secretary's and a visitor's point of view, it is certainly hard that perhaps some of the best prize cats should be absent from their pen whilst the public are paying their money at the gate; but, having made a rule, it is best to stick to it, and no cat should be taken away till the fixed hour under any pretext whatever, unless a veterinary certificate of illness is obtained.

It is always open to the management to advertise an earlier hour for the removal of exhibits on payment of a certain sum, but this should be made a substantial fine, especially in the case of a prize-winner. A lower figure might be named for other exhibits. As regards cats or kittens purchased at the show, it is certainly an inducement and incentive to buyers if there is a rule that these exhibits may be removed at any time.

According to the rules of the two leading clubs a certain fixed time must elapse before the prizes are sent out. In some cases this is a most uncertain and unfixed time, and many complaints have been made through the cat papers of the long drawn-out period between the prize being won and the prize being received. No doubt, immediate distribution of prizes after the show would lead to complications, for objections might be lodged within the given time allowed by the rules, and such objections would have to be brought before the committee of the club; therefore it is obvious that successful competitors must allow, say, a month to elapse before showing signs of impatience. It is then the manager's business to send the money awards, and the secretary of the club is generally accountable for the distribution of the "specials," which certainly call for a special acknowledgment from the recipient to the donor of these prizes.

As regards the financial aspect of a cat show, the first important point is to make the entries pay for themselves - that is. supposing your prize money in each class is 1, 10s., and 5s., then you need twelve entries at 3s. to carry you through. And here let me remark that, considering the character of our first-class shows and the value of the special prizes offered, I am inclined to think that entry fees are too low, and that they should be more in accordance with the fees charged at dog shows. It is always advisable to make a difference between members of the club holding the show and outsiders. Thus, if 5s. is the entry fee for members, then 6s. or 7s. 6d. might be charged to non-members. New recruits to a club are often gained by this arrangement. The usual commission on sales is 10 per cent., and then there is the gate money, which somehow is generally disappointing, for truly the outside public are not partial to cats, nor attracted to exhibitions of the feline race. I have always contended that exhibitors themselves ought to be charged an entrance fee - say, half - price admission on presentation of their exhibitor's pass, which in many cases would only be sixpence, yet one or two hundred of these small coins would materially assist the exchequer; and surely no cat fancier would grumble at this tax on their resources when they consider how much trouble and expense is entailed in providing them with a favourable opportunity of exhibiting their pets, and with a possibility of winning golden guineas and silver trophies.

Another plan is to advertise in schedules that exhibitors of more than, say, two entries would be allowed a free pass. Fanciers will be tempted to send additional cats, and thus swell the entries, in order to secure their free admission ticket. I do not think it would be a bad plan to have a "Contribution Column" on the entry forms for members' and exhibitors' voluntary donations towards the expenses of a show which, if well managed, is worthy of the utmost support from the cat-loving community.

"Every mickle makes a muckle," and it should be the earnest desire of each individual member of a club to do something, however small, towards keeping a balance on the right side of their treasurer's accounts.

Cat Buying And Selling

I believe that a Bow Street magistrate once asserted that anyone owning a stud dog or selling a dog was, in the point of law, a dealer. I do not know if the same decision would apply in the cat world. Anyhow, there are few fanciers who do not desire at some time or other to dispose of their cats and kits; and, again, there are many who keep stud cats, yet cannot be considered dealers in that sense of the term. The best way to set about trying to sell our surplus stock is to advertise in the cat papers, in which case it is advisable to fully and fairly describe our animals and to name the price required. If profit is to be considered, it is not advisable to keep kittens more than eight weeks. Very soon after this period they begin to lose their fluffiness and grow leggy in appearance. There is also the risk of illness and death. It is better, therefore, to be willing to accept a moderate sum for kittens at eight weeks old rather than to keep them to see how they turn out. It is a clear case of "a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush."

I have always thought that there is a good opening for any enterprising person well versed in cat lore and cat fanciers to start an agency in London, where cats and kittens might be sent on approval, for would-be purchasers to call and interview them. There might be a system of messengers who would meet cats and see them off at London stations. In connection with such a cat agency a register might be kept of cats for sale or cats wanted and arrangements made as at the Army and Navy Stores for having a certain number of animals on view. These could be boarded at so much per week, and commission charged on the sale.

A list of names and addresses of those willing to receive cats as boarders would be very useful, and many ladies who do not choose to advertise could and would, I am sure, avail themselves of the means of letting fanciers know they could undertake the charge of pets during their owners' absence from home. Many and frequent are the letters I receive on this subject, especially as the summer vacation approaches.

A day and hour for the visit of an experienced veterinary might be arranged, so that country fanciers could send or bring their sick cats for advice. All sorts of cat appliances might be on sale. It would be convenient to have a writing-room for the use of fanciers, where correspondence on catty matters could be carried on. Perhaps a tearoom could be added, and bedrooms, if space was available, for fanciers coming up to attend London shows. Anyhow, a list of suitable rooms might be kept which could be personally recommended.

In these days, when competition is so keen and occupation so difficult to obtain, the idea of starting a cat agency should commend itself to some who, being in touch with members of the cat fancy, and wishing for lucrative employment, might embark on this novel undertaking. Needless to say, it would be most desirable to have the cat agency in a central part of London, and in close proximity, if possible, to some of the main railway stations.

I think that, if only as a means of assisting fanciers in the purchase and disposal of their cats and kittens, this idea of an agency might be successfully worked. Many breeders become very disheartened at the inability to find purchasers for their kittens. A complaint was recently made by a lady living in the Isle of Wight. She writes: "No one seems to care for breeding in this island, and people are not willing to give more than about five shillings for pedigree kittens." No doubt fanciers living in the country and away from any catty centre have but little opportunity of finding a sale for their surplus stock. I would suggest photography as one means of making known the perfections of their pussies. A start in the right direction has been made by Mr. Landor, of Ealing, whose clever pictures of kittens are so well known. He is willing to take portraits of pretty, fluffy kits and good cats on special terms, provided he retains the copyright of such photographs. It is always handy to have a good photograph to send by post when endeavouring to dispose of our pets, and by such means fanciers may be spared the trouble and risk of sending their valuable kittens on approval.

Naturally, for unknown cat fanciers it is more difficult to effect sales through advertisement, and in their case it is necessary to offer to send on approval at buyer's risk and cost; and if an application is made from an entire stranger, then the purchase money should be deposited in the hands of some reliable and independent third person. Some fanciers entirely decline to send their cats on approval, and then it is very requisite to enter fully into particulars, and, if possible, to send a photograph. It is best to give the faults and failings as well as the good points, so that disappointment and disagreement may not follow between the purchaser and seller. Buyers should endeavour to learn something about the person from whom they purchase their cats; and it as well to ask not only for age and full pedigree, but whether the cat has been exhibited, and if it has taken any honours, and at which shows. It sometimes happens that valuable animals may be picked up for low prices at shows; but there is always a risk, and this is especially the case _ with young kittens, who more easily contract any disease. In buying a cat or kitten it is always advisable to make inquiries as to the way in which it has been fed, so as to continue the same regimen for at least a few days.

The pedigree of a cat or kitten should be sent at the time of purchase, and it is much easier to fill this in on a properly drawn out form, and certainly it is pleasanter to receive the particulars thus intelligently written out. I give a copy of the forms I drew out for the use of blue Persian members, but these can, of course, be used for cats of any breed.

Here let me quote from an article in that excellent American paper, The Cat Journal, headed "Unreasonable Buyers." The writer says:- "One of the most difficult things with which the cat seller has to contend is the unreasonable buyer. There are buyers who, finding a cat to suit them, pay the price and are satisfied. There is, however, another class that it is best to let alone. They are never satisfied, and blame the seller for everything that happens either on the road or after the kitten is received, and many of them also think if they are sharp they will be able to buy a $100 kitten for $10 or S15, and when they get such a kitten and they discover that it is not worth $100, they are disgusted, and have a lot to say about unfair dealing, etc. If a kitten that has been a pet is taken from its surroundings, and sent on a long journey, the rattle and the unusual conditions of such a trip places her in a state of nervous terror, so that she very rarely shows off to good advantage in her new home. The purchaser, if a true cat lover, will appreciate all the trouble of poor little pussy, and give her the tenderest treatment and coax her to make the best of her new surroundings.

It is a very rare thing for a kitten to come from the box after a long journey looking just as the new owner expected. Tired, homesick, and frightened, she will not eat, and is altogether a pitiable looking object. It is always advisable to put a new arrival in a room by herself, with a comfortable bed and conveniences, entirely away from the rest of the cats and kittens, and allow her to become acquainted with the members of the family gradually. Do not allow other cats to come bothering around till the new member of the family is entirely acquainted with its surroundings. Especially be very cautious in introducing two male cats.

"Sellers must be very cautious in sending out their stock, and buyers must not expect too much. Give the new member of the family a little time to know things before you write your letter of complaint. Be sure you are not expecting too much for the price you paid."

The question has often been asked, "Can cats be made to pay?" and, naturally, novices in the fancy wish to know the best way in which to make a good start.

Here I would say how much may be done by well-known and influential members of any fancy if they will give themselves a little trouble in helping the novice, who, after all, is the backbone, so to speak, of every fancy, and hence it is very essential that beginners should start on the right lines and with reliable, and therefore profitable, stock. Speaking from experience in the cat fancy, I can say that several persons have come into the ranks and gone out of it again, in many cases through sheer disgust because of the deceptions practised, and of which they, as novices, have been made the victims. I hold that if beginners are to be retained as members of a fancy, they should be treated kindly and liberally by the experienced fancier, especially when it is a question of purchasing stock. It is much to be lamented that novices are frequently treated in a reverse manner, and fanciers (so-called) seize upon an opportunity of getting rid of superfluous and often inferior specimens to those who are unable to discover good from bad in the cats offered to them.

At the same time, it is a pleasing fact that there are many true fanciers in the feline world who, having made their names as breeders, prize-winners, and perhaps judges, put themselves out to give valuable advice, and often spare no pains in endeavouring to obtain good stock for the novice at reasonable prices.

Another question often asked is, "Does showing pay?" In answer to this query, I give an extract from the pen of the clever weekly correspondent of Fur and Feather, "Zaida," who says: - "To those who keep their cats for pleasure, who really love them and can afford to despise the small 'takings' available, keep your cats at home and do not show. Expense does not count with this class of exhibitor, but risk to the welfare of their best-beloved pussies undoubtedly does. To those who are trying to make money by their cats, we would urge: harden your hearts, learn how to show, where to show, and when to show; and recognise the expense, risk, and trouble involved as part of the unavoidable outlay which is to bring in a certain return. Undoubtedly, a show is a heavy expense, and will always leave you out of pocket. Even if you conduct it on the most selfish terms - the 'give-nothing' and 'take-all-you-can' system - you will be exceptionally lucky if you clear your expenses. You cannot expect to sell your kittens well if you do not exhibit.

"If you possess a stud cat, he must be seen and known before you can hope to have a demand for his services. Your own eye must be continually trained by comparison of your own stock with the prize specimens of others. In short, if you wish to make money, you must spend money. On the other hand, never exhibit except at first-rate shows, and never be tempted to show an animal out of condition. If you can afford to buy animals already well known in the show world, cats of renown, for whose offspring there will always be a keen demand, you may possibly abstain from exhibition. This plan, however, involves a very large initial outlay. Then, again, the happy people who have won their laurels, whose names are always associated with first-rate animals of a particular breed, they, indeed, can afford to rest in peace, and show no more. Other people will buy their kittens, and do their exhibiting for them, and also do that mournful nursing and burying that too often follows a show. Undoubtedly, it is fascinating to show successfully; but, on the whole, we think the most enjoyable shows are those where one goes to look at other people's exhibits and leave one's own at home." A few words as to the stud fees and arrangements for visiting queens will not here be out of place.

The usual fee for the services of a stud cat is fixed at 1 1s., but some fanciers are willing to accept less, especially if their cat is not a well-known prize-winner. A higher charge is often made if the railway journey has to be followed by a cab fare, or if the owner, having a valuable stud cat, does not wish to encourage many visitors. The carriage of the queen should always be defrayed by the sender, and if a telegram and return insurance is desired, then these sums expended should be refunded to the owner of the stud cat. It is desirable to announce the despatch or intended despatch of a queen, as it may not be convenient to receive her. The usual time to keep a visitor is from three to six days, and then the owner of the stud cat should give notice of the return. In case the first visit proves unsuccessful a second visit is usually allowed by courtesy without any extra payment, but this must not be taken as a matter of course, and it is best for the owner of the queen to ask permission to send again. If through a mistake in the time of sending a cat apparently fails to mate during two visits, it can only be by the kindness of the stud cat's owner that a third visit is permitted for the one fee.

If, however, the queen has been known to have mated on each occasion, a third visit gratis cannot be expected even if there is no result. A fee once paid for a visit is not returnable. It is sometimes a matter of arrangement between fanciers to have the choice of a kitten instead of the mating fee, but this transaction does not commend itself unless the parties are on very friendly terms. A clear understanding should be arrived at on all occasions between the sender and the receiver, and thus any after unpleasantness may be avoided. It is catty etiquette to forward the fee when sending the queen or, at latest, immediately on her return. A label for the return journey should be fixed inside the lid of the hamper. This is a saving of trouble to the owner of the stud, and is also a means of identification.

In selecting a young kitten for purchase out of a litter, take note of the size of head and width between the ears. In self-coloured kits look out for white spots, and avoid those with long tails. Fanciers should strive to resist the temptation of buying too many cats and kittens of different breeds. To the novice and the beginner I would say, Buy two or three good specimens, carefully selected; these will be worth quantities of doubtful ones, which, as a matter of fact, have, as a rule, no value at all. Seize every opportunity which comes across your path of seeing and examining well-bred, prize-winning cats, and attending shows. The cleverest fancier and most successful breeder can improve himself by observation and education.

Do not be offended if you are told by those who have had a larger and longer experience in the fancy, and who are really experts, that you have made a mistake in any purchase. If you resent their criticisms, you may, and probably will, accumulate much rubbish as a monument of your own conceit. A great deal may be learnt from books, but more from observation. Above all, do not, when you have acquired some knowledge, form too high an estimate of your own powers and of your own cats; a true fancier is always ready - nay, anxious - to learn, well recognising that ignorance alone claims to be omniscient.

Local Cat Shows

As an example of the ever-increasing interest shown in cat sections at local shows, the following account, kindly supplied to me by Mr. F. W. Western, the secretary, will be of interest: "Sandy Show has long since outgrown in size and importance the title it bears, viz. 'The Exhibition of the Sandy and District Floral and Horticultural Society.' The first schedule, issued in 1869, catered for plants, flowers, fruit, vegetables, poultry, and cage birds. In 1880 pigeons were introduced, and in 1883 rabbits were added. Later, in 1899, dogs put in an appearance with four classes. It was not, however, until 1894 that our friend 'pussy,' in whom we are especially interested, made her debut at Sandy, and as we look at the schedule for that year we are driven to the conclusion that none but a philosopher could have drawn up such a classification for our pets. The trouble which we now frequently experience at a cat show of being 'wrong classed' could not well arise on that happy day in August 1894, when eight catteries were represented in the one and only class, viz. 'Any variety, any age, male or female.' But if our pets made a modest bow to the public in that year, they have lived to be proud of their position. In the succeeding year three classes were provided, bringing together 31 cats.

From this date the cat classes have shown substantial improvement. The year 1900 found Sandy with five classes and 41 entries. By this time the cat fancy throughout the country had come into prominence; clubs had been established, and specialist societies were springing into existence. With a leap forward the cat section of the 1901 show numbered 20 classes. This was far too bold a bid for popularity to be lightly esteemed. The support was obtained of the Cat Club, the Silver Society (to-day the Silver and Smoke Persian Cat Society), the Short-haired Cat Society, and the Siamese Club.

"Generous aid was given by many individual lovers of cats, and fifty special prizes, in addition to the class prize money, were offered. The show was attended with success, both as regards the number (about 150) and the quality of the exhibits. From a public point of view, moreover, the result was most gratifying.

"The cat tent was crowded throughout the day, and this section was acknowledged on every hand to have been one of the best features of the show.

"With such success attending their first earnest venture in cats, it is not surprising to find that the committee resolved still further to increase the classification. In August 1902, therefore, 32 classes were arranged, of which 21 were guaranteed. Special prizes numbered 85, and the cat section had the support of all the specialist societies.

"With such attractions the splendid entry of 1901 was eclipsed, and at the very worst time of the year for cats as many as 266 entries were made. Long-haired cats were decidedly well represented, and in the blue kitten class 21 specimens were penned. In the short-haired classes some noted winners appeared.

"Ring classes were provided, and proved a great attraction to the public. The local classes were proof that Mrs. F. W. Western has succeeded in interesting some of her friends in the hobby, and the specimens to which the honours fell would have done well in the keenest competition."

Mention was made in the list of clubs on a previous page of the Northern Counties Cat Club, which was founded in 1900. The committee decided on holding a one-day kitten show in September of that year, and the judges selected were Miss D. Champion, Miss Frances Simpson, Mr. T. B. Mason, and Mr. L. P. Astley. Entries came up well, numbering 154, and this novel undertaking was in every way a great success. The Northern Counties Cat Club kitten show is now an annual fixture, and on October 1st of 1902 a really splendid exhibition of promising youngsters was held at Bellevue, Manchester. Twenty-two classes were arranged, and over fifty specials offered. Entries were twenty in excess of the previous year, and would have been still higher in number had not sickness prevented several well-known silver breeders from exhibiting. The litter class numbered 17, and these, with the splendid blue classes, were the chief glory of the show. There were 18 pairs of blue kittens and 40 entries in single blue kittens, and it was most noticeable how few of these specimens failed in eyes.

There were rows of gleaming orange orbs that rejoiced the heart of the Hon. Sec. of the Blue Persian Cat Society.

The kitten show of 1902 may fairly be classed as another success for the Northern Club.

A similar show for cats and kittens is held annually in December in Manchester by this enterprising club. I am indebted to Mrs. G. H. Walker for the group of officials and members of the Northern Club. The photo was taken by Mrs. Walker at the Manchester kitten show of 1902.

In connection with the dog show of the Ladies' Kennel Association, an exhibition of cats is now held annually at Harrogate under the rules and patronage of the National Cat Club. The first venture in this popular and fashionable water resort was made by Mrs. Stennard Robinson in 1901, when entries came in splendidly; but rain descended most disastrously, and seriously interfered with the success of the show and the attendance of visitors. In 1902 the weather proved most favourable, but the cat section suffered considerably as regards numbers of exhibits in consequence of the date clashing with that of the Sandy Show, held also on August 28th. On this occasion the Hon. Mrs. McLaren Morrison was advertised as judge, but owing to ill-health her place was taken by Mrs. Stennard Robinson, and Mr. J. B. Townend, of the National Cat Club, undertook the management. The Midland Counties Cat Club held its first show in Birmingham. The classification was on a liberal scale, and several of the classes were guaranteed.

Several of the specialist clubs supported this first venture of the Midland Counties Cat Club. A new departure in the matter of shows may shortly be attempted, and a scheme has been submitted to the cat world by the Hon. Sec. of the Silver and Smoke Persian Cat Society, that the specialist societies should combine and hold a show in the West of England. Each society is to be asked to bear a part in the expenses, and secretaries will probably hold a meeting to consider the best ways and means of carrying out such an undertaking. It is not intended that such a show should be in any opposition to those held by the parent clubs, and registration in either of these clubs will be enforced; but, to quote the words of a well-known fancier and supporter of the specialist societies, "It is simply a way of escape from the enforced division of interests, and a means for permitting the cats of all club persuasions to meet on equal ground. As matters now stand, open competition is a thing of the past, and the sooner it becomes a possibility again the better for the cat fancy.

On this ground, therefore, we think all unbiassed minds will accept with pleasure the scheme submitted to the public by the secretary of the S. S. P. C. S." The Scottish Cat Club, which has Lady Marcus Beresford for its President, holds its annual show during the winter months, and its exhibition follows closely on that of the Midland Counties.

Under the list of winter shows mention may be made of the following, where, in connection with other live stock, cats play a more or less important part: - Peterborough, Sheffield, Hounslow, Kendal, Bedford,

Caterham, Hinckley, Hamilton, Don-caster, Yarmouth, Stratford-on-Avon, Bristol, Haverfordwest, Stockton. Cheltenham, Taunton, Epsom, Hexham, Lark hall, Stirling.

In this list I have made no mention of the great championship show of the National Cat Club, held annually at the Crystal Palace in October, to which the whole of cat creation looks forward with awe and longing. This is one of the greatest events in the cat world, and is always eagerly looked forward to by fanciers in all parts of the British Isles. In the schedule for the exhibition in 1902 no fewer than 216 special prizes were offered. Many of these were given by the following specialist clubs, who generously supported this annual fixture:- The Blue Persian Cat Society, the Silver and Smoke Persian Cat Society, the Chinchilla Cat Club, the Orange, Cream and Tortoiseshell Society, the Siamese Cat Club, the Manx Cat Club, and the British Cat Club.

The names of the judges acting on this occasion were as follow: - Mrs. Greenwood, Miss Forestier Walker, Miss G. Jay, Miss Cochran, Miss F. Simpson, Mr. Louis Wain, Mr. Sam Woodiwiss, Mr. C. A. House, and Mr. Jung.

In our latter-day shows the work of the judges is considerably augmented by the numerous specials that have to be awarded amongst the winners in the well-filled classes, and as regards the Crystal Palace show of 1902, the patience and skill of the judges making these awards were taxed to the uttermost.

The Cat Club's show has been held for three years in succession at St. Stephen's Hall,

Westminster Aquarium, about the beginning of January, and it is at this season that the really finest exhibition of Persian cats is witnessed, for at no other time are long-haired cats in such grand coat and good condition as in the middle of winter.

It is no wonder, therefore, with so many shows held throughout the length and breadth of the land, that the cult of the cat is becoming more and more widely known and appreciated, and that the fancy is really assuming such proportions that there can be no doubt of its permanent position amongst us.

CHAPTER VI. THE "POINTS" OF A CAT

BEFORE entering upon the distinctive breeds of cats, of which I propose to treat fully in the ensuing chapters, I would draw attention to the accompanying diagram of a cat, and will proceed to point out the general contour of the animal, whether long or short haired.

Having given a table of reference, I will take the points of the cat as arranged in order: No. I, Ears: These should be small, and rounded at the tops, carried somewhat forward, and not wide open at the base. In the Persian varieties especially the inner surface should be hidden by a growth of fur extending from the face, termed ear tufts. It is a beauty in the cat to have the ears set well apart, giving an appearance of greater width to the head. The outer portion of the ears should be evenly covered with soft, short, downy fur.

No. 2, Eyes: These ought to be round, large, and full. A small, beady eye is a great disfigurement in a cat. The eyes should be set straight in the head, not slanting like those of a Chinese. In the Persian varieties a fringe of overhanging fur greatly improves and softens the expression. The colour varies in different breeds, but in green, orange, or blue eyes, purity and depth of colour should prevail. Very often an orange eye is spoilt by an inner rim of green, and a blue eye is weakened by a paler shade of blue, giving the appearance of an opal.

No. 3, Skull: Should be broad, with width between the eyes and ears.

No. 4, Cheeks: Well developed.

No. 5, Face and nose: These should be short; if the contrary, a "snipey" appearance is given to the cat, which quite spoils the expression.

No. 6, Chest: Should be full and bread.

No. 7, Neck: Short and full.

Nos. 8 and 9, Shoulder and fore arm: These call for no special remarks; but in male cats especially firm and massive limbs are most desirable.

No. 10, Paw: A large, broad paw, with short but not stumpy feet. In the Persian varieties the tufts are an additional beauty.

Nos. 11 and 12. Body and back: There is a diversity of opinion as to whether a cat should be long in the body or of cobby build. I incline to the latter as regards beauty of form, but I am of opinion that female cats with long bodies are the best breeders. All cats should be low in the legs.

No. 13, Tail or brush: In both breeds this should be short rather than long, and in the Persian varieties broad and spreading. The tail should be carried almost on a level with the body, and slightly curving upwards towards the end. A too-tapering tail is a defect.

Nos. 14, 15, and 16 call for no further remark beyond the desirability of symmetry in form.

The foregoing list of points in a cat may be of some service to novices in the fancy, but it is necessary to add that, as in all animals, condition is a very important factor. A cat may be perfect in all points, and yet if in either the long- or short-haired varieties the coat lacks softness of texture, and in Persians the fur is matted or draggled, such specimens cannot expect to find favour in the eyes of a critical judge, or even an ordinary lover of cats. In short-haired breeds there is an unmistakable gloss on the coat of a cat that is in good health. A spikey appearance of the fur always denotes poor condition, and greatly detracts from the charms and chances of our pets or show cats. A great deal depends in keen competition upon condition. It turns the scale in a vast majority of instances. Therefore, as great attention should be paid to this point as to those set forth in the list I have given.

A small yet distinctive feature in a cat is the whiskers, and these vary in colour, according to the breed. They should be strong and yet sensitive, and curving slightly inwards. It is supposed to be a sign of strength if a cat's whiskers attain a great length.

CHAPTER VII. LONG-HAIRED OR PERSIAN CATS

IN classing all long-haired cats as Persians I may be wrong, but the distinctions, apparently with hardly any difference, between Angoras and Persians are of so fine a nature that I must be pardoned if I ignore the class of cat commonly called Angora, which seems gradually to have disappeared from our midst. Certainly, at our large shows there is no special classification given for Angoras, and in response to many inquiries from animal fanciers I have never been able to obtain any definite information as to the difference between a Persian and an Angora cat. Mr. Harrison Weir, in his book on cats, states that the Angora differs somewhat from the Persian in that the head is rather smaller and ears larger, fur more silky with a tendency to woolliness.

It is, however, my intention to confine my division of cats to long-haired or Persian cats, and short-haired or English and foreign cats. In both these breeds there are "self-coloured," "broken-coloured," and "any other coloured" varieties.

In the foregoing references to the diagram of the cat I have touched upon the points of the animal, which are practically the same as regards the form of body and limb in both long-and short-haired breeds of cats.

In comparing the dispositions of these two breeds, I think it is generally allowed that Persian cats are not so amiable, or so reliable in their temper, as the short-haired varieties. I am inclined to think, however, that they are more intelligent, and have a greater instinctive desire to make themselves at home in their surroundings. They are apparently as keen hunters of prey as the short-haired cats. When we come to the question of stamina and general health, I certainly think the Persian must, so to speak, "go to the wall."

It is a common belief that, in human beings, if the hair grows long and thick it is a sign of great strength and a good constitution; but as regards cats the longer the coat the weaker the animal. This I have specially noticed in Persian kittens, and have remarked that little mites with unusually long fur are the most difficult to rear, and suffer from extreme delicacy. Perhaps in-breeding amongst Persian varieties has been more carried on than with the short-haired breeds, which are allowed a greater freedom of choice, and therefore are the result of natural selection.

Apart from the question of health and strength, Persian cats require a great deal more care and attention on account of the long fur. In the spring Persian cats begin to shed their coats, and this process continues through the summer months, and it is not till about October that the new fur begins to grow again. Persian cats may be considered in their finest condition during the months of December and January. It is a wise provision of Nature that during the coldest months these somewhat delicate cats should have their warmest clothing. It has often been a matter of surprise that cat shows should ever be held in the summer, when long-haired pussies present a most unkempt and moth-eaten appearance. In this condition they are not likely to win converts to the cult of the cat; but from an educational point of view these unclothed specimens give the judge an opportunity of displaying his ability, for it needs a really capable judge, with experience, knowledge, and good common-sense, to allow for absence of coat, and to place the awards accordingly.

Under summer skies shape and bone will have their innings, whereas a grand winter coat may hide a multitude of sins that even the eagle eye of the most astute judge may fail to discover.

At the same time, for a breed of cats called "long-haired" the coat ought to demand the greatest consideration; for what is the good of the most perfect shape in a Persian cat, if it is exhibited out of coat and almost like an English short-hair in a class set apart for long-haired specimens? No doubt many breeders of Persians have been led through disappointment to join the ranks of short-hair breeders, for it is indeed very vexatious and tantalising, after having entered a grand-coated cat a month before a show, to find your precious pet persistently scratching out her fluffy frill and shedding the chief glory of her breed before the eventful day when you had hoped to reap golden awards.

As regards Persian kittens, the change of coat takes place between the ages of three and six months. In some cases long-haired kittens will -cast their fur to such an extent as to present the appearance of an uneven short-haired specimen, whereas in others the shedding process is so gradual that the transition stage from a kitten to a cat is hardly more discernible in the long- than in the short-haired breeds. Any severe illness may cause the fur to come out of Persian cats at any season of the year, and the growth of the new coat will be retarded by poor condition of the skin. In both long- and short-haired cats, as in other animals, the teeth are the chief guide in deciding the age, and a kitten may be said to become a cat after six months, when the adult dental process is completed, and the second set of teeth has become established. And here I would quote from Mr. John Jennings' interesting book on "Domestic or Fancy Cats" in support of. my twofold classification: "Of the many varieties or breeds of the cat with which we are now familiar, it must be remembered that, however crossed, selected, re-crossed, domesticated, or what not, we have but two breeds on which the superstructure of what is known to-day as the 'classification of varieties' has been reared - viz. the long-hair or Eastern cat, and the short-hair or European. The term 'breed' is even here used advisedly, for whatever the outer covering or coat, colour, or length of fur, the contour of each and all is practically the same.

Nor is this confined to mere outline. Take the skull, for example, which measured in the usual manner with shot, making due allowance for difference in size, is not only similar in the different varieties of either long- or short-hair, but even in the wild cat the anatomy is similar, the slight variation being in a great measure explained by its different conditions of life and diet, and is in unison with the fact of how even the ordinary domestic cat will undergo a change in taking up a semi-wild, outdoor existence."

At the present time there is no doubt that long-haired cats are the more popular, and, judging by the entries at our large shows, the numbers may be taken as four to one. A slight reaction has set in since short-haired societies have been formed, but the fascination for fluffy pets and pretty pussies will, I think, always predominate, for the less attractive points of the English domestic cat do not appeal so strongly to the heart and the eye of the general public.

It may be remarked by the readers of "The Book of the Cat" that very few pictures of short-haired cats are reproduced; and it is just because the long-haired pussies are so much more attractive that they are brought into greater prominence in this work. It is more difficult to obtain nice photographs of short-haired cats, probably because the owners of these less expensive pets do not think it is worth while to spend their money or to go to any trouble over having a good picture taken. As regards the coloured plates appearing in this work, care has been taken to instruct the artists to bring out as prominently as possible the special points of the cats, long- and short-haired. It is the first time that coloured plates of the different kinds of cats have been attempted; and it is hoped that, as types of each breed, these will prove useful to fanciers and instructive to the cat-loving public.

CHAPTER VIII. SOME NOTABLE CATTERIES

BEFORE entering upon a description of the various breeds, it may be interesting to my readers to give a short account, with illustrations (photographs for which have been specially taken for this chapter), of the catteries of some well-known fanciers who have not confined themselves to any special breed or variety.

Lady Decies' catteries, at her pretty summer residence at Birchington-on-Sea, are indeed most perfect in their arrangements, and every detail for the comfort and well-being of the inmates is considered. The stud cats have separate single houses, with good-sized wired-in runs, and luxurious and cosy sleeping

The main cattery is in a sheltered portion of the grounds, and will accommodate a large number of cats. The runs are arranged with boxes, benches, chairs, and ladders, and the sleeping places, built of brick, are most comfortably fitted up. By a system of wooden blinds the strong sea breezes and the bright rays of the summer sun can be regulated. There are side blinds and top blinds. The floors of the spacious catteries are wood, covered with cork carpet, and they are raised about a foot from the ground, so that there is a free current of air passing under the boards, thus securing absolute freedom from any damp.

In the house there are three rooms set apart by Lady Decies for her pussies. In two of these the queen mothers have their families, and the other is used as the cats' kitchen.

The beds for the cats are specially designed by Lady Decies. The walls of the cats' rooms are adorned with pictures by Louis Wain, and there is a display of prize cards won by Lady Decies' famous cats. "Zaida," so well known as the winning silver female, is the privileged occupant of Lady Decies' boudoir, and here the aristocratic little lady makes herself at home on the soft cushions and couches.

The famous " Lord Southampton " is now in the possession of Lady Decies, and resides in one of the up-to-date catteries at Beresford Lodge. He was purchased at a very high price. Since his change of ownership he has not frequently appeared in public, but in the past he was a noted winner. It is, however, as a silver sire that he attained his success and made his name. It is well-nigh impossible to mention his numerous winning children. His name in a pedigree is a safe guarantee for quality and colour.

The two Siamese cats have warm quarters in the stable cottage.

Lady Decies' pets comprise both long- and short-haired cats. Among the latter "Xenophon" is generally considered as the best specimen of a brown tabby, and has a long prize-winning record. A woman and a boy are kept to attend to the wants of these aristocratic animals.

The Bishopsgate cattery may be said to have won a worldwide renown, and those who have been privileged to visit the ideal residence of Lady Marcus Beresford will agree with me that it is impossible to give any idea either by photography or description of the delightful dwelling places set apart for the pussies belonging to this true lover and fancier of the feline race.

There is the cat cottage, where the attendant has her rooms, and where the other apartments are especially fitted up for the cats. Here the Siamese have their quarters, and the sun streams in at the windows, which face due south. Opposite to the cottage, as may be seen in the illustration, are some of the cat houses, and in the centre is the kitchen. The cat attendant stands at the door, and some of the pussies are having their mid-day meal. The celebrated "Blue Boy II." occupies a house, and in the background is a grass run, securely wired in, which is used as a playground for the pussies. In the hot summer weather this is shaded by the lovely spreading beech trees of Windsor Park.

The stud cats' houses are splendidly arranged with sleeping places and nice large runs. The space in the centre in front of these runs is used as an exercise ground for the females and kittens. The garden-house cattery is, indeed, an ideal one, being a bower of roses in the summer-time, and in winter an ivy-clad retreat. This house is divided into two apartments, and these are generally used for the queen mothers and their families. On the shelves along the windows the pussies sit and sun themselves.

Truly the lives of inmates of the Bishops-gate catteries are spent in peace and plenty, and when their little span of life is over they find a resting place under the shadow of the grand old trees, and a little white tombstone with a loving inscription marks the spot of pussy's last long sleep.

Lady Marcus Beresford has had almost every breed of cat under the sun at her catteries, but of recent years she has specially taken up silvers, blues, and Siamese, and a grand specimen of each of these varieties is in the stud at Bishopsgate. Amongst some of the celebrated cats owned by Lady Marcus Beresford I may mention "Lifeguard," a grand orange of massive build; "Tachin" and "Cambodia," two imported Siamese with perfect points; "Cora," a tortoiseshell-and-white of great beauty, and "Kismet," a brown tabby of exquisite shape, both imported; and "Cossy," a smoke that has found a home in America. At the present time three of the most notable inmates of the Bishopsgate cattery, representing blues, silvers, and Siamese, are "Blue Boy II.," "Beetle, " and "King of Siam."

One of the largest catteries in Scotland, where the fancy grows pace, is owned by Mrs. Mackenzie Stewart, of Seagate House. Irvine. Mrs. Stewart has possessed several notable cats of different breeds. Her blue stud cat "Ronald" has made himself a name in the south of England as well as in the north. Mrs. Stewart has had silvers, creams, brown tabbies, and is now the owner of the celebrated black. stud cat "Dick Fawe," who has sired many winning kittens. The severe weather of this part of Scotland seems to suit these Persian cats, for a healthier, hardier set of pussies one could not wish to see than those disporting themselves in the pleasantly situated catteries of Seagate House. Mrs. Mackenzie Stewart is a most enthusiastic fancier, and often takes the long journey down South to bring her pets to the London shows. She has acted as judge in Scotland and England, and a contingent from the Seagate cattery is generally to be seen and admired at most of our large shows.

To old fanciers and exhibitors the name of Mrs. H. Warner is familiar.

It was as Mrs. Warner, in 1889, that the Hon. Mrs. McLaren Morrison first exhibited a black cat called "Imp" at the Crystal Palace Show; and as black cats are said to bring luck, this puss took a first, and, thus encouraged, his owner commenced her "catty " career. In the following year, I note, by the catalogue, that Mrs. H. Warner had fourteen entries, and amongst these were two imported cats and the celebrated black Persian "Satan, " who departed this life in 1902. As late as 1897 this superb fellow, with glorious orange eyes, won everything he could (in spite of his age) at the Crystal Palace. There remains a worthy son of this worthy sire at the Kepwick cattery, named "Lucifer."

It was in 1890 that Mrs. McLaren Morrison, then Mrs. H. Warner, made her name as an exhibitor of white Persians; for no less than six of this breed put in an appearance, and gained prizes at Sydenham. Mrs. McLaren Morrison writes:

"I have always been lucky with black cats, both long- and short-haired; but I especially love white Persians, and, in fact, at one time I owned a 'white cattery.' I may say I still have some good specimens - namely, 'Muse-fer,' 'Queen of the Pearls,' and 'Lily.' I love the imported cats, and always get them when I can. I have nine now at Kepwick. One of these hails from Patagonia and one from Afghanistan. My cattery at one time was twice again as full as now; but my losses have been great, and I have reduced the numbers so that I may give more attention to the young stock.

"It is only recently I have really gone in for orange Persians, encouraged by the wins of 'Puck' at the Botanical. I love this beautiful variety, but consider the queens of this breed very delicate. I have owned some fine blues at different times, and purchased for 25 a beautiful fellow, bred from 'Beauty Boy,' at the Crystal Palace many years ago; but, alas! he came home only to die. Foremost amongst my blues ranked my late Champion 'Monarch,' who held the Beresford Cup. Of late years I have taken up silvers. My first Chinchilla was Champion 'Nizam,' ancestor of such cats as 'St. Anthony' and 'Ameer.' I bought 'Nizam' at the Crystal Palace in the early days of silvers, and he only took second prize, because, I was assured, he was 'too light' for first. I have a few Russians. I am most devoted to my pussies, and have tried to persevere in breeding good stock in the face of very great difficulties. I do not much care about running the risk of showing, but a true fancier likes to support all well-arranged cat shows. "

Mrs. Collingwood, of Leighton Buzzard, is a most ardent lover of cats, but it is only of recent years that she has been before the public as a fancier and exhibitor. During this time, however, many have been the honours showered on the lucky inmates of the Bossington cattery.

Mrs. Collingwood has great difficulty, so she tells me, in keeping her number of cats down to about thirty ! She likes these to be equally divided between long-and short-haired pussies; so there are all sorts and varieties. Blues have been great favourites, and Mrs. Collingwood is on the Blue Persian Cat Society Committee. "Royal Bobs," a big, massive blue male, has done a lot of winning. He was bred by the Princess Victoria of Schleswig-Holstein. His sister "Jill" also inhabits one of the twelve cat-houses distributed over five acres of the Bossington grounds. These smaller houses are mostly on wheels. The larger houses are kept for females and their families, and sometimes a corner of the hay-loft is set apart for a nursing mother. The male cats have their liberty during the morning, and then the females enjoy their afternoons out. Mrs. Collingwood does not keep a stud cat, but there are neuter pets that have their run about the house, and have their meals in a corner of the dining-room. Mrs. Collingwood intends going in strongly for smokes in the future; and although possessed of extremely good short-haired cats, this ambitious fancier is desirous of breeding a perfect silver tabby and a likewise equally perfect orange tabby. "James" is a beautiful specimen of a silver tabby, and during this year alone has won eight first prizes.

At Altrincham he had the honour of claiming championship and silver medal for the best cat in the show, beating all the longhaired cats that generally carry off this coveted prize; and at the Crystal Palace he was the admired of all admirers, with a number of prize tickets covering his pen. I know many cat-loving people, but I do not think I have ever seen greater devotion shown to the feline race than is displayed at Bossington. Mrs. Collingwood is ever ready to support cat shows by entries, by guaranteeing classes, and by giving handsome prizes. Her cats are always shown in the pink of condition, and it is seldom they appear in the pens unless their devoted mistress is in attendance. Mrs. Collingwood kindly had the accompanying photographs specially taken for this chapter.

Perhaps no name is better known in the cat world than that of Mrs. Herring, of Lestock House, Lee, who has for nearly twenty years been a prominent fancier and breeder of both long- and short-haired cats. Mrs. Herring is a member of the National Cat Club Committee, and also belongs to several of the specialist clubs, and is a member of the Cat Club and the Northern Counties Cat Club. At all the principal shows this enthusiastic lady is a prominent figure, and in the quantity and quality of her exhibits she generally leads the way.

At some of our large shows Mrs. Herring has entered from 25 to 30 cats; and I have known and seen these arrive with their mistress in a large omnibus or van. It is no light undertaking to prepare such a number of pussies for show, and then to convey them carefully to the place of exhibition.

Mrs. Herring started with a short-haired silver tabby called "Chin," and then turned her attention to long-haired brown tabbies; and although every variety of cat, both long- and short-haired, may be said to have existed from time to time in the Lestock catteries, yet it is with tabbies perhaps that Mrs. Herring has chiefly made her name and fame. Champion "Jimmy" was a superb specimen of a well-marked silver tabby, and he carried everything before him in the show pen. He passed away in 1900, and I do not think we shall see his like again. Amongst many celebrities in the feline world which have been born or bred, or have found their habitation at the Lestock cattery, I may mention "King Saul," the noted tortoise-shell torn who still holds a unique position at our shows, and won the Coronation Cup at the Botanical show. "King Alfred," a longhaired silver tabby, and "King David," a massive blue, are also well-known winners of the present day. Mrs. Herring bred some sensational silver tabby long-haired kittens, and two of these - " The Duchess " and

"Princess Lestock" - were exhibited respectively at the Westminster and Crystal Palace shows, and both were speedily claimed at the high catalogue price. "Floriana," a huge, handsome long-haired brown tabby, who formerly belonged to Mrs. Herring, has recently found a home in America. Siamese and Russian cats have not been strangers to this cattery, where sometimes the number of inmates has been over forty! Within the last few years Mrs. Herring has had to reduce her stock, owing to the complaints of neighbours, who showed no sympathy with the feline race, and some excellent, well-arranged cat-houses had to be removed, as they somewhat encroached on a neighbouring garden wall. It must have been a trying time, and the weeding-out process a most difficult one, for such a really warm-hearted and devoted a fancier as Mrs. Herring, whose pussies are all pets, and who personally supervises her cattery at Lestock House.

It is not given to all, particularly in large towns, to have at their disposal such an amount of waste space as their more fortunate brethren of the country. I have therefore asked Mrs. S. F. Clarke, whose cat photographs have been a delight to all our readers, to tell us how she manages in her town residence at Louth. Here are her notes.

Breeding Blue Persians In Limited Space

"The successful breeding of blue Persian cats in a space so limited that a grass run or green trees are things to be desired rather than attained, requires nice judgment and great care. The space at my command for cat keeping and breeding purposes is only a back yard, some 14 yards long by 6 yards wide. This very limited space is further curtailed, on one side, by my husband's laboratory; while the cattery and its covered run cut off another strip at the end, of 7 yards by 2 yards, reducing the ground available for open air exercise and run to a patch about 18 feet by 12 feet, and a flagged portion some 21 feet by 6 feet.

"The space between the front of the laboratory and the flagged path being occupied by a small independent house and covered run, is very useful either for isolation or as a separate home for growing kittens. The boundary wall is supported by 4-foot wire netting supported by 3-foot iron stanchions, thus allowing a free edge at the top of about 12 inches to be bent inwards and left loose. This I find a sufficient safeguard against my own cats getting out or strange cats getting in - a very important matter at all times, but especially so at certain periods, if breeds are to be kept pure and pussy not allowed to make her own arrangements.

"If I were asked for the very best design for building, fitting up, and furnishing a small cattery, I fear I could only answer that requirements differ so in individual cases that it is impossible to draw a hard-and-fast line that will meet all circumstances. Here is a photo of my own (p. 107). It is the outcome of my personal experience, and answers my requirements fairly well. It is a lean-to structure, about 7 yards long by 2 yards wide. The back and one end is formed by the north and west boundary walls, while the east end joins the dwelling-house, thus giving it a south aspect and complete shelter from north and east winds. It is divided into two unequal portions, the smaller (east) portion, 6 feet by 6 feet, forming the cat-house proper; the longer portion is the covered run. The front of the house is built of 1-inch wood, with a lining of wood leaving an air space of about 3 inches between the outer and inner surface of the front and dividing partition. The roof is of corrugated iron, with a ceiling of wood about 4 inches below. This arrangement of double walls and roof secures reasonable warmth in the winter, but not quite sufficient coolness for mothers and kittens during the height of the summer.

So the roof is then covered with a large white sheet hooked to the wall about 12 inches above the roof and carried over a rail in front about the same height, and there securely fastened. This arrangement insures not only a reasonable temperature, but also a never-ending source of exercise and amusement for both cats and kittens, some gambolling above, while others hide beneath the sheet. An ordinary sun blind along the front completes the summer arrangements. The front of the covered run is closed in with inch mesh wire netting from ground to roof, fitted on the inside with removable shutters, 18 inches high, and, above these, removable window-sashes, closing in as desired. These are held in place with turn-buttons, so they are easily removed or replaced in a couple of minutes, a great convenience in wet or changeable weather, and proving very cosy in the winter. The run is fitted with shelves for the cats to lie upon, a table, sleeping boxes, earth pans, two chairs, and an artificial tree covered with cork, which is a source of great pleasure when the cats are confined by bad weather to the run.

The open run consists, as before mentioned, of a space about 18 feet by 12 feet; this is covered with gravel (which in such limited space should be renewed at least once a year), with the exception of a strip some 18 inches wide by 6 feet long on the west side, and two small corners on the east side, reserved for grass. This grass reserve, which is most important for the keeping of Persian cats in good health, is renovated every spring with fresh lawn seed, and should either of the patches suffer unduly from special attentions from the pets, it is wired in so as to protect it until it recovers. By this plan my cats secure a supply of grass all the year round. In the centre of the gravel space I have another artificial tree (see photo), about 8 feet high; it is as great a favourite as the one in the run, and as it is hung with a loose cord, a few ping-pong balls, etc., it is a never-ending source of fun and frolic. To supplement the ground space, I place ladders leading to the tops of the roofs of the outbuildings and cattery, which afford extra space for exercise and a charming, interesting, and envious outlook for the cats into my neighbour's garden.

It is surprising how soon the kittens learn to climb up and enjoy the roofs.

"The sleeping house contains two wired-in runs going round two sides, about 2 feet by 12 feet long, containing nest-box, earth pan, etc. These are very useful for keeping a queen and litter of small kittens in. There are also two smaller wired-in runs, 2 feet by 6 feet, fitted like the larger ones, so that a cat may be shut up at any time if necessary. The queens sleep in the smaller runs in the winter. Beneath the runs a small cupboard is very useful for odds and ends of all kinds.

"In so limited a space cleanliness is of the utmost importance. The house and runs should be swept out, and the earth pans should be changed, washed, and disinfected every day. The question of supplying dust for the pans may prove a source of anxiety to the breeder confined to a limited space. In winter the dwelling-house fires supply about sufficient ashes daily; in summer I am compelled to fall back upon sawdust, which answers the purpose very well, only entailing a little extra litter in the runs and more grooming of the coats. Whatever the difficulty in this direction, it must be overcome and the pans daily changed. The floors and shelves, both in cat-house and covered run, should be washed with hot water containing some disinfectant at least once a week, and the wired-in runs for cats and kittens thoroughly done out with hot Sanitas distemper every time they are required for fresh occupants. All bedding should be changed at least once a week, and as little of it used as possible in summer.

All plates, etc., used for food must be thoroughly washed after each meal.

"In a space such as I have described my cats have to be kept, for they are allowed into the dwelling-house by special invitation only; but they each receive this treat at least once during the day.

"As to the number of queens: two or three are ample where space is so limited. Where the fresh air run is a back yard, blues are the very best of all colours, as with a daily grooming they always look clean and presentable. In a space such as we are considering I would not on any account recommend the keeping of a stud cat. The want of necessary exercise would be cruelty to it; and the very limited surroundings unfair to those who might wish for his services.

"It is of imperative importance that the queens you commence with be of pure blue pedigree; if prize-winners so much the better, as their kittens will sell more readily.

"When mating, be sure that your queen is in perfect health, and do not mate her too young - in my opinion twelve months is young enough, in the interest of mother and family. See that the stud cat chosen be also of the best possible strain. That he be a noted prizewinner is of less importance than that he should be able to produce kittens that will win. He must have size, bone, strength, soundness of colour, length of coat, and good eyes. These are indispensable requirements if good blues are to be produced. He should especially be strong in those points where your queen may be somewhat weak; thus if the queen be deficient in length of coat or frill, or in colour, shape, or boldness of eye, see that the selected stud-cat excels in those points, and so, as far as possible, correct and balance the points required between the parents. One must not expect to find perfection in any one cat. By using care, judgment, and forethought in mating our pets, we shall go a good way towards establishing in our strain the points necessary to build up the perfect blue Persian.

"All my kittens have been born in a Japanese dress basket, with the lid standing on its side and the bottom half thrust into it cradlewise. The outside of the basket proper is trimmed with a flounce, which helps to keep out draughts; over the top is thrown a small cloth table-cover, which covers, at will, the whole or part of the opening, thus making the little one's house a pretty thing to lock at. When any one of my queens is about to have a family I 'flee-flea' her, which I consider most essential for the future comfort of both mother and kittens; then I bring her into the house three or four days before the expected event. For the time being the expectant mother becomes the house cat. I let her find her own bed, which has already been prepared for her, by carefully closing all other places she might be likely otherwise to choose. When her time comes I stay with her during her trouble; but never interfere unless it is absolutely necessary.

"A few encouraging words, and the fact that one is near, seems to give her comfort. If a queen shows much exhaustion, I give a little Brand's Essence with a few drops of brandy in a spoon: but if all goes smoothly I let well alone. There is no need to press food upon the mother; she will not require it until some time after the births are complete. A little warm milk or gruel offered between the births may sometimes prove a comfort; but many queens will not touch it. For about three weeks, that is to say until the little ones creep out of their beds, I keep the queen and her family in the dwelling-house with me, changing her bed every other day. After the first week I make it a rule to handle the kittens at least once a day, and if the queen has more than three to bring up I begin, at two weeks old, feeding them three times a day with a few drops of warm sweetened milk from a spoon, increasing the quantity very gradually as they grow. I never wake the kittens to feed them - sleep is as necessary as food; but always arrange to feed them just after the little ones wake; they are then hungry, and that is the best time to assist and relieve the mother.

It is surprising how soon the kits enjoy being fed and look out for the friendly spoon.

"As soon as the little ones can get out of their bed they must be introduced to a shallow tin filled with ashes or earth. I prefer ashes to sawdust for very little kittens, and I find at a month old they will regularly use it. This early lesson in cleanliness is invaluable, as later on, with reasonable care, they never forget it. When the kittens are from three weeks to a month old I remove them, with the mother (or foster-mother), to their own little run in the cattery, where I visit them three or four times a day. When they grow stronger, and as early as the weather will permit, they are introduced to the open-air run, the sunshine, and the other cats.

"I begin the grooming as early as possible, daily brushing the little things in their bed or on my lap; it improves the fur, and the more they are groomed the sooner they get to like and enjoy it. When grooming kittens two or three months old, I generally have three or four trying to get under the brush at the same time, endeavouring to push the favoured one out of the way. I am strongly of opinion that the frequent handling of kittens does not do them any harm, but does tend to improve their temper and increase their gentleness. When I have callers the kittens are invariably fetched, introduced to, and fondled by the visitors, so that they become not the least afraid of strangers; as a result, when they go to new homes they come out of their basket without, fear, making themselves immediately at home, much to the comfort of themselves and their new owners.

"The best time to dispose of kittens is at about eight weeks old. Breeders with limited space must sell young and quickly, keeping only the one or two of the season they may either wish to show or turn into next year's brood queens. To get overcrowded is to court disease and disappointment, so sell early for the best price you can get; but sell you must, even if the price does not seem anything approaching the true value of the kittens. The first loss will be the known loss - most certainly far less than that involved in the risk of keeping one or two more kittens than your space should accommodate."

CHAPTER IX. BLACK PERSIANS

NEVER have these truly handsome cats received the amount of admiration and attention which they deserve. There are fewer breeders of black Persians than of any other variety, the two most noted fanciers being Dr. Roper and Mr. Robert Little. Both of these gentlemen have owned and exhibited very handsome specimens; Miss Kirkpatrick has also bred some lovely black kittens. The entries in the black classes at our shows are almost invariably the smallest; but as a specialist club for black and white Persians has been started, it is hoped more encouragement will be given to the breeders of these handsome self-coloured cats.

As in the other self-coloured cats, the chief point is absolute uniformity of colour throughout. It is fatal for a black cat to have a brown, rusty tinge; it should be a glossy jet black, betraying no bands or bars in the full light, and having no undercoat of a lighter shade, and, above all, no spot or tuft of white hairs on the throat. This latter is a very common fault amongst black cats, and it is one which takes away enormously from the value of the specimen, for either show or breeding purposes. In some other varieties of Persian cats two, or even three, colours for eyes are permissible; but a really good black cat must have the full round eyes of deep orange, and very attractive are these gleaming orbs, shining forth from their dense black surroundings. When black cats are changing their coats they often present a very rusty appearance, and newly born kittens are sometimes like balls of brown fluff. These, however, frequently grow up the very best-coloured blacks. This breed is very strong and healthy, and often grow into large, massive cats. A tortoiseshell female is a splendid mate for a black male, and some of the most noted blacks have been bred in this way.

Two brown tabbies will generally produce one, if not more, good blacks in a litter.

Black cats have been found very useful to breeders of silver tabbies and smokes for this reason - that these two breeds require to have their markings and colourings intensified. That is, a silver tabby with dark grey markings is not a true type, and a smoke with an upper coat of cinder colour does not represent the true smoke. Therefore the introduction of a black cross is often a great advantage to these breeds. There is certainly not much demand for black kittens, and we never hear of very high prices being asked or given for these, or, indeed, for full-grown cats. But as " every dog has his day, " so, perhaps, there is a good time coming for blacks; and certainly beginners in the fancy might do worse than to provide themselves with a thoroughly good black queen, for, anyhow, in exhibiting the chance of honours is very much greater than when competing in classes in which there are so many entries, as in the case of blues and silvers.

For very obvious reasons black cats are the very best animals for those living in London or near large towns. They can never present a dirty appearance, and, therefore, in this particular they will always score over the whites, creams, and silvers. To keep their coats glossy and bright black cats should be well brushed and groomed. They will repay tor this care and attention. Our American cousins call self-coloured cats "solid," and as applied to blacks this is especially expressive, for a black should not have a suspicion of any other colour than a dense black. If, when the coat is blown apart, a shading of grey or blue is seen it is a great defect. The nose should be black, and the pads of the feet also.

I do not remember having seen or heard of an imported Persian black cat. In an article on imported cats in Our Cats the writer (whose name is not given) says: - "White cats with blue eyes are not often to be obtained from abroad, neither are the blacks warranted to possess the amber eyes voted correct by up-to-date cattists. I know of a black queen straight-frem the land of cats and the palace of the Shah himself; it had the most glorious emerald eyes it is possible to imagine - as different from the ordinary run of green as flaming amber is from faded yellow. This cat, a Persian among Persians, had a coat as black as the proverbial jet - perfectly black throughout - long and straight, of fine, silky texture, but not giving one the impression of massiveness that is such a prominent feature of the type of imported cat. Moderate in size, slightly built, with an expression so foreign that it amounted to weirdness, this cat could with a dash of imagination have been worked up into the incarnation of a spirit, a soothsayer, the veiled beauty of a harem, a witch, snake charmer - what you choose; but always remain something far apart from prosaic England, something tinged with romance and the picturesqueness of the mystical East. This black cat was undoubtedly a typical Persian. "

As there is such a dearth of good black cats in England, it is a pity some enterprising breeder does not try to import a really splendid specimen, which might bring luck to himself and the fancy.

In looking back to the old catalogues of Crystal Palace shows, I find the same scarcity of blacks exhibited as at the present day. In 1886 the black male class is marked "no entry," and in 1889 Mrs. H. Warner (now the Hon. Mrs. McLaren Morrison) makes the sole and only entry of "Imp in the black class. It was in the following year, however, that this same well-known lady fancier exhibited "Satan," a black that was never beaten whilst it lived. It was the most remarkable of unapproachable excellence I can remember - a veritable triton among minnows.

In many of the accounts of our largest shows I remark such paragraphs as these: "Good blacks with orange eyes were conspicuous by their absence." Or again: "The black classes, as usual, were poorly filled." It is, therefore, high time that this beautiful breed should receive more attention at the hands of fanciers, and that not only beginners but those who are well known in the cat world should take up blacks, and, as the expression goes, "run them for all they are worth." At present Dr. Roper's and Mr. R. Little's black Persians have it all their own way. Mrs. Lenty Collins frequently has a look in with her wonderful big-eyed "Forest Beauty," and Mrs. Crowther, in the North, is faithful to this her favourite breed of cats; but we want some more dusky beauties to swell the ranks of black Persians.

As everyone knows, a vast deal of superstition is connected with a black cat. This is what Harrison Weir has to say on the subject: - "It is often said, 'What's in a name?' The object, whatever it is, by any other would be the same; and yet there is much in a name. But this is not the question at issue, which is that of colour. Why should a black cat be thought so widely different from all others by the foolish, unthinking, and ignorant ? Why, simply on account of its colour being black, should it have ascribed to it a numberless variety of bad omens, besides having certain necromantic power? In Germany, for instance, black cats are kept away from children as omens of evil; and if a black cat appealed in the room of one lying ill, it was said to portend death. To meet a black cat in the twilight was held unlucky. In the ' good old times' a black cat was generally the only colour that was favoured by men reported to be wizards, and black cats were said to be the constant companions of witches; and in such horror and detestation were they then held that when the unfortunate creatures were ill-treated, drowned, or even burned, very frequently, we are told, their cats suffered martyrdom at the same time.

It is possible that one of the reasons for such wild, savage superstition may have arisen from the fact of the larger amount of electricity to be found by friction in the coat of the black cat than of any other; experiments prove there is but very little either in that of the white or the red tabby cat. Be this as it may, still the fact remains that, for some reason or other, the black cat is held by the prejudiced ignorant as an animal most foul and detestable, and wonderful stories are related of their actions in the dead of the night during thunderstorms. Yet, as far as I can discover, there appears little difference either of temper or habit in the black cat distinct from that of any other colour, though it is maintained by many even to this day that black cats are far more vicious and spiteful, and of higher courage. and this last I admit. Still, when a black cat is enraged and its coat and tail are well ' set up, ' its form distended, its round, bright, orange eye all aglow with anger, it certainly presents to even the most impartial observer, to say the least of it, a most 'uncanny' appearance.

But, for all this, their admirers are by no means few; and, to my thinking, a jet-black cat, fine and glossy in fur and elegantly formed, certainly has its attractions."

But although black cats are supposed to be harbingers of evil under some conditions, yet in others they are credited with miraculous healing powers. In Cornwall, sore eyes in children are said to be cured by passing the tail of a black cat nine times over the part affected; and in some parts of the country the presence in the house of a black cat is both an antidote and a cure for epilepsy.

1 think that most cat fanciers are inclined to believe in the possible luck that a stray black cat may bring them, and perhaps be more inclined to take in a stranger of this particular breed than one of another colour.

There is an old Scotch proverb that says:

"Whenever the cat o' the house is black,
The lasses o' lovers will have no lack. "

The celebrated "Fawe" strain of black Persians is well known in the fancy. Dr. Roper has sent me some notes on his famous prize-winning cats, together with some useful information regarding the breed with which his name has become associated: "For many years black Persians were a most popular breed; but, like fashions, for the time being other colours, I regret to see, are obtaining more notice from fanciers. For years I plodded away to breed what I considered a perfect black Persian; at last my labours were crowned with success. What can equal a richly coloured, heavily coated, deep orange-eyed black?

"In breeding blacks, like any other colour, it is essential you should procure the best of stock, and be prepared to give a fair sum for such, otherwise you are almost sure to be disappointed in your results, and, maybe, retire as a fancier of this colour and try some other; but you will meet with the same fate if you hold the same views as to expense. A black Persian should be perfect in colour, with absence of white hairs, cobby in shape, short in leg, tail bushy and not too long, eyes large and deep-orange, a good broad head, ears short with tufts and well set apart, short face, coat long and silky.

"Having stated the points, I will now give my experience of breeding.

"In my opinion, it is most important the sire should be a black, and one of his parents a black, whatever colour the queen is. I have had greatest success in breeding from a black sire and a tortoiseshell queen. Through this cross you may get either blacks or tortoise-shells. As an instance I quote 'Johnnie Fawe' (black) and Champion 'Dainty Diana' (tortoiseshell). From these I have bred many-good blacks, amongst them 'Dick Fawe,' 'Lady Victoria,' and other good ones; also good tortoiseshells, three of them having taken championships. Blacks may also be bred from a black and a blue, or two blacks - in this case, cross the sire with one of his progeny, which I have found very successful. I admit there are other ways of breeding blacks, but in my experience the three ways I have suggested have proved to be the most satisfactory.

"In breeding, to be sure of success so far as the eyes are concerned, if possible it is better that both parents should have orange eyes, the deeper the better; but it is most essential the sire should have good orange eyes. Notwithstanding the queen's eyes being light amber, by crossing with a good orange-eyed sire the kittens are very likely to have good-coloured eyes, but not vice versa. As an instance, I once purchased a very handsome black queen, perfect in all points with the exception of the eyes, which were very light amber. I mated her to 'Dick Fawe,' who had the deepest orange eyes I have yet seen in a black; the kittens developed orange eyes. I have mated in the opposite way, and the result has been unsatisfactory so far as the eyes have been concerned, and if breeding for show the colour of the eyes is most important. The late Mr. Welburn, a well-known judge, once said in one of his reviews of blacks at a large show (I think it was the Crystal Palace), 'I scarcely think that eyes alone should carry an award, yet it is always best to uphold the desired properties so hard to obtain.'

"Having bred a litter of black kittens, it is unwise to make up your mind what colour they are going to be until they have attained the age of six months. I remember once giving away a kitten at three months old which I called iron grey and thought would or could never be black. Six months after I saw my friend, who thanked me very much for the lovely black kitten. Two months after seeing him I saw the cat: there were no white hairs, and the colour was a perfect black. This last Richmond show I showed a black kitten, aged seven months; it took a first, a second, and a special. At three months old I thought it was going to be a smoke. It was claimed by the Hon.

Mrs. McLaren Morrison. I have a kitten now, aged three months, perfectly bronze in colour and a grey frill. I have no doubt at seven months old it will be a perfect black. I have given these illustrations in order that -those who are thinking of going in for blacks should not give up all hope of the kittens becoming black until the age I have stated.

"I breed my kittens from January to July, and find they do much better in the catteries, all of mine being separate; and I find Spratt's movable runs most useful. In showing blacks they should be brushed and rubbed with a Selvyt cloth daily one month previously and kept free of matted hair. The application of Brilliantine or American Bay Rum in small quantity brushed on gives a perfect gloss to their coats."

CHAPTER X. WHITE PERSIANS

A GREAT change has taken place of late years in the quantity and quality of these beautiful cats, for whereas formerly blue eyes were considered quite a rarity, now it is seldom we see any yellow-eyed white cats exhibited at our principal shows. The most perfect type of a white Persian is assuredly to be found amongst the imported cats; there is a certain beauty of form and silkiness of fur which is not possessed by the specimens bred in this country. They are also generally distinguished by unusually long coats, round heads, tiny ears, and wonderful toe tufts.

One of the most lovely white imported cats was exhibited by Lady Marcus Beresford at the Westminster Cat Club Show in 1900. The best judges declared that there was not a fault to find with "Nourmahal," but her career was a short one. These imported cats are often of a rather savage disposition, and, although they can be sweet-tempered enough with human beings, they are extremely fiery with their fellows. There are two points peculiar to white cats - they are frequently stone deaf, and they very often have odd-coloured eyes. Certainly the deafness is a drawback, and in selecting a white cat care should be taken to ascertain if the specimen is possessed of sound hearing. Needless to say, there are many ways of arriving at the solution of what is really a mysterious dispensation of Providence, for why should one particular breed of the feline race be so constantly minus this useful sense? Then, again, as regards the quaint arrangement of different-coloured eyes. One might not be so surprised if the eyes of white cats were sometimes pink, for their noses are pink, and the cushions of their feet, and, as in human beings, we might expect to have albinos amongst cats, namely white with pink eyes; but Harrison Weir states he has never seen pinkeyed whites, although it has been asserted that they exist.

This peculiarity, however, of odd eyes seems only to be found in white cats, the two colours being blue and yellow. Occasionally white cats have wonderful sea-green eyes; and, although these are decidedly very uncommon, no colour is so completely in accord with the purity of the coat as eyes of heavenly blue. The tone should be not so much of a sapphire as of the deep forget-me-not blue. One of the drawbacks to white Persians is the difficulty of keeping them in spotlessly clean condition. This is absolutely impossible if they are living in or near a town, and certainly a white cat soiled is a white cat spoiled.

As regards the mating of blue-eyed white cats, I have been told by experienced breeders of this variety that kittens with blue eyes are just as frequently bred from odd-eyed parents, or, at least, when one of the parents has different-coloured eyes. It is easy to tell whether the baby blue eyes are likely to retain their colour or turn yellow. If at about three weeks or a month old the blue becomes tinted with green, then surely but sadly may we make up our minds that these kittens have not a distinguished career before them, for they will see and be seen with yellow eyes. It is a pity to try mating white cats with any other variety, as broken - coloured cats will probably be the result. It frequently happens that white kittens, when quite young, have smudges of grey on their heads; these gradually disappear. In America white cats seem prime favourites, and the demand exceeds the supply for importation of white Persians with blue eyes. At the last Beres-ford Cat Club Show the entries in the white classes were very large. The classification included and provided for golden- and blue-eyed whites, and these were subdivided according to sex, and all the classes were well filled.

Mrs. Clinton Locke's "Lord Gwynne" is a noted white stud cat on the other side of the water, as is also Mrs. Colbourn's "Paris."

The devotees of the white cat in our own country are not many in number. I may mention Mrs. Finnie Young and Miss Hunt, who are perhaps the most successful breeders of whites in Scotland; and in the south we have Mrs. Pettit, whose tribe of blue-eyed whites I had recently the pleasure of seeing. No more lovely specimens could be imagined, and I counted more than a dozen long-coated, full-grown, bonnie blue-eyed beauties, walking about in the woods surrounding Mrs. Pettit's dwelling-place near St. Leonards - on - Sea. The illustration shows Mrs. Pettit surrounded by eight of her pretty white pussies. Mrs. Westlake, Mrs, Nott, Miss White Atkins, and Miss Kerswill are all successful and enthusiastic breeders of white Persians.

Several well-known fanciers keep one white cat amongst their flock. I may mention the Hon. Mrs. McLaren Morrison, the owner of "Musafer," a famous imported puss, and Lad}' Decies, the former possessor of "Powder Puff," who has recently been presented to H. H. Princess Victoria of Schleswig-Holstein. There is always a keen demand for white kittens, either as pretty pets or, if with correct-coloured eyes, for breeding purposes, and, doubtless, when more encouragement is given to this beautiful variety, there will be an increase of fanciers of the white cat, whose praises have been sung in fairy tales, nursery rhymes, and by novelists who have a weakness for describing interiors with a beautiful white Persian cat reclining on the hearthrug.

I am indebted for the following notes on white Persians to Miss M. Hunt, whose beautiful white cat "Crystal" appeared on an earlier page, and by an unfortunate mistake was stated to be the property of Mrs. Finnie Young: "The blue-eyed white Persian is, I consider, one of the most interesting to breed, and, in my experience, no more delicate or difficult to rear than any other Persian.

"I have had them now for nearly four years, and, I think I may say, with a good deal of success. I bought 'Crystal' in 1898, when four months old, and she certainly has been a good investment. Out of the sixteen white kittens she has had, ten of them have been blue-eyed.

"The very best kitten I owned was never exhibited; he went to Mrs. Champion, who considered him the best and healthiest kitten for his age she had ever seen. Unfortunately, he died suddenly shortly after she had him. He was by Champion 'White Friar' ex 'Crystal,' and was one of the same litter as 'Jovial Monk, ' which did so much winning for Miss Ward, who purchased him from me at the Crystal Palace, where he took first. 'Crystal' herself has only once been beaten by a white cat, and that had not even blue eyes; but she was in splendid coat, and 'Crystal' was quite put of coat. Most judges are agreed, I think, that 'Crystal' is the best blue-eyed white female in the country.

"The colour of the eyes of white kits can be told much earlier than in any other colour; some I can tell as soon as they are open, others I am not quite sure of till they are about a fortnight old. The eyes are generally bright blue from the beginning, without a shade of kitten grey in them. I do not think that both parents having blue eyes makes much difference to the number of blue-eyed kits in the litter. If one parent is blue-eyed and the other odd-eyed the result is often just as good. I know of a green-eyed queen which had a litter of three by Champion 'White Friar' - all were blue-eyed.

"As to deafness, I cannot account for it at all, as it often appears, though both parents have perfect hearing.

"Since Mrs. Finnie Young and I purchased 'White Friar' in 1900, whites have become much more plentiful in Scotland, and the competition is now very keen indeed up North. 'White Friar' has had a very successful career since he came into our hands, both as sire and on the show bench, and can still hold his own against all comers. He has won sixteen first prizes since 1900, besides championships and numerous specials. "

Mrs. Champion, whose name is well known in "catty" circles, and who has now left these shores for America, did a great deal to establish a thoroughly good strain of white blue-eyed Persians. Her celebrated "White Friar" (now in the possession of Mrs. Finnie Young and Miss Hunt) is justly considered the finest male specimen in the fancy. Certainly he could only have been beaten by his son "White Tsar," bred by Mrs. Champion from her "White Witch." This cat, which assuredly would have had a notable career, was sold by Mrs. Champion for 20 to Mrs. Colbourn, in America. He arrived in poor condition and died shortly afterwards. I remember seeing an absolutely perfect white Persian kitten at Mrs. Champion's. It was by "White Friar" ex "Crystal." He had startling deep blue eyes, tiny ears, and broad, round head, and at nine weeks old his coat measured nearly three inches across. Alas ! though healthy and strong, this proved too perfect a specimen for this world, and "Crystal Friar" succumbed to the epidemic of gastritis then raging amongst our feline pets.

Referring back to celebrated white Persian cats of the past, I well recollect the marvellous size and splendid coat of Mrs. Lee's "Masher. " who took the cat world by storm when exhibited at the Crystal Palace in 1890. This enthusiastic fancier paid 21 for "Masher," whose show career was shortened by an accident. This cat was remarkable in those days, if only for his grand blue eyes.

The well-known breeder and judge Mr. A. A. Clarke, whose name is more closely connected with blue Persians, once owned a famous female called "Miss Whitey." I remember that this really remarkable cat was exhibited in 1887 at the Crystal Palace, and again in the following year, when at four years old she took first prize and silver medal in a strong class of nine females. It seems to me that these cats, as I recollect them, appeared half as large again as the present-day champion winning whites; but whether this was in consequence of more profuse coat or a generally bigger build of animal I cannot at this distance of time pretend to determine.

Amongst the well-known prize-winners and stud white Persian cats of the present day I may mention Miss White Atkin's massive-limbed "White Knight," whose broad skull is especially remarkable in a show-pen, and commends itself to the notice of the judge. Miss Harper's "Blue-eyed Wanderer" has great quality and lovely texture of coat. He was in truth a wanderer in the streets of a London suburb, and, although labelled "breeder and pedigree unknown," he has almost always held his own in the white classes at our largest shows. Mrs. Westlake, Mrs. Pettit, Mrs. Finnic, and Miss Hunt are all possessed of imported white cats, which have proved worthy ancestors of many prize-winning kittens. There have not been any very notable female white cats exhibited since the appearance of Lady Marcus Beresford's "Nourmahal," with the exception of Miss M. Hunt's "Crystal" and Mrs. Pettit's most lovely "Piquante Pearl, bred by her from her stud cat "King of the Pearls" and "Beautiful Pearl." This cat is as near perfection as possible, and has carried off highest honours whenever exhibited. Mrs. Pettit began breeding white Persians in 1896, and has kept faithful to this breed ever since.

This enthusiastic breeder always accompanies her exhibits, and her precious Pearls are never seen at the smaller mixed shows. I have always heard that white kittens are difficult to rear, and Mrs. Pettit, who should be well qualified to give her testimony on this point, says: "Without a doubt blue-eyed white Persians are the most delicate cats in existence. "A well-known authority on cats, writing to one of the cat papers, says: "What a change has taken place in our white classes, long- and short-haired ! A few years ago white cats with green or yellow eyes frequently were prize-winners, and a blue-eyed white was looked upon as a rarity. Now blue eyes have it all their own way, and judges are becoming more and more exacting as to the depth of tone and quality of the blue tint. If we could obtain a white Persian with the glorious eye of the Siamese, it would be a treasure indeed. "

A gentleman who has lived for ten years in Assam says that he never saw in that part of India any long-haired cats except blue-eyed whites. He also gives an amusing account of the usual way of obtaining a cat of this variety for a pet. It is as follows: - "You give instructions to a native, who offers to procure you one at a certain price, but gives you no idea where or how he means to procure it. In about a week's time he appears with the cat and claims the money. Things progress favourably with your new possession for a time, but suddenly and unaccountably your puss disappears. You are calling on some friend or acquaintance, and, to your surprise and astonishment, there on the armchair lies, curled up, your cat! "Thus it will be seen that the wily native makes a small income out of one cat, by stealing or enticing it away from the original purchaser and calmly re-selling it to one of the neighbours."

Mrs. Clinton Locke, the president of the Beresford Cat Club, has owned some beautiful white Persians which she has imported from time to time. This lady writes thus to Our Cats: - "The first white Persian I ever owned was brought to me many years ago from Persia by a distinguished traveller, and its eyes were amber, showing that the white cats brought from their native land have not always blue eyes. The descendants of this cat, mated to both amber and blue eyed cats, have thrown blue eyes. Two odd-eyed cats have also given blue-eyed kittens; but a pair of blue-eyed cats has by no means always thrown blue eyes with every kitten in the litter."

One of our most persistent and consistent breeders and fanciers of white Persians is Mrs. Westlake, and therefore I am glad to be able to put forward a few of her experiences as to the peculiarities of the breed.

Mrs. Westlake, writing from Camden Town, says: "My acquaintance with white Persian cats began some years ago, when I imported a white female as a pet. I was so delighted with her that, although for a London resident white cats would seem the least desirable, I decided to import two blue-eyed whites for breeding purposes. It was a litter from these two cats that tempted me to take up exhibiting, This litter consisted of all blue-eyed kittens, the tone of the blue being exceptionally deep. Since then I have, of course, often had a different tale to tell, and odd-eyed kittens have sometimes predominated. This curious freak of nature connected with white cats seems unaccountable. The two colours are generally yellow and blue, but I have seen green and blue. I have also remarked on the very brilliant tone of the one blue eye.

"There is a popular belief that almost all blue-eyed cats are deaf. All I can say is that I have never had a blue-eyed white that was deaf. I have, however, often come across those that were stone deaf, and others with defective hearing. Again an unaccountable freak.

" White Persian cats have been declared to be the most difficult to breed and delicate to rear. My opinion is that the delicacy is much more in their coats than their constitutions; that is, of course, in comparison with other foreign varieties, none of which are as hardy as the British.

"A few remarks as to the cleansing of white cats may be useful. As a dweller in London, I need scarcely say that unless I occasionally gave personal attention to my pussies they would not always be in the show condition that I would desire. Some fanciers wash their white Persians, but I have come to the conclusion that this treatment tends to coarsen the soft silkiness of the fur; and therefore, for this reason, and also because there is a risk of cats catching cold, especially in winter, I advocate dry cleaning, and suggest the use of Pears' white precipitated fuller's earth. One plan is to place the cat on a large sheet or towel, mix a little ammonia in warm water, dip your hands in this, and pass them over and over the fur, letting it become thoroughly moistened but not wet. Then well sprinkle the coat with the powder, and by keeping the animal in front of the fire the fur will soon become quite dry. Then rub with a soft towel, and finally brush thoroughly with a clean and not too hard brush. Your efforts will be rewarded with success, and though puss may be considerably bored during the process, she will not resent it so much as a tubbing.

I find that white females are far more diligent as regards their toilet than the males, who seem always to have more of the Eastern languor and indolence in their nature. I have remarked - and no doubt it is more noticeable in the white breed - that as soon as young kittens are beyond their mother's control they exhibit a marked antipathy to keeping their coats in anything like decent condition. Sometimes they will make a feeble attempt at washing themselves; but something will excite their attention, and off they will go, or perhaps in sheer fatigue will fall asleep during the toilet. Thus white kittens will very soon present a most unkempt appearance, and the poor mother gazes sadly at them as though the cares of a family were too much for her, and she no longer wishes to own what was once her pride and joy - a spotless litter!

It has been stated that white cats are wanting in expression, probably because of the lack of markings to give character to the face; but breeders of whites will nevertheless agree with me that they have even greater force of expression, not being assisted by any markings. I have found white cats to be most affectionate, and very conservative in their tastes. I have owned some white Persians with light sea-green eyes, and although these are not correct, yet I must say they were strikingly beautiful and very uncommon. I have been offered high prices by Americans and others for my imported white female, but my 'blue-eyed darling' will, I think, end her days with her devoted mistress in dear, dirty, old London."

CHAPTER XI. BLUE PERSIANS

A FAMOUS publisher once gave the following advice to a young author: "Never take it for granted that your readers have any previous knowledge of your subject, but credit them with ordinary intelligence." To all feline fanciers the heading of this chapter is a familiar household term, but to novices in the cat world and to outsiders the term "blue" as applied to a cat may sound rather absurd. Truth to tell, the name is misleading, and yet the same is used in describing certain breeds of domestic animals, such as dogs, rabbits, etc. There is also a fur much used for trimmings of ladies' jackets, etc., called blue fox, and this is very much akin to the colour and texture of the fur of the blue Persian cat, which, however, varies in tone from a dark slate to a pale lilac-blue.

It is over twenty years ago since I exhibited the first "blues" at the Crystal Palace Cat Show, and they created quite a sensation, for no one seemed to have seen any cats of this peculiar shade before. Some called them grey or lilac, and others London smoke or slate colour. One of my pair of blue kittens was quickly claimed at catalogue price, and I bought in the other, fearing I should lose her also. She, in her turn, became the mother of many celebrated blues. In those early days of the fancy blue Persians were entered in the "any other variety" class, and most of the specimens exhibited were in reality blue tabbies. For some years this state of things continued; but Mr. A. A. Clarke, so well known as one of the pioneers of the National Cat Club, and as a breeder, exhibitor, and judges-agitated with other fanciers, myself amongst the number, to obtain a better classification for the self-coloured blues, and in 1889 the schedule at the Crystal Palace Show contained a class for "Blue - self-coloured without white." For some time this breed of cats was termed "self blues," in contradistinction to the many blues with tabby markings which were formerly so very common in the fancy.

In 1890 it was decided to divide the sexes in the blue cat classes, and let the kittens compete with black and white. The result was an entry of eight in each class, my famous "Beauty Boy" taking first in the male, and Mrs. H. B. Thompson's celebrated "Winks" first in the female division. At Brighton in the same year the "self-blue" class was adopted with success.

The famous blue stud cats of that period were Mr. A. A. Clarke's "Turco," Miss Bray's "Glaucus," and my own "Beauty Boy." Amongst other exhibitors of blues about this time I may mention Mrs. Warner (now the Hon. Mrs. McLaren Morrison), Mrs. Vallance, Mrs. Wells, Mrs. Hunt, Mrs. H. B. Thompson, Mrs. Ellerton, and Miss F. Moore. In 1891 blues came very much to the fore, and the entries at the Crystal Palace numbered 15 males and 17 females. At Cruft's Show in the year 1894 a grand blue, called "Wooloomooloo," was exhibited by Mrs. W. R. Hawkins, and this cat became one of the most famous of stud cats. Many of the finest blues of to-day are descended from this noted sire. Mrs. H. B. Thompson's "Don Juan" was for many years greatly in request as a stud cat, and many beautiful blues claim him as their ancestor.

A little later "Moko" became famous as the sire of a sensational kitten exhibited by Mr. C. W. Witt at the Westminster Show of 1900. "Moko" was sold at a high figure to Mrs. Barnett, and is now in the possession of Mrs. Singleton, of Yeovil. Mr. A. A. Clarke was considered the best judge of this variety, and at the Palace and Brighton he did much to encourage the breed by offering handsome special prizes in the blue classes.

It is true that the prize-winning cats of ten and fifteen years ago would have had but a poor chance in the present-day competitions, chiefly for the reason that cats of the past could look at a judge with bright green eyes and yet be awarded the highest honours. Nous avons change tout cela, and now a blue cat without the much-to-be-desired orange eyes fetches but a small price, and is at a great disadvantage in the show-pen. An up-to-date judge may, however, be led into giving too great a prominence to this point and thus sacrifice soundness of colour, shape, and form. Then, again, I remember when a white spot on the throat of a blue Persian was not considered a serious defect; now a few straggling white hairs will cause anguish to the owner, and a judge will promptly put down the specimen for this blemish.

Blue cats with white spots used to be relegated to the "any other colour" class; but recently both the National Cat Club and the Cat Club have wisely decided that such cats should be judged in their own classes. However, I think that owners of these specimens would do well to keep them away from the show bench, where the competition in blues is now too keen to give any chance for defective cats to have a look in. I may mention that the nose of a blue Persian is a few shades darker than its fur, and the toe-pads yet a little darker.

As will be seen from the standard of points for blues, which will be found later on in this chapter, the highest marks are given for soundness of colour. There is a tendency to breed very light blues, and popular fancy favours this particular type. I am inclined, however, to prefer a good sound medium blue as being the best and safest for breeding purposes. The lovely pale blues are beautiful to look at, but are seldom absolutely sound in colour. Blues, whether dark or light, should be the same tint throughout, so that when the coat is blown apart the colour at the roots is the same as at the tips. A white undercoat is a serious blemish, and this often appears when silver blood may be traced in the ancestry of a blue cat. We have quite dropped the term of self-blue, and yet this well expresses the uniformity of colour which is so desirable. As tiny kittens blues frequently exhibit tabby markings; but fanciers need not worry over these apparent defects, for as the coat grows the bars and stripes are no longer visible.

It also sometimes happens that a kitten exhibits quite a light ruff, but this is generally shed with the second coat, and eventually disappears. There are some cats erroneously called blues by novices in the fancy, but which in reality are blue smokes. These have probably been bred from blues and smokes, and thus the type of each is seriously damaged. If it is desired to breed sound-coloured blues, then it is undesirable to cross them with any other colour save and except blacks. I have found good results from mating blues and blacks, more especially with a view to obtaining the deep amber eyes of the black Persians, which, for some reason or other, are generally larger, rounder, and deeper in colour than what we can produce in blues. Certainly all broken breeds and tabbies should be avoided when mating blues. I have heard of white cats being bred with blues to get a pale tint of blue; but white toes, chests, and spots have often been the results of such experiments. I have bred blue Persians ever since I took up the fancy, which is longer ago than I care to remember, and I have found them strong and hardy cats, requiring no special food, and enjoying the best of health without any cosseting or coddling.

I do not consider that blues usually obtain any great size or weight, nor are they generally massive in build or profuse in coat.

Ten or fifteen years ago I used to have my blue kittens bespoken for about 5 each before they were born; but nowadays, when blues are so plentiful, one must be content with lower prices, and the average sum for a good blue kitten is three guineas. Still, I am sure that for beginners in the fancy, wishing to combine pleasure and profit, there is no better investment than a good sound blue queen with orange eyes. The demand for blue kittens is really larger than for youngsters of any other breed. They make superb pets, but it is to be regretted that blue neuters are generally spoilt with green eyes, doubtless for the reason that the possession of good orange eyes tempts the owner or purchaser to reserve the specimen for stud or breeding purposes.

As one of the first breeders and exhibitors of blue Persians I feel I am in a position to speak with authority, and I am of opinion that no breed has made such rapid strides, either in improvements or popularity, as blues. In this statement I am supported by our best professional judge, Mr. T. B. Mason, who, writing to me on the subject, says: "I find ten good blues at the present time to one we came across two or three years ago. I am of opinion that in no colour of cats have we seen more distinct progress than we see in blue Persians. " Such a statement, coming from our most able and ubiquitous judge, is a valuable one. Mr. Mason has had a large experience in cat judging during the last few years, and his duties take him north and south, cast and west.

As regards the breeding of blues, I consider that to obtain the true sound colour blues should only be bred to blues.

I have often, however, observed that a kitten of unsound colour is to be found in litters bred from two sound-coloured blues; the kitten may have a white undercoat or be full of white hairs, or have a shaded ruff; but experienced breeders will soon discover that such blemishes are but temporary, and that the ugly duckling of a family may develop into the flower of the flock. It is, therefore, very interesting to make experiments and to keep an apparently worthless specimen to see what it turns in to when the first months of infancy are passed and the kitten coat has been shed.

I have known a young blue of sound colour completely transformed in this particular by a severe illness. Her fur became a sort of pepper-and-salt mixture - a sprinkling of white and dark grey; but this same cat, contrary to the prophecy of an able judge, has again changed her coat, and is now a perfectly sound blue, even from tip to root. It was evident that her illness had affected her coat, and that when she regained her usual health she recovered her correct coat. As regards the eyes in blues, it is not possible to give any exact time for the change in colour from the baby blue to the dreaded green or hoped-for orange. This change takes place gradually, and sometimes the period extends till a kitten is almost a cat. There are many blue cats with what may be called indefinitely coloured eyes; that is, neither orange, nor yellow, nor green. This most unsatisfactory state of things may be generally accounted for by a circle of green round the pupil, which, according to the time of day, will be wide or narrow. Thus it is that cats with this defect are sometimes described with "good yellow eyes, and advertised as such, and then, when received by the purchaser, a glint of green is plainly visible in the inner circle.

The perfect eye in a blue should be absolutely unshaded; and there are two distinct types of eyes, namely, the golden eye and the orange eye. The former resembles a golden coin in tint, and the latter has the dash of red which is to be seen in copper. Both these coloured eyes are correct, and much to be admired in blue Persians, and no doubt as time goes on we shall find it will be the rule and not the exception to see these perfect eyes amongst the blues of the future. It must, however, be borne in mind that in the point of eyes cats throw back, and two parents with good orange eyes may yet produce one or more kittens with pale eyes of yellow or greenish hue. Although I have dilated at length on the superiority of the orange eye in blues, I do not wish it to be thought that a weedy, boneless cat, even with eyes of deepest hue, would find favour in my sight; for in blues, as in all breeds of Persians, what we ought to seek after most earnestly are good massive limbs, plenty of bone, and broad skulls.

There are too many Persian cats of hare-like proportions, and we really want some of the type of a good old English tabby introduced into the more aristocratic long-haired breeds.

It will be interesting to up-to-date breeders of blues to hear what the veteran cat lover and fancier Harrison Weir had to say about them fifteen years ago. In his well-known book, "Our Cats," he thus alludes to the breed: "Blue in cats is one of the most extraordinary colours of any, for the reason that it is a mixture of black (which is no colour) and white (which is no colour), and this is the more curious because black mated with white generally produces either one colour or the other, or breaks black and white or white and black; the blue being, as it were, a weakened black or a withdrawal by white of some, if not all, of the brown or red, varying in tint according to the colour of the black from which it was bred, dark grey, or from weakness in the stamina of the litter. When once the colour or break from the black is acquired, it is then easy to go on multiplying the different shades and varieties of tint and tone, from the dark blue-black to the very light, almost white grey. If whole coloured blues are in request, then particolours, such as white and black, or black and white, are best excluded."

Many of our leading cat fanciers "go in" exclusively for blues, and keep faithful to this one breed alone. I give a list of these, and trust I may be pardoned if I have left out the name of any enthusiastic breeder and lover of blues and blues alone: Mrs. Hill, Mrs. Wells, Mrs. P. Hardy, Mrs. H. Ransome, Mrs. Bennet, Mrs. Mocatta, Mrs. S. F. Clarke (Louth), Mrs. Cartwright, Mrs. Gregory (Lincoln), Mrs. H. B. Thompson, Mrs. O'Brien Clarke, Miss Jay, Miss Bennet, Miss Messer, Miss Patterson, Miss Goddard, Rev. P. L. Cosway, Mrs. Swanson, Mrs. Curwen, Mrs. Duffin, Mrs. W. M. Hunt, Mrs. Slingsby, Mrs. Singleton, Miss Savery, Mrs. Eustace, Mrs. Hitchcock, Miss Hooper, Miss Violet Hunt, Miss Humfrey, Mrs. Kennaway, Mr. H. Maxwell, Mrs. Ponder, Miss Rigby, and Mr. C. W. Witt.

There are, of course, a large number of fanciers who, amongst other breeds of cats, keep one or two blues, and several keep blues and silvers only. I think I may safely say that blue Persians have the largest number of admirers, and certain it is that at all our large shows the blue classes are the best filled. At the Cat Club Show held at Westminster in 1899 the number of entrie3 in the blue female class was a record one - there were no less than 48, and the blue males mustered 42.

Seeing, therefore, how popular this breed had become, in April, 1901, I founded and started the Blue Persian Cat Society, a book of rules was drawn up, and the following ladies and gentlemen appointed as officials of the society

Blue Persian Cat Society

Founded April 24th, 1901. Presidents: Viscountess Maitland, Mrs. Maconochie, Miss Gertrude Jay.
Vice-Presidents : Viscountess Gort, Lady Danvers, the Hon. Mrs. Maclaren Morrison, Mrs. Collingwood, Mrs. W. M. Hunt, Miss Violet Hunt, Mrs. Clinton Locke, Mrs. Lionel Marks, Mrs. Herbert Ransome, Mrs. Mackenzie Stewart, Mrs. H. B. Thompson, Mrs. Woodcock, Sir H. Jerningham, K. C. M. G., Sir B. Simpson, K. C. M. G., Rev. P. L. Cosway, Frankfort Moore, Esq., R. Storks, Esq.
Committee: Mrs. Baldwin, Mrs. Russell Biggs, Mrs. Bishop, Mrs. P. Brown, Mrs. P. Hardy, Mrs. Collingwood, Mrs. H. L. Mocatta, Miss H. Patterson, Mr. Gambier Bolton.
Hon. Treasurer : Mr. Russell Biggs, 1, Garden Court, Temple.
Hon. Secretary : Miss F. Simpson, 9, Leonard Place, Kensington, W.
Judges: Lady Marcus Beresford, Mrs. P. Hardy, Mrs. W. M. Hunt, Miss G. Jay, Miss K. Sangster, Miss F. Simpson, Mr. C. A. House, Mr. T. B. Mason, Mr. F. Norris, Mrs. Mackenzie Stewart, Miss E. Goddard, and Miss Kirkpatrick.

The chief objects of this society are as follow: - To promote the breeding and exhibiting of blue Persian cats; to define precisely, and to publish a description of, the true type of blue Persian cat, and to urge the adoption of such type on breeders, exhibitors, and judges, as the only recognised and unvarying standard by which blue Persian cats should be judged; the improvement of the classification, and, if necessary, the guaranteeing of classes for these cats at shows supported by the society; the selection of specialist judges to make the awards at such shows. The annual subscription to the Blue Persian Cat Society is five shillings, payable by each member on election. At the general meeting of the society, held in April, 1902, the number of members on the books was 183, and the honorary secretary reported that during the past year twelve cat shows had received the support of the society, and numerous handsome challenge prizes, badges, and specials had been offered for competition.

The following is the standard of points drawn up by the committee of the Blue Persian Cat Society and approved of by the members of the society

Standard Of Points For Blue Persian Cat

Coat (30)
Any shade of blue allowable; sound and even in colour; free from markings, shadings, or any white hairs. Fur long, thick, and soft in texture. Frill full.

Head (25)
Broad and round, with width between the ears. Face and nose short. Ears small and tufted. Cheeks well developed.

Eyes (20)
Orange; large, round, and full.

Body (15)
Cobby, and low on the legs.

Tail (10)
Short and full, not tapering.

Members should not be deterred from showing their cats if they do not come up to the high standard set forth in the above definition.

It is true that very few, if any, blue Persians come up to the high standard here given, but still there is a very marked improvement in the breed during the last year or two. The number of green-eyed blues are steadily and surely decreasing, and the colour of the coat and size of head are points that have been carefully attended to. In reading the list of blue cats placed at stud in the columns of the cat papers we cannot help being impressed with the enormous strides made of recent years in this breed of cats alone. In a recent copy of Our Cats I counted twenty-five stud advertisements of blues, and this does not nearly represent the entire number of blues used for stud purposes by fanciers. This breed of Persians has become very popular in America, and several fine cats have been exported, and have carried off the highest honours at the New York Cat shows, held under the auspices of the Beresford Cat Club.

Mrs. Clinton Locke, the president of the club, is an enthusiastic breeder and admirer of blues, and has possessed the finest specimens among American fanciers.

The names of two good "all-round" judges appear on the blue Persian list, namely, Mr. C. A. House and Mr. T. B. Mason, and exhibitors of this special breed - as, indeed, of any other - may feel quite sure that their precious pets will receive justice at the hands of these two careful adjudicators.

Mr. E. Welburn, also a blue Persian judge, was long known and respected in the fancy, and his death in 1902 was a great loss to the cat world. Two silver bowls have been subscribed for by his many admirers in memory of this upright judge, and these are competed for annually at the two largest shows of the National Cat Club and the Cat Club.

Miss Jay and Miss Frances Simpson have frequently given their services as judges at some of the shows which have received the patronage of the Blue Persian Cat Society.

In conclusion, I would say that I am very hopeful of being able at some future time to hold a show for blue Persians, and by dividing and subdividing to give an attractive and liberal classification.

I have pleasure in giving a short account, with illustrations, of some of the catteries belonging to blue breeders.

Mrs. Wells, of Isleworth, was one of the first exhibitors of blue Persians, and has been faithful to this breed for many years. She has wonderfully well-planned catteries, and, having plenty of space at her command, the cats are able to enjoy lots of liberty in large wired-in runs, planted with shrubs, and with an abundance of grass. Mrs. Wells' blues are noted for their wonderfully fine coats. Her stud cat "Blue Noble" has sired many noted winners, and "My Honey," a lovely queen, has the deepest orange eyes I have ever seen. Mrs. Wells takes the greatest interest in her cats, and each and all are pets; in fact, so great is the care and devotion bestowed upon them that Mrs. Wells is very seldom persuaded into exhibiting any of her beautiful blues, and never lets- them attend any shows unless she herself is able to accompany them.

Mrs. Wells' cottage is situated in a most rural district of Isle-worth, and one might fancy oneself miles and miles away from the busy haunts of men. At the time the photos illustrating these catteries were taken Mrs. Wells had eighteen blue kittens, besides several grown-up representatives of her favourite breed. At one time Mrs. Wells was bitten with the silver fever, and began to breed this variety; but the litters did not give satisfaction, and she determined to return to blues - with what success can be learnt from a visit to the gardens at Isleworth.

Miss Gertrude Jay started cats in 1891, and her name will always be connected with blues. Nothing has ever been exhibited to compare with her wonderful female "The Mighty Atom" as regards beauty and shape of head. This cat, now, alas! no more, swept the board wherever it was shown. Twice she carried off the highest honours for best cat in the show at the Crystal Palace. It is true that this grand specimen lacked the orange eyes, but no judge could pass over such a perfect type of cat, despite her one fault, and thus "The Mighty Atom" reigned supreme. "Trixie" and "Doris," two of Miss Jay's noted blues, have also both won specials for the best cat in the show at the Crystal Palace. Miss Jay is fortunate in having some descendants of these precious cats in the luxurious catteries at Holmwood (of which an illustration is given). Many lovely blues may be seen revelling in the well-appointed houses set apart at the end of the long terrace for their special use. Miss Jay about a year ago retired from the cat fancy, and withdrew her name from the two clubs; but she is still a vice-president of the Blue Persian Cat Society, and often acts as judge.

Her name always draws a good entry, and, as a well-known fancier once remarked to me, "You can be sure of getting your money's worth when Miss Jay has the handling of the classes." The following few remarks from Miss Jay on her method of judging will be read with interest: "I fear my way of judging is unlike most other people's, because I do not judge by points unless it comes to a close fight between two cats. Of course, I consider shape and colour first, and then I mark all those unworthy to be in any prize list; next get to work with the remainder, and this I do, as I say, unlike most other judges, for I pick out the cat that I would soonest have given to me that day, with the object of showing it again at once. The point to be decided is the best cat that day. It is no use beginning to think which cat will be the best in a month's time or which cat might have been best a month ago; it is there that day - which is best ? And, to my mind, if I award first to the cat I would rather have, with the one object of continuing to show it, that surely must be the best cat in my opinion, and to that cat the first card goes. And so on through the class, only giving one V. H. C., one H. C., and one C, unless the class is a very large one.

I know some judges who say commended cards are very cheap, and they please the exhibitors. True; but are you not pleasing them in a wrong way by making them think their cat is better than it is?"

Mrs. Herbert Ransome is well known in the feline world as a successful breeder of blue Persians, and as the hard-working secretary of the Northern Counties Cat Club, and more recently as the editor of Our Cats. Her two blue stud cats, "Darius" and "Darius III.," have earned a great reputation, not only in the show-pen, but as the sires of many lovely prize-winning kittens, notably "Orange Blossom of Thorpe, "owned by Mrs. Slingsby, of Ouseburn, Yorkshire.

It is only of recent years that the name of Mrs. Paul Hardy has become known in the feline world as a breeder of blue Persians. Mrs. Hardy was a member of the Cat Club Committee, but on her removal to some distance from London she resigned her post. To her the Cat Club is indebted for a very beautiful design of a medal which, in silver and bronze, is competed for at the Westminster and other shows (see illustration).

Her first adventure into the domain of cat-keeping was in the case of a very fine blue cat named "Juliet," whose first few litters were not a great success, so that sensible cat took matters into her own hands. She chose for her mate the raggedest black tom she could find, and though, of course, the results of this misalliance were not at all satisfactory from the show judge's point of view, in later years, when suitably mated, "Juliet" did not once throw back to a wrong-coloured kitten. I am not sure that I can follow Mrs. Hardy to the logical conclusion of her deductions from this fact, but I think it is worthy of notice by those extremists who hold the view that an incorrect mating in the first instance spoils a queen for the rest of her life.

It was at the Crystal Palace show of 1897 that Mrs. Hardy exhibited her first litter from her blue stud "Wooshoo," and she was then awarded a first, a special, and two or three silver medals. Another famous cat in Mrs. Hardy's establishment was a blue, named "Mark Antony, " who met with success at several Scottish shows. Later ha came under the notice of Mrs. Mackenzie Stewart, into whose hands he passed, and received a good deal of favour at the hands of the judges. From Mrs. Stewart he passed into the possession of the late Dr. Longwill, and was sire of the famous Crystal Palace winning female blue, "Dolly Gray," in 1902.

Mrs. Hardy's success has not been achieved without some set-backs, more particularly of recent years, since her cattery has been enlarged, and she has had to fight her way against disease and death. Her own account is so vivid that I quote it, so that fanciers in a like evil condition may fight for the lives of their pets to the last: "I was singularly free from illness of any kind amongst them, and I lived for some time happy in the belief that the Persian puss was in no wise different from her short-coated sister in the robust possession of nine lives; so I added cat unto cat, and bred for show; when swiftly Nemesis overtook me. I showed five full-grown cats at the first Westminster show, and twenty-four hours after the show was over my best blue queen, a young beauty whose proud owner I had been only for one brief month, died of acute pneumonia. A few days later influenza showed itself amongst the others, and all four were down with it.

"What a time I had, with the experiences of a ward-nurse! But I pulled them through, all but one young kitten of four months, in whom acute laryngitis developed, and so she had to be put to sleep.

"'Wooshoo' was given up by the vet., as he piled so many complications into his system one after the other, developing bronchitis, gastritis, and jaundice on the top of the original complaint. Poor fellow, for twenty-four hours he lay unconscious, but I kept his heart going by doses of pure alcohol every two hours, while I fought the disease with hot fomentations, medicated steamings, and other proper remedies.

"For just one month I had to hand-feed him, and then one afternoon it occurred to him he might try his minced oyster by himself, greatly to my joy and triumph; and when he feebly washed his face afterwards I felt like setting the church bells ringing!

"I am convinced, in serious cat illness, it is the night nursing that does the trick and determines whether your patient is to live or die. It is somewhat of an effort, I admit, to have to arise two or three times in a night (nearly always in the bitter weather, when these epidemics occur), and, in my case, to be obliged to dress and go out of doors to the stable-yard, with a dimly burning lantern.

"In every cat lover's career there must be some such saddening memories. Saddest when, after the efforts of the night, and you have left hopeful the morning will bring improvement, you return in the early dawn to note on entering a sign that causes your heart to beat heavily - your patient's bed is empty!

"You know what that means, and look round. Yes, there in a corner, flat, stiff, and draggled, where he has crawled in the last uneasy seeking for air, is your poor pet, still for ever!"

Mrs. Hardy, in connection with illnesses, has some advice to offer as regards medicines which she has tested herself, and which I think will be of service to my readers: "While not intending to say anything authoritatively upon the subject of remedies for various cat ills, all of which will be most ably and exhaustively gone into by the writer of later chapters in this book, I might perhaps mention one or two things of which I have had personal experience, restoratives rather than drugs, which I now keep always at hand.

"One is a preparation of beef called 'Somatose. ' It is sold in 1 oz. or 2 oz. tins, is in the form of a fine soluble powder, and has this advantage over certain beef essences - that it will keep good any length of time, and has not to be used up directly the tin is opened; while it is no more expensive, and a little will go a long way if used as directed.

"I make it by putting some boiling water into a saucer, sprinkling about a teaspoonful on the water, and allowing it to dissolve slowly till cold, when it would look like weak tea. It is a most powerful restorative and stimulant, and given cold in teaspoonful doses can be retained in the worst case of stomach irritation.

"A second good thing is Plasmon powder. I was recommended to try this by a cat lover, for a case of dyspeptic sickness of a chronic character. For delicate kittens it is most valuable, and I believe the very worst cases of diarrhoea or dysentery can be cured, and the patient saved to grow up strong and healthy, if a diet of Plasmon jelly, given cold, with alternate meals of Somatose, also given cold, be persevered with until the bowels are normal. Never give milk in any form, either plain, boiled, or in puddings, to a cat that is suffering from looseness of the bowels. Another little hint I may be allowed, perhaps, to give: Don't wait for illness to come before you train your kittens to take medicine from a spoon.

"I teach all my youngsters to drink easily from a spoon, beginning with something nice - sweetened milk or the. like, going on to cold water and, when necessary, a drop or two of Salvo's Preventive in it. Then, when it becomes necessary for a real nasty dose, they are not in the least nervous of the spoon beforehand, and the dose is down and gone before they discover anything unusual. Never have I to wrap cloths round any of my cats, or get people to hold them by main force; but some cats will nearly turn themselves inside out when a spoon is held to their mouths! All the fault of early training. Badly brought up! You must be very patient with a young kitten; never do anything in a hurry. When once you have gained a cat's confidence it will let you do anything to it."

CHAPTER XII. SILVER OR CHINCHILLA PERSIANS

PERHAPS no breed or variety of cat has been so much thought about, talked about, and fought about in the fancy as the silver or chinchilla Persian. If blues are a new variety, then silvers are of still more recent origin. Years ago this cat did not exist - that is to say, we should not recognise the silver Persian of today as the silver of bygone times, for the simple reason that the only class of silver in the fancy formerly was the silver tabby. In those days there were self-coloured cats and tabby, or marked cats, and broken-coloured cats. Previous to the introduction of a Chinchilla class at the Crystal Palace in 1894, the class for silver tabbies included blue tabbies " with or without white, " and it is curious to read in the old catalogues of the Crystal Palace shows the titles given to the various cats by the owners, some describing their cats as "chinchilla tabby," "light grey tabby," "silver grey," "silver chinchilla," "blue or silver striped." We may infer that these cats were either blue tabbies or silver tabbies, or something betwixt and between. I distinctly remember the large number of cats which in these enlightened days we should find it difficult indeed to classify.

It is often said, "What's in a name?" But still, in trying to describe a particular breed of cat, it is as well to endeavour to find a term which expresses as nearly as possible both the colour and the appearance of the animal. There has been a great deal of discussion as to the correct name by which these delicately tinted Persians should be called.

The National Cat Club began by classifying them for the Crystal Palace show in 1894 as Chinchillas, and they have kept to this, although it is really a most misleading title, as the cats are quite unlike the fur which we know as chinchilla, this being dark at the roots and lighter towards the tips. Now, cats of this variety ought to be just the reverse.

It is difficult to give a correct idea of the real colour and appearance of these cats. The fur at the roots is a peculiar light silver, not white, as one might imagine, until some pure white is placed beside it, and this shades to a slightly darker tone - a sort of bluish lavender - to the tips of the coat. The Cat Club introduced the term "self silver, " but this is suggestive of one colour only, without any shadings whatever. Another class, called "shaded silvers," was added; but then, again, tabby markings are not shadings. Formerly, blues used to be called "self blues," but this is entirely done away with, and now we never think of using this term, and speaking of them as blues we understand there should be the one and only colour.

Surely, then, the simplest term and the most descriptive of these beautiful cats is "silver," pure and simple, for whether dark or light they are all silvers, and so we should have blues and blue tabbies, orange and orange tabbies, silver and silver tabbies.

Then comes the question of what is nearest perfection in this variety of cat, which has come upon us of late years, evolved from the silver tabby and the blue. The ideal silver, to use the words of a well-known breeder of these cats, should be the palest conceivable edition of a smoke cat, with fur almost white at the roots and palish silver grey at the tips, and as free from markings as a smoke. I do not go the length of declaring that silvers cannot be too light, for I think that it is the delicate tips of silvery blue that lend such a charm and give such distinction to this variety. Without these delicate tippings a silver cat would look inartistic and insipid. There has been of late quite a rage amongst silver breeders to produce a totally unmarked specimen; but fanciers would do better to endeavour to obtain a light shaded silver free from tabby markings with the broad head and massive limbs, which at present are qualities not often met with in this variety. I am quite aware this is a most difficult task, but we must remember that "all good things come hard, " even in breeding cats, and if it were not so half the interest for fanciers would be gone.

Having, therefore, considered what a perfect silver cat ought to be, I will give a description of the type of cat generally bred and exhibited as a silver. I read the following account in one of our daily papers, evidently written by a non-admirer of these lovely cats: "The chinchillas are very fashionable, and very difficult to breed in perfection. They took their name from a supposed likeness the fur bears to that of the chinchilla. But the chinchilla cat, as at present in request, bears no resemblance to the little rodent. Most of the exhibits are of a dirty white, tinged with lavender, with a quantity of marks and stripes on the face, body, and paws." Now this is not a pleasing picture, and one that would be considered libellous by a silver breeder. It is, however, true that at present our silvers are too full of tabby markings, and in many cases the undercoat is not silvery white, but light grey or pale blue. There are many silver cats with dark spine lines and shaded sides, but they are heavily barred on the head and legs, and the tail is frequently almost black.

It is a case of tabby blood which needs breeding out of the silvers, and which, no doubt, will be obliterated in time, so that two distinct types of silvers will only exist - the delicately tipped or shaded silvers, and the richly marked and barred silver tabbies. Just as in the case of the blue Persians it took a long while to eradicate the tabby markings which showed the existence of tabby blood, so amongst silvers the bar and stripes need to be carefully bred out, and we shall hope, in the good time coming, to have not self silvers, but a very near approach to this - namely, a perfectly unmarked but yet not wholly unshaded silver cat.

There is a greater delicacy amongst silver cats, and more difficulty in rearing the kittens, than in any other breed, and this may be accounted for by the immense amount of inbreeding that was carried on indiscriminately at the beginning of the rage for silver cats; also the desire to obtain lightness of colour caused breeders to lose sight of the grave disadvantages of loss of bone and stamina. Therefore it is that among the silver cats exhibited at our shows we seldom find massive limbs or broad heads or full cheeks. There is a tendency to hare-like proportions, and the faces have a pinched and snipey appearance, and noses are too long. However, great improvement is taking place, and with the numerous stud cats now at the disposal of fanciers, there ought to be no difficulty in making a suitable selection.

The question as to the correct colour of eyes for a chinchilla or silver cat is still a vexed question. In self-coloured cats the broad line is clearly laid down - blue eyes for whites, orange for blacks, and orange for blues; but when we come to the more nondescript cats - such as silver and smoke and tortoiseshell - there seems to be a wider margin given, and the line drawn is not so hard-and-fast. Still, I think it is always well to have some high standard of perfection in each breed, so that fanciers may breed up to it, and to my mind the bright emerald green eye is the ideal for a silver cat. I have seen very fine amber eyes which could not fail to attract admiration; but if these are admitted, then all sorts of eyes, not amber but wishy-washy yellow, will be the inevitable result. So many silver cats have eyes that may be described as neither one thing nor the other. Often one hears the remark, " Oh ! but if you see So-and-so's eyes in the right light they are a lovely green. " But viewed by the ordinary eye of a critical judge, they appear an uncertain yellow.

Therefore it is best to set up a standard, and I think it is becoming an almost undisputed fact that silver cats of perfect type should have green eyes, and by green let it be understood that the deeper the tone the better will they accord or contrast with the pale silvery coat.

I would here impress upon fanciers the great importance of striving to obtain the large, round, full eye, which gives such expression to a cat's face. How many of our silvers of to-day are spoiled by small, badly shaped or half-open eyes ! I do not think sufficient importance is attached by our judges to this point of size of eye. Many are carried away by the correctness of colour, and fail to deduct a sufficient number of points for a beady, badly shaped small eye.

Colour is fleeting, and with age our cats may lose the brilliancy of green or orange, but bold large eyes, placed well apart and not too deeply sunk, will be lasting points in favour of our pets.

There is one rather peculiar feature in the eyes of some silver cats. This is the dark rim which often encircles the eye. This rim decidedly enhances the beauty of the eye, and makes it look larger than it really is, and also throws up the colour. Light, almost white, ear-tufts and toe-tufts are adjuncts which go to make up a perfect silver cat. The nose is of a dull brick red, darkening slightly towards the edges.

Few Persian cats suffer so severely during the process of shedding their coats as silvers, and they present a most ragged appearance at this period of their existence. The lovely fluffy light silver undercoat almost disappears, and the top markings stand out very distinctly, so that a cat that in full feather would be considered a light, unmarked specimen will appear streaked and dark after the coat has been shed. As regards the silver kittens, it is a curious fact that these, when born, are often almost black - or, at any rate, generally very dark in colour, resembling smokes. It is seldom that a silver kitten is light at birth, but gradually the markings and shadings will lessen, and perhaps just the one mite that was looked upon as a bad black will blossom forth into the palest silver. In this respect, silver kits are most speculative, but in another they are cruelly disappointing, for a kitten at three months old may be a veritable thing of beauty, and ere it has reached the age of eight months, bars and stripes will have, so to speak, set in severely, and our unmarked specimen of a silver kit develops into a poorly marked tabby cat.

I may say that if the kittens are going to be really pale silvers they will in the majority of cases have very pale faces and paws, with little or no marking, whilst the body will be fairly even dark grey - perhaps almost black. In a week or two a change takes place, as the undercoat begins to grow, and it will be noticed that the kittens become more even in colour, the contrast between their light face and dark backs will not be nearly so accentuated, and by the time they are nine or ten weeks old they will look almost unmarked. The reason for this is that the dark fur they are born with is really only the extreme tips of the hair, and as their coats grow in length this shading becomes more dispersed.

And here I will allude to the so-called threefold classification which was part of the scheme of the Silver Society, founded by Mrs. Champion in 1900. At the inaugural meeting Mrs. Stennard Robinson took the chair. Voting papers had previously been distributed amongst the members, asking for their votes on the question of establishing three classes for silvers - namely, chinchillas, shaded silvers, and silver tabbies. The votes recorded were fifty-four in favour of the threefold classification, and nine against it. So this was carried by a large majority, and the question of points discussed and settled as follows:

Chinchillas

As pale and unmarked silver as possible. Any brown or cream tinge to be considered a great drawback. Eyes to be green or orange. Value of points as follows:

Head (20)
Shape (15)
Colour of coat (25)
Coat and condition (20)
Colour, shape, and expression of eyes (10)
Brush (10)
Total . . .100 After much discussion, Lady Marcus Beresford moved, and Mrs. Champion seconded, the following definition of Shaded Silvers:

Shaded Silvers

Colour: pale, clear silver, shaded on face, legs, and back, but having as few tabby markings as possible. Any brown or cream tinge a great drawback. Eyes green or orange. Value of points:

Head (20)
Colour of coat (25)
Coat and condition (20)
Colour, shape, and expression of eyes (10)
Shape (15)
Brush (10)
Total . . . 100 From this list it will be seen that for colour the highest points are given, and that eyes may be green or orange. But during the two years which have elapsed since the formation of the Silver Society, there has been a decided desire on the part of breeders for green eyes only, and certainly our best qualified silver judges are not partial to any other coloured eyes in this variety. In an article on the colour of eyes in silvers, "Zaida" of Fur and Feather writes: "Eye colouring threatens to become a matter of fashion. Some eight years ago we received from a first-rate fancier and exhibitor a letter respecting a chinchilla cat, which later became a great prize-winner. 'It is useless,' wrote this lady, 'to think of exhibiting her on account of her green eyes. ' What a change of opinion has marked the flight of eight years!"

It will be observed that, as regards the description of chinchillas and shaded silvers, there is a distinction and yet no very great difference, and herein lay the difficulty of retaining these two classes at our shows. The lightest silvers were deemed eligible for the chinchilla class, and then came the question for exhibitor and judge to draw the line between the two so-called varieties, and to decide what degree of paleness constituted a chinchilla and what amount of dark markings would relegate the specimen into the shaded silver class. The cat world became agitated, exhibitors were puzzled, and judges exasperated. There were letters to the cat papers on the "silver muddle." Show secretaries were worried with inquiries. I recollect a would-be exhibitor writing to me sending a piece of her silver cat's fur, and asking whether her puss should be in the chinchilla or shaded silver class; but even with her lengthy description and the sample before me, I dared not venture an opinion, and I used generally to reply to such letters by saying I did not know in which class to enter my own silver cat, and so I was going to keep him at home.

One correspondent, appealing through the columns of the papers, wrote: "Everyone knows a black or white or brown tabby, but how can we exhibitors discern between the number of shadings on our silver cats as to which class they belong? Do kindly air my grievance, and oblige."

It was quite pathetic to see the faces of disappointed exhibitors at the Westminster show of 1901, when several beautiful creatures who had travelled many a weary mile to be penned and admired were rewarded with a " Wrong Class" ticket only. They were either too light or too dark for the class in which their owners had entered them, and all hope of honour and glory and golden coins and silver cups vanished into thin air ! At one show I recollect a cat was accounted by the judge a chinchilla and a shaded silver, and he came off very well with special prizes for both varieties. No doubt he really was either one or the other, or both !

It was no wonder, therefore, that a reaction set in, and exhibitors and judges felt alike that something must be done, and that, at any rate for a time, it would be better to have only the two classes for silvers and silver tabbies, and that specials might be given to encourage the lightest cats. The abolition of the threefold classification was therefore taken into consideration when the Silver Society was broken up by the departure of Mrs. Champion to America, and the Silver and Smoke Persian Cat Society came into existence, with Mr. H. V. James as Hon. Secretary.

The following are the objects of the Society: The title of this Society, which (under the name of The Silver Society) was founded in July, 1900, is "The Silver and Smoke Persian Cat Society. "

The objects of the Society are:

1. - To improve the breeds of long-haired silver (or chinchilla), shaded silver, silver tabby, and smoke coloured cats and kittens, male, female, and neuter.
2. - To guarantee extra classes for these breeds at shows supported by the Society, when necessary.
3. - To offer prizes for the said breeds at shows supported by the Society.
4. - To hold shows independently, or in conjunction with other Societies or Clubs when it shall be deemed expedient by the members.
5. - To elect specialist judges to make the awards at shows supported by the Society.
6. - To establish and maintain a standard of points for the above-mentioned breeds.

It was in March, 1902, that voting papers on this burning question were sent out to members of the new society, with the following result: For the threefold classification, 20; against, 32. Therefore, by the wish of the majority, it was decided to give up the threefold classification for the Present.

The Silver and Smoke Persian Cat Society is now in a most flourishing condition, with about 150 members. It is the fervent hope and earnest endeavour of each and all of the fanciers of silvers in the society to breed a perfectly unmarked specimen, and with perseverance we may in time puzzle the judge to decide which cat in a large class of lightly tinted silvers is the palest. We shall gradually but surely breed out the tabby markings if fanciers will, so to speak, nail the right colour to the mast and keep on striving to breed up to the perfect type.

To quote Mr. C. A. House: "What is wanted is for breeders to work on standard lines, and not push forward with such persistency their own pet particular whims. All that is required is for breeders to be determined to breed honestly and consistently for what the standard advocates, and leave severely alone all excesses and exaggerations. Let us have chinchillas free from markings by all means, but let us keep our shadings, our silver colour, remembering that pure silver is of a bluish tinge, and is not the whitey-brown article some would have us accept as the ideal in chinchilla cats." The same authority, writing on the threefold classification, says: "I have always maintained that the threefold classification in silvers was a mistake, and the majority of breeders, I am pleased to know, are coming round to that view. My opinion, when first enunciated, was not popular. With some it is not to-day. But many who at one time could not see the force of my arguments now do so, and there is a more general feeling that the craze for self silvers is not conducive to the welfare of the silvers as a breed."

Amongst the well-known breeders, fanciers, and exhibitors of silvers in the present day, I may mention Lady Marcus Beresford, who owns some beautiful specimens of the celebrated "Lord Southampton" strain. A handsomer type of silver female cannot be met with than "Dimity," bred by Miss Cochran, and presented by her to Lady Marcus Beresford. Lady Decies is the proud possessor of the incomparable "Zaida," whose record of wins is a marvellous one. As all the cat world knows, "Zaida" is accounted the lightest and most unmarked specimen in the fancy. Mrs. W. R. Hawkins has bred some wonderfully good silvers, and was the owner of "Sweet Lavender," which has been acknowledged as one of the best of this breed that ever existed. The following are the principal silver breeders: The Hon. Mrs. McLaren Morrison, Mrs. G. H. Walker, Mrs. Neild, Mrs. Russell Biggs, Mrs. Wellbye, Mrs. Martin, Mrs. T. Drake, Mrs. Cubitt, Mrs. Marriott, Mrs. Balding, Mrs. Poole, Mrs. Ormerod, Mrs. Fawsett, Miss White Atkins, Miss Snell, Miss Horsman, Miss Dell, Miss Meeson, The Hon. Philip Wodehouse, Miss Chamberlayne.

During the last few years a very large number of silver cats have been placed at stud, but we may regard three cats as the founders of the breed or as the pillars of the silver strain - namely, "Silver Lambkin," "Lord Southampton," and "Lord Argent." To these worthy ancestors a very large proportion of the silvers of to-day can trace their lineage. But this noble trio is naturally being superseded by such stud cats as "Silver Starlight," "Tintagel," "Cambyses," "The Absent-minded Beggar," "Pathan of Dingley," "Jupiter Duvals," "St. Anthony," "Rob Roy of Arrandale" "The Silver Sultan." and many others. There is, therefore, now no excuse for in-breeding, which used to be carried on to a great extent when so limited a number of sires were forthcoming. To indiscriminate and injudicious in-breeding may be largely attributed the great delicacy amongst silver cats. There is no doubt that the number of fatalities among silver kittens is far in excess of that of any other breed. Then, again, the size of silver cats compares unfavourably with others, and they are wanting in muscle and bone.

We do not want huge, coarse, heavy silvers, but breeders and judges sometimes show an utter disregard for size and strength, and the consequence is we see a number of ladylike looking studs that fail miserably in these very essential points.

Breeders should aim at the happy medium between the liliputian and the leviathan, but not be content unless their silver studs turn the scales at 10 lb. As regards the mating of silvers, a broad line to lay down is to avoid tabby markings. It is for this reason that smokes have been wisely selected by most breeders as the best cross for a silver. It is more than probable that in many cases some nondescript sort of kittens will be the result. These sort of light smokes are exceedingly pretty cats and make fascinating pets, but they are useless for breeding purposes or exhibiting. I have known of some handsome specimens that have wandered from class to class, only to be disqualified in each and either, and it was a case of, "When judges disagree, who shall decide?"

Several experiments have been tried of crossing a white Persian with a silver in order to get pale coloured kittens, but this appears seldom to succeed unless the whites have silver blood in them. Some breeders have tried blues with silvers, but there is the danger of introducing the grey blue undercoat which gives such a smudgy appearance to a silver and is suggestive of a badly coloured smoke. It does not at all follow that the mating of two light silvers will produce light coloured and unmarked kittens, yet this cross and the smoke are the safest. It must be a work of time, as we have before said, to breed out the tabby markings of many generations.

The name of Mrs. Balding is as well known to breeders of silvers of the past as it is at the present day. In the past, however, it was as Miss Dorothy Gresham this enthusiastic fancier won her laurels. I well remember the sensation caused by the appearance in the show pen of the "Silver Lambkins" at the Crystal Palace in 1888. To breeders, exhibitors, and cat fanciers generally the following account of chinchillas from the earliest days, specially written for this book by Mrs. Balding, should be exceedingly interesting:

"There is probably no variety of longhaired cat which has caused so much discussion, notwithstanding that, with the exception of the light-coloured reds, which have been designated 'creams,' the chinchilla is the cat which has most recently gained distinction as a separate variety. The notoriety which the chinchilla enjoys has been in great part brought about by the delicacy of its appearance and the difficulty that has been experienced in the production of a perfect specimen. Many cats are called chinchillas and are exhibited as such, often winning prizes, but very few indeed are of the pale silver tint, with bright emerald eyes, and with no bars or stripes on the legs or head.

"The chief subjects that have been under discussion in connection with the chinchilla cat have been the colour of eyes and the shade of the coat; but, with regard to the former, I think it must be acknowledged that green is a more suitable accompaniment to silver than yellow or orange, and, as regards the latter, that silver, with dainty sheen evenly distributed, is more to be desired than a patchy grey, dull in hue and unattractive to the eye. As a matter of fact, these shaded grey specimens are in reality only ill-marked silver tabbies. They must, however, not be altogether despised, as they have been the stepping-stones which have led to the creation of the chinchilla.

"It is something like twenty years ago that, amongst the competitors in the classes for long-haired tabbies at the Crystal Palace and other important shows, was occasionally to be seen an alien with the ground colour of the silver tabby, but with very few stripes on the body. These cats were evidently sports from the silver tabby, so much so that the class for that section was the only one open to them; and, although they invariably showed great quality, breeders were loth to exhibit them in the medley of different coloured tabbies, where one of their chief beauties - the absence of stripes - became a disadvantage. Their only chance of distinction lay in putting in an appearance at provincial shows, where the authorities were sometimes to be induced to attach two cat classes to the rabbit division - one for longhaired of any colour, and the other for short-haired. In this indiscriminate assemblage, no colour having been stated, chinchillas when present wrought great havoc, although it cannot be denied that the judges of the day gave precedence to a well - marked silver tabby.

"Amongst these outcasts was a cat of striking beauty, whose like has not been seen again. This was 'Sylvie,' of unknown pedigree, owned by the late Mrs. Christopher, at whose death she became the property of the late Miss Saunders, of Peterborough. A beautiful portrait of this exquisite chinchilla is given in Mr. Harrison Weir's book 'Our Cats.' When judging at the Crystal Palace in 1886, this connoisseur and judge of worldwide repute awarded her first prize, medal, and special for the best long-haired cat, getting over the difficulty of her silvery, unmarked coat by calling her a very light blue tabby, though the puzzle was to find the tabby.

"Another chinchilla of the early 'eighties was Miss Florence Moore's 'Queenie,' who would, had chinchilla classes been provided at that time, have been loaded with championships and honours. In colour she was as light as any of our present-day celebrities, and might easily, from her freedom from markings, have earned the dubious compliment of the uninitiated so highly prized by owners of chinchillas of being mistaken for a grubby white. Miss Florence Moore, who later on had one of the best and largest catteries in the country, bred 'Queenie' from her 'Judy, ' winner of many first prizes, a heavily marked silver tabby of Mrs. Brydges' noted breed, and 'Fez,' a light silver cat with indefinite stripes.

"Mrs. Brydges can claim the distinction of having owned, something like half a century ago, some of the first long-haired cats ever imported into England. A coincidence worthy of note is that though there is no record of her having bred or possessed a chinchilla, two never-to-be-forgotten pairs of chinchilla kittens - Miss Florence Moore's 'Chloe' and 'Dinah,' winners of first and medal on three successive occasions at the Crystal Palace, Brighton, and Bexley, 1887 (they being the only chinchillas at any of these shows), and Miss Gresham's ' Silver Lambkins,' who swept the board in 1888, winning the specials at the Crystal Palace from forty-six pairs of other competitors of all colours - could in each case trace descent to the Cheltenham stock 'Chloe' and 'Dinah,' through the afore-mentioned 'Judy' and the 'Silver Lambkins,' through their sire 'Rahman,' also bred by Mrs. Brydges.

"Still more remarkable, these two couples of youthful prodigies were first cousins, on the other side of their pedigrees, the noted "Fluffy II.' and 'Beauty' being bred by Mrs. Vallance.

"'Chinnie,' the Mother of chinchillas, is familiar in name to every breeder of this lovely variety, and the following letter, of the early 'eighties, relating to her birth and buying, will perhaps prove interesting to the up-to-date silver fancier. It is copied from the original in the possession of Mrs. Vallance. One guinea appears to have been a price to talk of in those days. Now, one would be tempted to hide the fact of such a small amount, and if a specimen were offered to us at this low figure we should certainly desire it to be sent on approval.

The Vicarage, Sandal Mayner, near Wakefield,
October 14th, 1882. 'To Mrs. Vallance.

'Madam

The kitten I have to sell is quite pure bred. The mother I bought for 1 1s. when quite a kitten from prize parents. The father is one we bred partly from Mrs. Radford's breed and partly from a splendid torn cat that was found living wild at Babbicombe, and that we had in our possession for some months, but unfortunately he is lost again now - I am afraid permanently. I think this kitten promises to be very like the mother. She is very handsome and has good points - brush, ear tips, and so on - but I consider her rather small. But the kitten may be finer, as the father is a large cat. Miss Grant's are related to ours on the father's side, but Mrs. Radford's very distantly, if at all.

' I do not think these Angora kittens are delicate. We have never failed in rearing them. The more new milk they have, and the better feeding, the finer cats they are likely to make. We do not have much trouble in keeping ours at home, as we live some distance from the village. We always give ours their principal meal at 6 p. m., and keep them shut up in a hay-loft until next morning. If you have a box wherever the kitten lives, with sifted sand or cinders in it, kept in a corner, you will find that the best way to ensure habits of cleanliness. If I hear nothing from you to the contrary I will send the kitten on Wednesday morning, 19th, by the early train from Derby station; and if you are not satisfied with the kitten I am willing for it to be returned within a day or two, if the return journey is paid and I am let know beforehand when to expect it.

' I remain, yours truly,
' Grace Hurt. '

A letter redolent of lavender and old-world deliberation, but words of wisdom for all that. The reported delicacy of long-haired cats would trouble us less if we had more of the new milk and hay-loft system. Raw meat, raw eggs, new milk, fresh air, grass, and water are the sole ingredients required to rear the most valuable kitten.

"'Chinnie's' size is another interesting point. She grew to medium weight, but was remarkable for symmetry of form rather than bulk.

"Some of the loveliest chinchillas are small, but 'Nizam,' 'Tod Sloan,' 'Ameer,' 'Silver Lambkin,' 'Laddie,' 'Lord Argent,' 'Silver Mist, ' 'Cherub,' and 'St. Anthony' stand out as being as large, or larger, than any cats of other colours, and the majority of them have also the purity of colour, broad heads, and short legs so often lacking in large cats. The legginess and want of quality which frequently accompanies size doubtless cause our leading judges to deem it of little account.

" The name chosen by Mrs. Vallance for her new acquisition proves that even in those early days the term chinchilla was in vogue. 'Chinnie's' wins were third Maidstone, Sittingbourne, V. H. C. Oxford, Maidstone. Her charming little mate ' Fluffy I., ' a very pure silver with undecided tabby markings, also showed the quality of coat and cherub face for which their descendants have been unsurpassed. He was bred in 1883 by Miss Acland from imported cats, and won first and medal at Maidstone, Cheltenham, and Ealing, second Ryde, V. H. C. Crystal Palace, Oxford,, and Lincoln. His career ended in 1886, when he disappeared. Tradition whispers he was destroyed in the village.

"In April, 1885, 'Chinnie' produced a litter by 'Fluffy I., ' two members of which - 'Vezzoso' and 'Beauty' - have earned undying fame in the annals of chinchilla history. 'Vezzoso, ' a marvel of lavender loveliness, in his one brief year of existence won first in the open class and silver medal for best in show Albert Palace, 1885, first Louth, Maidstone, second Frome, third Lincoln.

"In fatal 1886 'Vezzoso, ' who belied his exquisite appearance by being very un-domesticated, like his maternal grandfather the wild cat of Babbicombe, roamed to return no more. 'Lost in the woods' is his epitaph.

"An even more tragic fate befell Fluffy II.,' the 1886 son of 'Fluffy I.' and 'Chinnie, ' who after winning first Crystal Palace, first and silver medal for best in show Brighton, second Albert Palace and Ealing, and siring the two before-mentioned kittens of the year, died in 1887 from the effects of an accident in which he was internally injured. Thus within little more than a year Mrs. Vallance lost three of the most promising young cats anyone could possess. At the time their owner scarcely realised their value, and allowed them absolute freedom, with such sad results.

"But undoubtedly the best result of the 'Fluffy' and 'Chinnie' alliance was 'Beauty, ' from whom, as already stated, came the 'Silver Lambkins. ' As a kitten she became the property of Miss Howe, of Bridgyate, near Bath, and later, by a breeding arrangement with the Miss Greshams (now Mrs. Bridgwater and Mrs. Balding), had three remarkable litters of chinchilla kittens, the first by 'Rahman,' who shortly afterwards strayed from home and was lost. This was the litter which produced four queens, including the two 'Silver Lambkins,' and which (with the exception of one renamed 'Mimi, ' who went to America with her owner) all unfortunately died.

"The second of Bridgyate 'Beauty's' litters was by Mrs. Shearman's 'Champion Perso,' a magnificent light smoke with remarkable coat and wonderful mane, winner of a large number of first and special prizes. In this lot was a torn kitten destined to be a pillar of the chinchilla stud book, the 'Silver Lambkin,' named after his deceased half-sisters. The chief beauties of this remarkable cat are his size and muscular frame, the length and thickness of coat, and the enormous frill inherited from 'Champion Perso, 'which spreads Elizabethan like round his shoulders and falls to his feet in front, a cascade of silvery white fluff several inches long. To 'Perso' may be traced in some degree 'Silver Lambkin's' success as the sire of unmarked cats, and to 'Beauty' their pale colour, green eyes, and perfect shape, which have won for her descendants by 'Lambkin' upwards of 150 first prizes.

"At the time 'Silver Lambkin' was bred there was no chinchilla stud cat, and no one had thought of trying to breed chinchillas, for whom, as before stated, there was no encouragement at shows or at home.

"The third litter which brought further fame to 'Beauty' was by 'Bonny Boy,' who in the early 'nineties was placed second in the class for silver tabbies at the Crystal Palace, but was considered by admirers of chinchillas to be the best cat in the whole show - an honour, however, which came to him a month later when at Brighton he was awarded the special for the most perfect specimen of the Persian breed in the exhibition; he had previously been claimed at Sydenham, by the Hon. Mrs. McLaren Morrison, at his catalogue price of 6 6s., and was afterwards renamed 'Nizam.'

"The only information that could be obtained about this beautiful cat was that he was exhibited by Mrs. Davies and that he came from Wales. Report suggested that he was imported, but there is no evidence of any chinchilla cat having been sent from abroad.

"'Beauty's' litter by 'Nizam' consisted of one male and four females, two of which, as 'Twin and I' - so named because they were so exactly alike - won first prizes and medals wherever shown. Another was sold by me to Mrs. Martin, which, as 'Lambkin Queen,' was the foundation of the afterwards noted cattery at High Wycombe. 'Twin' eventually went to Mr. Lawton, who renamed her 'Queen of the Mist.' Mated with 'Silver Lambkin' she produced 'Sea Foam, ' the first chinchilla to win a prize in a class solely confined to cats of the colour. There was an amusing coincidence about this win, inasmuch as after considerable trouble had been taken to get a separate class for chinchillas, the judge gave the first prize to a heavily marked silver tabby, thus totally ignoring the desired object. This occurred at the Crystal Palace in 1893 or 1894. The two first classes ever given for chinchillas were this one and that given at Cruft's first cat show at Westminster, held in March, 1894.

"The next that was heard of 'Twin' was that she had succumbed from the effects of swallowing a needle. 'I,' registered as 'I, Beauty's Daughter,' remained the whole of her lifetime at The Lodge, Penge, where, when paired with the pale blue 'Champion Bundle,' 'Southampton Duchess' was the result, the latter the mother of the 'Silver Lambkin's' most sensational son 'Champion Lord Southampton,' who was sold by Mrs. Greenwood for 60, when he became the property of Lady Decies, this being probably the highest price that has ever been given in England for a cat of any variety. 'Champion Lord Southampton,' who has been a very great winner, is remarkable for the lightness of colour and slight markings of his kittens, this being undoubtedly due to the strain of blue in his blood. Many beautiful cats own him as sire, notably Miss Leake's 'Seraph,' Mrs. Bluhm's 'Silver Sultan,' Mrs. Neild's 'Absent-minded Beggar,' Miss White Atkins' 'Tintagel,' Mrs. Tynvhitt Drake's 'Musa,' Mrs. Rickett's 'Empress Josephine,' Mrs. Earwaker's 'Buxton Cloud,' Mrs. Geo. Walker's 'Woodheys Fitzroy,' Mrs. Barnes' 'Nour-mahal,' winner of the Chinchilla Club challenge for the best kitten, 1899, and a daughter of 'ChampionFul-m e r Z a i d a, ' shown by Lady Decies at the Crystal Palace in 1901, also 'Green-eyed Monster. '

"Whilst speaking of 'Tintagel' it may be remembered that he sired a charming, litter exhibited by Mrs. Poole, which were first at the National Cat Club show at the Crystal Palace, and one of which won as a single kitten at the Botanic Gardens in 1902.

"Other famous progeny of 'Silver Lambkin' are 'Silver Mist, ' 'Watership Caesar' (who won the gold medal at Boston, U. S. A., for the best cat in the show, 1902), 'Silver Tod Sloan' 'Silver Owl, 'Mrs. Bluhm's 'Silver Lily,' 'Silver Squire,' and 'Mowgli,' the last named bred by Mrs. Dunderdale, but later the property of Mrs. Smyth, of Forest Hill, one of the most enthusiastic admirers of chinchillas, who has in her possession the stuffed figure of 'Beauty.'

"A chinchilla that gained a considerable notoriety was 'Sweet Lavender,' the property of Mr. Hawkins. This was a beautiful specimen, very light in colour. The latter was also a distinctive feature of the Hon. Mrs. McLaren Morrison's 'Ameer,' a son of ' Lambkin Queen, ' who stands prominently forward as one of the most perfect of his kind. Mrs. Martin's ' St. Anthony,' whose name appears in the pedigrees of several winners, is a brother of ' Ameer.'

" As the sire of Lady Decies' ' Champion Fulmer Zaida,' the most lovely chinchilla female that has ever been seen, 'Silver Laddie,' who is now unfortunately gone to his happy hunting-grounds, can claim to have been one of the most noted of sires, more particularly as he was also the father of many others of great value, prominent amongst which were Miss Horsman's 'Aramis,' Miss Snell's 'Starlight,' 'Silver Cherub,' 'Lady of Quality' (one of the most perfect chinchillas ever bred),' Charterhouse Pixie ' (the dam of 'Tod Sloan'), and numberless others.

"Not only as a chinchilla, but when competing with all breeds of cats, both long and short haired, 'Champion Fulmer Zaida' has proved her excellence, and has on more than one occasion secured the cup at the Crystal Palace for the best cat in the whole show. She was bred by Mrs. Bluhm, one of the pioneers of chinchillas, and, it is stated, has now won 136 first and special prizes, and that Lord Decies has refused 90 for her.

"'Zaida' has also produced some first-class kittens, amongst which was Miss Stisted's 'Pearl,' the owner of the latter pretty queen being a most devoted admirer of the chinchilla and sparing no expense to further its interests.

"Mrs. Bluhm's strain of chinchillas are all very light in colour, and show great quality, which may also be said of those of Mrs. Wellbye, whose 'Silver Lotus' and 'Veronica,' daughters of 'Silver Squire' and 'Dossie,' did so much winning in their day.

"Miss Meeson has also shown considerable enthusiasm in her endeavour to reach the ideal, her best efforts having resulted in 'Jupiter Duvals,' of wide fame.

"Two clubs have been formed in connection with the chinchilla cat - one, the Silver Society, embraced other coloured cats besides the chinchilla, this eventually becoming the Silver and Smoke Persian Cat Society. It was owing to this club encouraging shaded, or marked, silver cats and orange eyes that the Chinchilla Club was formed by Mrs. Balding. This Club has the honour of having as patron H. S. H. Princess Victoria of Schleswig-Holstein, who owns and exhibits some beautiful chinchillas, and Lord Decies as vice-president.

"The Chinchilla Club gives its support and specials, besides guaranteeing classes at any show whose management apply The conditions on which the specials are presented is that the cats to which they are awarded must be the property of members of the club, prize-winners in their respective classes, and registered cats.

"The club prizes usually consist of half a guinea in each class, and the more coveted Special of the club's badge for the best chinchilla of either sex. Badges were selected in place of the ubiquitous medal, because most of the dainty professional beauties very soon obtain a considerable number of the latter, and smart little badges were more appreciated.

"The club's present challenge trophy for chinchilla kittens is a solid silver model of 'Silver Lambkin,' offered by the hon. secretary for competition amongst its members; it is also open to members of the National Cat Club, in acknowledgment of the compliment paid by the latter to the original in choosing his statuette to surmount their challenge cup. The little history of the origin of this special has never appeared in print before, and as I was not present at the committee meeting referred to,' I tell the tale as 'twas told to me.'

When the challenge cups of the National Cat Club were designed in 1897, it was decided that the beauty and interest attached to them should be enhanced by immortalising on each the most representative cat of the long-haired and short-haired varieties. For the latter the great' Xenophon' was chosen without hesitation. Then came the more difficult task of deciding upon a recipient for the distinction from the long-haired ranks, which claim so much of the beauty and wealth of winnings of the cat world as to render the singling out of one a matter of consideration. To hasten the termination of the discussion Mrs. Stennard Robinson sent for a collection of cat photographs which had been left to her by the late Miss Portman, the well-known'Rara Avis' of the Lady's Pictorial. Amongst these the hon. secretary of the N. C. C. pointed out one - with no name attached - as the most beautiful photograph of the lot. This was recognised by most of the committee as being' Silver Lambkin,' so the honour fell to him.

"By some error at the makers' the longhaired cat was placed on both challenge cups, and it was determined by the club that the superfluous model which had to be removed and replaced by 'Xenophon' should be mounted as a letter-weight and given as a challenge prize for kittens, to be won three times before becoming the property of the winner. After some keen competition, covering about half a dozen shows, Mrs. Martin won it outright in 1899, when it was replaced by the present exactly similar model.

"The endeavour of the Chinchilla Cat Club, of which all the leading breeders and most successful exhibitors are members, is to continue the work that has been done to improve chinchillas, and to produce a new variety the colour of the palest shade of the fur (dyed) known as' blue fox,' or a very light shade of pigeon blue. Without doubt such a result can be obtained by careful selection and -'the little more.' Darwin's words on the subject of selection are attractive to all owners of live stock. He says: 'Improvement is by no means due to crossing different breeds. All the best breeders are strongly opposed to this practice, except sometimes amongst closely allied sub-breeds. And when a cross has been made, the closest selection is far more indispensable even than in ordinary cases. If selection consisted merely in separating some very distinct variety and breeding from it, the principle would be so obvious as to be hardly worth notice ; but the importance consists in the great effect produced by the accumulation in one direction during successive generations of differences absolutely unappreciable by an uneducated eye.

Not one man in a thousand has the accuracy of eye and judgment sufficient to become an eminent breeder. . . . Few would readily believe in the natural capacity and years of practice requisite to become even a skilful pigeon fancier.'

"The Chinchilla Cat Club is also prepared to encourage cats of new colours, which should now be not so very difficult to produce, considering the points that have been brought out in those varieties that were well known, the latter showing that it is possible to breed to a standard if judgment is used in the endeavour to do so. Some of us remember the time when a blue cat, either long- or short-haired (now the largest classes), was a rata avis when Mrs. Lee's 'Meo' was the only Siamese at the Crystal Palace show, smokes an equal oddity, blue eyes in a white cat a comparatively unnoticed point, and cream-coloured cats entirely unknown.

"The colour of the chinchilla has been bred in various ways. In bygone days, when chinchilla cats were flukes or freaks and few and far between, methods which would now be considered somewhat eccentric were resorted to by the first breeders of the colour. The useful tortoiseshell, from which black, red, cream, or tabby cats can be got, was pressed into the service, and, paired with a silver or light blue tabby not too clearly marked, would occasionally, amid the multi-coloured kittens for which tortoiseshells are proverbial, throw a medium chinchilla or light silver tabby, which with careful selection might, a generation or two later, develop into something approaching a good chinchi la.

"But it is, perhaps, more difficult to foretell with cats than any other animal what the result of pairing will be with anything like certainty. This particularly applies to the ordinary English cat, as it is impossible to guess at the mixture of different-coloured creatures which have preceded it, and any of which may influence the progeny of its descendants. A fancier who would produce any particular specimen must, amongst other gifts, be equipped with the patience of biblical celebrities and prepared to wait seven years, as one enthusiast actually did before arriving at the fulfilment of his desires in the shape of a well-marked tabby kitten.

"With pedigree cats, of course, the chances, of unexpected traits reappearing in their progeny are considerably lessened, and, given desirable connections on both sides of some years' standing, the personal attributes of a coming litter may be predicted more or less successfully. One of the loveliest of smokes - the correct black, with white undercoat, without the shadow of a stripe - was from a brown tabby queen, from brown tabby parents, and a chinchilla bred from a chinchilla dam and smoke sire. Again, a brown tabby with white paws, whose appearance did not suggest the bluest of blood, mated with the same chinchilla sire, produced in a litter three chinchillas and two faintly marked silver tabbies, which would nowadays have been styled 'shaded silvers' by followers of the dubious hue. Needless to say, these instances are not given to encourage the idea of breeding chinchillas from brown tabbies, but as illustrations that just as the results of pairing a cat with one of nondescript pedigree cannot be guessed, so in an animal carefully bred for generations so indelibly have the characteristics of the breed or variety been stamped upon it by past ancestors that it is practically impossible for them to become obliterated or submerged.

Thus the type once fixed survives, though it be by the aid of the most incongruous connection, such as a brown tabby. Had the latter been the patrician bred from progenitors of her colours, and the chinchilla been the one of doubtful lineage, the result must, of course, have been reversed, and the kittens, in all probability, would have followed the brown tabby strain. If neither parent cat when of distinct varieties can boast a particularly dominant strain, the offspring naturally partakes of the peculiarities of both.

"Colour, in chinchillas, is the most important point. It should be of palest silver, lavender tint, and lighter - in fact, practically white - at the roots. There should be no dark blotches or stripes or brown tint on the back or about the nose. A rusty hue is, however, sometimes caused by the action of the sun or wind. As regards bars or stripes on head, these should be as few and light in colour as possible, with a view to breeding them out altogether in the future.

"The coat should be long and thick, of fine, soft texture, much thicker and longer round the neck, forming a decided frill and mane, the latter reaching well down the fore legs. It should also be longer on the hinder part of the thighs, forming culotte, and very bushy on the tail, which should be short and wide. The legs should be slightly feathered, with tufts of hair between the toes. There should also be tufts in the ears, which should be very small and set low.

"The head should be wide at the forehead and short in the muzzle, well filled up below the eyes, giving it a round appearance. The eyes large and luminous, in colour emerald green with black lids. Green and yellow-mixture is permissible, but not so picturesque as the green; yellow in the eyes is not desirable. In shape the chinchilla should have a level back, and be only slightly long in the couplings. The legs should be short, with round paws, the latter well padded. When in full coat the hair should nearly reach the ground and the frill envelop the back of the head, making a very fascinating whole."

The following is the standard of points as drawn up by the Chinchilla Cat Club. It is also used in America as a basis for criticism:

1. Colour Of Coat : Palest silver, lavender tint preferred, nearly white at roots. No dark stripes, blotches, or brown tint. Darker tips to the long hairs give the coat an appearance of being lightly peppered with a darker shade. The whole appearance of the cat to be very pale .. .. .. .. .. 30
2. Coat : Long and thick . . . . 20
3. Texture Of Coat : Fine and soft . . 10
4. Tufts of hair inside and round the ears and between the toes .. .. 10
5. Head : Broad and round; forehead wide, ears small and set low, nose short . . . . .. 25
6. Shape: Back level, not too short; legs short, paws round ; brush short, wide, and carried low .. 20
7. Eyes : Large, luminous, and green in colour (if green mixed with yellow, 5 points only allowed) . . 10

To breeders of silver Persian cats an article by Mrs. Neild will be valuable and instructive. Mrs. Neild has made, so to speak, a speciality of silvers, and owns two noted silver studs - the "Absent-minded Beggar" and "Lord Hampton." There are always some good silver queens, and very frequently some choice kits, disporting themselves in the well-arranged catteries at Hart Hill, Bowdon, where Mrs. Neild has a kennel of Borzois and a cattery of silvers.

This is what Mrs. Neild says regarding the breeding and rearing of silver Persian cats :"Perhaps of the many varieties of Persian cats - and, indeed, they are a goodly number as they now appear on our show catalogues and schedules - the silvers may claim their owners to be the most sporting of cat breeders. Certainly, to breed successfully it is essential that one should possess the not too common virtues of unlimited patience and perseverance. Also experience is necessary.

"A common occurrence among even old hands is to assign a kitten - one of a new litter under inspection, as being of' little good except as a pet' -'to be sold at a small sum to a good home,' and a few weeks later discover this same kitten to be the pick of the litter. In short, the old, old story of the ugly duckling incessantly repeats itself in our catteries, certainly in those devoted to silver cats. Therefore I suspect fanciers who have succeeded (all honour to the few !) and those who mean to succeed in breeding silver Persian cats of possessing a larger stock of patience and of having acquired a larger experience than their brothers and sisters whose love has turned towards the blue, black, or white pussies.

"With these last three one may be tolerably sure - always taking for granted some knowledge - of fairly pure coat colour, and at a very early age the best kittens of the litter may be picked out - those having greatest breadth of skull, smallest ears, etc. But the silver litters are a veritable surprise packet, and remain so for an irritatingly long period. Personally, I have found that those kittens which, when born, have very pale - almost white - unbarred faces and fore legs are ultimately those which grow palest. I take no notice of the colour of the coat on the back, sides, hind legs, or tail, even if striped, as frequently happens, for all these markings generally vanish if - as I before said - the face and fore legs are unbarred. I must, however, own to one kitten who was born jet black. She was by Mrs. Champion's 'Lord Argent' and a shaded silver queen of my own breeding. When a month old I dubbed her a very bad smoke; at three months she was coatless - a most indecent little person, having shed her coat more completely than I had ever seen in cat or kitten.

When, after a provokingly long period, she again consented to appear clothed, her dress was of palest silver, unadorned by any markings except a very faint smudge on her forehead and - which, alas. spoilt her for show - a darker tinge on her broken tail. How is it that to our best some accident always happens ? So, as I could not exhibit her, I sold her to a delightful home in the North of England, and her enthusiastic owner wrote to me a few weeks since that her big babies by 'Lord Hampton' were as pale as the mother, who herself grew steadily of a fainter silver.

"Unfortunately, silvers more than any other breed of cats lack bone, caused, of course, by the unavoidable in-breeding practised when this variety of cat was first introduced and so enthusiastically welcomed, and when but one or two fanciers owned a cat of such shade. Another article on this subject, by a lady who may really claim to have established this breed, will explain to the reader more than it is in my power or province to declare.

"To go back to the subject of our small silvers, in-bred to delicacy. We should now remember how many good sires, absolutely unrelated and within easy reach, are placed at our disposal. Therefore, surely there can be no possible excuse if in a comparatively short time we do not manage to own silvers big in bone and limb, and owning ah ! happy accompaniment - greater constitutional vigour.

"We are, I believe, too apt, if owning a pale queen, to mate her with the palest known stud, disregarding other very important considerations in the all-absorbing wish to breed the wonderful 'dirty white' king or queen of silvers. Sometimes this atom (verily so) of perfection does make its appearance, and is enthusiastically greeted. But what of the mite itself? A tiny, sickly scrap of a kitten, constantly ailing. refusing to grow or to weigh, except at a rate of less than half the average blue kitten of its own age. But extraordinary care keeps the mite alive until one day some chance draught or a maid's carelessness ends our careful nursing, and the poor owner of that 'lovely dirty white kit' at last realises that this other good-bye means it may be wiser to mate that same pale queen to the strongest, hardiest, biggest-boned stud possible to be found among our silver studs, even if he is rather barred.

"Now mark. From the result of this mating, keep the best of the female kittens and marry her - if possible, not before she is eighteen (at any rate, fifteen) months old - to a stud unrelated, sturdy, of undoubtedly splendid health, for preference paler than herself, and boasting grand head and the essential tiny ears and short nose. Then you may dream your dream-with a chance of their resulting in a golden reality.

"If breeders would but spend rather more thought when they select husbands for their pussies, they would be indeed repaid. I am not speaking, of course, to the fortunate few who have won their laurels, and of whom I would I might learn; although I rather suspect their secret of success is but the result of continual study, coupled with extreme care. Would not an enormous increase of size and weight soon become evident in the occupants of our catteries if, when a queen was about to be mated, her owner would first carefully study the list of points provided by the Silver and Smoke Persian Cat Society (previously quoted in this work), jotting down those good qualities to which she believes her queen may lay claim, and then selecting that sire possessing the points most wanting in her own cat - of course, never forgetting relationship? The old rule about in-breeding is' once in, twice oat,' as all old fanciers know; but where silver Persian cats are in question, I would most strongly urge that this adage be disregarded, and, as a rule, avoid in-breeding entirely until a stronger race of silver cats is established, cats with frames equal to those big blue beauties we see at our shows.

I think that in a comparatively short time - of course, always avoiding tabby blood, breeding chiefly for bone - our silver cats may be very different to those of today, those who own too fairylike limbs to be beautiful.

"A word about our famous sires - and, by the way, we may congratulate ourselves on having within reach so many beauties. Often I have letters asking for advice as to which stud such and such a queen shall visit ; and, in addition to the above suggestions, I would remind the owner that length of journey should be taken into consideration, and the fact that if the chosen sire is extremely popular it may be that a better result may be gained if the queen is sent to one not so much in request, especially if the owner of the stud cat has not been warned before of the visit of your pussie. However, most owners of stud cats are extremely careful in limiting the number of visitors, and few object to keeping Sir Thomas free for a week beforehand if given due notice.

"Do let me urge all whom it may concern to keep Madame in close confinement for several days after her return home. Indeed, in the interest of the owner of both stud and queen this is of vast importance, and many a disappointment is due to this seemingly small neglect. Puss does not always return as one would wish, however great the care given her whilst away on her holiday, and may take her matrimonial affairs into her own paws with results most unsatisfactory to everyone but herself. When the kits arrive, do not - if you have reason to expect valuable kittens as a result of the mating - leave more than two or three with the mother (I am, of course, speaking of silver kittens) for reasons I shall directly state. By far the best plan is to procure (some time before the birth of both litters) a good big English cat as foster mother, one known to have brought up a previous litter - not an old cat. The usual method of substituting her foster for her own babies is to take away the mother cat for a few minutes - of course, out of sight - and, removing one of her own kittens, rub the little silver baby with the hay of the nest and against the other kittens so that the strange smell - sense of all others so wonderfully developed in animals - may not raise suspicion in the foster mother.

Then the next day remove one or two more.

"May I, at this point, plead that the little kittens taken from their mother for your benefit should not be drowned ? If they must be sent along the silent road to the Quiet City, let it be done mercifully and by chloroform. Such wee things may rest easily in a big biscuit box, the lids of which usually close tightly, and about 1 oz. of chloroform poured on a piece of flannel or sponge laid on a small saucer by their side will send them painlessly to sleep.

"The reason I strongly advise that the English foster should nurse the best of the litter is but an echo of the old cry,' Want of bone.' Fed by the sturdy British puss, the delicate tiny balls of silver fluff will gain greater strength, and be mothered for a longer period than would be possible with their real parent.

"It is necessary to remember that, although the foster mother needs extra food when nursing - just as in the case of the silver mother - more caution must be exercised when beginning the more liberal diet, for very probably, if this is forgotten, a liver attack - which will also affect the precious kits - will be the result of her unusually liberal fare. Remember, also, to inquire of the owner of your foster as to how she has been fed. With this knowledge, common sense and careful watching of cat and kittens will quickly show if it would be better to increase or diminish her meals either in quantity or quality. It is of enormous value to bespeak the foster mother, if possible, four or five weeks before the birth of the kittens, for then it will not hurt to give her what is almost certain to be necessary - i.e. a worm powder.

" I always allow my mother pussies as much milk as they like (although, as a rule, my cats drink water), but it should be boiled, and one tablespoonful of lime-water added to each half-pint. When I once urged this care of the foster mother to a friend who owned two kittens she was extremely anxious to rear, I was laughed to scorn, and assured that such fussiness about a strong English cat was more than foolish. Yet I would remind breeders who are inclined to agree with the above opinion that on the perfect health of your head nurse rests the future of your much-prized litter. On her depends their growth, their first chance of throwing off their natural delicacy. Mr. House, in one of his articles lately published in Fur and Feather, advises that kittens should be kept with and fed by their mothers as long as sixteen weeks. In my humble opinion this is too great a strain on any Persian cat, but there may be great wisdom in keeping the kits with the mother or foster for as long as it is possible without overtaxing the cat.

The same authority speaks of a relay of foster mothers.

I confess this puzzles me, for I should imagine that the food supplied by the second mother would be too weak in quality (as Nature provides it shall be of different quality to suit the age of all and every kind of baby) for the big kits after that of the first foster, and I should have also imagined the second foster would refuse to nurse kits so much bigger than those she had just left.

" When my kits are four weeks old I give them raw lean beef - scraped, not chopped - beginning with half a teaspoonful daily, then the same quantity twice daily, then three times a day; and at the same time teach them to lap, using a plate, which, being shallower than a saucer, causes less choking and fear to the little things."

Mrs. G. H. Walker, of Woodheys Park, is the chief supporter of the Northern Counties Cat Club, and is a member of the National Cat Club Committee. For several years she has been a well-known breeder and exhibitor of silver Persians, and has a most excellently planned cattery, which I had the pleasure of seeing when on a visit to Woodheys Grange. Mrs. Walker kindly had some views taken, specially for reproduction in these pages. I consider the arrangements for the pussies' comfort and well-being as complete as it is possible to make them. The floors of the outside catteries, which face south, are cemented, so that they can be washed over every day. The roofs are boarded, and then covered with galvanised iron, so that all the rain runs away easily. The spacious apartments are fitted with benches and ledges, and trunks of trees and leafy shrubs are planted in the ground for the cats' special amusement and exercise. The kennels - which, for the purpose of photographing them have been placed outside - are the cosy sleeping dens of the pussies.

There is a maid in attendance on these fortunate cats, and the man who looks after the kennels, of dogs also gives a helping hand.

In one of the pictures will be seen a staircase, and this leads to three charmingly arranged rooms. All the appliances and utensils connected with the animals are kept in one of these apartments. Another is set apart for mothers and their families, and a third is kept in case of illness for an isolation ward. In one of the loose boxes near at hand the cooking for the pussies is carried on, and there is a larder specially for the cats' food. Mrs. Walker devotes much of her time to looking after her pets, and great has been her sorrow over the untimely death of some of her treasured pussies. After one of the large shows, infection crept into her cattery, and worked most cruel havoc. Such losses as Mrs. Walker sustained were enough to damp the ardour of the most enthusiastic cat lover and fancier; but the lady of Woodheys Grange bravely faced the situation, and after a period of sad reflection she once again resumed her hobby with renewed interest. At the Northern Counties Cat Show at Manchester in 1902

Mrs. Walker exhibited a really wonderful silver kitten. I say wonderful, for this youngster, bred from the owner's "Wood-heys Fitzroy" and "Countess," was the most unshaded and unmarked specimen of a silver I have ever seen. This unique specimen will be watched with interest by silver fanciers. May his shadings ever grow less !

The average number of inmates of this cattery is about thirty, but at one period of Mrs. G. H. Walker's catty career the silver fever ran high, and there were sixty-three cats and kits within the precincts of the spacious and luxurious catteries of Woodheys Grange.

Mrs. Martin, of High Wycombe, who has often acted as judge, has been a most successful breeder of silvers, and the progeny by " St. Anthony," her noted sire, have distinguished themselves by winning over one hundred prizes. "St. Anthony " has retired into private life, but he will always be remembered if only by his two children " Silver Dove " and " Fascination." Mrs. Martin says, " I am all in favour of the male being older than the queen in breeding silvers ; also select a good-coated stud cat, short in the legs. Eyes are a worry just now. Of course, I like green best, but if a cat is good in all points but colour of eye, this should not upset an award. I find that if a kitten is born almost self silver, it will develop into an indifferent silver tabby later ; but if the body is dark, and head and legs light and clear, you may hope for a very unmarked specimen in due time."

Mrs. Wellbye's silver cats "Dossie," "Silver Lotus," and "Veronica" were at one time well-known winners, and for length of coat and beauty of eye have seldom been surpassed. Mrs. Wellbye is a most astute judge of silvers, and her remarks on this her favourite breed will be read with interest : "This handsome variety of the Persian ranks high in the estimation of cat lovers; indeed, its ardent admirers consider it the creme de la crime of the cat world. And why not ? Surely there is nothing to compare with a lovely young chinchilla Persian in full coat. Its very daintiness and seeming pride in itself is quite charming. One is reminded of a pretty child dressed out in its party frock, for puss appears to know it is well dressed and desirous to show her charms to the best advantage. She dances, pirouettes, and throws herself into the most graceful and entrancing attitudes, until we feel in sympathy with the Egyptians of old and are willing to fall down and worship our adorable pets. We all love beauty, but to those who love cats there is something beyond even beauty, for only they who keep and care and treat them well know the comfort these little creatures are, and the happiness they can bestow by their sweet caressing ways, perhaps more especially to those whose hearts are starved of human love, but still to all whose sympathies are wide of the varieties of silver cats.

I will first treat of the chinchilla.

"The Crystal Palace show of 1895 or 1896 was the first I remember with a class for chinchillas; previous to that, I believe, they were not recognised as such, but were shown with the silver tabbies. Strictly speaking, the name chinchilla is a misnomer as applied to these cats. The soft grey coat of the little animal called the chinchilla, whose lovely fur is so much prized as an article of ladies' dress, differs diametrically from the cat so called.

"The fur of the chinchilla is dark at the roots, and shades quite pale grey at the tips. The cat's fur, on the contrary, is absolutely pale grey, almost white at the roots, but tipped with black at the outer edges.

"The points as laid down by the Silver Society are as follow :' Chinchillas should be as pale and unmarked silver as it is possible to breed them.'

"The aim of the breeder of this variety, therefore, is to obtain a cat with none of the markings of the original stock (the silver tabby), the dark tippings to be slight and faint.

"Breeders have found this ideal most difficult to obtain; although some kittens are born pale all over, with no markings; in a few weeks - or maybe months - the hope of the family is no more, for the lighter the kitten the more delicate. 'Whom the gods love, die young.' Or, again, if the cherished one lives over its baby troubles, and starts on the change from its first, or kitten coat, to the second coat, too often do the markings appear, the shadings get darker, or fine black hairs are seen amongst the pale grey. Some of the best chinchilla kittens have been born quite dark, and with tiny stripes all over. At a month or six weeks these marks have disappeared, and later the coat has become an even silver.

"The breeder must not even then build high hopes. Again change may occur. There is no cat which varies so much; it is quite chameleon-like in this respect.

"A few years ago the Cat Club adopted the name of 'self silver' as applied to the chinchilla - another misnomer, as a self silver should have no tippings or shadings, and the silver cat has not been bred that had fur the same shade throughout from roots to tips.

'The slight dark edging to the fur constitutes to most people the charm in these silvers. Sometimes it is almost imperceptible to the casual observer; or when the cat is in full coat (the fur being from three to seven inches long on the tail - sometimes as much as nine inches) the tiny fleckings are lost in wavy, tossing, billowy coat. But let the coat become damp, however slightly, it will be seen that the dark edges are clearly in evidence.

"As, however, breeders could not always produce the pale shade of silver, the litters, even with the most careful mating, being generally assorted in good, bad, and indifferent so far as colour was concerned, many fine cats - dark silvers - had no place assigned to them.

"It was then suggested that a class should be given at the shows to be called ' shaded silver,' the points according to the Silver Society being as follows: "'Shaded silvers should be defined as pale, clear silver, shaded on face, legs, and back, but having as few tabby markings as possible.'

"The dark or shaded silvers, it was understood, should have pale, clear undercoats; but instead of the neckings of the self silver (so called), the dark edges ran a considerable way into the fur. The shaded silver is a handsome cat, but too often much marked on the face and barred on the legs, a defect most difficult to overcome. Many cat fanciers describe the shaded silver as a 'spoilt tabby.' "The third in the group of silvers is the silver tabby. The points are here stated : "'The colour of a silver tabby should be a pale, clear silver, with distinct black markings.'

"This variety ought in equity to have been mentioned first, as it is the original stock, but it has been overshadowed by the superior attractions of the chinchilla. (Silver tabby enthusiasts will perhaps pardon this eulogy of my favourite breed.) There is not the slightest doubt this handsome cat, the silver tabby, has suffered materially from the craze for the newer variety, and consequently the type has not been kept pure. They have been mated over and over again with cats of less markings in the hope of breeding chinchillas, until at the present day there are very few silver tabbies true to type.

"The position of the silver tabby in the feline scale is very peculiar. As a Persian it is, of course, necessary that its coat should be long and fine, whilst as a tabby it is desirable that the markings should show up to advantage. How to reconcile the two is the puzzle, for the longer the coat the less the markings are evident, as the stripes are merged in the flowing coat, so that we sometimes see at the cat shows exhibits woefully out of coat placed in the first rank, as the markings are much more distinct. It follows, then, in this variety of the silver, a long coat is distinctly a disadvantage when competing at shows.

"Having now obtained three types for silvers, and the Cat Club willing to give classes for them at the great shows held in St. Stephen's Hall, Westminster, the outcome was looked forward to with much interest. But it was one thing to get four types, and quite another matter to get silver breeders to understand the fine distinction ; consequently, the cats were entered in self silver, shaded silver, and silver tabby classes indiscriminately. The result was, of course, muddle and confusion, many exhibitors having the mortification of finding 'Wrong Class' on the cat pens.

"At a recent show held at Westminster under the auspices of the Cat Club, the judge was asked by the Honorary Secretary to go round the classes first, and if any exhibit was wrongly placed to re-classify before judging. This worked satisfactorily so far as disqualification was concerned.

"At this show, however, the judge was confronted with another difficulty, it being found that most of the cats in the classes for shaded silver had deviated materially from the standard of points laid down by the Silver Society. Instead of the clear, pale undercoat, the fur was a dark grey right down to the skin. The majority of these cats were quite dark, and, rightly speaking, were not silvers - that is, if one bears in mind the metal so named. It is difficult to say in what class they could be placed, unless a new class was created, to be called 'clouded or oxydised silver.' If we go on to these subdivisions we shall not know where to stop. Self silver or chinchilla, shaded silver, clouded silver, and silver tabby - a truly appalling problem for the bewildered judge to decide, for the majority of exhibitors would not appreciate the variations.

"It may come to this eventually, but at the present time the threefold classification leads to much confusion, for as nearly - or very nearly - all silver cats are more or less tabby marked, so will exhibitors be in doubt as to the class to which their cats rightly belong.

"It is a question if the introduction of the shaded class at shows has not done more harm than good, for as previously we saw very few of the dark silvers - it not being worth breeding the variety when there was no class in which to show them - so now the tendency of exhibits, as anyone who attends shows can see, is to run to darkness rather than light; and breeding for colour, purity of colour, and absence of markings has received a set-back, for with some judges colour is nothing, and prizes will be showered upon a' spoilt tabby' if it happens to have, perhaps, a broader head or a bulkier body - good points, as everyone will allow, but points which the common or garden cat may possess; and we do not pit our dainty chinchillas against all and sundry.

"Without wishing in any way to detract from the good qualities which the more plebeian branches of the cat tribe undoubtedly possess, it is impossible not to award the palm for grace and beauty to the highly bred aristocratic chinchilla. Coal and iron are useful, but we give our admiration to diamonds and pearls."

Before closing the chapter on silvers, I will allude to the Cat Club show held at St. Stephen's Hall, Westminster Aquarium, in January, 1903. On this occasion there was quite a record entry in the male silver class, which contained twenty-one cats. The list was headed by Mr. J. F. Dewar's handsome "Father O'Flynn II." Many well-known prize winners had to be content with a V.H C. card in this class of quantity and quality. The females numbered eighteen, and here again a noted winner was awarded the highest honours. Miss Chamberlayne's "Cap and Bells" is very pale and pure in colour, and carries a soft, silky coat. In the silver kitten class the sexes were not divided, and Miss Ford's lovely kittens scored first and third. A sweeter face and rounder head than that possessed by "Silver Button," the first prize winner, would be difficult to find, and Miss Ford may be congratulated on having bred such a gem. Mr. T. B. Mason judged the silver classes at this show, and he doubtless experienced some difficulty in testing the colour of the exhibits in the bad light of St. Stephen's Hall, more especially as on the opening day of the show a dense fog hung over the city.

Another difficulty which must present itself to our most capable judges is the awarding of specials offered for silvers and shaded silvers. Perhaps the easiest way out of this difficulty is to give the shaded silver prizes to the darkest cats; but all are shaded, even the palest, and therefore some judges might justify themselves if they awarded both sets of specials to the one cat. At this show Lady Marcus Beresford offered three special prizes in each silver cat class for the palest specimens, one of these in the male class being won by her own handsome "Beetle," a son of the famous "Lord Southampton." The classification for silvers at the specialist societies' show at Bath, which followed close after the Westminster show, was the largest that has ever been given, consisting of classes for novices and breeders, in addition to the ordinary division and subdivision for cats and kittens. The sensible plan of a ring class for neuters only was adopted.

Members of the specialist society for the encouragement of silvers must on this occasion have felt proud of the liberal classification and of the long list of handsome special prizes offered for their favourite breed of longhaired cats.

CHAPTER XIII. SILVER TABBY PERSIANS

THERE can be no question that a really good silver tabby will carry off the palm even from the most exquisite unmarked silver cat, and in this assertion I feel I have the support of all our professional judges, for with the "mere man," it is well known, the pale silvers do not stand high in favour. Men call them "wishy-washy," insipid, and wanting in expression, and are generally displeased at this sport in the fancy that has spoiled the handsome silver tabbies of years gone by.

No doubt there is just cause for complaint, for the inter-breeding of silvers with silver tabbies has undoubtedly done much to destroy the clear defined markings which in tabby cats is their chief glory. Now, of course, it is easily understood that these tabby markings in a long-haired cat cannot be so distinct as those that appear to such advantage in the short-haired breeds. " The better the coat the weaker the markings," may be said of Persian silver tabbies, and judges have been known to give the highest award to an out-of-coat specimen just because the markings are more evident than in a cat in full pelage. Harrison Weir states that "Tabby is not a Persian colour," and goes on to say, "Nor have I ever seen an imported cat of that colour." His definition of a silver tabby reads thus : - " Markings : Jet-black lines, not too broad, scarcely so wide as the ground colour shown between, so as to give a light and brilliant effect. When the black lines are broader than the colour space, it is a defect, being then black marked with colour, instead of colour with black. The lines must be clear, sharp, and well-defined, in every way distinct, having no mixture of the ground colour.

Head and legs marked regularly, the rings on the throat and chest being in no way blurred or broken, but clear, graceful, and continuous ; lips, cushions of feet, and the backs of hind legs, and the ear points, black." And here it will be interesting to give the discussion which took place and the list of points drawn up at the inaugural meeting of the Silver Society in 1900, and which standard is still adhered to in the present Silver and Smoke Persian Cat Society

Silver Tabbies

At the meeting of the Silver Society, discussion arose as to whether the markings on silver tabbies should be broad or narrow. Lady Marcus Beres-iord proposed that Miss Leake and Mrs. Herring should be asked to express an opinion, both being breeders of prize winners. Miss Leake said she thought there were two distinct types of cats, the one with broad markings, the other with narrow stripes, and that both were correct silver tabbies, the superior beauty of either being a matter of personal opinion. Mrs. Herring agreed, and said the markings should be a dense black. Miss Leake considered they should be black at the tips, but shading to light at the roots. Mr. Abbott objected to the word "dense," as black was black, and the word "distinct" was substituted. Finally the following was resolved : - The colour of a silver tabby should be a pale clear silver, with distinct black markings, any brown or cream tinge to be considered detrimental. The eyes should be orange or green :

Head and expression (25)
Colour and markings (25)
Colour of eyes (5)
Coat and condition (20)
Shape (15)
Brush (10)
Total . . . 100

The adoption of the preceding descriptions and scale of points as a whole was carried unanimously.

As regards the eyes of a silver tabby, Harrison Weir says "deep bright yellow." The Silver Society gives an option of "orange or green"; but the mandate of present-day fashion and personal bias is in favour of green eyes for silver tabbies. From an artistic point of view, there is no doubt emerald green is a better contrast to silver than yellow or orange.

The Rev. R. Maynard, whose name has for many years been connected with silver tabbies, recently complained in the papers of the tendency to breed green eyes in this variety. He writes : "In former days we never had anything to do with a cat that had green eyes, and now that so much is being done to improve the feline race, why should we try to think the green eye right and even desirable?" Another authority says : "The fiat has gone forth that silver tabbies are to have green eyes. Happily there still remains room for a difference of opinion on the subject, for the oldest and most perfect breeds of silver tabbies have always been distinguished by their deep hazel eyes."

This vexed question of eyes, certainly outside the "self" classes, ought not to be one of such vast importance. As Louis Wain aptly writes when complaining of this undue proportion of points, "Everyone, judges and exhibitors alike, are bitten by the craze for the correct coloured eyes.'" It is a fault that judges are prone to commit, and truly one point ought not to be allowed to outweigh others, and it is just this balancing of merits with a mingling of common sense that makes the good all-round judge, whether of self or tabbies, of long- or short-haired cats. In judging a class of tabbies, first and foremost in the judge's estimation must rank the markings, and in Persian tabbies coat must next be taken into consideration. I have always thought that judging long-haired tabby cats in a ring class would be specially welcomed both by judges and exhibitors, for it is when a good cat of this breed runs or walks the beauty of his markings can be seen and admired -Then the dark spine lines will show up to advantage, the side markings will stand out, and the bars on the legs and the rings round the neck may be clearly discerned. I think it is not to be wondered at that fanciers who have bred tabby cats are not easily satisfied as regards selfs and silvers.

A friend of mine declared, "I always miss the stripes which give a tabby cat such a sweetly expressive countenance." Yet in spite of the beauty of the silver tabby, there are very few fanciers of this variety, and to those wishing to take up Persians I could not recommend a more interesting field for speculative breeding.

The number of good show specimens can be counted on the fingers of one hand. Silver Tabby classes at our shows are full of nondescript cats with shaded silver bodies and markings only on legs and head.

When judging the silver tabbies at the Crystal Palace in 1902, I was greatly struck with the number of cats and kittens which ought really to have been marked " Wrong Class," for some of these were absolutely wanting in any definite marks at all; some had faint grey pencilling on the head and legs, but not a sign of the dense mottling on the sides. It is, no doubt, disappointing to exhibitors to have their specimens labelled " Wrong Class," or for really lovely kittens to be passed over without even a card ; but it is only by thus treating exhibits so lacking in the essential point of the class for which they are entered that fanciers will learn to discern between the genuine article and what may be called a spurious one. These pretty nondescript silvers, which are neither one thing nor the other, should be disposed of as pets ; but to enter them at our shows in classes for tabbies is only throwing away money and risking the animals. No cat has come nearer to the perfect ideal of a silver tabby in our day than Lady Pink's "Shrover II.," now gathered to his fathers. He possessed the wonderfully clear silvery white ground with distinct dark markings, and was always the admired of all admirers at our leading shows.

Lady Pink is not without some worthy descendants of her famous "Shrover II.," and writes to me thus : "I have a smoke male by 'Shrover II.,' and hope to show him at Westminster.

'Shrover III.' is just like his father 'Shrover II.,' but I shall not exhibit him, as I am too afraid of losing him. I have suffered many losses after shows.' Shrover III.' is a fine, big fellow, even better marked than his father, with long silky, wavy coat, lovely eyes, and a perfect temper."

Mrs. Herring has bred some fine silver tabbies, notably "Duchess Lestock," a sensational kitten at the Westminster show of 1900, when she was claimed at a high price by Mrs. G. H. Walker, of Woodheys Park. Mrs. Herring's "King Alfred" was the sire of "Shrover II.," and is quite "one of the best." Miss Anderson Leake is justly celebrated as a most enthusiastic and successful breeder of silver tabbies, and is our greatest authority on this variety. As far back as 1887 "Topso of Dingley" was exhibited by Miss Leake at the Crystal Palace. This cat was said to be of Irish descent, but his ancestors were sunk in oblivion. Not so, however, his progeny, for the winnings of his son " Champion Felix," owned by Miss F. Moore, of Beckenham, are fresh in the minds of those who, like myself, can remember beautiful cats of bygone years. In 1889 Miss Leake entered "Topso" and two toms in a class for " blue or silver tabbies, with or without white." " Felix " was also in this class, as a winner of the Challenge Cup. Miss A. Leake's "Abdul Zaphir" and the present representatives of the breed "Abdul Hamet" and "Marquis of Dingley" are household names amongst silver tabby fanciers.

Miss Derby Hyde has long been faithful to this breed, and "Thames Valley Silver King" and "King Alfred" have often had to fight it out together at our shows, sometimes one being favoured by the judge and sometimes the other carrying off the honours. Miss Cope has recently been bitten with the silver fever, and her tabby kittens are always to the fore. Her "Roiall Fluffball" took first and seven specials at Westminster in 1901, and her "Silver Tangle" is a well-known winner. Mr. Furze, another Midland fancier, is also making a speciality of silver tabbies, and the Hon. P. Wodehouse possesses a fine silver tabby female in "Silver Saint." Mrs. Slingsby owns "Don Pedro," a beautiful specimen, and Miss Meeson has bred some good silver tabbies as well as silvers. But the ranks need filling, and with the assistance of the society now in existence the classification at shows will become more liberal, and instead of silvers and browns being often placed together at our smaller shows, separate classes are guaranteed, for it is certainly most unfair on judge and exhibitor to place these two very distinct breeds together. "Comparisons are odious," we are told, and certainly it is hard on the brownies for the more brilliant silvers to be placed side by side in competition.

As regards the mating of silver tabbies, the essential point to try and breed for is markings, and it behoves the fancier to endeavour to find a sire with bold, distinct tabby markings, and if it is desired to strengthen the colour, then a black is not at all a bad cross. There are two distinct kinds of tabbies - the blotched and the pencilled varieties ; and it is a matter of choice which is considered the handsomest. But it does not do to mate these two varieties together. A well-known authority on breeding silver tabbies writes thus in Fur and Feather : - " A great deal has been said as to the disadvantage of crossing chinchillas with silver tabbies, but we think this applies more to the detriment of chinchillas than of tabbies. Provided the tabby, on one side, is of a very decided type, the chinchilla, having come originally from the same stock, may not prove a bad cross. Miss Cope's 'Silver Tangle,' for instance, one of the best-marked silver tabby queens, is the child of the chinchilla 'Silver Chieftain,' and of a queen bred from a silver tabby sire.

A good young queen, belonging to Mr. Hoddi-nott, was bred from 'Lord Argent' and a tabby mother. 'Champion Felix' was bred from 'Topso,' a heavily marked tabby, and 'Lady Pink,' a cat that would nowadays have been called a light shaded silver with white markings. 'Climax' came of the same parents, and both have broad dark markings, and transmitted them to their offspring. The union of two strongly marked silvers is not always a complete success. A brown tabby makes a most excellent cross, and some of the purest and best silvers we have seen have been obtained in this way. Of course, you must be prepared for a brown tabby kitten or two ; but you need not fear sandy smudges and yellow noses. The colour seems to be concentrated in one or two examples, and leaves the silver free. In short, in colour breeding we must be content with one or two perfect specimens in a litter, and, retaining them, try again for yet further perfection."

The cat fancy needs some new sensational cat to appear on its horizon, and if only a perfect silver tabby, male or female, could be penned at one of our leading shows a great impetus would be given to this variety, and a thoroughly good strain might be established. Then we should not read such remarks as these from the pen of the reporter : " The silver tabbies, we regret to say, were only a shade of days that are gone. There is room for an enterprising enthusiast in this breed. The beautiful clear silver colour with deep black markings seems to be quite a thing of the past. Who will revive them?" And echo answers, "Who?"

From such an authority as Miss Anderson Leake the following article on silver tabbies will be of great interest, and the photos of her cattery at Dingley Hill, Bradfield, near Reading, have been specially taken to illustrate these notes : "Possibly amongst the rarest of our longhaired cats may be classed the really well-marked silver tabby. Twenty years ago he existed, and was, indeed, more commonly met with than to-day. For at that time chinchillas were practically unknown, save for a few scarce specimens, and the silver cats of that day were more commonly called 'grey' Persians, and were nearly always tabbies. But with the popularity of the pale chinchillas began the downfall of the heavily marked tabby. Instead of breeding for the preservation of markings, everyone worked their hardest to breed out markings, and real tabby kittens were almost unsaleable. Those that were produced were very frequently ventured, and sold at a low price for pets. The lightest specimens in a litter were preserved for breeding purposes, and rarer and rarer became the deeply marked silver tabby. But at last the tide has turned, and people are beginning to realise that there is a character, a beauty, and a contrast of colouring in a good tabby, which lend to them a charm all their own. Added to this, they are exceedingly rare and difficult to produce.

"Competent judges agree that to breed regular, symmetrical, and well-coloured markings is no easy task, for contrast is the grand point in a silver tabby. His ground coat from tip to tail should be pure pale white silver. On this light silver ground-work lie the most beautiful even dark mottlings, dark to the point of blackness. These markings are most difficult to describe. A dark stripe runs the whole length of the spine. Then comes a light stripe on either side, then two more dark stripes, but these are broken just behind the shoulder by a transverse bar of light silver, and widen on the shoulder into considerable sized patches. The markings on the sides are not stripes, but patches, elliptical in shape, generally three in number, and partially encircled by dark stripes. The shoulder is particularly heavily barred and striped, as are also the hind quarters. The legs are barred throughout their length, the face should be dark, with dark tufts, and the back part of the hind legs from the knee downwards is black, as in a Southdown sheep. "The head is most beautifully pencilled, the cheeks possess double or treble swirls, the eyes are outlined by dark rims; on the forehead the lines form a complete triangle, which is repeated at the nape of the neck.

The chest is encircled with a perfect dark ring, called the' Lord Mayor's chain,' but this is concealed when the large light frill is in full beauty, as is also the neck triangle. The whiskers often contain all the different shades of colour found in the coat. The ear tufts should be long and light. The tail is generally ringed from trunk to tip, but this is not noticeable after kittenhood, owing to the great length of the hair. Also the hair to the root is much darker in colour on the tail than on the body.

"The correct colour for the eyes of a silver tabby is neither green, orange, nor yellow, but hazel - a deep nut-brown. This shade of eye is very difficult to obtain, and it fades with age; but once seen, its beauty and suitability to the colouring of the cat will never be denied. Many of the most noted prize-winners have not possessed this coveted hazel eye. The nose is by preference dark, but this, so far, has not been considered as a point.

"Not only evenness and regularity of markings go to the making of a good tabby, but sharpness and depth of colour in the dark parts, and clearness of colour in the light parts. A great deal has been said of late regarding the depth of the black markings ; but it is quite as necessary to insist on the purity of the silver tone. No suspicion of brown must be tolerated, neither any blue nor grey tone.

"There is no question that, as a tabby, a long-haired cat is handicapped by his length of coat. There are some people who would rob him of his crowning glory in order that his beautiful striping may the better appear. But surely it were better for them to confine themselves to short-haired cats if they cannot appreciate the marvel of long-haired tabby markings. For marvellous they truly are, when we consider that the dark marks are only formed by tips to the hair of some quarter of an inch in length. When the coat is quite short these tips are massed together, and the blackness is, so to speak, concentrated. When the hair is at its full length - of from two to four inches - it can be readily understood that the long floating locks mix and mingle with the paler coat, and some distinctness of marking is lost. The massive frill and the long light shoulder tufts give the cat a very pale frontage ; and if he be placed in a show-pen side by side with a cat whose coat is just coming, whose marks show up, in all probability he will take a second place. No stroking, blowing of the coat, or other device will show off a tabby cat. He must be made to get up and walk.

Then the long coat falls apart, the spine lines reveal themselves, the side patches fall into place, and bars, stripes, swirls, and rings all are to be seen. Even then you will not see them all at once, but as he moves and turns one by one the points will show themselves. As a show cat, a tabby is not a success, for his period of perfect beauty is exceedingly short. When he proposes to moult he changes colour, and if you are unwise enough to exhibit him at this stage ominous whispers of 'Brown tabby blood' will pass from mouth to mouth. For a thorough good rusty brown shade, commend me to a moulting silver tabby. Then a little later he completely loses his side markings, and you must wait until the new coat makes its appearance before you can venture him in the show pen. In the first beauty of that new coat, when the hair is about an inch long, he is a dream of colour contrast, and somehow suggests such ineffable cleanliness!

" How to breed silver tabbies is a moot point. One thing is certain, that if we expect whole litters of well-marked kittens we shall be grievously disappointed. Personally, we have had the best results from pairing two marked cats slightly related and of good silver pedigrees. A smoke of silver origin is another good cross, but the sire should always be a tabby. The blacker the kittens are at birth the better. There is no sign of light undercoat, but generally narrow pencillings of silver are to be seen, and face and paws are fairly light. The kittens which at birth show contrast of dark and light rarely turn out good tabbies. The markings, as a rule, become too faint. At a month old the light markings should widen and develop, and at three months old the full beauty will be seen. Before the change to cat coat, many of the kittens become more shaded than marked, and up to the sixth or eighth month there is always a possibility of their proving disappointing. If, however, after this age the markings return, harden, and develop, they will endure for ever, except during periods of moulting. In extreme old age both the purity of colouring and distinctness of markings are lost. Exposure to the sun considerably injures the colour of the silver tabby cats, giving them a brown tinge.

We believe exhibitors of magpies never allow their birds to enjoy the rays of the sun for a similar reason, but it is a question whether it is not wiser to study the beneficial effects of a sun-bath on the health of our cats rather than the slight detriment to their coats caused by its enjoyment. I have said nothing about size and shape. The silver tabby should be a large cat, with good bones, and very heavily coated. The old-fashioned cats were very long, low on the legs, and a trifle narrow in head. Nowadays we have remedied this defect, and the modern cats are decidedly more cobby than their progenitors. The ears should be set wide apart, and be small and not too sharply pointed. If only fanciers will now devote themselves to the production of such cats as I have tried to describe, we shall soon see the silver tabby classes at our shows filled with typical animals, instead of, as is too often the case, with spoilt silvers, too heavily marked to be called chinchillas, too unevenly or lightly marked to be correct tabbies."

I have mentioned Miss Cope as a breeder of silver tabbies. Her remarks on her favourite breed are as follows: "There is no doubt that until quite recently interest in this fascinating breed had, to a great extent, died out, owing to the craze for chinchilla breeding. But I hope their day-is-coming again. There is a marked improvement already shown in the silver tabby classes at the best shows.

"Mr. St. George Mivart, in his celebrated book, asks, 'What is a cat?' But even so simple a question as that appears from his statement to be more easily asked than answered. The same may be said of the question, 'What is a silver tabby?' I will endeavour to answer the question by giving my own idea of what may be considered to be a perfect type of a silver tabby. The chief point of a silver tabby should be clearness and distinctness of markings ; the sharper they are the better. My ideal cat would have the two spine stripes clear and well defined from shoulder to base of tail, set off by the' epaulet' behind each front leg. On each side of the body should appear what may be called the horseshoe ; both sides should match exactly. The hind-quarters well barred. The fore-legs should also be barred, each in symmetrical correspondence with the other. The double cheek swirls, the markings on the forehead, which may be easily imagined to take the shape of a lyre, the shaded eyebrows and whiskers, and dark outlines to the eyes, all these give a character to the face not found except among tabbies. More or less conspicuous will be the dark lines across the chest, known as the' Mayor's Chain.' Occasionally some more favoured animal is found to have two such lines.

The beauty of all these markings is thrown up by the ground colour of the coat, which should be a clear bright silver. The whole effect, if one may so describe it, is like a piece of elaborately wrought black lace on lustrous silvery silk. The colour of the eyes is somewhat a vexed question. Some fanciers prefer green. Personally, I think nothing is more lovely than the hazel eye, enhanced by dark rims. Happily, latitude is allowed in this direction in the standard drawn up by the Silver Society, which decrees the colour shall be the green or orange. But with all these, my ideal silver tabby must have perfect shape of body, so far as it is possible to obtain it, as well as luxuriance of coat. The long, thin-bodied, snipy-headed, spindle-legged cat is an abomination. The ideal cat must be cobby, with short, thick legs, the head broad and massive, ears small, well tufted and set wide apart, the nose short and wide at the tip, the tail short and wide at the extreme end - I consider a pointed tail very undesirable. The coat of the ideal silver tabby should be long and thick, and the texture as silky as possible. "Having described my ideal silver tabby, the next question is how to get it.

When I succumbed to the fascination of the longhaired beauties some years ago, I resolved to breed only from the very best stock obtainable, and I have unflinchingly adhered to this rule. I would like to impress upon anyone starting this delightful hobby that it is absolutely a waste of time and money to attempt breeding from any but the best. The observance of this principle will save many disappointments, much heart-burning, and not a little money. Having made up one's mind which breed one admires most, it is far better to keep to that particular variety, and win success worth having, than to dabble in a variety of breeds with only a moderate amount of success. To a rigid observance of these principles I owe any honours in the show pen which have been awarded to me. It is of little use taking up the breeding of long-haired silver tabbies unless one is possessed of unlimited patience and perseverance. It is sometimes very disappointing to find the kitten one fondly hoped would prove a coming champion merging into a shaded silver - exquisite in colour and as far as head, shape, and coat are concerned, but none the less not a silver tabby. Here comes in the study of pedigree.

It by no means follows that the mating of two tabby parents will result in a litter of pure tabby kittens, unless both sire and dam are of pure silver tabby lineage. Hence purity of pedigree on both sides is of great importance.

"If there is a trace of chinchilla blood in the ancestry it is certain to manifest itself at odd times in the progeny. Nevertheless, do not despise your shaded silver, if it be a queen, providing all other points are perfect. As Miss Leake says - and I quite agree with her - 'You no longer have a show specimen, but you have a cat that, crossed with a heavily marked cat, will probably provide you with splendid silver tabbies.' This, however, can scarcely be called the true science of breeding, as the progeny of two such cats may hark back to some of the original characteristics.

"My own practice is to mate silver tabby with silver tabby invariably, and of the purest pedigree I can find. I should never breed from a sire that I knew possessed a brown tabby ancestry. I would far rather choose a good black sire, and in this way strengthen the markings. Of course, one would not expect a mating of this kind to produce a litter of champion silver tabbies; but if I secured one well-marked kitten I should feel quite repaid. On the general question of breeding, Mr. C. A. House, who is no mean authority, and whose suggestions I have often followed with advantage, recently said:'If I were asked to pick out in a certain cattery a pair of silver tabby Persians which would be likely to make a good match, I should proceed on lines similar to the following : - Shape and size with quality of coat I should expect the dam to possess. Marking, colour, length of coat, colour of eye, and strength of bone, I should demand in my sire. This is, of course, if I were selecting from cats whose ancestry was quite unknown to me. My reasons for so doing are because in nine times out of ten the sire influences the outward characteristics of the progeny, while in like ratio the dam exercises her influence over those points which are more hidden.

The dam has far more to do with shape than is generally supposed, and I would rather breed from a bad-headed male than a bad-headed queen. Quality of coat must always be looked for in the queen.'

"With regard to in-breeding I have no hard-and-fast rules to lay down. The whole matter, in spite of what one and another may say, is too experimental and speculative for anyone to dogmatise. The authority I have just quoted remarks on this matter:

'It sometimes happens that a fancier puts together two animals which excel in some particular property, yet not one of their progeny is above the standard of mediocrity, so far as that property is concerned.' Experience has shown me the importance of studying the weak points of the dam. These I try to remedy in selecting the stud cat. But with all my care I sometimes find' the best laid schemes . . . gang aft agley.'

"For the successful keeping of cats and rearing of healthy kittens, my prescription begins and ends with two words - liberty and fresh air. I have found cats can stand any amount of cold, providing, of course, they have never had artificial heat previously. Two things must be carefully guarded against - damp and draught. These are fatal. Kittens so reared will be healthier, grow better coats, and will be much better able to stand the wear and tear of show life. My own cats live in wooden houses, raised at least one foot from the ground, the size at least seven and a half feet by five and a half feet. Each house is fitted with an inner wire door, as well as the outer wooden one. Along the entire length of the upper part of one side is a wire netting window, with a broad shelf fitted beneath. This opening has also a sliding shutter fitted with glass panels. I am thus able to give ventilation at will, or fasten them up securely in bad weather. In one corner of the house is a cosy sleeping box : in another corner an equally cosy chair. All cats love a chair. Cats kept outside, when they are admitted to the house, invariably find out the most comfortable corner of the most comfortable chair.

In such a house as I have described, kittens can be successfully reared ; there is ample room for them to scamper round should a wet day keep them in. Unless it is absolutely raining all my cats have the run of a large garden the whole day, and are only shut up at night. I never coddle my kittens, but try to bring them up as naturally as possible. "I am sometimes asked how it is my kittens attain such good proportions. The secret, if secret there be. lies in this - I never allow my mother cats to nurse more than two kittens after the first week. If a foster cannot be found, I select the two I consider the most promising, and the lethal chamber claims the rest. Some may consider this foolish. I can only say I would far rather rear two thoroughly healthy kittens than five or six little puny things that will require weeks of care and attention, and then fail to reach the end in view. Baby silver tabbies, I must admit, are not altogether things of beauty and of joy. More often than not they are dark and uninteresting. The time to decide which is the best marked kitten is while the coat is comparatively short. When compelled to make a selection, I usually give the preference to the darker kittens.

Experience has taught me that the lighter kittens, so attractive in themselves, even at that early stage, and whose colouring is so exquisite at eight or nine weeks old, are apt to prove deceptive in the end, and often develop into shaded silvers."

To Miss Cope's last statements I can add my testimony, but I will also mention a curious case coming under my direct notice and regarding my own silver stud cat. "Cambyses" is by "Mowgli" (a noted pale silver of " Silver Lambkin " strain) and a handsome silver tabby unknown to fame, being a house pet. When I became possessed of "Cambyses," then five months old, he was a decided silver tabby, taking after his mother ; he has since shed all his markings, except faint grey pencillings on head and legs, and is one of the lightest silvers at stud. When mated to smokes and silvers I have not known or heard of any tabbies in the litters ; but on one occasion, when crossed with a silver tabby, he had some very densely marked tabbies. I have remarked that this beautiful breed of Persians has not been taken up by American fanciers in the same enthusiastic manner as have blues, orange, and especially silvers. In an account given by Field and Fancy of the Beresford Cat Club show in New York, January, 1903, I find mention made that over 125 long-haired cats were entered, and that in the silver classes alone there were thirty-five entries, almost as many as were entered in the whole long-haired section of the previous year.

The smoke male class was cancelled, but eight females of this breed put in an appearance. No mention is made of silver tabbies. Amongst the winners of the challenge cups offered by the Atlantic Cat Club, a silver tabby called "Queenie," owned by Mrs. Wagner, carried off the trophy. Miss A. Leake, of silver tabby fame in the English fancy, has exported some of her stock, and no doubt our American cousins will not let this beautiful breed remain long neglected, but some enthusiastic fancier will establish a strain on the other side of the herring pond.

At the Westminster Cat Club show of 1903, held about the same time as the Beresford New York show, the entries in the three classes provided for silver tabbies numbered twenty seven, which is an increase on previous years, but with two or three exceptions quality was lacking. No new names appeared in the catalogues, and Miss Anderson Lecke and Miss Cope carried off the highest honours.

The winner in the female class was "Royall Fluffball," whose portrait appears below, and who is the best-marked silver tabby that is now before the public. Miss Cope must be proud of having bred so fine a specimen by Miss Anderson Lecke's "Abdul Hamel of Dingley," whose picture appropriately forms the heading of this chapter on silver tabbies.

CHAPTER XIV. SMOKE PERSIANS

IT is only within recent years that smoke Persian cats have really come into notice at all, and even now these lovely cats may be said to be sadly neglected in the fancy. It was not till the year 1893 that they were considered sufficiently popular to deserve a class to themselves. They were formerly relegated to the "any other colour" class, and very often at smaller shows this is where we find the smokes penned. A really good smoke is a thing of beauty, and it seems certain that as the fancy expands and the Silver and Smoke Cat Society looks after their interests, a good time will be in store for breeders of this handsome variety.

Smokes may therefore be called a new breed, and it is a very distinctive one, made up, as it were, of the three self colours - black, white, and blue. It is a shaded cat without markings, the fur being pure white underneath and gradually assuming almost a black tone on the outer coat. The face, paws, and back down to the tip of the tail are the darkest parts, shading to a dark grey down the sides and on the under part of the tail. A very great beauty in smokes is the light frill and ear tufts, which lend an air of much distinction to this breed. The great failings in many smokes is the appearance of tabby markings; these especially mar the beauty of head and face, and take away from their value in the show pen. The tail should be quite free from any rims of light and dark, and should have the upper part an even dark colour, and underneath a cinder grey. Some smokes are so dense in the surface coat as to be really black cats with white under-coats, having none of the modulated grades of dark and light grey. These cats are often minus the light ear tufts and ruff, and therefore cannot be regarded as correct smokes.

Then, again, there are light smokes which might almost be called silver smokes - very beautiful cats to look at, but far removed from the ideal smoke.

Perhaps at some future time there may be a special classification for these cats, which are now without an abiding place at our shows. It is most important that the coat of a smoke should be long and of the true Persian flakiness, otherwise the chief beauty of the contrast between the light under-coat and dark outer-coat is not seen to full advantage.

I think I may say without fear of contradiction that, of all long-haired breeds, smokes present the most altered and absolutely dishevelled appearance when out of coat. The glory of the light frill disappears, and multitudes of lines and streaks can be plainly discerned. Then a very rusty brown tinge appears on the back, and the rich, glossy black surface coat vanishes. I owned a lovely smoke cat once that at certain times of the year - and, I may say, for most part of the year - was nothing better than a bad black, his only claim to the title of smoke being the general appearance of a dark cat that had spent his life in an ashpit. But when "Pepper" was in full feather, he was a joy to behold.

It is curious that when the kittens are first born they appear almost a dead black, with no trace of a white under-coat. This appears gradually as the kittens grow, and at three weeks old the lighter coat becomes visible. Their faces and paws should be intensely black when born, as the tendency in smokes is to get lighter and not darker. If a kitten is born with the appearance of a smoke it will generally turn into what I have termed a silver smoke later on. As with black kittens, so with smokes: they are often very rusty in appearance, but this will disappear with their kitten coat. This also applies to tabby markings, though, of course, if there is any tabby blood in the strain the markings may be retained. For this reason it is most undesirable to mate smokes with tabbies; neither is it advisable to select a blue as a cross. The blue tinge destroys the purity of the white under-coat, which is one of the glories of a perfect smoke. It is a case of " like to like" in breeding smokes, and, failing this, choose a good black sire for your queen with amber eyes.

This is especially advantageous if your queen should be light in colour and throw light kittens ; but if she is already too dark, mate with a chinchilla, avoiding, if possible, a green-eyed one.

Above all things shun, as you would Sin, tabbies of any colour, and let your choice fall on a heavily coated sire. I have been told by smoke fanciers that it is much more difficult to breed a good smoke female than a male, and that the latter sex predominates in litters.

I will here give the officially approved table showing the proportion of marks which should be awarded for points of smokes. This is as drawn up by the Silver and Smoke Persian Cat Society, which has Mrs. H. V. James, our principal breeder of smokes, as Honorary Secretary : -

Smoke cats should be black, shading to smoke (grey), with as light an under-coat as possible ; light frill and ear tufts : eyes to be orange.

Value of points : -

Head and expression (20)
Colour of eye (15)
Colour of under-coat (10)
Absence of markings (15)
Coat and condition(20)
Tail (10)
Shape (10)
Total . . . 100

I think there are no fanciers or breeders of smokes who feel that any option should be given as to the colour of eyes in this breed, for, as in the black cats, the eyes should be amber or light golden. However, I must confess that brilliant green eyes are to be preferred to the pale yellow, which too often spoil the beauty of many of the smokes now exhibited. I should never place an indifferent smoke with orange eyes over a good specimen with eyes of emerald green. In the early days of the fancy, smokes were entered in the " any other variety" class, and were sometimes called Smoke Blues or Smoke Chinchillas.

In 1891 Miss Manley (now Mrs. Strick) exhibited a fine smoke called " Bayadere." Amongst the names of our oldest smoke breeders who still continue to breed I may mention Mrs. Cartwright, of Upwood. In 1895 this lady showed smokes at Cruft's show bred from her "Timkins." The Upwood cats are very pure in colour, having the dense outer coat very white at the roots. At one time the Lindfield smokes held their own everywhere, Miss Molony winning first at the Crystal Palace in 1893 with "Lindfield Bogie." Mrs. Bluhm, better known as a silver breeder, also owned about this time a famous smoke female called "Smuttie."

Mrs. Robert Little has for years combined the breeding of smokes with blacks. In 1897 "Namouska," a smoke female, won first at the Crystal Palace, and her descendants continue their career as first-class smokes. In more recent times the following are noted winners : Lady Marcus Beresford's "Cossey," Mrs. H. V. James's "Backwell Jogram," Mrs. Sinkins' "Teufel," Mrs. Stead's "Ranji," Mrs. Stillwell's "Victoria," Miss Snell's "Dusky Girl," Mrs. Collingwood's "Minouche," Rev. P. L. Cosway's "Maritana," Mrs. Neild's "Silver Soot," Mrs. Hamilton's "Bulger," Miss Rose's "Judge." Perhaps the most consistent and successful breeder of smokes now in the fancy is Mrs. H. V. James, who started in 1893, and has been faithful to this breed ever since. I have had the pleasure of visiting Mrs. James's smoke cattery, and I felt that the lovely old-fashioned garden surrounding the Grange at Backwell was truly an ideal place for successfully rearing live stock of any kind, and all the pussies were pictures of robust health.

I am glad to be able to insert the following valuable article on smoke Persians from the pen of Mrs. James, who is certainly our best authority on this breed.

"Before entering upon the distinctive points of smokes, I will give a short account of my smoke cattery, and how I first took up this breed. It is curious to look back and see what mere chances govern our actions. I have all my life been devoted to Persian cats of one colour or another, but never intended to go in for any special breed. However, in 1893 I purchased a blue kitten, which, on its arrival, appeared far from well. The man who sold it offered, if it died, to replace it. In a few days I was in a position to accept this offer, for the kitten succumbed, and another - which was also supposed to be a blue - was sent to replace it. As time went on this kitten darkened, and, much to my disgust, turned to a deep cinder colour. In 1894 there was a grand West of England Cat Show held at Bristol, and, to please an old servant who had taken great care of the kitten, I entered 'Jubilee.' I was not much up in cat showing then, but 'smoke' seemed to answer the description of the kitten better than any other colour; so into the smoke class he went, and, to my surprise, carried everything before him. This started my career as an exhibitor.

I showed' Jubilee' again at Cruft's and Brighton the next year, where he again carried off firsts, and was described as the best smoke cat seen since the days of the famous' Mildew.'

"At the Palace in 1894, I bought a smoke female kitten from Miss Bray as a mate for 'Jubilee.' This mating proved successful, and I had several grand litters of smokes, most of which, I am sorry to say, went to swell the ranks of neuter pets, being given as presents to my friends. In time I learnt wisdom, however, and kept my smokes myself. 'Jubilee's' career as a show cat was unfortunately cut short after his Brighton win in 1894. He escaped one night, and in a fight with another cat had his ears so torn that I was unable to exhibit him again. A year later, when I was away from home, he was let out one day, and never returned, having, I expect, been trapped in the woods. At that period my smokes nearly died out, as I had only one litter a few weeks old by 'Jubilee.' Of the two smokes one was promised, and the other I kept, and he is still alive as 'Champion Backwell Jogram.' So I think I may consider I have had my share of luck, though, like most breeders, I have had my bad times, and have lost sometimes as many as twelve cats and kittens in a few days from distemper, and once or twice a very promising female has strayed into the woods and been seen no more.

I hope, however, that for some years, at least,' Jubilee's' descendants will continue to flourish, as there are a number of 'Jogram's' kittens scattered over England, and several have left these shores for America.

"In mating my smoke queens I have several times tried a black sire, and have always been successful in getting good smokes from this cross. 'Jubilee II.' is an example, being by 'Johnnie Fawe,' Dr. Roper's famous black Persian. I have only once - years ago - tried a blue cross, but the result was a mixed litter of blacks and blues. I have found that all the blue queens mated with'Jogram' have had chiefly blacks. Smokes may be considered a very hardy breed, perhaps from the fact that there has been little in-breeding so far.

'Jogram' lives in an unheated wooden house all the year round, and has never even had a cold. Kittens will also stand the same treatment.

"And now I will endeavour to give my ideas as to the points which go to make up a perfect smoke. A good smoke is perhaps one of the most beautiful of the many beautiful breeds of long-haired cats, a bad smoke one of the plainest. The novice - for whom this article is principally written - may therefore be glad to have a clear definition of a smoke to start with.

- " The definition drawn up by the Silver Society when it first started reads as follows :

'A smoke cat must be black, shading to smoke (grey), with as light an under-coat as possible, and black points, light frill and ear tufts ; eyes to be orange.' But the word' black,' having sometimes led novices to suppose that a black cat possessed of a white under-coat is a smoke, it would be perhaps safer to say 'a smoke is a deep cinder-coloured cat shading to grey, with a white under-coat,' etc. In order to distinguish the difference between black and the true cinder-colour of the smoke, it is an excellent plan to keep a sound black cat in a smoke cattery.

"Smokes are, comparatively speaking, one of the newer breeds of long-haired cats, and arose from the crossing of blues, blacks, and silvers, and appeared as a freak in litters of blues or silvers, and, being beautiful, were kept by their owners. No serious attempt, however, was made to breed them until quite recently. If beauty and a hardy constitution count for much, they should be more popular even than they are at present; but no doubt the extreme difficulties of breeding a good, unmarked shaded cat deter many breeders from taking them up. With a whole-coloured cat it is fairly plain sailing when a strain, sound in shape and bone, has been established ; but with a shaded cat it is quite another matter. Litter after litter of kittens appear, grand in shape, strong in limbs, apparently perfect in shading. In a few months the kittens moult, and the shading becomes perhaps a hopeless jumble of light and dark. Where it should be dark it has turned light, and vice versa. Still worse, the shading disappears, and the markings - the bugbear of all smoke breeders - appear, showing traces of the far-away silver tabby ancestors.

These markings have perhaps been lying dormant for a generation, and appear as a reminder of the silver tabby origin of the smoke.

"To all smoke breeders who wish to succeed I would say,' Never part with a well-shaped smoke until at least a year old, lest you find you have, in rejecting the apparently ugly duckling and keeping the gem, thrown away the substance for the shadow.' On the subject of mating, there is much to be said. I am afraid many owners of smoke queens mate with any coloured cat which takes their fancy in the hopes of getting something in the litter besides smokes.

"I have sometimes heard owners say,

'Oh ! I mate my smoke queen with all sorts of colours. She always has one or two good smokes in each litter.' That may be true, but if a smoke strain is to be built up, you are making a fatal mistake. The kitten thus bred goes to a new home and is expected to produce smokes as good as herself. She is mated with a smoke male, and when the litter arrives there are perhaps no smokes, she having thrown back to her sire, so as a breeder she is useless. Smoke to smoke must be the rule, except in special cases - when, for instance, the queen is on the light side; then a cross with a black may be found to be necessary. Or the queen may be too dark and given to breeding black kittens. Then the choice should fall on a silver as free as possible from silver tabby relations. On no account must a tabby of any colour be chosen or a sire with any white. A blue should also be avoided, as the under-coat is liable to take the blue shade and become blurred instead of white at the roots.

"Orange eyes are much prized in smokes, and I believe, from my own experience in breeding smokes for the last ten years, that it is from the mothers that the kittens get their eye colour. If the queen has pale green eyes you may mate her with all the orange-eyed sires in the kingdom, and the eyes will still be pale. But if the queen has deep orange eyes, the kittens will inherit them also, even should the sire have only pale eyes.

"Thanks to careful mating by some of our smoke breeders, smokes are not the flukes they once were, and a smoke queen, well mated, may now be relied upon to produce whole litters of smoke kittens. As a rule, the kittens at birth are quite black, and remain so for a week or so ; and my experience has been that if a kitten shows any trace of grey at birth, it will grow up too light. There are, however, a few well-known queens who throw almost silver kittens, which remain so for weeks, and then shed this kitten coat for a darker one; so no hard-and-fast rule can be laid down as to what a smoke kitten should look like when born. Try in - breeding for coat to avoid the sleek or woolly-coated smoke, and aim at getting a cat with a coat of the true Persian flakiness described by Mr. Harrison Weir in his book on Persian cats, otherwise the chief beauty - the light under-and dark outer-coat - is not seen to advantage as the cat moves. One point to be remembered in this breed is that the new coat growing is dark just at the roots. These marks, when the smoke is changing coat, have often been mistaken for tabby markings, so for this reason it is most unwise ever to show a smoke when out of coat.

Wait until your cat is in full coat before accusing it of having tabby markings.

"There is a fashion in smokes, as in everything else; and at present in England the very dark smokes-are the rage, but in America the light ones are more sought after. That grand cat 'Watership Gesar,' who was considered too light for English taste, was last year bought by the late Mrs. Thurston and taken to America, where he carried off all the smoke honours, also taking the prize for the best cat in the show. The same happened to Lady Marcus Beresford's 'Cossey,' a lovely cat of the lighter type. The tide may turn, however, even in England, where the slightly lighter smokes may share the honours with their darker brothers. It is better, however, to be on the safe side and breed for the darker smoke, as the lighter are apt to lose the smoke characteristics and overstep the line which divides them from a shaded silver."

Mrs. Sinkins, to whom I have alluded as a smoke breeder, owns a splendid stud cat called "Teufel" that has made a name for himself as a first prize winner. This cat is as nearly a perfect specimen as it is possible to find. Mrs. Sinkins has written a few notes on smokes.

"I must consider myself honoured in being asked to write about smoke Persians in 'The Book of the Cat,' as I am, comparatively speaking, a beginner in the cat fancy, only having kept Persians for three years or so. I began by buying a well-bred queen in kitten, and she presented me with two chinchillas and a perfect smoke female, which I named 'Teufella,' and showed at Westminster in 1899. She carried all before her, winning everything in her class, and was claimed at once at catalogue price. From a silver half-sister of hers I then bred'Teufel,' whose picture is in this issue, and who is a great pet, being extremely sweet-tempered and affectionate. His chief characteristics are his absolutely unmarked black face and the lovely white under-coat, so desirable in a perfect smoke, and for which he received a special this spring (1902) at Westminster. I hope some of his descendants will take after him in these respects and make smokes increasingly popular.

"In my opinion, it is a fatal mistake to mate smokes with blues, as they then lose this white under-coat. I think one obtains it best by mating a smoke-bred smoke cat with either a silver-bred smoke or else with a silver cat, as unmarked as possible, who possesses a smoke ancestor. Some day I should like to try mating a black with a pale silver, just as an experiment.

"As to eye colour, there can be no two opinions. The deeper the orange, the better.

"I do not find smokes at all delicate, no more so than the common or garden cat. All my queens have entire freedom, one in particular being a first-rate ratter and mouser, even catching moles sometimes. And they live out of doors in unheated houses all the year round, even in the most severe winter.

"It seems hard that all Persians should have to pass through an 'ugly' period - luckily a short one - when they change their coats, looking ragged and certainly not their best. Smokes and blacks then show the brown tinge even worse than chinchillas, as it gives them the poverty - stricken appearance of rusty moulting - though I must say'Teufel' has so far been the exception, taking all honours at one show when in full moult.

"However, their good time fully compensates for the shabby period, and a typical smoke, with his large orange eyes set in his black face, with light ear tufts and frill, his white under-coat showing with every movement, is a thing of beauty hard to beat, and I feel sure the smoke variety has a great future before it."

Mrs. Stead, the owner of "Champion Ranji" and "Rhoda," a winning smoke female, has kindly given me her opinion on smokes: "My ideal of perfect smoke cats is that they should be black, shading to smoke grey, with as light an under-coat as possible, light frill and ear tufts, eyes orange. This is the standard up to which I try to breed. I find the kittens go through several stages before they approach this perfection. For instance, a kitten I had in the spring of 1902 lightened considerably, and developed markings on the face, but at eight months old he was nearly up to the standard. A litter of six I have recently bred were entirely unmarked at birth, being, in fact, quite black. Five are now medium-coloured smokes, and one a very dark one, with beautiful light under-coat. I strongly advise all breeders not to despair of colouring until their kittens are fully grown. Permanent markings are, of course, very detrimental, and there is always great anxiety as to the final colour of the eyes. If, however, both parents are good in this respect, the result is generally satisfactory."

The following article on smoke cats in America is taken from Field and Fancy of October, 1902 : "Smokes, with us, will probably rank with the silvers, and are destined to always hold a measure of popularity, though we have not such a very strong lot; in fact, we may say that good smokes are never so numerous anywhere as to become a nuisance, and we may fairly congratulate ourselves at this stage of the game upon what we have had and bred.

"Opinions differ as to what is a smoke, and at times we have to be rather lenient in the judging of these cats, for they are apt to be off colour - too light or too streaky. No one has yet, in America, taken up the colour solely to breed smokes and nothing else, which seems a pity, for they can be bred and kept with blacks, and each sets off the other, and when visitors come to the cattery the contrast is made more apparent.

"Those not conversant with the colour are apt to think anything smoky is a smoke exhibition cat, and no doubt, when good, those cats with dark faces and paws and light bodies are very handsome, but more often than not they are streaky and are smoke tabbies. After mature consideration and after seeing a good many, we, as well as other breeders, still think that unless the 'Southdown' cats, as some have called them, are very good we had better stick to the old definition of a smoke, and demand them dark enough.

"A really dark, rich smoke without marks is, without doubt, one of the richest in colouring of all our long-hairs, and the stars are few. One may go away from the original definition of a smoke, but when brought face to face with a good one it forces one to confess that this is the genuine article, and, when in grand condition, a thing of beauty and a joy for ever."

CHAPTER XV. ORANGE PERSIANS

IN the short-haired varieties, these cats are sometimes called red tabbies; but I do not think the term gives such a true idea of the correct tone of colour, which should be just that of a ripe orange when in perfection. As I write I have in my mind's eye the mass of bright colour presented by a pile of oranges in a greengrocer's shop, and this is the tone that is to be desired in our orange cats. There is a dash of red in the ideal orange cat, suggestive, perhaps, of the blood-oranges with which at Christmastide we are familiar. Anyhow, an orange cat should be as far removed as possible both from sandy or yellow or, as I have heard them called, lemon-coloured cats.

I have left out the term "tabby" from the heading of this chapter, and I think advisedly; for in the Persian varieties the markings are gradually but surely vanishing, and orange cats may be said to stand in the same relation to orange tabbies as shaded silvers do to silver tabbies. I mean that most of the orange Persians now exhibited have shaded bodies, with tabby marking on head, face, and paws. The body markings, never very strong in Persian tabbies, are even less distinct in the orange than in the silver varieties. It may therefore be said that in judging this breed as they are represented in the show pen today, colour is taken into consideration first, and tabby markings are of less account. As regards other distinctive features of this breed, I may say that it is the exception, and not the rule, to find good round heads and short noses. The longest faces I have ever seen in any felines have been those possessed by orange Persian and short-haired cats. I have really sometimes felt quite sorry for a magnificent puss of this colour whose nose was so self-assertive that every other point, however excellent, seemed to be lost sight of, and that nose with the accentuated terminus stood out with distressing prominence.

Until the year 1894 the classification at the Crystal Palace was " brown or red tabby, with or without white," and the descriptions given in the catalogue by some owners on entering their cats read "brown and red," "red-marked tabby," "spotted red tabby," "sandy Persian." In 1895 orange and cream cats were placed together in one class.

A specialist society for orange, cream, fawn, and tortoiseshell cats was founded in 1900, and although the number of members is small, yet they have proved a strong body of staunch supporters of these breeds, and a really astonishing amount of good work has been done by these few enthusiasts. The classification at the large shows has been greatly supplemented, and, whereas before the formation of the society the sexes were never separated, now this energetic little club asks for, obtains, and often guarantees extra classes. The result, therefore, to breeders of orange and cream cats is much more satisfactory, and males and females have their respective classes; and right well have they been filled. It was in 1900 that classes for creams were introduced at shows. At the Richmond show in 1902 there were thirteen entries in male and thirteen in female orange and cream classes, the sexes, but not the colours, being divided. This was really a splendid testimony to the efforts of a specialist society of less than two years' standing.

It is such a short time ago that orange, cream, and tortoiseshell cats were relegated to the "any other colour" class, even at our largest shows; now it is often remarked by reporters in the cat papers that the well-filled cream and orange classes were the chief attractions of the show.

I will here give a copy of the circular issued by the honorary secretary inviting members !to join, and the points for orange cats, as drawn up by the specialist society, which were decided upon at the inaugural meeting

Orange, Cream, Fawn, And Tortoise-Shell Cat Society
Long And Short Haired

As societies have been lately formed to promote the interests of one or more colours in the cat world, it has been thought by a few fanciers of orange, cream, fawn, and tortoiseshell cats that there is an opening for a society for the purpose of encouraging the breeding of these colours. The objects of such a society would be :

(1) To secure better classification for these varieties at the different shows.
(2) To encourage fanciers to breed and show these colours by offering special prizes, etc.
(3) To improve the type of cat bred.
(4) To secure recognition for all shades of orange, cream, and fawn ; and, inasmuch as many fanciers disagree as to the merits of the different tints for eyes, to encourage the breeding and showing of specimens with green, orange, hazel, and blue eyes.

Miss Mildred Beal, Romaldkirk Rectory, Darlington, has undertaken to act as hon. sec. to the society, and will be glad to hear from any fanciers who may wish to support it.
November, 1900.

Orange Self Or Tabby Points

Colour And Marking - Colour to be as bright as possible, and either self or markings to be as distinct is can be got. (25)
Coat - To be silky, very long, and fluffy. (25)
Size And Shape - To be large, not coarse, but massive, with plenty of bone and substance ; short legs. (20)
Head - To be round and broad, with short nose, ears small and well opened. (15)
Eyes - To be large and full, and bright orange or hazel. (5)
Condition - (10)

It will be noticed that the heading of these points is "orange self or tabby"; but, as I have pointed out, the cats exhibited as orange Persians are neither self-coloured nor can they be called tabby. So it remains to be seen which type of cat will in due course be the established one. I incline towards a self-coloured orange in the Persian breeds, and a very handsome cat this would be - of just one tone of bright even colour, perhaps slightly lighter on the flanks and stomach, under the tail, and with a frill of paler tone. In fact, very much the type of a smoke cat, in two shades of brilliant orange. At the same time, if real orange tabbies can be bred with the distinct body markings these should be encouraged.

At the Cat Club shows it has been customary to give the classification for orange cats marked or unmarked, so that then the judge may not have to take tabby markings into consideration, but give his awards according to colour and other points of excellence. It is the same when a class is given for sable or brown tabby, silver or shaded silver. In such classes it would be unfair to consider either the tabby markings in the one or the amount of shadings in the other. Of course, it is possible that in time orange cats may be bred to such perfection that two distinct classes will be given, namely "orange" (selfs) and "orange tabby." In former years blues (selfs) and blue tabbies were included in one class, but gradually blue tabbies have been disappearing from our midst. If, therefore, orange tabbies - I mean, of course, long-haired cats - should likewise become extinct, our browns and silvers would be the sole representatives of tabbies in the long-haired varieties.

As regards the eyes in orange Persians, the standard given in the foregoing list of the specialist society is "bright orange or hazel." I should prefer the terms " golden bronze or hazel," as there is a special shade of gold with a dash of bronze or brown which seems to tone best with the bright coats of these cats. Certainly the pale yellow or greenish-yellow eye is not desirable - better a bright green eye. I often wonder if ever fanciers will be fortunate enough to breed an orange Persian with bright blue eyes, such as are seen in whites and Siamese. I have heard of a short-haired orange cat with blue eyes, and sometimes I have been told by a fancier of the Persian tribe that they had bred an orange, and its eyes had not turned from the deep kitten blue at four months, so they were fondly hoping they were going to astonish the cat world ; but their hopes were dashed to the ground, for surely and sadly a change came o'er the colour of that cat's eyes, and it was a case of the blue that failed! I once noticed an advertisement in one of our cat papers which announced, "For sale, a unique orange Persian male with perfect deep blue eyes"; but I also remarked that the age of this unique specimen was not given, and I did not think it was worth while to write and inquire.

The texture of coat in this breed ought to be particularly soft and silky, and is often of great length and thickness. The kittens when born are usually dull in colour, and gradually brighten as they grow older. As is well known to cat fanciers, orange females are rarer than orange males, so their market value is higher. There is, therefore, always a flutter of excitement on the arrival of a litter, and too often fate has decreed that all are males!

Orange cats make a splendid foil for other varieties. This is especially the case as regards blues and blacks; the contrast in colour enhances the beauty of each. I know one lady who, having an eye to the artistic, keeps a blue and an orange neuter, and a lovely pair they make. I think the largest cat I ever saw was an orange neuter that simply filled the show pen with a mass of bright colour - but he had a white shirt front and white gloves! As regards mating orange cats, they make a good cross with blacks and tortoiseshells; and if a brown tabby lacks the admired tawny or golden tint, then an orange may assist to brighten and improve the general tone, and do away, perchance, with that drabbiness which is so undesirable in a brown tabby.

I do not think orange cats have ever been very popular, and I have remarked at shows that a certain number of people refuse to give anything but a passing contemptuous glance at the classes which contain what they call "those yellow cats."

A very common defect among orange Persian cats is the white or very light chin. Sometimes there is the still more damaging blemish of a white spot on the throat, spreading, perhaps, further down the chest. It is very rare to find an orange that has really a dark under-lip. and chin level in tone with the body colour. The white lip is a bugbear to breeders and exhibitors, for Nature repeats itself, and judges make notes of the defect; and in these up-to-date catty days of specialist clubs and standards of points a cat full of quality failing in one particular is too often a white elephant, if desired for anything more than a pet. I have observed that orange cats will sometimes develop a light or nearly white chin in their old age. I never consider a white spot or tuft of white hairs such a blemish to a cat if these are on the stomach, as compared with the same defect on the throat. Such a spot would not be so likely to be handed down to successive generations; and, of course, a blemish that has to be sought for in an obscure part of the body is not such an eyesore in a self or tabby cat.

I have often observed orange cats with very light hair underneath which has almost approached white ; but such defects are sometimes only temporary, whereas a white spot on the throat or a white chin remains once and for ever.

In the early days of the fancy, orange cats were decidedly more tabby marked than they are in the present day. A noted one of this type was "Cyrus the Elamite," born in 1889, and bred by Mrs. Kinchant, an enthusiastic fancier at that and later periods. In 1893 and 1894 Mr. Heap exhibited a handsome orange, "Prince Charlie," at the Crystal Palace. He also owned another, called "Prince Lyne," of the same breed, the celebrated tortoiseshell "Queen Elizabeth" being the mother of both these cats. "Puff " was exhibited by Mrs.

Spackman in 1894; this orange cat was not much marked, and "Lifeguard" was bred from him. It was about this date that unmarked orange Persians became more fashionable. Among females, "Lifeguard's" sister, "Goldylocks," owned by Mrs. Marriott, was one of the very best queens ever shown. Mrs. Foote, who is still well known in the fancy, had several beautiful orange females, notably "Marigold," "Buttercup," and "Cowslip." With these-cats Mrs. Foote tried to breed unmarked creams and oranges, "Ripon," a noted cream, being the sire. She built up several storeys of her catty castle, but then sold them to Lady Marcus Beresford. "Trilby," litter sister to "Zoroaster," a famous cream, was one of the brightest and deepest coloured orange females - or, indeed, orange cats - that has ever been seen.

Coming down to the present day, I may remark that the number of orange cats placed at stud is very limited. A great loss to the ranks of male orange Persians was " Lifeguard," formerly the property of Lady Marcus Beresford. This cat was almost unmarked, of a beautiful bright shade, and had an unusually round head and short face, with long silky coat. He was purchased by Miss Cartmell, who is well known as an enthusiastic breeder of orange Persians, but who never exhibits. This lady has been very successful in breeding numerous fine female orange cats, and many a winner has been born to blush unseen in the Barham Cattery, near Canterbury.

Another noted winner and stud cat is "Torrington Sunnysides," of whom a portrait is given. This cat is the property of Mrs.

G. H. Vidal, and has done a lot of winning. His colour is exceptionally good, and he has sired several prize kittens, some of which have been sent out to America and gained distinction over the water. "Torrington Sunny-sides" has a most luxurious house in the spacious garden surrounding Mrs. Vidal's residence at Sydenham. The photograph is by Mr. G. W. Vidal, who dislikes taking orange cats, because the tone is so difficult to reproduce in photography. Mrs. Davies, of Caterham, has owned some good orange cats. Her male "Hamish" was a grand specimen, but was only twice exhibited, when he gained highest honours. He was then purchased by Mrs.

Vidal, and sent out to Mr. Storey in Chicago. A son of "Torrington Sunnysides" has also found a home in a Chicago cattery. "Red Knight " was sent by the writer to Mrs. Colburn, and in an article in the American Field and Fancy mention is thus made of him:- "'Red Knight,' an orange male, with deepest orange eyes, was imported from England. He is a very good type, and has sired some beautiful kittens, notably two by Miss Adams' 'Daffodil,' very fine specimens of pure orange, with cobby bodies, wide heads, tiny ears set far apart, and beautiful coats. They have been fed on 'Force,' and Miss Adams is going to call the male' Sunny Jim.' Another son, seven months old, of the same parentage, is the largest cat ever seen for his age, and if he continues growing will certainly be enormous."

One of Mrs. Vidal's orange kittens, "Puck " by name, is now owned by Mrs. Moxon, of Ilfracombe, from whom I have obtained a photograph for reproduction.

A few notes on orange Persian cats by Mrs. Vidal will be interesting to my readers:"It is difficult to imagine a more gorgeous colour than a really good orange lying full length in the sun. There is, however, rather a prejudice against them, chiefly because some people persist in calling them 'sandy' or 'ed,' both of which names are quite misleading. I have several times had people say to me when visiting my cattery,' I have always thought I did not like sandy cats, but I have never before seen a cat of such a lovely colour as the one you have just shown me.' Six years ago, when I first took up cat rearing, it was rare to see any orange cats at the shows, but now they and the creams form one of the most beautiful classes, and they have a specialist society of their own and an energetic secretary in Miss Mildred Beal.

"There are two classes of oranges, one which has the ordinary tabby markings, more or less distinct, and the other which is 'flecked' all over the back in small patches, and which is usually not nearly so bright in colour as the so-called 'tabby' markings. The correct thing is to breed a totally unmarked orange ; and, although many people claim this for their pets, it is very rarely seen. The absence of markings usually means absence of the rich orange colour so much admired. Any white on chin or bib is, of course, a blemish, and for breeding or show purposes such an animal is perfectly useless.

" An orange stud cat is a very useful animal to have in a cattery, for crossing with him will improve many colours, viz. tortoiseshell, brown, grey, and sable tabbies ; while if he is mated to a blue queen the kittens, if orange, are beautiful in colour - brighter, I think, than if two orange cats are mated together. In mating with other colours it is a toss-up what colour will predominate, but the only way to ensure all orange kittens is to mate with orange queens, when, according to my experience with my stud cat ('Torrington Sunny-sides'), the results are all orange. Mated with tortoiseshells the orange kittens are very good ; but mated with blacks the strongest colour carries the day, and the kittens are mostly black or tortoiseshell, seldom orange. Silvers, chinchillas, and smokes should, of course, never be mated with oranges, as the result would be a horrible mixture ! Orange queens were at one time very rare, and even now are not plentiful, being delicate and difficult to rear.

"The time at which the kittens change the colour of their eyes from the baby blue to orange varies a great deal in individual animals, from seven to twelve weeks. When the eyes are very deep blue, they change to bright rich orange or hazel; but if of a pale blue, they change very quickly to a poor yellow, and never get the rich dark orange which the deeper blue get. Therefore rejoice when you see your kittens with deep blue eyes. Some of our kittens have had the most lovely deep blue eyes, and great has been our sorrow as we found the inevitable change coming on. If I could only manage to get some kittens with the permanent blue eyes that the best white cats have, I should indeed be proud; but thinking of the kittens with terrible white chins and under-coats, which would crop up in every litter and would have to be drowned, quite deters me from sending my orange queens to white studs with blue eyes! All who have been accustomed to frequent the show pens will remember Miss M. Beal's splendid old orange queen 'Jael,' who up to the last, although nearly fourteen years old, always took first prize, and was a very good specimen of what an orange queen should be - of a bright rich orange, without any suspicion of light under her chin or chest (the usual weak point), and having the splendid head, short nose, and good cobby shape which all breeders strive for.

Short-haired orange cats are often seen about our towns and villages, and are always called 'sandy,' but are not, I think, held in much account. They are distinct from the so - called' red tabby,' which is a recognised colour in our shows."

Among the prize - winning females of the present day I must not forget to notice Mrs. Singleton's "Orange Girl," bred from Miss Beal's noted strain. This cat has had many honours showered upon her during a very short career, and as there must always be a scarcity of queens in this breed, this fine specimen is a valuable possession.

So long as there are two cat clubs and two registers there will be a confused multiplicity of names, and so yet another orange male called "Puck" inhabits the cat world. This handsome fellow is owned by the Hon. Mrs. McLaren Morrison, to whom I had the pleasure of awarding first prize and many specials at the Botanic show held in June, 1902. His vivid colouring and well-shaped limbs and splendid eyes will always make him a conspicuous specimen in the show pen. Alas! his photograph does him but scant justice. Quite a surprise packet appeared at the Crystal Palace show of 1902 by the appearance of a very handsome young male in " William of Orange " exhibited by Mrs. Stillwell, and bred from Dr. Roper's noted black "Johnnie Fawe" and tortoiseshell queen "Dainty Diana." This cat was awarded first and many specials, and was claimed by Lord Decies at catalogue price. As "William" was not a year old when he won his laurels, it may readily be believed that he has a distinguished career before him, and may add another to the long list of winners owned and exhibited by Lady Decies. No orange male cat is better known in the fancy than that splendid fellow " The King's Own," belonging to Mrs. Neate. He has had a most successful career, and may be considered as nearly self-coloured an orange as any yet exhibited.

Mrs. Neate is a devoted admirer of this breed and also a great cat lover, and has recently started an arrangement for boarding cats, and truly I know of no place better adapted for successful cat keeping than the home of Mrs. Francis Neate, at Wernham, near Marlborough ; situated as it is in the very heart of the country, a mile from any other house, her cats can enjoy their liberty with perfect safety.

A large range of brick-built and slated outhouses has been converted into catteries and comfortably fitted. All have wooden floors, wire doors, and large runs attached. A number of portable houses and runs are dotted about the kitchen garden and meadows. An empty cottage serves as an isolation hospital, or place of quarantine for cats returning from shows.

A herd of pure-bred goats supply the inmates of the cattery with milk, and rabbits, which abound, form their staple food when in season. The largest of the outhouses is fitted with a Tortoise stove, carefully guarded. The pride of Mrs. Neate's cattery is, of course, the famous orange stud "The King's Own." He is the sire of the two winning orange queens "Mehitabel of the Durhams" and "Glory of Prittlewell."

Fitting mates for him are "Wernham Titmouse" (tortoiseshell-and-white), "Evening Primrose" (a cream daughter of "Champion Midshipmite" and "Hazeline"), also "Mimosa" (an orange bred by Miss Cartmell from" Richmond Bough" and "Mistletoe") these occupy the house adjoining the stables.

"Champion Bundle" and "Betsy Jane," a lovely little blue with glorious orange eyes, are the only blues of the establishment. Latterly Mrs. Neate has reduced her own stock of breeding queens, and makes a speciality of receiving cats during the holidays. Judging by the number of cat fanciers who sent their pets to Mrs. Neate during the summer of 1902, it is certain that a great want has been most efficiently supplied. Not only does Mrs. Neate give personal supervision to her catty boarders and visitors, but they have splendid caretakers on the premises. These custodians are Mrs. Neate's big St. Bernard and a chow-chow, who jealously guard the Wernham cattery. These dogs are on the very best terms with the feline inmates, and the strange pussies very soon appear to settle down to an amicable cat-and-dog life. The accompanying photographs, as will be seen, were taken in the depth of winter. These brick-built houses, slate roofed and with wooden floor, are splendidly adapted for keeping the cats snug and warm during the cold weather. One of the buildings illustrated is 25 feet by 15 feet, and has three windows.

This house is provided with large table, shelves, and chairs, and cosy sleeping-boxes. An outside wire run, of the same length and width as the building, is erected for an exercise ground in summer weather.

Mrs. Neate has kindly supplied me with a few notes on orange Persian cats:"It was in 1897, at Boscombe show, that I claimed the winner in a class of twenty-six kittens, my now well-known orange Persian stud 'The King's Own.' The same year, at the Crystal Palace, I purchased a lovely orange female kitten sired by Mrs. Pettit's' Champion King of Pearls' and the tortoiseshell-and-white 'Dainty Doris.' From her I fondly hoped to establish a breed of blue-eyed oranges, which feature would be charming in the variety ; but alas ! she came home to sicken and die, as so many another valuable kitten has done, and I have never since been able to obtain an orange of either sex sired by a blue-eyed white.

"It is most difficult to breed oranges without white lips and chins ; the pink nose, too, is a feature in the breed that I do not like.

"I have found crossing an orange male with a cream female the surest way to breed sound-coloured specimens of both sexes and varieties, e.g.'Mehitabel of the Durhams' (a really rich-coloured unmarked orange queen, and quite free from the objectionable light shading on lips and chin) ; she was bred by Mrs. D'Arcy Hildyard from her cream female' Josephine of the Durhams' and 'The King's Own.' Again, from a blue male and a tortoiseshell queen you are more certain of breeding good oranges (though seldom of the female sex) than from mating tortoiseshell and orange together ; in the latter case more often than not black kittens predominate in the litter, and there is rarely, if ever, an orange female amongst them.

"Mrs. Vidal's famous orange stud 'Torrington Sunnysides' was a son of my light blue 'Champion Bundle' and a tortoiseshell dam 'Torrington Owlet,' herself of an orange strain. Mrs. Walford Gosnall's' Rufus' (whose name discloses his colour) was also the result of this union. 'Red Ensign,' the orange kitten who won first and three specials at Westminster in 1902, was bred by me from 'Champion Bundle' and 'Mimosa,' an orange queen of cream breeding, and with his litter brother 'Scarlet Lancer' took first and silver medal for the best pair of kittens. The latter is now the property of Miss Cartmell, and has grown into a fine cat. Unfortunately for the cat fancy generally,' Red Ensign' was claimed at the show, and is now a house pet.

"The best orange kittens I have bred were from my 'Wernham Titmouse,' a tortoiseshell-and-white who owns an orange dam, and' The King's Own' ; the whole litter were females, and redder than any oranges I have seen. These never lived to see a show, and their death was one of the greatest disappointments I have experienced in my career. The demand for good orange and cream females is greater than the supply ; in fact, these colours are decidedly' booming,' and better classification is given for them at our principal shows.

"At the Crystal Palace show of 1898 there were only four entries in the open class for orange and cream males, and four of the same varieties in the female class, compared to the ten entries in orange and cream male classes and the same number in the female classes at the Cat Club's show, held at Westminster, 1902. These facts speak for themselves of the increased interest now taken in these varieties. "Unlike some of the warmer tinted of us humans, orange cats of both sexes are particularly sweet tempered, showing great attachment to their owners. They are of strong constitution and attain to great size, being at present free from the in-breeding that is practised amongst many other varieties of our show cats. A small piece of sulphate of iron in the drinking water will enrich the colour of orange and tortoiseshells, besides being an excellent tonic, especially during the moulting season.

"Orange Persian cats do not, as a rule, make good photographs, as they lack expression compared to the short-haired tabby varieties of this colour."

The Misses Beal, of Romaldkirk, near Darlington, have long been associated with orange and cream cats. "Jael" was quite unique as an orange female, and at fifteen years of age could yet win in her class by reason of her grand colour, perfectly shaped head, short face, and tiny, well-set ears. Such a cat stands out in any breed, and such a cat may never again be bred. "Jael" died in 1902, after a long and successful career.

Miss Beal's male orange "Minotaur" is one of the most beautiful cats of this breed now exhibited, and has quite the best round head and face, with sweetest expression. These are qualities too often lacking in orange cats.

Miss Beal's name is, perhaps, more closely associated in the cat world with cream cats, and in my next chapter on this breed she has kindly supplied some notes.

Another fancier of both orange and cream cats is Mrs. D'Arcy-Hildyard, and to her I am indebted for the following notes on orange Persian cats : "Until comparatively lately I confined myself entirely to the breeding of creams, and my efforts were attended with considerable success, both in multiplying the number of cats of that colour - I bred thirteen one year - and in filling the classes given for cream females. I was particularly lucky in breeding many creams of the gentler sex.

"The birth of the Orange and Tortoiseshell Society fired me with ambition to start breeding oranges. I was much fascinated with the colour, though I hate their being penned beside the creams at shows, as they completely take all colour out of the lighter animals and give them a washed-out appearance. I started by crossing my cream queen 'Josephine of the Dur-hams' with Mrs. Neate's famous' The King's Own.' This proved a most satisfactory cross, the results being three rich-coloured unmarked orange kittens, one male and two females. I sold one female to Miss Scratton, of Prittlewell Priory, and it has, I hear, grown into a very handsome cat ; the other two I kept, and they won all before them at Manchester Kitten Show, 1901, and were shown at Slough after, where the male was claimed. The remaining one,

'Mehitabel of the Durhams,' I kept, and she won me many prizes last winter, and being mated this year to 'Champion Romaldkirk Admiral' has presented me with a litter of two creams and an orange. Certainly creams and oranges cross well, and often I think produce a brighter and deeper tone of colour than is obtained from other shades. I have lately purchased an orange torn, and by crossing him with'Hazeline,' one of my cream queens, have got a splendid litter of seven pure oranges. This, I think, proves that the cream and orange cross is good, and that they breed very true. Oranges bred by crossing other colours seem to me rather spasmodic, if I may use the term. When breeders try crossing an orange and a tortoiseshell they very often get blacks and blues as well as oranges ; on the other hand, from a blue and a tortoiseshell cross sometimes an orange is obtained. But they do not seem able to count exactly on the results.

"Reliability is what I claim from the cream and orange cross. I emphatically believe in mating creams to creams if you wish to get a good pale colour and few markings, and oranges and creams crossed have certainly produced good specimens of both colours for me. I speak from my own experience.

"I hope to do great things by trying a cross between my orange torn' Benjamin' and'Mehitabel.' Miss Winifred Beal's' Minotaur' was the result of a cross between a cream and a tortoiseshell. Her well-known 'Garnet' is the daughter of a cream and a blue. At present there is, to my mind, no orange female on the show bench to compare with the late'Jael,' owned by Miss Mildred Beal, whose brilliant colour and perfect head with its tiny ears made her hold her own at all the shows up to within two months of her death at quite a venerable age ; but I hope in the future, as oranges become more popular and breeders work hard at producing good specimens, we may see her like again. I was much taken at Richmond show with Mrs. Singleton's' Orange Girl,' and also with the kitten of that colour exhibited by the same lady at Manchester. Every year, I think, shows that the general world is becoming more alive to the beauties of orange and cream cats, as proved both by the large increase in entries of these colours at the principal shows and the great demand for kittens when any are offered for sale.

Undoubtedly breeders owning creams should stick to them, if they wish to produce good oranges - see the many splendid specimens sired by 'Midshipmite' and 'Admiral.'

"It is a hard matter to say decisively what tint orange kittens should be when born. 1 have known them enter the world a bad cream, and gradually grow redder till they develop into the brilliant colour we all look to see in a cat of orange hue. Personally, I prefer them born a dark shade ; they usually lighten and brighten a little, but on the whole I think that is the more satisfactory of the two. It is distinctly discouraging to see a washed-out looking kitten when you are expecting a bright orange one.

"Fanciers differ about the eyes which are supposed to be correct in this breed. Hazel eyes are universally acknowledged to be the right thing. Personally, I admire green, or rather eau-de-nil eyes, as giving more contrast to the colour of the coat, but you do not often see them. I have always wished to breed a cream with blue eyes - I do not mean the baby blue, but the colour that Siamese have - and only the other day I sold a kitten three months old with brilliant blue eyes of this tint, and shall be anxious to know whether they change in time or not.

"I think the time is approaching when the orange and cream cats are going to be among the most attractive classes at our bigger shows. Already the classes are much better filled than when I first joined the fancy, and you always find an admiring crowd in front of their pens. I wish, though, that a nice sprinkling of blues could always be placed between the two colours at shows. The close company of the oranges is so excessively unbecoming to the creams, while when you see the three colours together they are especially lovely. To see cream and orange cats at their best they should be at large in the country and running about on the green grass."

In 1902 an Orange and Cream Cat Club was started by a few enthusiastic breeders of these varieties over in America. The Misses Beal, Mrs. Vidal, and Miss Frances Simpson were elected as honorary members. The following is an extract from Field and Fancy, the American weekly paper : ORANGE CATS. There is very little doubt that this is a colour that has from the beginning of the fancy in America been very popular, and has had a very strong hold upon the American love for colour. But, of course, as is generally the case with the popular ones, the supply has never been too plentiful, and probably never will be as regards the queens, for they only appear once in a while, according to what seems to be one of Nature's rules, that the queens should be tortoise-shells.

The Orange and Cream Club is probably destined to do a great deal for the variety, which is one of the colours from which it takes its name. Breeding orange cats opens quite a field, for in attaining your end you can at the same time indulge in other colours, for undoubtedly a cross with a tortoiseshell will be found necessary to keep the colour sufficiently intense, and at other times it may be quite as well to throw in a little black. The tendency for the queens to be tortoiseshells may possibly be somewhat overcome in time, but these inherent traits in colours in animals and birds are often so strong that they have a knack of reappearing even after several generations. We occasionally see queens of the orange colour, and these are usually high quality ones, both in colour and type ; but the orange queens are not destined to at present make heavy classes by themselves. Though the standard calls for orange eyes, it is a curious coincidence that the most consistently successful cat of recent times has been Miss Beal's "Jael," who had green eyes ; but so good was her colour, so good her type, that she generally won when exhibited.

The struggle carried on in the British Isles for some years to breed these cats without marks has been hardly a success, and there have not been very many evolved of that colour that were really without marks, and it is a great question if in this craze for absence of marks they have not been passing by a lot of good cats. As far as we personally are concerned in the matter, we see little to be gained by the absence of marks in the orange cats. If the colour had been very prolific in numbers it might have been a good idea to try and split up the classes, but they were never too well filled, and there is room still for plenty more, though we cannot complain so much at the representation that they have had in America last season, either in numbers or quality.

CHAPTER XVI. CREAM OR FAWN PERSIANS

THIS may be said to be the very latest variety in Persian breeds, and one which bids fair to become very fashionable. The term " cream " describes exactly what is the desired tint of these cats, but few and far between are the specimens which are pale and even enough in colour to be correctly described as creams. No doubt. in times past now and again a cream cat would be seen exhibited in the " any variety " class, but then they might be designated as freaks or flukes. Now, however, fanciers of these cats have a system in their matings, and therefore, as a result, there is a breed of cats established which until late years were not recognised or classified.

It is true that the cream Persians seen in the show pens are often much darker than is implied by the name, and, indeed, are really fawn-coloured. The great thing, however, is to obtain an even tint throughout, whether dark or light, and to avoid any patches, streaks, or tabby markings. I think the very pale creams are more dainty and fascinating than the darker cats, but the lighter the coat the more difficult it is to obtain perfect uniformity of colour. Of course, there will always be a certain amount of shading in cream cats - that is, the spine-line will be slightly darker, shading off on the sides and under the stomach and tail. I think that creams are making more rapid strides towards attaining the "almost unmarked" stage than are silvers. Certainly, good creams of to-day are very slightly barred on head or legs or tail, and this cannot be said as regards some of our best silver cats. This is probably to be accounted for by the cautious and wise discrimination used in mating creams by selecting blues or tortoiseshells, and thus avoiding tabby-marked cats. It is a peculiarity of cream cats that the eyes are generally almond-shaped, and are set rather slanting in the head. It is rare and a great treat to see bold, round, owl-like eyes in cream cats.

These in colour should be golden or hazel, the brighter the colour the better. I will here give the points of cream or fawn cats, as drawn up by the specialist society

Colour - To be as pure as possible without marking or shading, either paler or darker, dulness and white to be particularly avoided. All shades from the palest fawn to be allowable. (25)
Coat - To be very long and fluffy. (25)
Size And Shape - To be large - not coarse, but massive, with plenty of bone and substance ; short legs. (20)
Head - To be round and broad, with short nose, ears small and well opened. (15)
Eyes - To be large and full, and bright orange or hazel in colour. (5)
Condition - (10)

Much has been done by this energetic specialist society to get a better classification for creams at our shows; and perhaps, as time goes on and a larger number of fanciers take up these breeds, a distinct classification will be given for creams and fawns. It may always be a little difficult to draw the line between the two; but such a division of colours would, I think, give satisfaction to the breeders of both creams and fawns, for at present judges are more inclined to give a preference to the palest-coloured cats, perhaps because more beautiful and more difficult to breed.

In the former breeds, more especially blues and silvers, that I have described in this work it would have been impossible to name all those cats that were noted in the fancy, for the simple reason that their name is legion ; but it is different in a breed like creams, for, as I mentioned in the beginning of this chapter, in times past it was a case of only here and there a cream Persian appearing on the scene, then vanishing perhaps to America, or else being purchased for a pet and retiring from public life. These " sports " in the fancy were not seriously taken up, and no one thought of trying to establish a strain; so that one can, as it were, put one's finger on the cats of this variety, if not so easily in the present day, certainly in the past.

The first recorded cream Persian in catalogues or stud books is "Cupid Bassanio," born in 1890, bred by Mrs. Kinchant ; no pedigree is given. He was a big, broad-headed, heavily coated cat, with a good many marks and shadings, and was sold to Mrs. Preston Whyte, and passed on to Miss Norman. In the same year Mrs. Kinchant exhibited cream kittens at Brighton. "Ripon" was another well-known cream of imported parents (a blue and an orange). This cat was purchased from Mrs. Foote by Lady Marcus Beresford, and eventually disappeared when in the possession of Miss Cockburn Dickinson. Mr. McLaren Morrison in 1893 owned a pale cat called "Devonshire Cream." In the following year Miss Taylor bred a splendid specimen from "Tawny," her noted tortoise-shell. This cat, called "Fawn," was an absolutely self - coloured fawn with brown eyes, and would do some winning if alive now to compete in our up-to-date classes for cream or fawn. It was in 1895 that Miss Beal first exhibited some of her creams, upon which at that time she did not set much store, more interested as she was in blues ; but of her now celebrated strain more anon.

One of the best-known creams of late years is "Zoroaster," bred by Mrs. Bagster from her tortoiseshell "Pixie." This was a remarkably large pale cat with glorious eyes, but he was a good deal patched in colour when I saw him at Mrs. Mackenzie Stewart's cattery. Mrs. Cartwright bred a well-shaped light cream, "Upwood Junket," by "Timkins," a blue, and a daughter of "Cyrus the Elamite." Mrs. Davies, of Caterham, has often had creams in her possession, notably "Lord Cremorne," quite one of the palest seen in the show pen. Two noted creams now placed at stud are Mrs. Norris's "Kew Ronald" and Mrs. Western's "Matthew of the Durhams." Both these cats are bred from Miss Beal's famous "Heavenly Twins." Regarding "Matthew," a reporter in Our Cats thus writes after the Botanic show of 1901 : - "Creams are, we prophesy, the coming cats. There seems to us great possibilities in this variety.' Matthew of the Durhams is one of the cats we would bring forward in support of this view. Eminently aristocratic, breathing an air of refinement, this cat might be the petted darling of a princess whose cats are all selected by a connoisseur." Mr. Western is justly proud of his purchase, for he claimed this fine cat at the Sandy show, 1901, when he was exhibited by Mrs. D'Arcy Hildyard. "Matthew" has on four separate occasions taken second to his father "Admiral's" first.

He has sired some lovely creams, notably "Wynnstay Myrtle," also owned by Mrs. F. Western. This female is one of the best of her breed, and is sure to have some influence over the creams of the future. At the Crystal Palace show of 1902, where she was awarded first and many specials, she was the admired of all admirers. As a rule, cream females have been very much behind the males in quantity and quality. Almost the first two were bred by Miss Hester Cochrane from "Cyrus the Elamite" and "Brunette." "Cremed'Or" is quite one of the best, and was owned by Mrs. Wellbye, who sold her to Mrs. Norris. This cat declined to enter into any matrimonial alliance for some time, but at last presented her owner with a family by "Darius," Mrs. Ransome's noted blue. Two of these cats, "Kew Laddie" and "Kew Ronald," are well known in their different spheres. "Kew Laddie" I purchased to send out to Mrs. Clinton Locke, in Chicago, and she presented him to the honorary secretary of the Beresford Club, Miss Johnstone. This lady exhibited "Laddie" at the big Chicago Cat Show, where he won high honours, and in a letter received from Miss Johnstone I learn he is growing a grand fellow and, in fact, is quite la crime de la creme in catty society over the water.

The picture of a perfect kitten on the opening page of this chapter represents a cream female, "Jessica Kew," bred by Mrs. Clinton Locke from "Lockhaven Daffodil," sired by Miss Johnstone's "Laddie Kew." Mrs. Clinton Locke is justly proud of this lovely kitten, and writes: "Jessica is the finest kitten I have ever seen ; all her points are perfect. She was five weeks old when this photo was taken. Her grandfather was my' Victor,' an orange, her great-grandmother a tortoiseshell-and-white."

I have mentioned Mr. F. Norris as a breeder of creams and the owner of the handsome pair of cats illustrated on this page. He has kindly supplied me with the following notes: "Cream cats are of a modern colour in Persians, but are now being more freely bred and finding numerous supporters. There are, however, very few good ones in the fancy, for size and colour are difficult to obtain. The great failing with them is that, although they are called cream cats, the best and soundest coloured ones are really of a fawn shade. So many show markings, patches, or shadings, whereas the colour should be one shade and sound throughout; better be a little dark in colour rather than shade from cream to white, as is the case with so many specimens exhibited.

"For one grand-headed and good-eyed cat you see a dozen snipy, long-faced ones with curious slit eyes, instead of a short, snub head, with glorious big round golden eyes.

" In my opinion, to get the short head, good eye, fine body shape, and short legs, it is best to mate a cream with a good cobby blue. From my experience nothing beats a blue, although you can mate them with a red, tortoiseshell, or black. Mating two creams together I do not advocate, unless one of them has a distinct out-cross in the first generation to totally different blood.

"All the creams shown are descended from Miss Beal's two brothers' Ronaldkirk Admiral' and 'Ronaldkirk Midshipmite,' and to keep the colour, breeders have bred in and into them again; and that is why they have lost so much in type and character, which would have been improved by using an out-cross.

"I have heard people say,' Cream females will not breed.' If they only studied the question a minute, they would know the reason well enough, which is that they have been too much in-bred. If breeders will only try the blue cross more, they will, I am sure, be pleased, and we shall see a better cat being shown. Breeding from blue you will get pure creams and some cream and blue mixed. Keep the blue and cream females, and when old enough mate them to a cream, and you will get some fine sound-coloured cream kits.

"It is very curious that there has been nothing yet bred in males to beat the twin cats 'Admiral' and' Midshipmite.'

"In females the best I have seen is 'Miriam of the Durhams,' who has a lovely body and coat, but is long in face and has those bad-shaped eyes. 'Creme d'Or' runs her close, as she has such a good head, with perfect eye, but is a wee bit long in the leg." Miss Beal's females "Calliope" and "Mignonette" were both noted prize-winning cream females. Mrs. D'Arcy Hildyard has been most successful in her endeavours to breed creams from creams, and a letter from her in Our Cats of April, 1901, will be interesting to breeders of this variety

Sir, - Being much interested in the breeding of creams, I should like to say a few words on the subject and state my experience. Though only a novice, I have up to date succeeded in breeding twenty creams - two in 1899, thirteen in 1900, and seven this year. I began by mating my mixed blue and cream queen "Senga" to a cream torn "D'Arcy," which I bought from Mr. Hutchinson, of Egglestone. From this pair I got four kittens, all females - two cream and two marked blues. I kept the creams "Josephine" and "Hazeline," winners at Westminster as kittens, first and second special and medal, 1900. Later on in the year I mated them, "Hazeline" to Miss Beal's "Midshipmite," "Josephine" to her "Admiral." Both litters were entirely cream, "Josephine" producing six kittens, "Hazeline" producing five, two of which I have kept. "Matthew" and "Miriam of the Durhams" both won as kittens at Manchester, and "Miriam has since taken first and specials at Barnard Castle, Westminster, and Reading. "Matthew" is growing into a very handsome cat, and I hope to exhibit him at the Botanic. On Saturday last, April 13th, "Hazeline" again kittened and produced five creams, having again been mated to "Midshipmite." This I think distinctly proves that good creams can be got from a pair of the same colour.

On April 14th "Senga" also presented me with two more creams, also two marked blues, this time the result of a mating with Miss Beale's "Ronaldkirk Toza."

Mrs. Barton Collier has two good creams, "Brum" and "Dolly of Brough." Again these cats are from Miss Beal's strain, the male being a fawn and the female quite one of the palest of creams.

Miss H. Cochran, who formerly took a great interest in this breed, writes : - " I should be inclined to mate a pale cream male or female with a white, and the progeny with an unmarked orange, or vice versa. I had a litter from' Buttercup' and' Zoroaster,' consisting of two oranges, two fawns, and a cream. The fawn and creams were females, but all died in their youth. I made other attempts with similar crosses, as I had been told it was impossible to breed cream queens, and in the first year all the creams were queens, and the males red ! My idea was to select a male of the required colour, and mate a queen of suitable breeding with him, then to mate the resulting queens with their own father. I believe this plan would have been a success if I had followed it up. My idea is that the natural males are the fawns and oranges, and that their complementary queens are the blue tortoiseshells and the ordinary tortoiseshells. No harm is ever done to a cream or orange strain by crossing with black, and it may do much good to the latter by deepening the colour of the oranges, and promoting patchiness as opposed to streakiness in the tortoiseshells."

I have made frequent mention of Miss Beal's noted creams during my chapters on orange and cream cats. These two celebrated champions are commonly known in the fancy as the " Heavenly Twins," their registered names being "Romaldkirk Admiral" and "Romaldkirk Midshipmite." They are really fawn Persian cats, very sound in colour, well made, big boned, and are always exhibited in the pink of condition, and at all seasons of the year are in marvellous coat. Certainly, the cold climate of the Romaldkirk cattery, which is situated 730 feet above the sea level, must, anyhow, suit this variety of Persian cat. I suppose the day will come when these welltried and well-seasoned veterans will have to retire from public life and make way for some of their already noted offspring. In the North, South, East, and West these " Heavenly Twins" have reigned supreme, and Miss Beal must almost have lost count of the number of prizes won by them, which, I think I am safe in saying, would give an exact record of the number of times exhibited. In response to my request, Miss Beal has sent me some notes regarding her cattery arrangements, She says : "Most of the houses are old farm buildings round about our stable yard, and I have recently utilised an old granary which is over the coachhouse.

This is about 40 feet long, and has a room at one end, with five windows and good ventilation above. In addition I have three big cat houses and a loft, where most of the queens reside. 'Middy' and 'Admiral' (the 'Heavenly Twins') have small wooden houses, felted inside and out, with wired runs and concrete floors.

"I have the use of two laundries and a tool-house fitted with fireplaces, and these I reserve in case of illness."

There are no cats exhibited in better coat and condition than those that come from the Romaldkirk cattery, and the Misses Beal may be justly proud of their splendid specimens of creams, oranges, tortoiseshells, and blue Persians. Miss W. Beal has kindly supplied me with a short article on cream and fawn Persians : "The cream and fawn Persian was a few years ago looked upon as a 'sport,' and when cream kittens appeared in an orange strain they were considered spoilt oranges, and were either given away, sold for a few shillings, or in many cases destroyed as useless. Now, however, it is very different; there is a growing demand for cats and kittens of this colour, and at the big shows they usually have two classes, i.e. male and female, for them. They were certainly slow in coming into general favour, owing, I think, to the following facts : First, that the specimens formerly exhibited failed very noticeably in head, being very narrow in face and long in nose ; secondly, that cream females were practically unknown; and, thirdly, that a show, where they are generally seen, is emphatically the worst place to see cream Persians to advantage, as the journey and being in a town, etc., takes off the spotlessness of their coat and dulls their colour, and the dingy grey of the pens and the yellow of the straw combine to spoil the effect of their colour.

"The place, without doubt, to see creams to perfection is the country, where against a background of vivid green lawn then-pure, soft colouring is indeed a thing of beauty, and rarely fails to command admiration. The colour is rather difficult to describe, and there are two distinct tones of colour bred, the one which is generally seen and is so far most successful at shows being a cream rather deep in shade, almost buff, with a distinct pink tinge about it, which is very different from the washed-out orange or sandy colour some people imagine it to be. The other tone of cream colour is much paler in shade, but, instead of the pink, it inclines to a lemon tinge, and, though paler, it is, as a rule, more' flaky' and uneven than the darker shades, and it is also very apt to fade into white underneath.

"Nearly all the best-known creams are bred in the first place from orange and blue strains, though creams have appeared as freaks in many colours - silvers, tabbies, etc.; but I believe the present strains sprang from crossing blue and orange, and you can generally rely on getting some creams by crossing a tortoise-shell, cream, orange, or blue tortoiseshell queen with a blue sire. But, so far, reversing the mating, i.e. a blue queen with a cream or orange sire, is not successful from the cream breeders' point of view, though very good from that of those breeders who want blues, as the kittens generally excel in purity of colour. Cream females are now fairly common, and so in a few years there ought to be a well-established strain of cream-bred creams ; but, as in all other breeding for colour, people are apt to get surprises - for instance, one strain of cream females mated to a cream sire invariably produces whole litters of creams, while another strain, more cream-bred than the first named, mated to the same sire produces equal numbers of creams and orange-and-creams. If people wish to start breeding creams, and cannot afford a cream female, it is a good plan to buy a well-bred nondescript coloured female, either blue-and-cream, tabby, tortoiseshell, or anything that has cream or orange about it, and if it is properly mated there are nearly sure to be one or two creams : thus a cream strain can be gradually built up.

"There are several things to be remembered in trying to breed good creams. One point to be aimed at is to keep the colour as level as possible, whether it be of a dark or light shade, and to keep it pure, not tinged with blue or dull. Among other faults to be bred out are the light lip and chin, which are very common defects, and the long head, which is still seen sometimes, though creams have improved vastly in this respect in the last few years. Creams have been taken up greatly in America as well as oranges, and there they seem to be formidable rivals in popularity to the silvers, which have so far over here outdone them in that respect. " One great point in favour of creams is their hardiness, for they do not possess the delicate constitutions which seem to belong to most of the other very pale varieties of Persians. With other coloured cats - blues, silvers, etc. - creams make a splendid contrast, and with oranges add greatly to the effect of a group. They also cross well with several colours - blue, black, tortoiseshell, etc. - for breeding; and many breeders think the result of the growing fancy for these colours, i.e. cream and orange - for, though so different, they are hard to deal with separately - will be that they will be better catered for at shows as to classes, and more extensively bred than they are at present."

CHAPTER XVII. TORTOISESHELL PERSIANS

MANY years ago, when I first took up the cat fancy, I used to think tortoiseshells ugly and commonplace, and I am afraid even now I have not that admiration for the breed which I feel a really good specimen of this variety ought to inspire. To begin with, it is seldom that a true type of long-haired tortoiseshell is seen or exhibited, and perhaps this may account for the breed being so much neglected. They are not taking-looking cats, and make a poor show in the pen. I have often remarked, however, that this is a favourite breed with the sterner sex, and that our professional men judges will almost invariably pick out a tortoiseshell when judging an " any other colour" class, and give it some mark of distinction. This may be accounted for by the fact that, of all varieties, a really good tortoiseshell is most difficult to breed, and therefore any specimen approaching perfection should be encouraged. There are splashed and sable tortoiseshells and tortoiseshell tabbies, all handsome cats of their kind, but not the genuine article.

Real tortoiseshells may be called tricolour cats, for they should bear three colours, like a tortoiseshell comb, on their bodies, namely black, red, and yellow, in distinct patches or blotches, solid in colour and well broken up, with no trace of stripes, bars, or tabby markings. A brindling effect is to be avoided, and a white spot on chin is a great blemish. It is most undesirable that the black should predominate, in which case the specimen will lack brilliancy. The three colours should, if possible, be pretty evenly distributed over the body, legs, and tail, and should not run into each other. The red and yellow may preponderate over the black with good effect. A blaze, so called, up the face is considered correct, and this should be of the red or yellow, and in a straight line from the nose upwards. This is a very distinctive feature in the breed, and one that judges will look for in a good show specimen. It is incorrect for the tail to be in any way ringed with the colours. The texture of the coat is often coarser and more hairy in this breed, and it is not usually so long and flowing as in other varieties of Persian cats. There is no difference of opinion as to the correct colour for the eyes of tortoiseshells.

They should be a bright golden or orange, and these seem in perfect harmony with the colouring of the coat. Tortoiseshells never attain any great size, and may be called a small breed of Persian cats. I give the list of points as drawn up by the specialist society

Colour And Marking

The three colours - black, orange, and yellow - to be well broken and as bright and well defined as possible; free from tabby markings, no white. (30).
Coat - To be silky, very long, and fluffy. (20) Size And Shape - To be large - not coarse, but massive, with plenty of bone and substance; short legs. (25)
Head - To be round and broad, with short nose, ears small and well opened. (15)
Eyes - To be large and full, and bright orange or hazel in colour. (5)
Condition - (10)

They are quite one of the most interesting from which to breed, and experiments can be tried successfully in crossing a tortoiseshell queen with black, cream, orange, and blue cats. The litters will often be a study in variety. I have known one family to consist of a black, a white, a cream, an orange, and a blue! The owner of such a litter would have something to suit all comers. A really good tortoiseshell queen may, therefore, be considered a valuable property. And what of a tortoiseshell torn ? A mine of wealth would such a possession be to any fancier. Among short-haired cats a tortoiseshell torn is a rare animal, but I do not think a long-haired specimen has ever been seen or heard of. Several experiments have been tried, but it remains for some skilful and scientific breeder to solve the problem of the manner and means to be employed to produce males of this breed. The classification at our smaller shows for tortoise-shells is generally of a meagre and discouraging description. There are so few specimens that executives of shows fight shy of giving a class for even tortoiseshell and tortoiseshell-and-whitc together.

So tortoiseshells are mixed up in the " any other colour " class, and therefore this breed can seldom, if ever, be really judged on its own merits, or comparisons made between the different specimens that are exhibited. At our largest shows there are classes provided, which, however, are poorly filled.

Tortoiseshells may be said to have had no past. There are no celebrities in feline history save and except "Queen Elizabeth," and not only was she the finest of her breed, but she also made her name famous by severely injuring Mr. W. R. Hawkins, who was examining her when making his awards; and I have good reason - or rather bad reason - for recollecting her, on account of her fixing her teeth into my hand when I was removing her from her basket to pen her at the Westminster show in 1899. It seems that she had a great objection to travelling, and resented making an exhibition of herself in public ! She was a grand specimen, however, and, besides always carrying off highest honours herself, she was the mother of many prize-winning orange and tortoiseshell cats, amongst others "Prince Charlie," "Prince Lyne," and "Mattie." I have failed to obtain a photograph of this celebrated cat; and, even had I succeeded, a tortoiseshell makes a terribly poor picture when reproduced in photography, for the reason that the yellow comes out only fairly light, the orange appearing as dark as the black patches.

Miss H. Cochran had a dear old pet puss called "Brunette," a dark tortoiseshell, and from her were bred some of the first cream femalesever exhibited. The Hon. Mrs. McLaren Morrison has a good tortoiseshell, "Curiosity" by name. The best three specimens now before the public are Dr. Roper's "Dainty Diana," Miss M. Beal's "Pansy," Miss Kate Sangster's "Royal Yum Yum," and Mrs. Bignell's "Topsy of Merevale." As regards the last-named, Mrs. Bignell has kindly supplied me with particulars of "Topsy's" litters when mated with different-coloured cats. "Topsy's" first litter in 1896, when mated to the "Duke of Kent (a blue), was two creams and two smokes. When mated to "Johnnie Fawe" (a black) her kittens were all of the father's dusky hue. Again, when crossed with another blue male her litter consisted of two orange males and a tortoiseshell female, and again to the same cat one black male and two orange males. "Topsy" is a noted prize-winner, and one of her smoke children, "Lucy Claire," went out to Chicago, and is considered the finest smoke specimen in the American fancy. Dr. Roper's "Dainty Diana" is one of the best-known tortoiseshells, and her colouring as good as any exhibited; she is the mother of many winners.

Miss Kate Sangster, who is a great admirer of this breed, writes : "My 'Champion Royal Yum Yum' was bred from a black and a tortoise-shell, and her grandsire was a cream. She is over seven years old, and has had twenty-two kittens, namely, five cream, five blue, five orange, four black, and three tortoiseshell."

Miss Mildred Beal, who with her sister is so well known in connection with cream and orange cats, is also the owner of some fine tortoiseshells. "Wallflower" (well so named) is the mother of a noted prize-winning cream called "Sunlocks." "Pansy," Miss M. Beal's special pet, is a well-known tortoiseshell. "Snapdragon," another prize-winner, was exported to America, where quite a number of the Romaldkirk cats have found their home. We need a few more enthusiastic admirers of tortoiseshells like Miss M. Beal to take up this rather despised breed and follow in her footsteps. Some notes by the owner of " Pansy " will be of interest : "Even fanciers who will go into raptures over the blue, orange, cream, or silver members of the establishment have no admiration to spare for a tortoiseshell, however striking its record of prizes may be ; and yet to those who breed and understand them there is something very fascinating about these quaint creatures, though the taste for them is certainly an acquired one.

"Among non-catty people great ignorance prevails as to what colour a tortoiseshell cat really is. Many people, if asked to describe a tortoiseshell cat, would say that it was a sort of sandy colour all over ; others imagine that the' chintz' cat, as it is called in the North - white with black and red patches - has a right to the name. So let it be said at once that three colours, namely, orange, yellow, and black, and these only, enter into the composition of the true tortoiseshell. There must be no white, neither should there be any trace of tabby markings, though this is very difficult to attain. The three colours should be patched or' broken' all over the cat, and the more distinct each separate colour is in these patches the better. Brilliancy of colour is another point which breeders have to consider ; many tortoiseshells have far too large a proportion of black in their colouring, which gives them a dingy and uninteresting appearance, and is sure to go against them in the show pen.

The eyes should be orange, and in other points, such as shape, head, and texture of coat, the standard is the same as for the other varieties of long-haired cats.

"One curious fact in connection with longhaired tortoiseshells, which is well known to fanciers, may be mentioned, namely, the nonexistence of the male sex. Among short-haired tortoiseshells toms are exceedingly rare, though one or two do exist ; but an adult longhaired male appears to be absolutely unheard of. The writer knows of one male kitten born some years ago, but it was either born dead or died in very early infancy. Darwin's theory that the orange torn and tortoiseshell queen were originally the male and female of the same variety is borne out by the fact that until recently orange females were also rare. Of late years a good many of these have been bred and reared, and therefore, if the Darwinian theory be correct, it seems hard to believe that the tortoiseshell torn must be regarded as unattainable. If the difficulty has been successfully overcome in the one case, why not in the other? Breeding with this object in view is very slow work, for some tortoiseshell queens will produce litter after litter without a single kitten of their own colour, and a family consisting entirely of tortoise-shells would be as welcome as it is rare.

But it would be a pity to despair of breeding the long looked for torn ; if he ever does make his appearance, he will be hailed with sufficient interest to gratify any quantity of feline vanity.

"At present, breeders hardly seem to recognise the great value of a tortoiseshell queen for breeding almost any variety of self-coloured cat. If the queen is mated to an orange, a cream, or a blue torn, she will be very likely to produce at least one or two really good specimens of the same colour as the sire, and sometimes a far larger proportion of the litter will 'favour' him. Much, of course, depends upon how the queen herself is bred, and this no doubt accounts for disappointment in some cases.

"Tortoiseshells compare very favourably with the other varieties of long-haired cats in the matter of intelligence. The writer knows one which enjoys the well-earned reputation of being the cleverest thief in the cattery. Nothing is safe from her nimble paws ; she has often been known to remove the lid from the saucepan in which the meat for the cattery supper had been placed, and make off with the contents ; and if the cook's back should be turned for only half a minute, woe to tomorrow's dinner or to anything else tempting which may chance to be within reach!

"Though tortoiseshells may be distinguished for brains, some of them certainly fail considerably in temper. They seem to find it most difficult to keep the peace with the other members of the cattery. I sincerely hope this breed will receive more attention from fanciers in the future.

CHAPTER XVIII. TORTOISESHELL-AND-WHITE PERSIANS

THESE cats, both long- and short-haired, have always had a great fascination for me. One of my first Persian pets was a tortoiseshell-and-white, with a gorgeous coat, stand-out frill, and wide-spreading tail.

She was so stately and dignified that we called her "The Lady Mayoress." In those days cats were of no account, and shows were non-existent. My pretty pet roamed at will and made her own matrimonial arrangements : the kittens were consequently mostly consigned to the bucket.

With my present knowledge of the feline race, I realise that "The Lady Mayoress" was a grand specimen of what a tortoiseshell-and-white should be. She was not a white-and-tortoiseshell, as so many now seen in the show pen might be called. In these cases the white predominates, and in reality the four colours should be about equally distributed. The patches of black, red, and yellow should cover the back, head, and tail, leaving the chest and paws and part of the hind-quarters white. There should be patches of the three colours on each side of the face, with a white blaze up the nose.

As in the tortoiseshells, so in this breed it is better for the brighter colours rather than the black to predominate. I believe an old-fashioned name for this breed was chintz cats.

I think they might also be called patchwork cats ! There is a great deal in the manner in which the colours are distributed on either side of the head, for expression in a cat goes a long way, and if the patches are badly placed and unevenly distributed the effect may be displeasing, and perhaps grotesque.

Harrison Weir, in writing of this breed, says: "In a good tortoiseshell - and - white there should be more white on the chest, belly, and hind legs than is allowable in the black-and-white cat. This I deem necessary for artistic beauty when the colour is laid on in patches, although it should be even, clear, and distinct in its outline ; the larger space of white adds brilliancy to the red, yellow, and black colouring. The face is one of the parts which should have some uniformity of colour, and yet not so, but a mere balancing of colour ; that is to say, there should be a relief in black, with the yellow and red on each side, and so in the body and tail. The nose should be white, the eyes orange, and the whole colouring rich and varied, without the least 'tabbiness,' either brown or grey, or an approach to it, such being highly detrimental to its beauty."

This is another of the breeds of long-haired cats that may be said to have no history in the fancy, and I doubt if tortoiseshell-and-whites will ever be taken up seriously. There will always remain the difficulty of obtaining good mates for the queens, as males in this variety are almost as rare as in the tortoiseshells. It would seem that the corresponding males to tortoiseshells and tortoiseshell-and-whites are orange and fawns. I do not remember ever having seen or heard of a long-haired tortoise-shell-and-white torn cat; and as regards notable females, these have never at any time been numerous, and few really good specimens have been exhibited.

The most perfect type was Lady Marcus Beresford's "Cora," an imported cat of great size and beautiful shape. Her colouring and markings were lovely, and her round snub face and short nose lent great charm to this unique specimen. It was a grievous loss to her owner and the fancy when poor "Cora" suddenly developed dropsy, and succumbed to this rather unusual complaint amongst cats. Mrs. Davies possessed a fine tortoiseshell-and-white named "Chumly," and Mrs. Bampfylde's "Susan" was a good type. Many of the cats exhibited have either too much or too little white, and often there is a grave suspicion of tabby amongst the black and orange.

Coming down to the present-day cats, I may mention Mr. Furze's "Beauty of Birmingham" and "Peggy Primrose," both of which he disposed of after shows where they were exhibited. There is no doubt these cats are very taking in the show pen, where darker feline beauties are at a considerable disadvantage.

I have had a difficulty in obtaining any good photographs illustrative of these cats, for, as with tortoiseshells, the colouring cannot be successfully portrayed by any gradations in tone, so that the orange and black both appear dark on a white ground, and thus the individuality of the breed is lost. It is different in painting, when it may be generally noticed that artists choose to depict these broken-coloured cats in preference to the self-coloured ones. In Madame Ronner's lovely pictures, of which several adorn these pages, it will be remarked that almost all the fascinating fluffy kittens are patched in colour.

As I have remarked, one of the reasons why these cats have not been seriously taken up by fanciers is the difficulty experienced in selecting suitable mates that will be likely to perpetuate the breed. In fact, this is not possible with any degree of certainty. Tor-toiseshell - and - whites may be crossed with black or orange cats, and it is a toss-up what the progeny may be. Creams are sometimes bred by mating with blues, but there is always the danger of white spots and white toes. I once mated a pretty tortoiseshell - and - white with my silver "Cambyses," and the result was a good pale silver and an almost unmarked cream. Considering all things, I cannot prophesy any future for this breed in the fancy ; in fact, I think there is every chance of these really pretty pussies disappearing from our midst. At the Westminster show of 1903 there was only one solitary entry in the tortoiseshell-and-white class! This was Miss Yeoman's "Mary II.," whose portrait appears on the foregoing page.

CHAPTER XIX. BROWN TABBY PERSIANS

MY first prize-winning kitten was a brown tabby, exhibited many years ago at the Crystal Palace. He became my stud cat "Rajah," called after an Indian prince who was visiting us at that time. "Rajah" was wholly and devotedly attached to the lady of his choice, namely, my blue Persian "Mater." These two names occur in the pedigree of many a prize-winner of the present day, and very numerous were the lovely litters I reared from this eminently respectable pair of Persians. I never knew either " Rajah " or "Mater" troubled with a day's illness, and if one of their kittens had died such an event would have caused as much astonishment as grief. But I must return to my tabbies.

I cannot explain it, but certain it is that of all the feline race (blues not excepted) the warmest corner in my heart has always been kept for the brown tabbies. There is something so comfortable and homely about these dear brownies - they seem to have more intelligent and expressive countenances than any other cats, and I am firmly of opinion that no Persian cats are so healthy and strong as brown tabbies. They are a hardy race, and as such I have frequently recommended novices in the fancy to start with a good brown queen, and with ordinary care they may reasonably expect to rear litter after litter without the difficulties and disasters that one hears of in connection with the bringing up of Persian kittens in general.

I know there is a kind of idea that brown tabbies are a common sort of cat, and this breed is often spoken of in a most disparaging way. Then, again, the ignorant in the cat world have an extraordinary notion that tabbies are always females ! Perhaps because we sometimes hear a meddlesome or gossiping woman called a "tabby" - and I had a dear old friend who always bade me beware of "tabby bipeds" among catty communities !

The word "tabby" is supposed to have had its origin in a certain street in Bagdad called "Atab," which was chiefly inhabited by weavers of a particular kind of material called "Atabi." This is what Harrison Weir says on the subject : - " The word' tabby' was derived from a kind of taffeta, or ribbed silk, which when calendered, or what is now termed 'watered,' is by that process covered with wavy lines. This stuff in bygone times was often called' tabby,' hence the cat with lines or markings on its fur was called a tabby cat. Certain it is that the word 'tabby' only referred to the marking or stripes, not to the absolute colour, for in 'Wit and Drollery' is the following: Her petticoat of satin, Her gown of crimson tabby.

Be that as it may, I think there is little doubt that the foregoing was the origin of the term. Yet it was also called the brindled cat, or the tiger cat, and with some the grey cat 'graymalkin.' "We are told also by the same authority that tabby cats in Norfolk and Suffolk were called cyprus cats, cyprus being a reddish-yellow colour, so that the term may have applied to orange as well as brown tabbies. The term " tiger cat " is, I believe, often used in America, and it well describes the true type of a brown tabby. The groundwork should be of a bright tawny shade, with a dash of burnt sienna, the markings a dark seal brown - almost black. As regards the colour of eyes in brown tabbies, I prefer the golden or orange; but some of the finest cats in this variety have possessed the green eye, and some fanciers are disposed to prefer this colour, which I think should be the speciality of the silvers. Anyhow, a good brilliant green is preferable to a washed-out undecided yellow.

There are two distinct types of brown tabbies - the splashed or heavily marked, and the barred or ticked. I think the former the handsomer breed, with the well defined and evenly balanced side markings, the dark spine line (not too wide), the clear rings round the chest (commonly called the "Lord Mayor's chain"), the paws ringed in graduated bars to the foot. On the head and face the markings should be very clear and distinct, the narrow dark head lines running symmetrically till they join the broad spine-line. The ruff should be of the light shade, and ears of the same tone lend great distinction to this cat. As in the other tabby breeds, the browns are terribly addicted to white chins ; in fact, I think it is certainly rarer to find a brown tabby without this blemish than an orange, more pains having been taken to eradicate the evil in orange tabbies. There is no denying the fact that brown tabbies are a very neglected breed, and at present the only one, except tortoiseshell - and - white, that is not taken up by a specialist society.

This is a crying shame, and it remains for some ardent admirer of the dear brown tabbies to form a club, and to try to breed really good specimens of the golden-brown order; not the drab or grey animals that are so frequently seen at our shows, and which are very far removed from the genuine article.

I do not think that any breed can produce such fascinating kittens. They have such remarkably intelligent expressions, and, as a rule, the sturdy cobby shape and broad heads of brown tabbies are very conspicuous. This breed should distinctly be massive in build, with plenty of bone and muscle ; in fact, with brown tabbies the larger the better, if well proportioned. With the sterner sex brown tabbies are decided favourites, and I cannot help noticing that the very few fanciers who have taken up this breed amongst the gentler sex are what might be termed strong-minded.

I have also remarked that when once fanciers start breeding brown tabbies they continue, and this cannot be truly said of other breeds - silvers, for instance ; but I would fain see a steady increase to the ranks of breeders of brown tabby Persians, and more encouragement given at shows. I know that as matters now stand fanciers complain they cannot get any market for their tabby kittens, and that classification is poor at shows and prizes scarce. It is all too true, but surely it is a "long lane that has no turning," and as every dog has its day, so perhaps in the future, whether near or distant, this beautiful breed will gain all the admiration and attention that it deserves. There is a distinct kind of brown tabby, so called, which may better be described as sable. These cats have not the regular tabby markings, but the two colours are blended one with another, the lighter sable tone predominating. At the Crystal Palace Cat Show of 1902 the class was for brown tabby or sable. I was judging, and, considering the mixed entries, I felt that markings must not be of the first importance, and so awarded first and second to Miss Whitney's beautiful sable females, the third going to a well-marked though out of condition brown tabby.

These sable-marked cats are rare, but still more beautiful would be a cat entirely of the one tawny colour - a self sable, without markings. "The most suitable factors to obtain this colour," so writes Mrs. Balding, "would probably be tortoiseshell - and - sable tabby, as free from marking and as red in ground colour as possible. A cross of orange, bright coloured and as nearly as obtainable from unmarked ancestors, would be useful. Some nine years ago I purchased a dimly marked bright sable coloured cat,' Molly,' shown by Mrs. Davies at the Crystal Palace, with a view to producing a self-coloured sable cat; but 'Molly' unfortunately died, and I abandoned the idea." The nearest approach to a self-sable I have ever come across was a cat I obtained for the Viscountess Esher, which had, alas ! been neutered. He was almost unmarked, and of the colour of Canadian sable, with golden eyes - a most uncommon specimen.

Another species is the spotted tabby, but I have never seen a true specimen in Persians.

Some brown tabbies are ticked or spotted on the sides, but they have the spine line and rings on neck, head, and tail.

Very few and far between have been good brown tabbies in the history of the fancy. Amongst the males two names may be said to stand out conspicuously - Miss Southam's "Birkdale Ruffie" and my own "Persimmon." Both these cats, of quite different types, have gone to their rest.

As regards the famous Birkdale strain, the following account, kindly supplied to me by Miss Southam, will be of interest : "There is no doubt that, until quite recently, our old friend the tabby has been deliberately placed in the background, and regarded in the show world with an indifference which has proved an unmistakable stumbling block to the improvement of this particular breed.

"Nor is this very much to be wondered at, when we take into consideration the hideous combination of the drab, colourless browns, dowdy greys, and indistinct markings which had hitherto constituted the chief charms of the typical tabby. Instead, it would appear that the commonplace and unattractive grey was openly encouraged, rather than otherwise ; for, although the silver tabby was provided with a classification of his own, only one class was relegated to " brown and grey tabbies," either colour being considered equally worthy of carrying off premier honours !

"It was at this period, when the nondescript tabby was reigning supreme, that Champion 'Birkdale Ruffie' made his debut in the show world, my sister, Miss Emily Southam, being the first to bring the sable tabby into prominence. Whether, however, it was that the public was not sufficiently up-to-date to appreciate the sudden departure from the usual sombre colours with which it had hitherto been satisfied to a brilliant sable, or whether he was particularly unfortunate in his choice of judges, it is difficult to say ; at any rate, it was not until four years after his first appearance in the show pen that he met with the justice that his many beautiful points so richly deserved. In fact, after exhibiting him at several shows, where he was deliberately passed over for other and most inferior cats, he being in the pink of condition, my sister was so annoyed at the treatment he received that she simply burnt the schedules which poured in upon her and kept him at home, determined he should not be further insulted by such flagrant injustice !

" It was at the West of England Cat Show in 1894 that 'Birkdale Ruffie' scored his first real success - I believe under Mr. Gresham - winning two first prizes in the open and novice classes and two specials. Here at last his beautiful sable colouring, his dense black markings, and wonderfully expressive face were appreciated.

"The year 1896 was the occasion of his sensational win at the Crystal Palace show. He simply swept the board, carrying everything before him - first prize, championship, several specials, and the special given by the King (then Prince of Wales) - for the best rough-coated cat in the show, the prize being a handsomely framed portrait of the King with his autograph attached. Mrs. Vallance was judge. Again, in 1897, he was shown with great success at the Crystal Palace, winning first prize, championship, and special.

"This was the occasion of 'Birkdale Ruffle's' last appearance before the public, as it was during the following month my sister was taken dangerously ill, and for this reason his pen at the Brighton show was empty. After her death we determined to subject him no more to the trials and discomforts of the show pen, so 'Ruffie,' who was now seven years old and a great pet, both for his own sake and that of his mistress, only too gladly retired into the privacy of home life, spending the cold winters by the fireside in his own little snug retreat, and in the long summer days lying under his bower of shady hops, lazily watching his facsimile, his little son 'Master Ruffie,' growing up more beautiful each day and ready to take up the thread of his father's famous career in the exhibition world.

"Into the latter 'Master Ruffie' made his debut without any of the numerous anxieties encountered by his celebrated parent. The way was paved for him, and when he appeared at the Crystal Palace show in 1899, in all the full glory of his youth and beauty, it was difficult for the judges to realise that it was not their old favourite who was now confronting them through the wires !

"'Master Ruffie' has only been shown on two occasions - in 1897 as a kitten, and in 1899 at the Crystal Palace, when he returned home with his box literally filled with cards, his winnings including three first prizes, four specials, and a championship.

"I am sorry we can manage to get no really good photo of' Master Ruffie.' Time after time we have attempted it - in studios, out of doors, by means of professionals and amateurs - including many kind relatives and friends with their ever-ready little Kodaks!'Master Ruffie' steadfastly refuses to face the camera. Again and again the button is pressed in vain, and only the glimpse of a vanishing tail upon the negative is all we have to show as 'Ruffle's' portrait!

"But we have only to look at' Birk-dale Ruffle's' picture, and we have 'Master Ruffie' too! The only difference between them is that the latter is a very cobby little fellow, being perhaps shorter in the legs, which makes him appear to be a somewhat smaller cat than his father. In fact, at the Crystal Palace show he was pronounced by the judges to be perfect in every point.

"'Birkdale Ruffie' was noted for the extreme beauty of his expression ; he had certainly one of the most characteristic faces ever seen in a cat, and his son inherits the same. The former was constantly the subject of sketches in the illustrated papers, those by Mr. Louis Wain being especially lifelike.

"Some of 'Master Ruffle's' descendants are, I believe, in the possession of Miss Witney, and have met with great success in the show pen.

"Our cattery is built on the principle of shepherds' huts, each house having a separate wire run, with shrubs planted, and a thick wall of ivy in the background, which gives a picturesque appearance to the whole of the little colony. In summer a mass of luxuriant hops makes a welcome shade from the hot sun.

"The houses are warmed by gas stoves, on which the cats love to sit, purring contentedly, and with the pretty curtained windows, carpets, wickerwork armchairs, and cosily cushioned benches, I think 'Master Ruffie' and his seven feline playmates have a pretty easy time in this tempestuous world!

"The one bone of contention is that the cats have appropriated the sunniest corner of the garden, their houses-having the much desired southern aspect, which our gardener looks at with longing eyes for his beloved peaches and early peas. Happily, he bears the little occupants no grudge, and when we go from home takes over the whole of the cattery into his charge."

Here let me give a few details of my dear departed puss. "Persimmon" was a well-known character in the fancy, and had the distinction of being a champion in the National Cat Club and the Cat Club. It was in 1899 when, judging at Brighton, I was greatly taken with a wonderful-headed brown tabby that came under my awards. I gave him first in his class, and when later I obtained a catalogue and saw his price was a very reasonable one, I purchased him, and I may say I never made a better bargain, in or out of the cat fancy. "Persimmon" (as I afterwards called him, in memory of the Derby winner) was bred by Mr. Heslop, of Darlington, that astute and clever cat fancier; and his grandsire was "Brown Prince," a noted Northern prize-winning tabby. I have never seen such a wonderful head as that which made "Persimmon's " chief glory.

His face was very round, and his nose quite a snub, and he was blessed with tiny ears and short tail. His shape was perfect, but the markings on his back were rather too heavy, and alas ! he had a white under-lip. But, taking him all round, he was a grand specimen, and a most lovable puss. He fretted himself to death when a change of residence from the country to London obliged me to board him out.

"Persimmon" sired some splendid kittens, which whenever shown proved themselves worthy of their sire's long prize - winning record. At the Crystal Palace show of 1902

Miss Whitney exhibited two of his progeny - a superb neuter "Persimmon Laddie," who covered himself with glory and his cage with cards, and a beautiful kitten that had previously won at Manchester and has since been purchased at a high figure by a lover of the brownies. At the Specialist Show at Bath in January, 1903, "Persimmon Laddie" was again to the fore, and won in the open and ring classes. "Persimmon" was a great loss, for good brown tabbies are rare. I hope, however, to purchase a fine, well-grown son of my dear old "Simmy," and as "Persimmon II." I trust it may be a case of "like father like son," and that by-and-by we may find quite a long list of brown tabby Persians "at stud" in the columns of the catty papers.

I think I may with truth assert that brown tabbies are more appreciated, and that better specimens are produced in the North than in the South of England. I have mentioned Mr. Heslop as having owned some splendid specimens, and at one time he used to exhibit quite a number at our Southern shows. Miss Eggett, of Manchester, has a grand tabby of the golden order named "Cleopatra." Mrs. Whittaker has some nice specimens, and Mrs. Mackenzie's "Cleo" was much admired at the Westminster show in 1900, when she took first in her class. Mrs. Ricketts has always been partial to the breed, and Mrs. Stead's "Timber" has done some winning. Miss Gray's "Lady Babbie" was one of the finest brown queens that used to visit "Persimmon," and another was Miss Meeson's "Jolie," whom I used greatly to admire. Miss Derby Hyde exhibits a wonderful copper-coloured brown tabby called "Maraquetta," who, if only possessed of a good head and shorter face, would be a splendid specimen. Mrs. Davies formerly owned "Susan," a cat now in the possession of Mrs. G. Wilson, very good in colour and markings, but failing in head and face.

Mr. Western, of Sandy, has a good male in "Wynstay Monarch." In the West of England Mrs. Hellings and Mrs. Gregory are admirers and breeders of brown tabbies.

Mrs. Gregory, of Bath, started breeding brown tabbies in 1899. Her female (a black) she mated to her stud cat "Azor," and, curiously enough, all the litters have consisted of brown tabbies, the kittens numbering sixteen in all. When, however, " Queen Caterpillar " was mated to Mrs. Gregory's blue Persian, her kittens were all black.

A picture of two pretty brown tabby kittens bred by Mrs. Gregory appears in this chapter. I am happy to say that Mrs. Gregory intends to continue breeding brown tabbies, and has kept a handsome specimen from one of her recent litters to perpetuate the strain. Mrs. Drury, of Graffham, is very faithful to the brownies, and in her lovely old-fashioned cottage near Petworth she is always surrounded by several of her pet pussies. She writes as follows : " When first I received a margarine basket, and out of it came a little brown fluffy kitten, I knew no more about Persian cats than the man in the moon - in fact, he probably knew more, as he is frequently the only witness to their nocturnal gambols. I had heard of such things as Persian cats, yet never remember having seen one. However, kind friends soon gave me a helping hand, and as time went on and my fluffy kitten became a fluffy cat, being passionately fond of animals, I soon found out the very fascinating ways of dear 'Miss Wiggs,' so named because the fur on her head in her kitten days would stand erect, and it is the only name she condescended to answer to.

She has been - and is so still, in spite of all her maternal cares and five years' experience - one of the healthiest pussies imaginable, and has never had one day's illness since she came into my possession, though I believe, in her babyhood, distemper nearly carried her off; and all her children have been equally healthy - in fact, I have never lost one of her kittens, which is, I imagine, almost a unique experience.

"'Miss Wiggs' came from a blue father and a silver mother, but has, with one exception, always had brown babies, even when mated to a silver. The varied beauties of blues, silvers, whites, and blacks have never taken such a hold upon me as compared with the fascination of the browns, and it is quite a wonder to me more fanciers do not breed them. Nothing looks handsomer, to my mind, than a rich brown, tabby male with tawny markings, like a young lion, and judging from my experience they amply repay any trouble taken by their loving ways and robust health. I have a son of 'Miss Wiggs 'and poor old 'Persimmon' now, who follows me like a little dog, even out in the road, and goes for a walk running by my side.

"Perhaps what would astonish a stranger most on coming to see me is the way my catty family lives in peace and contentment with the dogs, and very often I find two or three kittens in the dogs' basket very busily occupied cleaning my little bull-terrier. It is a point of honour amongst the happy family that they never touch each other's food, and very rarely is this broken, and not infrequently we see three, and perhaps four, cats sitting round the dog while he eats his dinner, waiting for any leavings, and the same with the dog. Persians have the reputation of being bad mousers.

'Miss Wiggs' makes quite the exception, and on one occasion caught and killed two mice at the same time; one she held in her paws and the other in her mouth. Young rats also she has many times brought in, to show what a useful little person she is, and her children follow in her footsteps.

"In a great measure I attribute my brownies' good health to the open-air life they lead. From early morning to when darkness approaches they have the run of a large garden, even on a wet day. They go in and out of the houses as they like; never sleep indoors, always in a very dry little outside cattery - in summer on benches, and in winter in nice boxes with straw.

"Perhaps, financially, blues or silvers may be greater successes, but brownies have been my first love and will always remain so. I am only sorry I cannot show what a lovely head and sweet face dear 'Miss Wiggs' has, but she absolutely declines to be photographed.

"In time I hope more fanciers may realise how rich in colour and markings a good brown tabby is, and then we may hope to see this beautiful breed brought more to the fore at all the leading shows.

"As 'Mis? Wiggs' has been the foundress of my cattery, perhaps a short description of her would not be amiss. She is a ticked tabby - that is to say, she has not the broad, dark stripes with tawny splashes ; her ground colour is a beautiful golden brown, and down the back and sides are pencilled stripes, more like the markings on a silver. Round her face, nose, and ears she has most lovely golden brown shades; eyes are green - they used to be amber; her head is very broad and well shaped; and her expression is very sweet.

"When mated to a silver, as she has been twice, the litters have been equally divided - two silvers and two brownies ; but both silvers and browns in that case had broad dark and light markings, in no way resembling the ticking of the mother. But when mated to poor old' Persimmon 'the kittens have been equally divided, always two resembling the maternal side exactly, and two following out' Persimmon's' beautiful splashes. When mated to a brown tabby all the kittens were brown. She has never thrown a black; but her daughter, whose father was 'Abdul Zaphir,' and who I also mated to 'Persimmon,' had two blacks and two very dark tabbies in her litter. 'Wiggs' has in all her five litters had only two females. Her average is four or five kittens; she looks after them entirely herself, and has never been the worse for so doing ; but I do not allow her more than one family a year, and until the kittens can lap she is fed every two hours."

The best-marked brown tabby I have ever seen was Lady Marcus Beresford's' "Bassorah," who was unfortunately given away and lost. Her markings looked like oil painting, they stood out in such distinct relief-Another specimen of a different type was imported by Lady Marcus Beresford, namely "Kismet." She was of the ticked order, with small pencilled markings, very compact and cobby in shape. Mrs. Herring has always possessed good brown tabbies. To begin with, "Adolphe," who used formerly to win everything till his son, "Prince Tawny Boy," stepped into his shoes, to be displaced later by his own son, "Prince Adolphe," and his exquisite daughter, "Floriana," now in America. Another good son of "Adolphe's" was Mrs. Bonar's "Lord Salisbury." To go back as far as I can recollect, there was Mr. Horrel's "Nero," and Mrs. Pearce's "Juliet" and "Rosebud," also Miss Malony's "Lind-fields Lion" and the Hon. Mrs. McLaren Morrison's "Cetewayo" and "Mazawattee," this latter a really wonderful cat which was imported by Mrs. Davies at the same time as the celebrated "Nizam," and reported to be his brother.

Anyway, he resembled him greatly in everything but colour.

For sables we, of course, go to the Birkdale strain. I remember the incomparable "Birkdale Ruffie" in his full glory at the Crystal Palace - a mass of red-brown fur, of the style of "Persimmon Laddie," but with more distinct markings and a very keen, almost fierce, expression; in fact, he looked like a wild animal!

Then "Master Ruffie" appeared as a kitten, and later as a mild edition of his sire. From this celebrated strain Miss Whitney's lovely sables are descended. This enthusiastic fancier has kindly written some notes on her favourite breed. Her cats are all pets, and lead a life of luxury in their town and country houses on the other side of the Irish Channel. Miss Whitney says:"I am pleased to see that brown tabbies are coming to the front again, after being such a long time in the background. It now rests with fanciers of this charming variety of the feline species to improve them in all points. We hear often that they should be a rich tan in ground colour, clear and dense in markings, profuse in coat, ruff and frill, large round head, small ears, and no white lip. I should consider this a perfect specimen ; but where is such to be had ? I do not say it will not be obtained, but up to this I have never seen it. Now what we are to endeavour is to breed up to this high standard. This will take time, no doubt ; but, above all, do not let us give up everything for markings, though they are very essential.

"My idea of a brown tabby is that it must be of a rich tawny ground colour. How could a brown tabby be called a brown if it is only a greyish drab? I should prefer to do without such perfect markings, but to have the more desirable rich colour, and, above all, plenty of coat, ruff, and frill; if it has not these latter qualities, it could not be called a Persian, which must have an abundance of fine soft-textured coat. If we only breed for marking, why not mate to a' short-hair,' which is more likely to be perfect in that point ? But then, where would be our true Persian ? Now, as to white lip, I have never seen a good brown tabby without it, but I hear that there are such, though they fail in colour. I would prefer the well-coated cat with good colour and markings and a white lip to one that failed in these other points and had no white lip (I do not mean when it extends to a white throat). Now if we happen to breed a good kitten without a white lip, and should strive to mate her to a really well-marked stud cat, even should he fail in colour - perhaps we might get even one kitten nearly reaching perfection as the result. It would reward the patience, expense, and time; but we need never expect a profusely coated cat to show as distinct markings as an in-feriorly coated one will.

I breed nothing but brown tabbies, but cannot say I have yet obtained perfection. I have, however, secured coat and colour, and expect to attain the other desirable points in the near future, as we must all persevere, but always let us breed up to the standard of the true Persian.

"I first became interested in cats by being given a nice brown tabby Persian kitten, which I called' Ruffle,' and got very fond of him ; but as he seemed lonely I thought of getting another kitten as a companion for him, so I then purchased a pretty little silver tabby from Miss Cochran ; but after some time, of all the varieties I saw, none pleased me so well as the brown tabbies. This breed I have gone in for altogether during the past few years, and I feel sure I shall remain faithful to them to the end of my career as a cat fancier. At present I have not a cat of any other colour in my cattery.

"I still have 'Ruffle,' who is now a very large neuter, splendidly marked, but perhaps not quite up to the standard in other points for the English show bench.' Brayfort Fina' is, I may say, a sable tabby, being particularly rich in colour all throughout - indeed, more often of an auburn tan than brown. She is very profuse in coat, carrying a long body-coat and a big ruff and frill. She is a very large cat, with plenty of bone, and well made, with a fine-shaped hea,d.

She was once mistaken for a male by a well-known judge.' Fina' was bred by Miss G. Southam, and is by' Master Ruffle' ex 'Bluette,' her sire being a son of the famous 'Champion Birkdale Ruffle.'

"She was already a winner when I purchased her, and has since won many times, including second and special at Bristol, 1899, in a mixed sex class, being beaten by a male. At Belfast, in 1900 - the following year - she was beaten out of first by her sister, 'Brayfort Princess.' She then took second at Westminster, 1902; first at Reading, and first and championship at the Crystal Palace, 1901 and 1902. Again first at the Bath Specialist Show in the same year, where her gorgeous colouring was called in question and an unsupported protest was made that she was dyed !

She is a most successful breeding cat, her produce being usually winners. Her sister, 'Brayfort Princess,' is also a sable tabby, and carries an immense coat, ruff, and frill; it is denser than 'Fina's,' and I fancy but for the latter 'Princess' would have been more heard of as a winner, as, except on one or two occasions, she has been usually beaten by 'Fina.' "'Brayfort Persimmon Laddie' is by 'Champion Persimmon' ex' Brayfort Fina.' He made his public appearance at Bristol when he was four months old, taking first and special in a tabby kitten class and third in novice, against an entry of twenty-five adults ; then he won first and special in kittens, and second in open to his mother's first at Belfast in 1900; also he took first and special for best long-haired neuter at Manchester in 1901; first, Liverpool; and first and two specials at the Crystal Palace, 1902. He is too well known to comment on. He is a wonderful sable colour, and is superb in coat. 'Brayfort Sable Boy' is also by the late 'Champion Persimmon' ex 'Fina.' He won first and special at the kitten show in October, 1902, and first and two specials at the Crystal Palace show, 1902 ; his wins speak to his merit.

"I find all my cats very strong and healthy, and even in the coldest winter they never have artificial heat. I attribute having never lost a pet after a show to taking them away at night. Unless something very unforeseen occurred, nothing would induce me to leave a cat of mine in a show.

I have found mating to a good brown tabby much the most successful. I tried mating to an orange, but did not like the results. I always mated to the late' Champion Persimmon,' and had never fewer than six kittens in a litter - sometimes eight - all strong and healthy. Twice only have I lost any, and on these occasions the fault lay with the foster mothers.

"In the spring and summer my cats get a run out in the garden every day; the two neuters go on leads, but the females have their liberty; indeed, unless I were present 'Fina' would not leave the house. Their rooms look out on the grass terrace, so they can come in or out as they please till their breakfast time, which is at about ten o'clock. They are groomed every morning between 8 and 8.30 o'clock, winter and summer, and always fed regularly. Their sleeping houses, as in photo, are about four feet long, lined round with oilcloth, so they can be washed when necessary. In the winter the bedding is hay, and in summer, shavings. The houses are sufficiently long to allow for sanitary boxes during the breeding time. I find Hall's washable distemper very nice for the cattery walls, and it looks so bright and fresh. The floor-covering is linoleum."

In America brown tabbies are beginning to find favour, and several good specimens have been exported. "Arlington Hercules," who took first at Westminster in 1901, was shipped to Mrs. Sarmiento and Mrs. Cutler, and I sent a "Persimmon" kitten out by Mrs. Robert Locke to Mrs. Clinton Locke, the president of the Beresford Club. He was passed on to her honorary secretary, and in Field and Fancy of December, 1902, the following notice appears: "Miss Lucy Johnstone is the fortunate owner of' Persimmon Squirrel,' a son of the noted brown tabby' Persimmon,' who lately died. Good brown tabbies are very scarce, and she should congratulate herself on this possession, as, according to all accounts, he is destined to make a good hit." Another American lady, Mrs. Gotwalts, of Pittsburg, wrote to me for a brownie, and I sent her one bred by Mrs. Bignell, and the cat has, I believe, had some good litters. The most famous brown tabby, however, over the herring pond was Mr. E. N. Barker's wonderful "King Humbert." This cat arrived in America in 1885, and made a considerable stir in catty circles. Mr. Barker is said to have refused a thousand dollars for him from a New York millionaire. I remember when Mr. Barker was over, acting as judge at the Westminster Cat show, he sought, but did not find anything to beat his noted brown tabby now gone to its last home. Mr. Barker, writing of this breed, says: "If I were asked suddenly why I admire brown tabby Persians, the liking must be partly attributed to face markings and colour, and to one who grows accustomed to these they are fascinating and add to the general beauty of the cat, and seem natural and as though they ought to be there, and one is not so overweighted with a sense of continual sameness as may be apparent in a whole colour. I must confess, personally speaking, I have become used to bars and stripes.

I miss them when I contemplate a self-coloured Persian.

"I once had a good many brown tabby Persians, and people did not fancy them, as they said, 'They are so like ordinary cats' - a great mistake ; but by gentle persuasion I managed to get one or two adopted. One lady some time afterwards candidly confessed,' I could not now be satisfied with any other kind, I should miss the stripes so much on the face.' That is just it; in a tabby you have a little more than your neighbours, who go in for self-coloured cats, and, though for the time being they are not quite so fashionable, you can chuckle to yourself if you own one, and feel quietly superior to fashion and the common herd, and hold your tabby still closer to your heart, and purr softly to yourself with satisfaction at its possession; for I think one may say that for good all-round, everyday, reliable qualities, the brown tabby stands pre-eminent.

"His constitution being good, he is not peevish ; he stands cold and heat, change of climate and surroundings, better on an average than any. Brown tabbies should have the under-coat a good golden hue, the markings black, clear, and distinct, rather too many than too few. A good-shaped body, lots of bone, a bold head, red nose, golden eyes, well marked on the chest, and no light colour on the lips and chin. These cats may with advantage be a good size. With care, the under colour may be bred to a grand copper colour; a grey hue in brown tabbies is most undesirable."

As regards brown tabbies in America, "King Humbert" and his children have always held their own. "Humbert" was bred in England, and as he is now dead I may be allowed to say that when fit and in good condition a better coloured and smarter show cat never stood in a pen or outside, and he loved to show himself off. The best kitten bred from him was "Jasper." He was very short in leg, and quite lost in coat, his feet being hardly visible."

To the readers of that very excellent American publication The Cat Journal the handsome portrait of "Crystal," the brown tabby, is very familiar. The editor, Mr. C. H. Jones, writes thus to me:- "I am sending you some pictures as promised. The large photo is 'Champion Crystal,' son of 'Humbert,

'a beautiful cat as to type and disposition. A peculiar thing about 'Crystal's' kittens is that they do not show very long hair till they are several months old."

And now a few remarks as regards the mating of brown tabbies. I have tried several experiments, but if I were wishing to breed fine specimens I should continue to mate brown tabbies with brown tabbies. Such mating frequently results in a black or two, and these are generally good ones. The orange cross is sometimes successful in introducing a brighter tone, but I confess I have not had very good results from these attempts. I have on several occasions mated blues to my brown tabby stud, and although blue tabbies have appeared in the litters, I have also obtained blues with very grand heads, plenty of bone, and massive build. My famous "Beauty Boy," a well-known winner and sire of bygone days, was bred from " Rajah " (a brown) and "Mater" (a blue). I have been told by silver breeders that a brown tabby cross with chinchillas has often proved advantageous. It might be imagined that the silvers would be tinged with brown or streaked, but I have been assured this is by no means usual, and that the litters consist of good brown tabbies and equally pure silvers.

A well-known breeder of silvers says: - "Although it may be incorrect to cross silvers and browns, it is often most successful. My first torn was a brown tabby with a white chin, and being mated with a silver queen the kittens were good browns and exquisite silvers, and there were lots of winners amongst them.

Many of the silvers were very pure in colour, with lovely markings. My old' Climax,' whose pedigree was pure silver ('Topso' and 'Lady Pink'), was the sire of the noted brown tabby' Birkdale Ruffle.'"

Before closing my article, I would remark that the brown tabby and sable, though often classed together, must not be confounded. The brown tabby is supposed to be the common ancestor of all our cats, and hence the tendency to revert to that colour, as in the case of the blue Rock pigeon. This being the case, surely we should have brown tabby cats more nearly approaching perfection than any other colour. They appear in very unexpected places - in a litter of chinchillas or blacks, or among our oranges, and sometimes where no brown ancestor can be traced. In the brown tabby there seems to be little or no inclination to lose the markings, as in other tabbies ; rather the contrary, for they overdo themselves sometimes, and form into solid black patches, thus causing the dark saddle, which is a serious fault in this breed. Query : Would generations of in-breeding produce a self brown, as with oranges and chinchillas? I rather doubt it, as I think the common ancestor would, so to speak, "chip in" and assert himself.

As regards the sables, I may remark that they are late in maturing and do not acquire their marvellous colouring till about the second year. Anyway, they rarely make a sensation on their first appearance. As I write I am thinking of "Persimmon Laddie," who seems to have developed his glorious copper coat in the course of a year, and when seen at the Crystal Palace show of 1902 was as near perfection in the matter of colouring as could be desired. I hope that in time this breed of Persians may find more admirers, and that with patience and perseverance a really good strain of grand-coloured, dark-chinned, and above all splendidly marked brown tabby cats may be seen at our shows.

In America, as will be seen from the following extract from Field and Fancy, the brownies are making good headway

The brown tabby cat, whose fate seemed to hang in the balance for some time, is now, in America, on the road to social prominence, and daily we hear of the progress of the breed, so that the classes next winter seem to promise greater results than ever. From all over we hear of brown tabbies being bred and reared, and, what is more, finding homes at remunerative prices. In looking at the reasons for the popularity of the browns we do not have far to seek, for when once well tried, these cats wheedle their way into your affections by the strength and vitality they display, as a rule ; and the general average being level in their temper, with plenty of common sense, as well as bold, lovable cats, are very satisfactory to deal with. Besides these attributes, when bred properly, their colour is most fascinating, and has a faculty of growing upon one, and weaker colours seem tame by comparison.

So far as we can say, that as regards the brown tabbies, the whites and orange, there have been more concentrated efforts to breed good ones by design than in any of the colours, though the silver breeders are now coming up.

Taking a general look at our cats of this colour, we have little to be ashamed of, and the stock is good enough to make the nucleus of a fine lot of show cats, for they inherit their goodness from several generations of the colour, which is much to the point.

Our breeders will find that to breed good tabbies they will have to keep to blood lines, select the best marked ones, and not switch about in search of all sorts of blood crosses ; for the way to breed tabbies is to keep to the colour and get the marks, which too many crosses with solid-coloured cats are liable to spoil. After a time the purely bred and carefully bred strains will stand out and perpetuate themselves, and the chance-breds will go to the wall.

It has been surmised that the reason why the browns are so hardy is that possibly they more nearly approach the natural colour of cats in a wild state, and are perhaps not quite so artificial; but the number that will be bred of superlative colouring to fill the standard from a show point of view will never be too numerous to command high prices, and the greater the competition the greater the value of the variety, as we see in our dogs. For it is in the popular breeds that the prices rule the highest, and the scarce ones seldom realise the same figures, because there is not the same keen competition to get the best.

When we look back we can call to mind quite a few good brown tabbies in the last seven years, and not very many bad ones, and for uniform quality our browns have been the equal of any colour.

Breeders should be careful to select those with the brown or red body colour, and with the stripes as distinct as possible. In our own experience with the colour we have found three varieties, and these are best described as they appear at birth. No. 1 is the cat with a narrow band down the centre of the back, and thin, narrow lines radiating therefrom. These marks may be very distinct when the cat is young, but are not strong enough for a long-haired cat, and the marks are lost when the coat grows. Though these cats are not the best of exhibition cats, they are very useful to breed to those too heavily marked. No. 2 is the cat that is heavily marked and carries too much black, and is often too grey in his body colour, but these, by being carefully bred to other colours, may throw the desired cat; or No. 3, the cat with the orange body colour and the distinct black marks covering about a third of the surface of the cat. This latter we hope to see in greater numbers now that an organised effort is being made to breed the colour true.

A great many of our browns are clear of one great fault, which is the light chin and throat, and it is to be hoped that this will be continued.

Another fault that wants improving, and which is the prevailing fault in one of our prominent strains, is a rather sour green eye, and this has been the cause of some of them having to take a back seat on occasions. Last year was fortunately a great educator for some of our best breeders, and they are now experimenting along the right lines, and are aware, when they lose, why it is so. As the years roll on those who do learn will not expect to win over better cats just because they think they ought.

CHAPTER XX. ANY OTHER COLOUR PERSIANS

IN the early days of the fancy all sorts and conditions of cats were entered in this class. Blacks, whites, and tabbies were considered important enough to have classes assigned to them ; then the rest were all huddled and muddled together in the "any other variety " class. Even in these days it is no easy matter to place the awards in a mixed class; but formerly the judge must have felt puzzled over the prizes, and probably finally gave the highest awards to the breed of cat which he most admired. I do not mean anything personal; but, as I write, I recollect a very large class in 1887 at the Crystal Palace, two years before a class for blues was instituted. Mr. A. A. Clarke was judging, and a female blue, "Fanny," which I had given to Mrs. W. M. Hunt as a birthday present, was awarded first. She was a beautiful specimen, and but for her green eyes would have been a remarkable cat even in these up-to-date days of the fancy. Whereas, therefore, for many years this " any other variety " class was the largest in the show, it has gradually become beautifully less - and rightly so, for by degrees the various breeds have been improved, and the number of specimens have increased, and the executives of shows have gone with the times and provided separate classes for each breed as occasion seemed to arise.

So orange and cream cats are no longer relegated to what we now call the " any other colour " class, and tortoise-shells and tortoiseshell-and-whites are separately dealt with ; therefore it is only tabby-and-whites, nondescript smokes, blue tabbies, and black-and-whites that are received into the fold of the somewhat despised " any other colour " class. Blues and blacks with white spots used to be entered in this class, but of recent years both cat clubs have wisely decided that such cats must be entered in their own classes, for a blue is a blue and a black a black, and having a blemish does not alter their breed, but takes so many points away from them ; and, of course, their chances of success even with every other quality is small indeed when in competition with pure self-coloured cats.

I am of opinion that ere long the " any other colour " class, at least at our principal shows, will cease to exist, and mismarked cats, white-spotted cats, and doubtful smokes will no longer be considered worth entering, and fanciers owning such specimens will make up their minds to keep their pets at home.

For instance, Mrs. Boutcher, a silver breeder, owned a magnificent cat, a son of "Lord Argent." He was a superbly shaped and grandly coated animal, and was neither a silver nor a smoke - in fact, what might be termed a silver smoke. His face was dark, and tail and paws, and his body was a pale silver-grey, shaded to almost white at the roots. His owner entered him in the "any other colour" class one year, and he was disqualified by the judge ; then he was next located in the smoke class, but as a different judge was making the awards he was again marked "wrong class." This noble "Lord Sylvester" was the cause of much correspondence in the cat papers, and discussion ran high as to what manner of cat he was. One of our ablest judges - now, alas ! no longer in our midst - wrote thus in Our Cats of December 1900 : Sir, - In your issue of the 24th I notice at the meeting of the Silver Society Mr. Boutcher asked the opinion re the decision of myself at the Palace as against that of Mr. House at Brighton. In defence of my own award, I unhesitatingly say that, in the same classification as at the Palace, " Lord Sylvester's" class was the A.O.C., in which I fearlessly awarded him first prize.

Of course, Mr. House has just as much right to his opinion as I have to mine ; but, whether right or wrong, I do know " Lord Sylvester " is not a smoke, both on my own knowledge of colour and of that set forth in the standards. - I am, yours truly, E. Welburn.

Surely this is the common-sense view to take. A year later "Lord Sylvester" was purchased by Mrs. Champion, and travelled out with her to America, where, no doubt, this splendid animal receives all the admiration he deserves, in whatever class he is entered on the other side of the herring pond.

Since writing these lines I have read an article in Field and Fancy on the New York Cat Show of January, 1903, and the following mention is made : " In the 'any other colour'

'Lord Sylvester' was to the front, looking splendid."

As regards the advisability of doing away with the " any other colour " class, I will quote from a letter written by that well-known fancier Mr. W. R. Hawkins : - " Why should one class in a show be given up to the bad specimens or mismarked cats of each colour ? Surely the intended use of the' any other colour' class was that when any definite colour had no class of its own it should not be excluded from the show, but take refuge in the ' any other colour' class; for instance, at the Brighton show (1900) we had no class for cream, orange, or tortoiseshell. They were, therefore, shown in the' any other colour' class, and being good cats of definite breeds were a credit to the class, and in no way a disgrace. But what do we often see? A blue with a white spot or some other freak winning. I say this is absolutely wrong, and that a blue with a white spot is in reality a bad blue, and should not be encouraged. In the same way, a tabby-and-white is a bad tabby, and ought not to go to a show at all, but even if shown has no right in the' any other colour' class, according to my ideas."

There is one cat that is fast vanishing from our midst. I mean the black - and - white Persian, and yet I confess an evenly marked specimen is a handsome animal. By black and white I mean the ground should be black, dense and glossy; the feet, chest, and nose white, with a blaze of white coming to a point up the centre of the face. The eyes of such a cat should be orange.

Another type is the white-and-black cat, but unless the black patches are evenly balanced, especially in the face, the effect is not pleasing (see illustration, page 232). Harrison Weir gives particulars of some curiously marked cats coming under his notice - "one entirely white with black ears ; another white with a black tail only; another had the two front feet black, all else being white."

I cannot say I have any leaning towards tabby-and-white cats, or orange-and-white, these being the least attractive of any in the fancy. Blue-and-whites are seldom seen, but the photos on pp. 234-5 represent some sweetly pretty kittens of this variety. Their sire was "Yani," a noted blue owned by Miss E. God-dard, and their mother a black-and-white. Blue tabbies, so common fifteen or twenty years ago, are no longer to be seen, at least only here and there at shows, and they have really no value beyond being pretty pets. A cat that has done some winning and has sired some lovely kittens, but must, strictly speaking, be considered an "any other colour" cat, is "Blue Robin," formerly the property of Miss H. Cochran, and now in the possession of Mr. C. W. Witt. This is a blue cat with a tabby-marked head. He was bred from blues and silvers, and his chin, ear tufts, and eyebrows are silver, and his nose pink. As will be seen from his picture, on page 236, he has a grand head and beautiful expression. I am indebted to Miss Hester Cochran for the following notes on " any other coloured " cats : "The cats known as' A.O.C.'s' or' any other colour,' because they are of a colour for which no class is provided, are hard to write about, because they have no history.

They are not bred from A.O.C.'s, and A.O.C.'s are not bred from them. They are either pedigreeless or, more commonly, the result of indiscreet crossing of two definite colours, as, for example, when the owner of a white queen wishes to breed a litter of blue kittens. More rarely they result from a cross which has been resorted-to to fix some special point, as when a white and a blue with particularly massive heads or wonderful orange eyes have been mated with a view to producing a strain noted for their eyes. Years ago the classes were interesting, as they introduced all new colours. "I remember an A.O.C. class at the Crystal Palace not many years ago containing seven entries, all good smokes ; soon after smoke classes were given, and then chinchillas began to appear in this class. These cats being specially provided for, creams were the most noticeable A.O.C.'s ; but now the blue tabbies and broken-coloured cats - that is, some colour and white - usually occupy the A.O.C. class. Notable instances of cats with white spots were'Cain,"Nankipoo,' and 'Kingfisher,' all grand bines with this blemish.

"In 1892 Mrs. Pattison's exquisitely shaped and coated orange-and-white' Chicot' (pedigreeless), then shown as tabby with or without white, established a record by winning as best in show at the Crystal Palace. Other tabby-and-white cats have done well. Miss Malony used to show some good ones; the best, 'Lindfield Sweet William,' was a blue tabby-and - white, very massive and heavily coated, son of the smoke 'Lindfield Bogie.' Mrs. Pearce, of New Barnet, also used to win with tabby-and-white cats, and Mr. Law's' Buffer' was a celebrity in his day, but whether he was a brown tabby or an A.O.C. is doubtful; he was later known as 'Leopold.' The Hon. Mrs. McLaren Morrison had a really good silver tabby with white feet in 'Kepwick Silver King' ; and later Miss Snell's grand-headed 'Wonderland' made a small sensation.

"Another good cat which won in an A.O.C. class is Lady Maitland's' Cheeky Blue,' a lovely blue with a sprinkling of white hairs on her body. Blue and smoke tortoise-shells are freaks, and not really exhibition cats at all, but are by some people considered useful for breeding. Personally, I do not think they are capable of producing anything which a definitely coloured cat of proper ancestry cannot produce as well or better. When cream queens were unavailable they had to be used, but now they are becoming unnecessary. Perhaps the best is Miss W. Beal's 'R. Fluffie.' Mrs. D'Arcy Hildyard's 'Sengo of the Durhams' was another. Miss Taylor's 'Tawney' began life as a blue with a few yellow marks, and wound up as a good tortoiseshell, though a trifle too red. Mrs. Cunliffe Lee's 'Tiger,' a kind of yellow-brown, more ticked than marked, and principally distinguished by his great coat, made his mark in the A.O.C. classes.

"Of blue tabby cats which have won well (mostly bred from blues and silver tabbies) there is a long list. They became common through the craze for blues, as silver queens were sent to blue toms. Later the desire for chinchillas started them afresh, as blue queens were sent to chinchilla toms.

' Upwood Dew' and' Camera' are from the' Timkins' strain ; Miss Jebb's' Julius Caesar,' Miss Rae's 'Romanoff,' Miss Nicholay's 'Sacho,' and Miss Jay's' Holm-wood Skittles' were all celebrated cats. Some of these have thrown beautiful kittens, both blues and chinchillas; and as a makeshift, when a correctly coloured cat of the required pedigree is unavailable, they may, when judiciously mated, be found useful; but good breeders will part with all mis-marked kittens for pets. The best and most definitely coloured A.O.C. I ever saw was Mrs. Davies" Sin Li,' a deep self-coloured chocolate - brown cat. He was supposed to be one of three Swiss mountain cats imported to this country, and he was a most handsome and interesting animal. Unfortunately, he died young, leaving no progeny. Another interesting A.O.C. cat I have seen was a short-haired neuter, red, with black stripes and white paws and chest. In the future I hope to see a variety of strange cats in the A.O.C. classes, but at present they are very uninteresting. Good suggestions for future colours are red, orange, blue, or white with black stripes, chestnut-brown self-coloured, and black with white tips to the fur.

So far as I can see, it should be possible by crossing with various foreign breeds to produce in a few years' time cats of all these colours." One of the finest " any other colour " cats of the present day is now in the possession of Miss Moxon, of Ilfracombe. "Cinder" was purchased from Mrs. Davies, who has a rare faculty of picking up uncommon-looking cats. Miss Moxon writes : - "I am sending you a detailed description of' Cinder,' who is a difficult cat to describe, and is quite the handsomest cat I have ever seen. By' handsome' I mean striking, as she attracts everyone's attention, and very often visitors to our well-filled cattery have not a glance to spare for our other specimens." The following is the description of this very uncommon long-haired cat : -

"'Tors Side Cinder,' winner of many prizes, including second Brighton A.O.C. kitten class, 1899 ; first A.O.C. kitten, medal, and two specials, Westminster, 1900; first and special for best cat in show, Maidstone, etc.

"'Cinder' was described to me by the lady from whom I bought her in 1901 as' a very peculiar colour - a kind of tortoiseshell creamy smoke.' She has a dark seal-brown mask and ears, except for one creamy orange (tortoiseshell) splash above left eye, and another under chin. These give great expression to her face. Head exceptionally fine, considerable breadth of skull, small tufted ears, short broad face, very sweet expression. Round orange eyes, for which she has won more than one special. Fine outstanding frill of a creamy smoke colour ; fur on chest very long and feathery, of a creamy, bluish smoke shade, with a pale cream knot in centre. Seal spine line, splashed with creamy brown, shading gradually lighter to shoulder knots and side puffs, which are of a rather darker tint than the frill. Paws and legs of a dark seal-brown; waistcoat and knickers of a bluish cream. Splendid thick brush - upper-side to match spine line, under-side of a bluish cream shade. Slightly bluish tint all over, distinct under-coat of palest cream shading to soft creamy blue."

American fanciers have always shown a partiality for broken-coloured cats, and orange-and-white and blue-and-white cats have classifications given for them at the leading shows. In England there is a marked antipathy to these cats, chiefly because they have little or no value for breeding, though they undoubtedly make pretty pets. As a sign of the times, I may mention that at the Westminster show in 1903 the three " any other colour " classes for males, females, and kittens had to be cancelled, no entries having been made.

Speculative, but, I must add, persevering fanciers might derive interest and amusement from trying to breed out - of - the - common specimens. A black-and-white, spotted like a Dalmatian hound, or a cat marked with zebra stripes, could doubtless be produced in time by careful and judicious selection.

CHAPTER XXI. NEUTER CATS

IT has been my experience in the past year or two that the demand for neuter cats, or, in other words, household pet pussies, is on the increase; and I am inclined to believe that if some fanciers made a speciality of these cats they might do a thriving trade. As it is, owners of male kittens do not care to undertake the trouble and responsibility of having them gelded, or doctored, as this process is sometimes called, and novices in purchasing are always very anxious that the operation should have taken place before they become possessed of their pets. A selling class for neuters at our large shows would not be at all a bad idea, but the age should be limited to eight months, or at most ten months, as it is only natural that purchasers should desire pussies before they reach the prime of life, so that they may grow up as pets in the home. For reasons that are easily understood, it is necessary, if you wish to have a house pet of unimpeachable manners, to have your male cat doctored when he arrives at years of discretion.

For my own part I consider between five and eight months the best time for a cat to be gelded, but I have often known successful operations taking place much later. It is, however, most important that the torn should not previously have shown any desire to mate. In all cases a cat should be kept on low plain diet for two or three days before being neutered, and it is more humane to pay the extra fee for the use of an anaesthetic.

I have been told on good authority that if a female cat is to be made neuter she ought to be allowed to have one litter before the operation is performed. Neuter cats are essentially for the "one cat" person. They undoubtedly make a grand show when exhibited, but those who are possessed of these pet pussies are generally very disinclined to let them run the risks and discomforts of a show pen. I have advocated having neuters shown only in the ring, on the lead. If this course were adopted, I think owners would not mind exhibiting their precious cats, as they could be sent or taken home after their turn round. Certainly neuters are the only cats that ought to be led into the ring, and in this way their fine proportions and generally heavy coats can be seen and judged to the best advantage. It is too often a practice with fanciers to have the worst of the litter kept for a pet and made neuter, and therefore we see many blues with light green eyes, and cats with the blemish of a white spot, in the classes set apart for gelded cats; and if a beautiful, almost perfect, neuter is exhibited, fanciers are apt to protest at what they consider is "a grave mistake." From the lips of some noted and over-wrought breeders of Persian cats I have heard the exclamation, "I shall go in for neuters only!" This has been called forth, perhaps, by a succession of failing litters or by a rampageous stud cat that has fought with the neighbour's torn or has wandered off on amorous thoughts intent, perhaps never to return, or on returning to bring disease to the cattery.

Certainly, for a thoroughly comfortable domestic pet there is nothing like a neuter cat. They are more affectionate, and with children more docile, not less keen in catching rats and mice, and they are proverbially very clean in their habits. One great advantage that neuters have over the other long-haired breeds is that they retain their lovely coats nearly all the year round. In spite, however, of the many points in favour of neuter cats, they are nevertheless rather looked down upon in the fancy. Certainly, at our shows no cats are more attractive to visitors than the big burly neuters, and I would fain see a better classification for these really fine animals.

A specialist society was started in 1901 by an admirer of these cats, but either through lack of energy or want of enthusiasm the work was not carried on, and the club died a natural death. It remains for some other fancier with a love for pet pussies to start a society, for as it is the neuters fare badly at our shows, the classes provided never numbering more than two, and the special prizes being few and far between. Formerly neuters were judged by weight, and I remember some specimens exhibited at the Palace that really looked like pigs fatted up for market. It was in 1886 that the classification for neuters at the Crystal Palace show ran thus : " Gelded cats, not judged by weight, but for beauty of form, markings, etc." Happily, therefore, this state of things has been abolished, and though neuters should be big, massive cats, yet they need not, and should not, be lumps of inert fat and fur. It is true that a big show cat appeals to the non-exhibitor, and visitors to our shows are always greatly impressed with huge animals over filling their all too small pens. The heaviest and biggest neuter I have ever seen was possessed by Mrs. Reay Green. This enormous silver turned the scale at 20 lb. I believe the record weight at the Crystal Palace was 25 lb.

It is a libel to say that neuter cats are lazy and uninteresting. I have always possessed a neuter, either a blue or a brown tabby, and these beloved pets have ably fulfilled their duties as mice-catchers of the establishment. My " Bonnie Boy," who but recently joined the noble army of neuters, is as keen as a knife, and will sit for hours watching a likely hole, and never a mouse escapes his clever clutches. He kills them instantly, and then amuses himself for hours dancing about and throwing his dead prey with wild delight into the air. Then, again, he is, I am sorry to say, just as destructive with the poor London sparrows, and many a time I have had to chastise my pet for stalking the game in our little back garden.

Miss H. Cochran, writing of neuters, says : "There are, without doubt, a great number of people who like to keep a cat, especially a Persian, for a pet pure and simple - one that will be the admiration of all, and of service in ridding the house of mice and rats. They will attain a greater size, and in nine cases out of ten retain all the pretty habits and antics of their kittenhood. Neuter cats are often very troublesome in a large cattery ; they fight with each other and with the queens, which have a poor chance against their superior size. I think they do it for fun."

In Fur and Feather "Zaida" thus writes of neuters : Undoubtedly it is a crying mistake for neuter cats to be allowed to compete in open classes, but personally I should be delighted to see more classes for them at shows, and much greater interest taken in them. Sometimes one is tempted to think the ordinary run of cats has deteriorated in general beauty, remembering the splendid animals, both English and foreign, which we used to see in friends' houses in our childhood ; but the real explanation lies in the fact that formerly " house " cats were almost entirely kept as pets, and handsome kittens were obtained for the purpose. Nowadays anything not good enough for breeding from is made a neuter, and fanciers undoubtedly look on them with a certain contempt. Why should this be more the case with cats than with horses ? For a perfect household pet the neuter cat holds its own, if only the public would universally acknowledge it. But too often every purchaser of a kitten starts breeding, and multiplies a race of weedy, ill-kept animals, who do little credit to their owner. A cat with kittens is undoubtedly a charming sight ; but a female cat is more or less of a worry, and is, besides, only in coat for a very short time each year.

Then a torn cat roams, fights, and is often objectionable, but the stay-at-home cat is always a thing of beauty, never requires periods of seclusion, will mouse and rat with the best, and be a credit to any establishment. In short, we should like to see more of them, not fewer, and a neuter class for every colour in a show. In many a household cats are now disliked through the ill-advised action of some member of the family in starting breeding with more zeal than knowledge, and without proper convenience. If a lovely neuter, or even two or three, reigned in their glory, there would be an end to the trouble, to the groans of the other members of the family, to the " wasn't engaged to wait on cats " of the servants.

In the schedule of the Beresford Cat Club show, held at New York, January, 1903, the classification for gelded cats reads thus : "Class 25, neuter, white or black; Class 26, neuter, blue or smoke; Class 27, neuter,' any other colour'; Class 28, neuter, any colour tabby with white." It will be seen, therefore, that in America a much more liberal classification is given for long-haired neuters, and for short-haired there are three classes provided. I do not know, nor have I heard of, any remarkable American neuters, and no photographs have been received by me for reproduction in this work.

If we go back some years in the fancy, I remember Miss Sangster's " Royal Hector," a blue of great celebrity ; also same owner's "Royal Bogey," a handsome black with a white star. Miss Boddington's cobby, woolly-coated white " Ba Ba" appeared later in exquisite form, winning well till he was eleven years old. At this same period Mrs. Herring's little smoke " Ally Sloper" and Miss Molony's big, heavily coated black " Uncle Quiz " were noted winners.

Then we come to Mrs. Willman's " Charlie," a fine blue of " Beauty Boy " strain, and Miss Knight's " Albion Joey," one of the finest neuters ever exhibited, a huge smoke with the roundest of heads, a trifle marked and not good in eye, but a glorious animal.

A little later came Madame Portier's "Blue Boy," and, as I have received some notes from the owner of this magnificent cat, I will give them : - " I am very proud of my' Blue Boy,' born on St. Patrick's Day, 1895. He has won twenty-eight first prizes and many specials, and his championship before he was a year old. I had an offer of 20 for him. The greatest honour' Blue Boy' received was a caress from her Majesty, then Princess of Wales.

"I often take my pet out for a walk on a collar, and he is quite easily led, and people often stop and ask if it is really a cat. I send you his photo for reproduction in' The Book of the Cat.' " One of " Blue Boy's " wins was at the Richmond show, 1902, where he was greatly admired for the dignified way in which he comported himself on a lead. In these up-to-date days, however, " Blue Boy " has to run the gauntlet with superior coloured eyes, but in shape, size, and coat he holds his own. Miss Kirkpatrick's " Chili," now no more, was a beautiful creature - a silver}' smoke, almost a smoke tabby, with a wonderful fleecy coat and grand frill. Mrs. Reay Green has always been the proud possessor of superb neuters - "Mosca," a blue ; "Abdul Zephir," a chinchilla ; and later "Ajax," who has done some winning. Viscountess Esher also has quite a cattery of neuters. I procured for her a sable, almost unmarked and very rich in colour, a white with limpid sea-green eyes, and a Siamese with perfect points.

Miss Cochran's "Patpaw" (now in the possession of Viscountess Esher), a son of the celebrated tortoiseshell "Tawney," is rather small for a neuter, but full of quality, with wonderful orange eyes. " Persimmon Laddie," owned by Miss Whitney, is, perhaps, the most perfect specimen that has been seen in the pen of the neuter classes. He is not a brown and not a tabby, but a sable ; and, having the blood of the " Birkdale Ruffles " and " Champion Persimmon " in his veins, it is no wonder he carries all before him. No photograph can do him justice.

Mrs. Boyce's "Fur" could beat any male chinchilla now on the show bench ; for in colour, shape, and head he is well-nigh perfect. Mrs. Millar's "Lord Bute" is a monstrous black, and in spite of his green eyes is generally in the prize list ; but in Mrs. Curtis's "Baron Bonelli" he met more than his match at the Crystal Palace in 1902. This black cat (a son of "Johnnie Fawe") has all the good points of "Patpaw," including his gorgeous eyes, and he is very large. Miss Holmes' " Blue Tut" has won many honours, and Miss Chamberlayne's "Tiger" is a handsomely marked brown tabby. Miss Meeson's "Fluff Duvals," another brownie, won first at the Crystal Palace and Brighton, and after a second at Westminster came home to die ! Miss Averay Jones has a splendid chinchilla neuter " King Cy," a possession too precious to be risked at any exhibition.

So much for the long-haired pet pussies, and we will take a glance at past and present short-haired neuters. A lovely coated cat was " Tiger of-K-epwick," owned by Mrs. MacLaren Morrison, a brown tabby, as his name denotes. Then Mrs. Butler's orange, which for many years won at the Crystal Palace and Brighton. Mr. Lane had a good yellow-eyed white, "Leonidas." Mrs. Herring owned a well-marked brown tabby in " Sir Peter Teazle." Of late years the most remarkable short-haired neuters have been Miss Cartwright's really lovely Siamese "Chote" and Lady Alexander's blues, " Brother Gamp " and " Tom Gamp," who are rarely, if ever, defeated. A richly coloured orange tabby neuter, "Red Eagle," also hailed from the same cattery.

In judging neuters, I think it is rather a mistake to go too much by points. I consider size should be a most important factor, also coat and general effect. Of course, in close competition points would come into question; but I really think that a large, heavily coated neuter, whose colour was a trifle unsound, or whose markings or eyes were below par, should not be placed below a small mean-looking cat who, however, excelled in these points.

Louis Wain, writing on a general survey of the Crystal Palace show of 1900, referring to the neuter class that he judged, says : - "Neuters have suffered somewhat through the extended schedule of the' whole' cats. At one time it was quite a usual thing for exhibitors to have their' cats neutered to preserve the natural beauties of a fine cat, and very often a really handsome cat was neutered because he stood no chance in a class of twenty or thirty cats, and yet would take first as a neuter in a class of six or eight. The neuter classes have not grown as have the other classes. As 'home' cats neuters should be encouraged, and I feel sure that many are kept at home in fear of the dreaded' blues,' which are usually unbeatable." Mr. Wain also complains of the poor classification for neuters at our shows, and on this particular occasion he states that the cats were such extremely fine animals that they needed classes of their own for him to do justice to their merits. Certainly there ought at least to be three classes provided for neuters at our large shows, viz.: Neuters, self-coloured (blue, black, and white); neuters, tabby, "any colour"; and neuters, "any other colour."

CHAPTER XXII. MANX CATS

THESE quaint cats are rapidly and surely coming into notice in the fancy. As a breed they are intelligent and affectionate, and, I believe, splendid sporting cats. They are undoubtedly great favourites amongst the sterner sex, perhaps because they are such keen and plucky ratters. As a breeder of Persian cats, and having become used to the beautiful wide-spreading tails of these cats, I confess there is something grotesque and unfinished, to my eyes, in the Manx, and from choice I should not care to keep these tailless pussies as pets. They do not appeal to me and to my sense of the beautiful. Having, therefore, never kept or bred Manx cats, I feel diffident in writing about them; but I have carefully studied those exhibited, and have also had opportunities of judging of their points whilst visiting friends who have fallen victims to the fascinations of these curious felines. I know a good Manx when I see one, and to prove this assertion I will tell an incident in connection with a prize-winning Manx of to-day. A friend of mine living in London took compassion on a little stray black kitten who came crying for food. She fed him, and repeatedly tried to find poor pussy's owner, but in vain.

I was appealed to to know what had better be done, and when I saw the little black fellow I strongly recommended my friend to keep it and exhibit it at the next large show, as I considered he would go in and win easily. She followed my advice in the latter respect, but placed too low a figure on " Nig," as she declared she did not wish to go in for Manx. I warned her he would be sold, and sure enough that clever and astute judge of cats of uncommon breeds, Mrs. H. C. Brooke, snapped him up at catalogue price; and since then he has blossomed forth into a champion, and as "King Clinkie" has taken highest honours whenever shown. It is only just to state that Mrs. Brooke most generously handed over some of her winnings to " King Clinkie's " former owner.

I will therefore proceed to give my opinion of Manx cats, but with all due deference to my fellow fanciers who have had personal experience with the breed. I think I have judged every species of cat, long- and short-haired, except Manx; but if I were given a class of this breed upon which to adjudicate, I should first closely examine their tails, or, to be more correct, the place where the tails ought not to be ! I remember in former times stump-tailed cats, called Manx, used to win comfortably at shows, but in our up-to-date times I should make a black mark in my judging book against those cats with a stump or an appendage, or even a mere excrescence. I do not fear contradiction when I state that a Manx cat of the true type should have no particle of tail - only a tuft of hair, which ought to be boneless.

The next point for which I should search would be the length of hind quarters, which lends such great individuality to this breed of cat. No doubt the lack of tail in itself makes a cat's hind legs look long, but we want more than that; we need a very short back, so that from the point of the quarters to the hocks there is a continuous and decided outward slope. In fact, the hind legs stand right back from the body, like a well-trained hackney's in the show ring. Coat I should next consider, as this differs, or should differ, considerably from both the long- and short-haired breeds. It should bear more resemblance to the fur of a rabbit, being longer and softer than that of our common or garden cats. I think a good-shaped round head as desirable in a Manx as in other breeds. As regards colour, the most common would seem to be tabbies, either silver, brown, or orange, and often there is a mixture of white. Self-coloured Manx seem to be much rarer, and Harrison Weir tells us he does not recollect having seen a white Manx.

As regards the colour of eyes in Manx cats, it is the custom to say that they do not matter in this breed; but, nevertheless, a cat that has the correct colour of eye must necessarily beat an animal that has just the opposite to what is set forth in the standard for short-haired English cats.

A lady friend of mine, who was brought up in the Isle of Man, has told me that she always understood that Manx cats came from a cross with a rabbit, but if this supposition is correct it seems too strange to be true that cats and rabbits should only form matrimonial alliances in the little island off our coast ! It would appear more probable, therefore, that a foreign breed of cat was brought to the island, and the following article from the pen of Mr. Gambier Bolton gives his ideas on the subject : " In the Isle of Man to-day we find a rock named the Spanish Rock, which stands close into the shore, and tradition states that here one of the vessels of the Spanish Armada went down in the memorable year 1558, and that among the rescued were some tailless cats which had been procured during one of the vessel's voyages to the Far East. The cats first swam to the rock, and then made their way to the shore at low tide; and from these have sprung all the so-called Manx cats which are now to be found in many parts of Great Britain, Europe, and America.

"The tale seems a bit' tall,' and yet the writer feels so satisfied of its truth that he would welcome any change in the name of this peculiar variety of the domestic cat to sweep away the idea that they sprang from the Isle of Man originally.

"Any traveller in the Far East - Japan, China, Siam, and the Malay region - who is a lover of animals must have noticed how rarely one meets with a really long-tailed cat in these regions, for instead one meets with the kink-tailed (i.e. those with a bend or screw at the tip of the tail), the short kink-tailed (i.e. those with a screw tail like the bull-dogs), the forked-tailed (i.e. those having tails which start quite straight, but near the tip branch out into two forks), and finally the tailless (or miscalled Manx) cats; and the naturalist Kaempfer states definitely that the specimens of this breed now so common in parts of Russia all came originally from Japan. Again, anyone who breeds these tailless cats, and keeps the breed quite pure, must have noticed how they differ in appearance and habits from the common short-haired cats. They are, and should be, much smaller in size; the coat should be longer and more 'rabbity'; the' call' is much nearer that of the jungle cat of the East than that of the ordinary cat ; and their habits, like those of the Siamese cats, are much more doglike.

In all these points they keep closely to what the writer firmly believes to be their original type, the domesticated cats of the Far East.

"The photographs illustrating this article give some idea of the general appearance of these delightfully quaint little creatures, and one notices immediately the great point that all judges look for, viz., the high hind quarters, which is so typical of the tailless breed of cats, the few hairs, which represent the spot where the tail should be, constantly appearing even a few hours after birth, although there is not a sign of a caudal appendage beneath them.

"Kink-tailed, screw-tailed, fork-tailed, and absolutely tailless cats have all been exhibited at British shows of recent years, and the writer, from a personal knowledge of nearly all breeds, has no hesitation in recommending the latter as companions, their quaint and doglike ways making them general favourites whenever they are met with.

"There are at present six distinct types of Manx, or ' rumpy,' cats being exhibited at our shows, viz. : The long straight-backed cat, the long roach-backed cat, the long straight-backed cat with high hind quarters, the short straight-backed cat, the short roach-backed cat, the short-backed cat with high hind quarters. The last type is the correct one, the first is the worst and commonest type, the others are intermediate and should be judged accordingly.

"Manx cats should always be judged in a good, large, empty pen, and never in their own pens, or when held by the judge.

"Coat. - Exactly the opposite to the ordinary domesticated short-haired cat. A long and open outer coat and a soft, close under coat is the correct thing."

At one time, we may presume, the Manx cat was kept pure in the Isle of Man; but, alas ! the natives, with an eye to the main chance, have been led into manufacturing a spurious article, and many more tailless cats and kittens than ever were born have been sold to tourists eager to carry home some souvenir of the island to their friends on the mainland. I have been told that the landing pier is a frequent resort of dealers in so-called Manx cats, where the unwary traveller is waylaid and sold ! On some out-of-the-way farms on the island I believe none but tailless cats have been kept for generations, and some genuine specimens may thus be picked up, if the tourist gives himself the trouble to go off the beaten tracks.

The following letters which appeared in Our Cats. in the issue of June 30th, 1900, will be read with interest. They were written by two gentlemen of prominent position in the Isle of Man, but as they did not wish to be identified as authorities on cats their names were not given :

[Letter I.]
Castletown, Isle of Man,
12th July, 1898.

I received yesterday your letter respecting Manx cats. I fear I am unable to aid you much in your inquiries as to the Manx cat, for any personal information I can give.

When I was a boy there was a kind of tradition that the tailless cat was brought here by the Spanish Armada. We have a headland called " Spanish Head," where it has been believed that some tailless cats escaped and took refuge here, and that from such cats all the so-called Manx cats have been derived. During my life I have frequently met persons who have travelled in Spain, and I think I have always asked from such persons if they had ever met with tailless cats there, but I never met anyone who had seen them. I never heard any other traditional) origin of the Manx cat alleged. They are very common here, but not so common as cats with tails. Both cats with and cats without tails associate together. In my own house we have always kept cats, and in almost every litter of kittens there arc some with and some without tails. I have two tailless cats now - one is a kitten of a few weeks old. It has no sign of a tail, but is (as designated here) a pure rumpy. The mother is one also, but she has a little fur tuft.

I have frequently seen kittens having a very small " rudimentary tail," such as one or two bones.

I have seen, I think, Manx cats of most of the colours mentioned by you, but the most common are the grey or tabby.

I have never heard of wild cats found here, and I do not think there is any tradition about them.

A few years ago I had a very fine torn cat (bred in my own house), black all over, and with no sign of a tail. I lost it. I presume it was stolen by some tripper. Trippers are frequently on the look-out for Manx cats, and I fear that many tailed kittens are deprived of their tails to meet the demand.

[Letter II.]
Ramsey,
17th July, 1898.

Thank you for letting me see the interesting letters about Manx cats. I suppose the Society wants to have a standard by which to judge them. . . . I am sure we should all be interested to hear what they have to say on the subject, and we may be able to add some general information.

To take the questions in order I should say that grey tabby (barred, not spotted) is the most natural and correct, if one may so speak. I think it is certainly most common. I have known tortoiseshell, black-and-white, black, white, and perhaps others, which I now forget. The eye, so far as I know, is the same as in the common English tabby.

Certainly we have cats with tails - the rumpy being the rare form. Perhaps one in a litter, and one or two of them with half-tails.

As to what they are supposed to be, I have of course heard the Spanish Armada story. My own belief is that they have originated in a sport, e.g. as we find in dogs and fowls, and have been perpetuated as curiosities, and in modern times on account of their commercial value.

I do not know that there is any type which can be said to be more true than another with regard to size and shape of head, etc. The height at the hind legs is perhaps more apparent than real, caused by the abrupt ending, without the falling tail as in ordinary cats.

Professor Owen made a preparation, which may be seen at the British Museum, showing the bones (if any) of the tail. I think in a perfect specimen there should be no bones. Of course, there are all degrees of stumps.

It is only of recent years that any English fanciers have tried to breed true Manx cats. Miss Samuel has been very successful in establishing a strain which again and again breeds true to type. The " Golfsticks" and "Kangaroo," two noted winners, are owned by her. In former days Miss Bugden's "Gorrie," Mr. Woodiwiss's "Manx King," "Pickles," "Belle," and "Beauty," all good cats, accounted for most of the prizes. Miss Jay, whose name is more familiarly known in connection with blue Persians, has always been partial to Manx cats, and used to exhibit at the Crystal Palace. The last time I visited the Holmwood cattery I was much struck with the number of tortoiseshell Manx cats running about the stable yard. Miss Jay has quite a family of these ; but, needless to say, they are all of the female sex ! Mrs. Herring has not been unmindful of this breed, and has exhibited some good specimens. Miss Dresser has owned Manx cats for many years and shown some good ones. Her "Belle Mahone" and "Moonlight" were nice tabbies, free from tail, and "Bonhaki Junior" was a very fine-shaped silver tabby-and-white; but, unfortunately, he had a stump which always kept him back. Mrs. Mosely has exhibited some good blacks.

Lady Alexander owned several prize-winning Manx, but t he s e have passed into the hands of Miss Hester Cochran. The best of these are " Balloch-myle Bell Stump," a curiously spotted tabby, absolutely tailless. "Bell Spitz" and "Strathcona" are also good specimens in Miss Cochran's possession. Mr. Gambier Bolton owned and bred some fine cats. "Manx Primrose," a black, and "D-Tail," a silver tabby, won respectively first and second at the Westminster show in 1902. It is so usual to see " Breeder and pedigree unknown " after almost all the entries in the Manx classes that these two cats were distinguished by having a certified pedigree. It was a grievous loss when "D-Tail " disappeared very mysteriously from his home in St. John's Wood. " Manx Silverwing " passed from Mr. Bolton's possession to that of Mr. Foulstonc's, and was later purchased by Mr. A. Ward, the well-known cat specialist. As will be seen from the illustration on page 251, this puss is almost a spotted tabby.

Lady Marcus Beresford has lately shown a great partiality for Manx. I think I am right in stating that the first one that inhabited the Bishops-gate cattery was a beautiful white called "Mona," that I procured for her. This fine specimen was brought from the island direct, and proved herself a splendid ratter ; but, alas ! she did not live long to enjoy the luxuries of her new home. There are, however, no fewer than five Manx now at Bishopsgat e - "Jack," a silver tabby; "Patch," a tort oiseshell; "Satanella." a black female ; and "Stumps," a brown tabby male. The most recent addition is "King Clinkie," whom I have before mentioned as being owned by Mrs. H. C. Brooke. Does he ever think of his former struggling existence, now that his ways are those of pleasantness and peace ? One of the latest of the specialist clubs is the Manx Club, formed by Miss Hester Cochran in 1901, with an annual subscription of 10s. ; this has been reduced to 5s., and the members in the beginning of 1903 numbered about twenty. The club has, as far as possible, devoted its limited funds to guaranteeing a better classification for Manx cats at the principal shows, and when unable to afford a guarantee has given special prizes for competition.

The efforts of this small body of fanciers have been substantially rewarded by the great improvement in the quantity and quality of the Manx cats exhibited during the last eighteen months. Miss H. Cochran, who has given up all other cats for Manx, is the hon. secretary, and Lady Alexander hon. treasurer. Committee : Lady Alexander, Miss H. Cochran, Mrs. Herring, and Miss White Atkins. No doubt in time the officials and members of the Manx Club will be able to add to their number.

The following is translated from a paragraph in a German weekly paper called Mutter Erde, and appeared in Our Cats of March 1st. 1900 :

The Progeny Of A Tailless Cat Of The Isle Of Man

A cat brought from the Isle of Man (felis catus anura) to S. Germain en Laye, of which the pedigree is unknown, was mated with ordinary long-tailed cats, and among twenty-four kittens the four following different kinds appeared :

I. - Kittens with ordinary long tails.
II. - Kittens with short and stump tails.
III. - Kittens without tails, like the mother.
IV. - Kittens without the least sign of a tail.

The comparison between the influence of the sire and that of the dam on the young is interesting : -

1st litter - 1 kitten like the mother
2nd litter - 6 kittens; 5 like the mother, 1 like the father
3rd litter - 5 kittens; 3 like the mother, 2 like the father
4th litter -3 kittens; 1 like the mother, 2 like the father
5th litter - 4 kittens; 1 like the mother, 3 like the father
6th litter -5 kittens; 3 like the mother, 2 like the father It will be seen that the influence of the mother predominates.

Manx cats may be considered shy breeders, and constantly the litter will consist of one kitten only ! I have been told that they are excellent mothers; but, in the words of a Manx fancier, "they only care to have one family a year, many queens won't breed at all, and heaps of males are very funny and take no notice of their wives ! "Another breeder of Manx informs me that these cats seem entirely fearless with dogs, and that her canines and felines live together in perfect amity. I believe Mr. H. C. Brooke once exhibited a Manx in the same pen as a bull-dog at the South London Bull-dog Show of 1893. And now, having mentioned Mr. Brooke's name, I am pleased to say that this well known and successful fancier of Manx, as well as foreign, cats has kindly written an article on this variety, which is his pet speciality: "On this breed I think I may claim to write with some authority, as I have kept it for a number of years, and it has always been my favourite breed of cat. I believe I may, without boasting, say that I have of late years been of some service to the breed, by constantly agitating for the Manx classes to be entrusted to judges who take some interest in the variety ; for it is a lamentable fact that there are numbers of people, good judges of the more popular breeds, who are quite willing to adjudicate upon the Manx classes without possessing the slightest qualifications, and these usually merely judge the Manx as a tailless cat, which is all wrong.

During the last few years I am glad to say that the National Cat Club, at almost all its shows, instead of tacking the Manx classes on to the list of any all-round judge, has appointed capable judges; and whilst, of course, no judge has ever succeeded in pleasing all concerned (except when there was only one entry in the class), the awards at these shows have always been reasonable and sound, and free from the absurdities which too often sicken fanciers and render the judge ridiculous at other shows. When we find an all-round judge openly stating that a Manx is but a tailless cat, and that he could manufacture perfect specimens, it is high time that that judge's name, however excellent a judge he may be of other breeds, should be inscribed upon the tablets of every Manx fancier's memory, and when he again officiates he should be saved the trouble of going over cats which he neither likes nor understands.

"'What is a Manx but a tailless cat ?' some may ask. Well, a cat with, perhaps, an inch of tail, though in my opinion unfit to win a prize, may possibly be really a better Manx, more calculated to do good to the breed, than an absolutely tailless cat. It may possess more Manx character, and this Manx character is a thing not 'understanded of the people' ; and here it is that those judges score who have taken a real interest in and studied the breed. A cat may have a couple of joints of tail, crooked or straight, and yet be a pure Manx; though, as we strive for perfection, I consider that such cats should be relegated to the stud, or at most only be placed in the money if the competition be very weak, and then never awarded any high prize.

"If breeders of Manx were more careful, there should be no difficulty in obtaining litters without any tail whatever. No cat can be a really typical Manx who is long-cast in the body. A short, cobby body is an essential in a show Manx. So also is a round, short skull. These points are usually noticeable when the kittens are young ; as they grow older they disappear, frequently to return when the cat has outgrown its kittenhood. But the most important Manx property is the great length of hind leg, which absolutely marks the typical Manx as a cat quite distinct from a tailless cat ; with this should be coupled a round, guinea-pig-like rump, round as an orange, which, of course, can only be obtained when there is absolutely no tail. Even a tuft of gristle or hair, as found in many of the best specimens, though in itself but a very trifling defect, detracts from this typical 'rumpy' appearance, by giving a more or less angular appearance to the hind quarters, unless, that is, it be situated so far back between the hipbones that it in no way projects. As typical specimens showing this rumpy formation to perfection, I may mention the late' Champion and Premier Katzenjammer,' and' Ballochmyle Bell Stump,' probably two of the best ever seen in this respect.

Had these two been mated, what glorious progeny should have resulted. Now these two cats, whilst possessing the round rumpy formation to perfection, did not excel so much in length of hind leg, and for superlative excellence in this property we must turn to another celebrated couple, the late silver tabby' Champion and Premier Bonhaki' and 'King Clinkie,' who has just passed into the possession of Lady Marcus Beresford, and who at the age of about fifteen months has already twice won championship awards. Now, these two cats exhibited the great length of hind leg which gave them when in motion the desired comical rabbity action; but in roundness of rump they lost to the other two, being somewhat more angular.

"To gain absolute perfection we require roundness of rump united to great length of hind leg. These are the great characteristics of the Manx, to which every Manx judge worthy of the name will attach the greatest importance. Then come other body properties - shortness of back, general cobbiness, roundness of skull, small ears, shortness of face ; then, last of all, colour. And here it is that the average all-round judge goes astray, for in too many cases he attaches too much weight to colour, a good instance of which occurred when 'Ballochmyle Bell Stump,' above referred to, whose colour, though quaint, is not very pleasing, was placed below a long-cast cat of a taking colour, but in no wise a typical Manx.

"As I before remarked, colour should be considered last. I think a good black is the nicest colour for a Manx, and, of course, the eyes should be of the colour sought for in ordinary black cats. A pure blue-eyed white is very pretty, and also very scarce. Tabby-and-white I personally do not care for. Silver tabbies are uncommon and very handsome. Tortoiseshells are also pretty and quaint.

"The fur of the Manx should be just a little longer and softer than that of the ordinary short-haired cat. Now and then we see longhaired Manx advertised, but these are, of course, mongrels or abortions, and by no means Manx cats.

"What is the origin of the Manx ? That is a question which in all probability will never be answered. The theory that it originated from a cat (or cats) having lost its tail by accident I do not consider worth a moment's consideration. Such a cat might well have tailless progeny, but that would have nothing to do with the abnormal length of the hind legs, which in good specimens is patent to the most superficial observer, and which makes the gambols of a couple of Manx a comical sight calculated to excite laughter in the most mournfully disposed person.

" Quaint is the old versified explanation, which I remember hearing some years ago.

It ran, if I remember rightly, somewhat like this :

Noah, sailing o'er the seas,
Ran high and dry on Ararat.
His dog then made a spring, and took
The tail from off a pussy cat.

Puss through the window quick did fly,
And bravely through the waters swam,
Nor ever stopped, till, high and dry,
She landed on the Isle of Man.

Thus tailless puss earned Mona's thanks,
And ever after was called Manx.

"The most feasible explanation, in my opinion, though of course it can be but a theory, is that these cats were originally imported from the East. Asiatic cats of domestic varieties show remarkable variety in the shape of their tails, as witness the kinks often found in the tail of the Siamese cat, and the knot tails of other varieties. This subject will be referred to again in a subsequent paper.

"It is also noticeable that many Manx, like the Siamese, are very dog-like in their habits, showing extreme affection for their owners. Poor old' Katzen jammer,' for instance, would follow me to the railway station, and many a time on my return from town have I found him sitting in the middle of a field waiting for me, and on seeing me he would accompany me home just like a dog.

"To return to the question of the Manx cat's tail, this should, of course, be like snakes in Ireland - absent. What we want is for the spinal column to come to an end high up on the back, so that on placing the finger where the tail would begin a hollow or depression is felt. This is the perfection, but it is not always obtainable in even the very best specimens. Next to be desired is when only a little tuft of gristle and hair, with at most a suggestion of a twisted and withered bone, is present. Then comes a distinct caudal vertebra, if twisted or abnormal in shape so much the better ; but in my opinion more than two joints should not be allowed in show specimens at all, though such cats, as I remarked above, may be valuable at stud for breeding from. But I see no reason, if Manx breeders would pay more attention, and incompetent judges were barred, why absolute taillessness should not be attained in ninety-nine kittens out of each hundred. I have bred many, but none have had the crooked stumps we often see in otherwise good specimens.

"I do not care for large Manx, which generally look coarse. Here, again, the all-rounder often goes astray, and unduly favours a large cat.

"I can heartily recommend the Manx as a pet, and the quaintness of his movements are certainly a recommendation. My cats are all house pets, so that I can watch them and enjoy their company; the' cattery' cat is abhorrent to me. I cannot understand why so few people go in for rationally breeding this quaint variety. I had hoped that the recent purchase by his Majesty of two couples of the breed might have given it a fillip.

"To illustrate the breed, I may perhaps be accused of egotism in giving the portrait of one of our own cats, but as he is dead it is less invidious than if living specimens were selected, and as they were awarded the very highest prizes by the very greatest authorities they may safely be taken as near perfection. The silver tabby' Champion and Premier Bonhaki' was bred by Mr. Jungbluth, one of the keepers of the monkey house at the Zoo. He made his debut at the Botanic Gardens as a kitten, when he was much admired by the then Princess of Wales, and Mr. Wain awarded him the championship. This success he followed up by winning four others under various judges,and died at the early age of twenty-seven months.

'Champion and Premier Katzenjammer' was bred at home; he did not commence his show career till late, and then he had to meet 'Bonhaki,' after whose death, however, he was unbeaten, and had earned his champion title at the time of his death from gastritis last year, which robbed me of one of the most affectionate' pals' man ever had, and I am not ashamed to own that many and bitter were the tears I shed over his grave.

"In conclusion, I would advise Manx fanciers to do their best to accustom their cats to seeing strangers, to being handled, and to the show pen ; for when a cat is nervous and crouches in a heap it is most difficult to see whether the desired shape of hind quarters and rabbity action are present. They can best be seen when the cat holds itself fearlessly and boldly; and when a judge has a large number of classes to get through in a short space of time, in very likely an ill-lighted building, he cannot spend half an hour coaxing each cat to show its action."

CHAPTER XXIII. SIAMESE CATS

I HAVE often remarked at our cat shows that strangers in the fancy will inquire and ask to be directed to the Siamese class, and many and varied are the exclamations of surprise and admiration expressed by them on seeing, perhaps for the first time, a row of Siamese cats seated in their pens. Nor is it always necessary to direct visitors to the Siamese classes, for generally these animals will betray their whereabouts by the unique tone of their voice, which is distinguishable at a great distance.

There is certainly a great fascination about this peculiar breed of cats, which is yearly becoming more popular and fashionable. But. fanciers are also learning a lesson in the school of experience, where frequently the fees are high, that they dare not trust their valuable specimens on the show bench. Siamese cats seem to be more sensitive than even the most delicate of long-haired breeds, and if attacked by any of the ills that catty flesh is heir to they do not appear to have any stamina to bear up against the ravages of the disease. Their recuperative powers are almost nil, and they rarely pull through a severe illness. I have never kept Siamese myself, but I have had many opportunities of observing them in sickness and in health. I have seen grown-up specimens go out like the snuffing of a candle with acute pneumonia, almost before one has realised they were even ailing. These creatures are quite human in the way they look at you with those bonnie blue eyes, and when you talk to them they seem to answer in their croaking voice.

I can well understand what companionable cats these may become, and to fanciers of this unique breed other cats must appear lacking in interest and wanting in intelligence.

From time to time there have been discussions in our cat papers on Siamese cats in general, and on their kinked or kinkless tails in particular. It is certain that those cats known to us as royal Siamese are not the only species in Siam, the common cat of the country being tabby or black. So many of my friends who are fanciers and breeders of Siamese have kindly supplied me with interesting facts concerning this variety, that I do not intend to enter into any details, but will state that in 1902 a Siamese Cat Club was started by several enthusiastic admirers of this breed, and the members have certainly done much to improve the classification at shows, by offering prizes and guaranteeing classes.

The following is a list of the officials of the specialist club, with a standard of points for royal Siamese cats :

President : Mrs. Vary Campbell.
Vice-Presidents : The Lady Decies, Mrs. Vyvvan, Miss Sutherland, The Hon. Mrs. McLaren Morrison, Mrs. Chapman, and Miss H. Cochran.
Committee : Mrs. Parker-Brough, Mrs. Carew Cox, Miss Derby Hyde, Mrs. C. B. Robinson, Mrs. A. Spencer, Miss Forestier Walker, Mr. Gambier Bolton, and Mr. C. W. Cooke.
Hon. Treasurer : Mrs. Parker-Brough, Springfield, Kettering.
Hon. Secretary : Miss Forestier Walker.
Hon. Auditor : Conrad W. Cooke.

Standard Of Points For The "Royal" Siamese Cat

Body Colour - As light and even as possible, cream being most desirable, but fawn also admissible, without streaks, bars, blotches, or any other body markings.

Points, i.e. mask, ears, legs, feet, and tail, dark and clearly defined, of the shade known as "seal" brown.

Mask - Complete, i.e. connected by tracings with the ears, neither separated by a pale ring (as in kittens) nor blurred and indistinct, the desideratum being to preserve the " marten face," an impression greatly aided by a good mask.

Eyes - Bright and decided blue.

Coat - Glossy and close lying.

Shape - Body rather long, legs proportionately slight.

Head - Rather long and pointed.

General Appearance - With points emphasised above, a somewhat curious and striking looking cat, of medium size ; if weighty, not showing bulk, as this would detract from the admired " svelte " appearance. In type, in every particular, the reverse of the ideal short-haired domestic cat, and with properly preserved contrasts of colour, a very handsome animal, often also distinguished by a kink in the tail.

Remarks

While admitting that blues, blacks, whites, tabbies, and other coloured cats may be also cats of Siam, these being common to all parts of the world, this club recognises only as Siamese cats those cats the points of which conform to the above standard, and is, in fact, desirous of encouraging the breeding of those particular cats first made known to British fanciers as the "royal" Siamese.

The points of the "chocolate " Siamese are the same as above, with the exception of body colour.

Value Of Points

Body colour (20)
Shape (10)
Coat (10)
Head (10)
Eyes (20)
Mask (15)
Density of points (15)
Total . . . 100

Any cat failing to obtain 75 of the above marks shall not be eligible for the club's challenge prizes and medals.

It was shortly after the formation of the Siamese Cat Club that the following letter appeared in Fur and Feather: POINTS OF THE SIAMESE.

The committee of the Siamese Club wish to draw attention to the unfortunate diversity of opinion concerning Siamese cats expressed in articles which appear from time to time in some of the papers which devote a portion of their issue to cat news. One great object of the Siamese Club is to encourage the distinct breeding of the royal cat of Siam and also of the chocolate cat of Siam - both beautiful in their own way, but recognised as distinct breeds. The Siamese Club is young, and not infallible ; but, containing as it does most of the principal breeders and exhibitors, its committee would like to record their opinion on some few points which have appeared in the Press, in order to avoid a silence which might be construed as consent. With regard to colour, they cannot agree that a royal can be too light in body colour, nor can they endorse " we like a rich cream body, chocolate saddle, and the points glossy black, shading away to chocolate." Another paper advises the mating of royal Siamese with the chocolate variety. It is true that the young kittens are very pretty, but after six months old quickly become dark and blurred. The great beauty of royal Siamese is the contrast between the sharply defined, deepest brown markings and a body of as light a cream as possible.

A third paper gives the information that an exhibitor known to it has bred prize - winning Siamese from a cross between a white cat with blue eyes and a Siamese queen. It also mentions another case where such crossing has produced good Siamese kittens, and thinks "that many other people have, with more or less success, followed the same tactics. The above experiment has often been tried, purposely and accidentally, but no case is known to the writers where the result has been anything like Siamese, the kittens always favouring the English parent. All Siamese are born white, and therefore if the children of one white parent died quite young such a mistake might be natural. It certainly would be very unfair to sell such kittens, as their progeny would inherit, and might pass on, an English parentage, not even necessarily white. A white is, or may be, merely an albino variety. - (Signed). A. Forestier Walker, Jean A. Spencer, May Robinson, L. Parker-Brough, S. E. Backhouse, Constance Carew Cox.

Miss Forestier Walker and Mrs. Vyvyan were amongst the first to introduce Siamese cats into England, and they have always owned a direct descendant from the first and famous "Tiam-o-Shian," and many are the prize-winners they have reared and shown from this celebrated strain. Miss Forestier-Walker has frequently acted as judge of Siamese, and took a very active part in the formation of the specialist club for this breed. She has kindly furnished me with the following notes, and given me some photographs of Mrs. Vyvyan's cats: " Siamese cats were first introduced into England about twenty-five years ago, but were not often seen until a few years later. Among the earliest were those belonging to Sir Robert Herbert, Lady Dorothy Nevill, the Rev. S. Baring-Gould, Mrs. Cunliffe Lee, Mrs. Vyvyan, and myself. Since then they have become fairly common.

"There are two distinct varieties in the present day.

(1) The royal cat of Siam, cream-coloured in body, with sharply defined seal-brown markings on head, ears, legs, feet, and tail ; eyes a decided blue. The cats generally become darker after two years old, but where great care has been taken in breeding the true royal cats keep the light colour longer. In any case the body colouring should be even, not blotched or striped. The larger, lighter-coloured cats have china or ultramarine blue eyes ; the more slender, darker cats have deeper-coloured eyes.

(2) The chocolate cats are deep brown in colour, showing hardly any markings, and have blue eyes.

" All Siamese kittens are white when born, but in a few days slight markings appear on tail, ears, and paws, and by four months old the markings are dark and complete, excepting those which connect the face and head ; these are seldom perfect before eight months old.

"The tails are sometimes straight, which is not a fault; but a knot or kink in the tail is a peculiarity of the breed, and therefore desirable. In England it has been asserted that this is a defect, but in Siam it is highly prized, and cats from the royal palace which have been given by the King as presents of value to important people have had this distinction. In the East a cat with a kinked tail fetches a higher price.

" The Siamese have a great affection for animals, and there is no doubt that the cats are much valued, those in the royal palace having been kept exceptionally pure. "There is a legend that the light-coloured cats, with blue eyes, represent silver; the dark cats, with yellow eyes, gold ; and that the possessor of both will always have plenty. This rather gives the idea that originally the eyes of the pure chocolate cat were yellow, and that the present variety has been crossed with the royal cat.

"Mr. Young, of Harrogate, had some years ago a chocolate cat with yellow eyes.

" Another belief is that they receive the souls of their owners at death, and it is well known that the King of Siam had one on board his yacht when visiting Europe a few years ago.

"It is a great mistake to mix the varieties, as the result after they become adult is a blurring of the markings and a patchy coat.

"The males are extremely powerful, and will kill strange cats and fight dogs. They are devoted to their wives and children, and to their owners. They are exceedingly intelligent. With the dogs of the house they will be on excellent terms.

"The litters vary in size, but four to five is the usual number. The kittens are difficult to rear, as they suffer from worms and teething, but after seven or eight months old there is little danger. Some people think a meat diet best, but I find it satisfactory to bring them up on lighter food, such as Ridge's food, milk, gravy, and fish, until they begin to cut their teeth, when meat is required.

"A pair from the Palace were given to Mrs. Vyvyan and myself in 1884-5, and we have been very careful in breeding, mating when possible with such good cats as Mrs. Lee's celebrated 'Meo,' Miss Moore's'Siam,' Mrs. Harrington's'Mechi,' etc, and have bred in consequence the famous 'Tiam-o-Shians' II., III., and IV., 'Polyphema,' 'Susa,' 'Kitya Kara,' 'Goblin,' 'Champion Eve,' 'Mafeking,' 'Vishuddha,' 'Ah Choo,' 'Suzanne,' and many others."

Among fanciers and importers of Siamese cats in the past, I may mention the Hon. Mrs. McLaren Morrison, Lady O'Malley, Lady Decies, Mrs. Brodie, Mr. Temple, Mr. Gambier Bolton, Miss Moore, Mrs. Elliott Hill, Mrs. Cunliffe Lee (owner of the celebrated "Meo"), and Mrs. Carew Cox, who later in this article will give some account of her "King Kesho" and the breed with which her name is still associated. Mrs. Herring has exhibited good specimens from time to time. Mrs. Chapman's "Wally Pug" used to cross the Irish Channel to visit English cat shows. Mr. Young and Mr. Inman, both of Harrogate, favoured this breed, and had some lovely cats. Mrs. Nield owned a charming little female named "Mintha-mee " ; and Miss Sutherland, who lives in the south of France, used to breed a lot of good Siamese from her imported " Prince of Siam." Several of her breeding have been sold in England, and have won at shows. Mrs. Patton Bethune has often exhibited, and is an ardent admirer of the breed. Mrs. Parker Brough, in whose care "Tiam-o-Shian IV." is placed by Mrs. Vyvyan, is well known as a Siamese breeder, as is also Mrs. Spencer, of Eye Vicarage, who exports quite a number of cats ; one of her breed - owned by Mr. E. Ratcliffe - is a beautiful animal.

Mrs. Vary Campbell, the president of the Siamese Club, is a generous supporter of the breed. Mr. and Mrs. W. R. Hawkins have always had some fine specimens ; and Mrs. Hankey, Miss H. Cochran, Miss Derby Hyde, and Miss Armitage are among others who owned some notable-Siamese cats. Mrs. Backhouse's " Champion Eve " was a distinguished prize-winner, and Mrs. Robinson's "Ah Choo" was chosen as a model for the medal of the Siamese Club. But it is chiefly as the owner of the celebrated " Champion Wankee " that Mrs. Robinson is known in the cat fancy in general, and among Siamese breeders in particular. "Wankee " was the first Siamese to win the title of " Champion." He was bred in Hong-Kong, his mother - "Nins " - being a stolen palace kitten. "Wankee" was six months old when he arrived in England: and was born in September, 1895. He has won over thirty prizes, but was never shown till June, 1898, therefore losing the time in which most Siamese cats gain their honours - namely, between six months and two years, when they are pale in colour of coat.

Many are the prize kittens he has sired, too numerous to mention. Mrs. Robinson, who is a member of the National Cat Club committee, has frequently acted as a judge of Siamese, and has kindly written the following account for this chapter : "One of the most beautiful of the short-haired cats is undoubtedly the royal cat of Siam, and the breed is greatly increasing in popularity ; but is never likely to be common, as the cats are delicate in this country. The best description is that drawn up by the Siamese Cat Club in their standard of points. The points of the chocolate Siamese are the same as the royal, with the exception of body colour, which is a dark rich brown all over, thus making the markings less noticeable. All Siamese cats darken with age, and when they get dark there is a tendency to call them chocolates. I know of only one real chocolate - Mr. C. Cooke's' Zetland Wanzies' - so consider them more likely to be a freak than a distinct variety.

" Of the royals there seem to be two types in England : the one - rather a small, longheaded cat, with glossy, close-lying coat and deep blue eyes, and with a decided tendency to darken with age - is generally the imported cat or having imported parents ; the other is a large cat, with a rounder head, a much thicker, longer, and less close-lying coat, and the eyes a paler blue (these cats do not darken as much or as soon as the other type, and have generally been bred for several generations in England).

"The kittens are born absolutely white, and in about a week a faint pencilling comes round the ears, and gradually all the points come. At four or five months they are lovely, as generally they retain their baby whiteness, which contrasts well with their almost black ears, deep brown markings, and blue eyes. Some kittens are much longer than others in getting dense, these making the lightest cats.

"This breed is said to be kept very carefully in the palace in Bangkok - hence the title 'royal' - and is by no means the common cat of Siam. One gentleman (a missionary), who had lived there fifteen years, had during that time seen only three. A few years ago there was a pair of these cats in the Zoological Gardens at Bangkok, but they were very poor specimens.

"They have occasionally been given by the King as presents of great value, and several pairs have come to England in this way ; also kittens have undoubtedly been stolen from the palace from time to time.

"There is a legend that these cats were kept exclusively and with great care in the King's palace, as resting places for royal souls. The Siamese are Buddhists, and consequently believe in the transmigration of souls ; but with the growth of Western ideas and Western scepticism I doubt this being admitted.

" They are very intelligent, almost doggy in their ways, and very affectionate, but not universally friendly. The males are great fighters, and freely use their terrible voices ; but they are well suited for house pets, as they seem happiest with their human friends.

"The first specimens were brought to England about twenty-five or thirty years ago, and Mr. Harrison Weir says that among those who possessed them were Lady Dorothy Nevill, whose cats were' imported and presented by Sir R. Herbert of the Colonial Office. The late Duke of Wellington imported the breed, also Mr. Scott of Rotherfield.' "

Miss Armitage, of Chaseleyfield, Pendleton, has sent me some charming photographs of her pets. She writes : "I have very few cats at present ; I lost so many beautiful Siamese last year, and I think I made rather a mistake in having their skins made into mats! 'Cora,' the mother of my Siamese cats and kits, is still a beauty, and I really think she improves with age; and though her eyes are not all I could wish for in colour, yet her kittens have always had the desired tone of blue. I have now a lovely daughter of 'Cora' and 'Champion Wankee,' aged nine months. When she was a few hours old I put her to be fostered by our old English garden tabby, who makes her headquarters in the greenhouse. This kitten has never had a day's illness. She leads a wild life, catching birds and mice, and nibbling the tips off the ferns - much to the gardener's annoyance. I am hoping to send her to our next National Cat Club show, if I can catch her that day, but she is generally up a tree when wanted !

" I find the way to succeed in breeding and rearing Siamese kittens is to only keep a few. I strongly believe in putting them forth into cottage homes. Distemper spreads like wildfire amongst this breed, and it is heartrending to lose whole litters at once. It is strange how much stronger the females are than the males. I have never lost a female kitten yet ; but, alas ! many a promising male."

I remember a beautiful male bred by Miss Armitage that she exhibited at one of the Manchester shows. "Sam Sly" was as near perfection as possible, and after taking everything in the way of prizes, medals, and championships this fine fellow came home and died ! Mrs. Spencer, of Eye Vicarage, to whom I have alluded as a Siamese fancier, has bred so many large litters of kits that I wrote to ask if she would kindly give me and my readers the benefit of some of her experience in rearing young Siamese. She writes in reply : "My 'Royal Siam' came from the royal palace, and I consider him a splendid specimen. I did not breed from him until he was between three and four years old, which may be one of the reasons why all the kittens by him are so wonderfully strong and healthy. He has never ailed anything since I have had him. I have never placed him at stud, but have allowed a few friends to send their queens to visit him. Neither have I ever exhibited him, for he is far too precious a pet to be allowed to run any risks. My queen' Princess Mai-mowne' is also a fine strong cat, a daughter of Mrs. Carew Cox's' King Kesho'; and many are the prize-winners bred from these two.

I heat my catteries during the day in winter, and at night in cold weather I give the cats a hot stone bottle in their sleeping boxes, for it is the damp and cold of our English winter nights which are so dangerous. The windows of my catteries face south, and this is important in rearing Siamese. I always allow my cats an abundance of fish ; this I give - mixed with bread soaked in water - twice a day, with another meal of something different, thus making three meals a day. I boil all the milk. Sometimes I give a little cod-liver oil over their food - with very beneficial results. If the kittens have bad colds or any trifling ailment, I indulge them with a little finely cut up raw beef. I have been breeding Siamese for over five years, and I have only lost one kitten of my own rearing. I think the reason of my success is that I never pass over the most trifling symptom of illness, and it is very necessary to take the temperature of Siamese at the slightest sign of sickness. I send a great number of kittens away to purchasers, and I am most particular in the way I pack the kits for their journey. The basket outside should be covered with thick brown paper, leaving just a square piece in the lid for ventilation.

Inside I line with new house flannel, and place a soft cushion at the bottom, and if very cold weather I put an indiarubber hot-water bottle under the cushion. If the cats have to pass through London, I arrange with the District Messengers Company to meet the cat and convey it to its destination or to another station. Thus dangerous delays are avoided at a very little cost."

As everyone knows, Lady Marcus Beresford has always been especially fond of Siamese cats, and many splendid specimens have inhabited the Bishopsgate cat cottage. At present "King of Siam" and "Khoula," and a quaint little female called " It," represent this breed. In the days gone by "Tachin" and " Cambodia " were the admired of all admirers, and I doubt if ever a more perfect pair has landed on these shores. These cats were given to Lady Marcus Beresford twelve years ago by the late Lord William Beresford, who brought them straight from the palace at Bangkok. Lady Marcus writes : " I never once had any trouble or anxiety with them - dear, gentle, friendly little people, so clever and attractive. I have never seen any I have so admired. They had many fine, healthy litters, scattered about now amongst various friends. My success all round was great with them - no illness of any kind, till one day a fiend poisoned both' Tachin' and' Cambodia,' and some of their six months kittens. I have replaced them with some bred in England ; and my opinion is that, as a rule, the imported ones are much the stronger. A pair of Siamese imported from the temple at Bangkok I purchased from Mrs. Vary Campbell, and had the great misfortune to lose them.

They differed from the royal Siamese, being darker and having a more pointed head and face, and their eyes were larger and fuller.

"I consider that Siamese cats are much cleverer than other breeds, and with patience can be taught several clever tricks. I intend to go in more largely for them in the future."

Several of Lady Marcus Beresford's Siamese found their way into Mr. and Mrs. Hawkins' possession, and were exhibited from time to time, always gaining great distinction. Mrs. Hawkins possesses a daughter of "Tachin," and so hopes to keep up this unique strain. Mrs. Hawkins has some of the best arranged and very solidly built catteries at Brighton, of which I give an illustration. These are specially adapted for the breeding of Siamese and silvers, the two varieties which find favour at Shalimar. A long experience with Siamese enables Mrs. Hawkins to write with authority, and I give her notes as given to me for the benefit of my readers : "The first thing you have to consider with regard to these animals is that when newly imported they are naturally delicate, and must be hardened off, so to speak, just as our delicate foreign birds have to be ; that is to say, you cannot treat them at first as you would our ordinary fireside cats. If you are fortunate enough to pick up newly imported ones, even if you have to pay a good price for them, they will prove a good investment; and perhaps you may be able to get some from one of our numerous cat fanciers, though they are very scarce at present and difficult to obtain.

My advice is to get the best possible pair, and let them breed in the spring in the house, ii you can let them have a spare room, which need not be warmed in any way. Leave the mother quietly with the kittens ; and, having provided a warm bed and bedding for them previously, leave them to nature as much as possible, just going in now and then to see that all is going on all right, and giving the mother warm milk, etc., and coaxing her to get used to you.

"Siamese cats are particularly gentle and affectionate, and if you are kind to them they soon get to know and love you. It is a pity their nature is not more copied by human beings - then we should not have so much dissension and wrangling in our cat fancy. But this is a digression! As the kittens get on it is as well to have a warm place outside prepared ready for them ; but do not put them out too soon, and if any show the slightest suspicion of cold they must be brought) in and allowed to get over it completely before being turned out in the garden or outhouses, with the others.

" My own Siamese kittens were born in a cat house in my garden at Brighton, but they were June kittens, so by that time we were having very nice weather. The father and mother I had as kittens ; I pulled them through their baby ailments successfully, and as soon as the weather was propitious and sunny I put them in their outside houses. Siamese and chinchilla kittens (both of which I go in for) must be hardened off gradually. They are just like English children brought from abroad, who have to be carefully nurtured at first and trained to get used to our English climate.

"What we want is to establish a really healthy, strong strain of Siamese in England, and by following the above suggestions I think it is possible to do it - not without difficulty, as, of course, it takes a little time and trouble (like everything else), but what is worth having is worth trying for.

"I may say I won with my Siamese at Brighton shows every time I exhibited them, and am now starting breeding them again ; and I think that everyone who will have the patience to go in for this charming variety will find themselves well repaid, as the kittens command 5 to 10 each if successfully reared, and sometimes more. Of course, one must keep a careful watch over their diet, and not over-feed (this is a great point, as they will contract skin diseases if you do) ; but all these things apply as much to all cats, and I cannot see why Siamese should be more difficult to breed and establish thoroughly in England than other cats. One of mine, a female, is out now (and has been all the winter) in a brick cat-house, and is perfectly well. I have been told Siamese are so delicate that people cannot rear them. This is often the fault of the people themselves, for if they will not take a little trouble over animals they cannot expect to make money by them. By this I do not mean fussing and worrying your servants over them. Look after them yourselves, see that they are all right every day (a good feed twice a day is quite sufficient), and then your Siamese will soon be as healthy and strong as your other cats.

All the points of a good Siamese are so well known that I need not touch upon them here. Start with a good strain, be careful, be patient, and you will be rewarded in the end."

I have mentioned Mrs. Parker Brough as a breeder of Siamese cats, and I am indebted to her for the following account of her favourite breed: "A peculiarity of royal Siamese is that the kittens are born quite white, and at about fourteen days the points begin to look rather grey, turning at two months to a deep seal-brown, while the rest of the body usually remains white or cream for at least a couple of years (the whiskers and claws remain white). The colouring process resembles nothing so much as that of a meerschaum pipe. There are distinct varieties of Siamese known to fanciers - the palace or royal cat, the temple cat (chocolate), and there is likewise the common cat of the country, which is also found within the palace. The points of the chocolate cat are identical for shows with those of the royal except body colour, but the imported chocolate is often dark chocolate, with blue eyes, stumpy tail with a marked kink, short legs, and heavy, thick body. There are not many chocolates exhibited, owing to the preference given to the royal variety.

"It must be understood that there is no definite royal breed as such, but the palace breed seems to have originated by selection. The Siamese as a nation are lovers of anything quaint or uncommon, and the white-bodied cats in Bangkok seem to have been given to, or bought by, the inhabitants of the palace, until they have established a breed of their own, and reproduced the cat that fanciers know to-day as the royal cat of Siam. This should explain a point which has given rise to much controversy, as travellers agree that other cats than royal Siamese are to be found inside the palace, yet the King and Prince Damurong have given from time to time royal Siamese to friends, naturally choosing for a present the cat that has the most value in their eyes. That is to say, that the term' royal Siamese' or' royal cat of Siam' is a descriptive term applied to a particular variety of cat, and should imply no more than this. We have a parallel case in 'King Charles spaniels.' The temple cat is under the care of the Jan priests, who have the greatest reverence for animal life, and whose temple is a sanctuary for all animals.

"Those who have kept Siamese will readily understand that, given a climate to suit them, only one breed of cat would be left in the temple - i.e. the Siamese, for this breed is distinguished as much by its pluck and activity as by hatred for any other breed of cat. The common cat of Siam is very much the same as anywhere else, except that the Malay kink in the tail is to be found in many of them. Until recently the Siamese was but little known in Europe, but occasionally was to be found in the various zoological gardens. At present there is a fine female specimen to be seen at the Zoo at Frankfort-on-the-Main, having been purchased from the King of Roumania. One or two are to be seen at Berlin, and we understand some are to be seen at the Hague. London has the first one it has had for six years, but it is not shown owing to its want of condition.

"A point on which the Siamese fancy is divided is whether the ideal cat should have a kink in the tail or not. The Club remains neutral.' Champion Wankee' has a decided kink, looking, in fact, as though the tail had been caught in a door in his early youth.

'Tiam-o-Shian IV.,' on the contrary, has none. This kink is a peculiarity of the animals of the Malay Peninsula, and sometimes is so marked, as to make the tail appear like a corkscrew, though others of the same litter may have quite straight tails. There is a peculiarity in breeding Siamese - i.e. the rarity of female kittens in a litter, the average seeming to be five males to two females. This may be due to the artificial lives so often led by these cats ; and, if so, corroborates the theory of Herr Schenk, the Austrian doctor, of the probabilities of sex at birth. Three of the most noted male cats exhibited in England have been Mrs. Robinson's 'Champion Wankee,' Mrs. Vyvyan's 'Tiam-o-Shian IV.,' and Mrs. Parker Brough's 'Koschka.' Probably Mrs. Backhouse's 'Champion Eve' and Mrs. Vyvyan's' Poly-phema' were the best females exhibited.

'Koschka' was, perhaps, the finest cat we ever saw, having eyes of the most glorious blue imaginable.' Koschka' died after the Westminster show of 1900. Owners run a great risk in sending their Siamese (especially kittens) to shows, as in addition to being more liable to take cold, are apt to fret themselves ill at being separated from their mistresses. Many fanciers are leaving off showing Siamese for that reason - for instance, the Siamese classes were cancelled at the Westminster show of 1903 owing to lack of entries.

"It is hard to say how they should be kept and how they should be fed. Some Siamese thrive by being treated just the same as ordinary cats, but they are few and far between. We have known cats which have been allowed to run about in the snow, and in and out of draughts, and remain perfectly healthy ; and others, who seem quite strong as long as they are taken care of, catch cold and die if they get their feet wet. However, if their cattery is kept constantly at a temperature of 50 degrees, and they are fed on scraped beef, milk (without boracic acid or preservative), water, and vegetables they seem to do better than under any other conditions. Personally, we have two catteries - indoor and outdoor. The indoor one is fitted up with' foster-mothers,' as used for chickens, on legs about three feet from the ground. We find this very necessary owing to the draughts on the floor. The rooms can be quickly warmed to any temperature required, even in the depth of winter. We like our grown-up cats loose about the house, but it is impossible to allow kittens their full liberty when there are many of them, as they are bound to get into mischief and do much damage to the furniture, climbing up curtains and breaking ornaments on mantelpieces and scratching leather, etc.

Of course, they are allowed downstairs a portion of every day when their mistress is able to look after them. They are most fascinating, frolicsome little creatures. The outdoor catteries - for use in summer - consist of a house and greenhouse, with covered runs leading from them, and so arranged that any or every cat can be isolated at will. These arrangements have taken a great deal of anxiety off our shoulders.

"This breed is certainly the noisiest, least dignified, most intelligent, and most active of all the cats. They are dog-like in their nature, and can be easily taught to turn back somersaults, and to retrieve, and in the country take long walks like a terrier.

"If they think it is meal-time and they fancy themselves neglected, they cry like children. The points of the perfect royal Siamese lie in the eyes, which should be a most perfect blue, and the contrast between the seal-brown of the paws, mask, and tail and the white or cream of the rest of the body, which should not be disfigured by bars or blotches. Age should be taken into consideration in judging this contrast. There are many beautiful kittens shown that we never hear of again after they have grown up, age having blurred their coats, thereby making the contrast less defined.

"For travelling short distances there are few better travelling cases than a Canadian cheese box, with holes bored in the side. They are cheap (say 4d.), light, and damp and draught proof, and can be burnt after once using."

It will be gathered from the accounts given by Siamese fanciers that these cats, though delicate, with the exercise of care may be reared like ordinary ones of other breeds.

Miss Cochran is very emphatic on this point. She says : " If Siamese are treated like common English cats, given plenty of fresh air and proper food, they are hardy and healthy ; and by proper food I mean a meat diet raw shin of beef, and as often as possible any kind of bird with the feathers on, or fowls' heads and mice. The fur and feathers act as a mechanical vermifuge. If the Siamese cats are coddled, they will certainly die. They have naturally rather delicate lungs, and for these fresh air is absolutely necessary ; a close, hot atmosphere and heated rooms are fatal."

Mrs. Carew Cox I have alluded to as one of the pioneers of the Siamese fancy, and she still remains an ardent admirer of this breed, and often acts as judge. She has kindly written a very valuable article specially for this work, and I have therefore great pleasure in giving her interesting experience in this chapter on Siamese : "Only those who possess Siamese can understand how reluctantly a lover of this breed takes up a pen to endeavour to do justice to its characteristics - it is like attempting the impossible. One feels one must step softly - so to speak - in the presence of these wonderfully fascinating creatures, whose thoughtful yet penetrating eyes appear to see so far and so much, whose intelligence seems almost human, and who seldom stay with us for long. Unfortunately, these cats are difficult to rear, the constant damp of our climate affecting their lungs and producing frequent colds and coughs, lowering vitality and causing debility.

"There are two recognised varieties of this breed - the royal and the chocolate. The former is certainly the most beautiful in appearance, the seal-brown points - sometimes black in adults - relieving the pale but rich cream colour of the rest of the body, and the brown mask forming a grand setting for the superbly blue eyes. The mask on the face should circle well above the eyes, but should not extend into the ear space ; the cream colour should be in evidence beyond the circle ; the ears should be seal and well and distinctly put on - i.e. the seal or brown should not merge into the cream ; the legs, feet, and tail should be of the same shade of seal, the darker the better. The tail of a Siamese cat has been the subject of considerable discussion and argument, some preferring the straight tail and some the kinked. The former is surely the most to be desired for appearance sake; but the latter undeniably adds to the quaint and foreign appearance of the cat, and in Hong-Kong preference is given to them and higher prices paid for' kinks.' The eyes should be large and luminous, of a bright shade of true blue, appearing flame-coloured at night or by artificial light; good specimens are often spoilt by small eyes, pale in colour.

There appear to be two distinct types - the compactly built, short in body, short on legs, and round in head ; and the long-bodied, long-faced, lithe, sinuous, and peculiarly foreign-looking variety. I am informed that the small cats are held in great esteem in Siam, some of the females being quite liliputian. ft is a matter for regret that as the cat ages the beautiful clear cream colouring becomes cloudy and dark. There have been exceptions to this rule : the late ' Polyphema,' owned by Mrs. Vyvyan, retained her pale colouring and her well-defined points to the last, and was the mother of many very beautiful kittens. Male cats are generally larger than females, and possess voices, which demand instant attention.

"The chocolate Siamese are of a rich chocolate or dark seal, with still more intense points. These cats usually possess eyes of rich amber. I have Miss Forestier-Walker's kind permission to utilise the following most interesting - and hitherto unpublished - extract from a letter received by her in October, 1902 : 'I am very pleased to write and give you the following information re Siamese cats. During a stay of some thirteen years in the Straits Settlements I have visited Siam on several occasions, and on one of these visits the present King of Siam gave a friend of mine a pair of cats. These cats were what the King called palace cats, were very valuable and perfect specimens, with short twisted tails. It may also interest you to know that the Siamese have a superstition about their cats, and like to have both breeds in their houses - i.e. the dark, coffee-coloured ones with yellow or golden-coloured eyes, and the cream-coloured with blue or silver eyes. The idea is that the yellow-eyed cats will bring gold and the blue-eyed silver, hence if you have both breeds there will always be plenty in the house.'

"I advocate that all kittens should be reared by healthy English foster-mothers, and am convinced that if breeders would adopt this plan we should in time succeed in establishing a far stronger breed of cats. As matters now stand, the kittens inherit and develop any ailment or weakness to which their mothers may be subject, so that from the very commencement of their existence they have but little chance of becoming strong and healthy enough to withstand our climate of many moods.

" Plenty of sun and air they require, but damp and draughts are fatal. All young kittens should be encouraged to take exercise ; empty cotton reels cause hours of amusement, also a rabbit's foot tied on to string or otherwise ; corks of any description must be avoided. Large bones should be given when the kittens are two months old - they assist the growth of teeth ; small ones, such as of game, chicken, or fish, are dangerous. The best and safest of all is a bullock's foot boiled down and pulled apart ; these bones will occupy kittens for a considerable time.

"Worms cause an enormous mortality amongst Siamese, and are, I feel convinced, at the root of nearly every ailment from which cats or kittens suffer; therefore, however reluctant one may feel as to giving medicine to youngsters of tender age, it is better to do this than to run the risk of these odious parasites establishing themselves, for they are most difficult to dislodge permanently. I have used Saunder's worm powders with considerable success. Of course, the dose for kittens must be administered in minute quantity - just a small pinch given in warm olive oil early in the morning after an all-night fast. In giving the powder to adults I always enclose it in capsules. In cases of weakness or exhaustion a few drops of brandy or whisky in a teaspoonful of warm milk works wonders. It is often necessary to give some sort of tonic after medicine of this description.

" Siamese kittens should be well fed; not much at a time, but little and often - lean scraped beef or mutton, vegetables, stale bread and gravy, boiled fish, rabbit, raw eggs, milk (previously boiled); in fact, anything light and nourishing. The remains of a meal should never be left on the floor. These kittens' digestions are not strong, and their intestines are most delicately formed.

"The colour of the eyes of Siamese kittens should be well determined at eight weeks. They are most interesting and playful at this age; a tunnel made of newspapers will afford endless amusement, and after a long and energetic game of play they will sleep for hours. It is not desirable to lift or handle them more than can be avoided whilst they are very young. In cases of bad colds or coughs, a simple but usually effective remedy is a mixture of three pennyworth of oil of almonds and three pennyworth of syrup of violets, mixed by a chemist - a quarter of a teaspoonful thrice daily (it is absolutely necessary to shake the bottle thoroughly before administering the medicine). For an adult an eggspoonful three times daily may be given. Cod-liver oil is always safe (also the best olive oil), and helps to build up the constitution. As a tonic I know of nothing to equal half-grain (coated) quinine pills, given early each morning for a few days now and again. In cases of bronchitis, Carvill's Air Purifier (about a teaspoonful) should be placed in boiling water, and the cat or kitten made to inhale the steam several times daily, and particularly the first thing in the morning and the last at night.

"For adults suffering from bad throat complaint and total refusal of all food I have found no remedy to equal the following prescription, if given in time. I have administered it with great success to numberless cats : Forty drops Calvert's pure carbolic acid, two drachms spirits of wine, six ounces pure water. Not quite half a teaspoonful to be mixed with a teaspoonful of warm milk, poured down the throat three times daily; for very young cats a smaller quantity of the mixture should be given. I doubt if it would be advisable to give it to young kittens. Even if the cat does not swallow the whole dose, it acts beneficially as a mouth-wash and disinfectant, apparently removing an unpleasant taste and re-establishing the power to smell - the loss of this sense often preventing a sick cat from eating. Weak eyes, sickness, and diarrhoea are tedious ailments to which all kittens are very subject, and to effect a permanent cure the treatment must be very persistent. "I do not know when Siamese were first introduced into England, but Lady Dorothy Nevill possessed some several years ago.

Sir Robert Herbert imported some; and Miss Forestier-Walker and her sister (Mrs. Vyvyan), who have owned and bred many beautiful specimens, first made acquaintance with this breed in 1883, and soon afterwards were presented with 'Susan' and 'Samuel' direct from the palace at Bangkok.'Tiam-o-Shian I.' also came from Bangkok. All these cats had kinked tails. From 'Susan' and 'Tiam - o- Shian I.' - mated with Mrs. Lee's 'Meo,' Mr. Harrington's' Medu,' and Miss Moore's' Siam' - descended, amongst others, the following well-known and typical cats :

'Bangkok," Tiam-o-Shian II.,' 'Goblin,' 'Kitza Kara,' 'Queen Rhea,' ' King Wallypug,' ' Prince of Siam,' 'Tiam-o-Shian III.,' 'Adam,"Eve,' 'Cupid,' 'Mafeking,' 'Rangsit,' 'Vishuddha,' 'Tiam-o-Shian IV.,' 'Suzanne,' 'Ah Choo,' 'Tornito,' and' Evangeline.' In awarding prizes in the Siamese classes at the Cat Club show at Westminster in 19011 found' Suzanne' quite the best cat present, and upon referring subsequently to a catalogue was not surprised to find that Mrs. Vyvyan was her owner.

Mrs. Hawkins' Cattery 'Champion Wankee' for a long time held his own in the show pen, and has sired some very good kittens; but, of course, as is usual, age has darkened him.

"Mrs. Robinson's 'Ah Choo'. and Mr. Cooke's' Zetland Wanzes' are well-known cats of to-day. Lady Marcus Beresford's 'King of Siam' is imported, has glorious eyes of sapphire-blue, and sires exceptionally good kittens ; he is short on the leg, has a coat like satin and an excellent constitution. 'Royal Siam,' the property of Mrs. Spencer, of Eye Vicarage, Suffolk (who has bred some of the best kittens I have ever seen), is a superb creature with eyes of deepest blue; he was given to a friend of Mrs. Spencer in Siam, is a genuine royal palace-bred specimen with bright blue eyes, a handsome cat with, strictly typical points, and - he is never ill! Miss Harper's (late)

'Curly Tail,' a daughter of 'King Kesho,' was an excellent example of the breed, all her points were very good ; unfortunately her life was not of long duration - she died a victim to dropsy. It is so long ago since I first possessed a Siamese kitten that I cannot remember from whom I purchased her ; she was a very perfect little creature, absolutely adorable with her quaint ways appealing and yet assertive nature.

"After her death from rapid decline I tried to put aside all thoughts of securing another, and not until September, 1893, did I again fall a victim to the attractions of this breed, purchasing a female of about one year old from Zache, of Great Portland Street. I named her 'Yuthia' ; she was supposed to have been imported, had very expressive blue eyes, and she lived until February, 1899.

"In October, 1893 - immediately after the Crystal Palace show - I became the owner of 'Kitza Kara,' a very perfect male, bred by Miss Forestier-Walker, which won first prize and several medals and specials. He also carried all before him at Bath in March, 1894. Unfortunately, he died that year from congestion of the lungs.

"'King Kesho,' the well-known male (sire of many beautiful kittens), I bought from Mr. Forsgate in 1894 ; he claimed descent from the Duchess of Bedford's, Mrs. Seton-Kerr's,. and Miss Forestier-Walker's cats; he had large bold eyes of a glorious shade of blue, and very dark points; he won many prizes and specials, but died in 1897. 'Lido,' a male bred by Mrs. Chapman and sired by' Champion Wankee,' was descended from some of the best of his time; he was of the long-bodied, narrow-faced type, most graceful in his movements.

"Amongst the many females I have possessed, 'Cameo' was one of my best, her pale body colour being relieved by intensely dark points; this little pet died suddenly in July, 1896, from failure of the heart's action.

'Koko' was a very large cat, comparatively coarse in appearance for one of this variety; she won the Duchess of Bedford's special at Holland Park in 1896, for the best adult Siamese. 'Princess To-To,' 1900, bred by Mrs. Bennet, became a great favourite; no words of mine could ever do justice to her remarkable individuality, her fascinating moods, her expressive little face and sense of the comic. She loved to be sung to sleep, closing her eyes with an unmistakable air of enjoyment and confidence, and clearly requesting an encore when the song ceased. I taught her to dance, and every night at ten o'clock she frantically enjoyed prancing round the room on her hind legs.

"Alas, that these little companions to whom we are permitted to become so deeply attached should be only lent us to brighten our weary way for so short a period ! 'To-To' was always very delicate, and after lying at death's door on several occasions she finally entered in; with her very last breath she crept into my arms to die. 'Yolanda,' the female I now own, was presented to me by Mrs. Hankey, and bred, I believe, by Mrs. Foote. She is a small cat with very blue eyes, and has recently had a litter of five kittens by Lady Marcus Beresford's 'King of Siam' ; these kittens all possessed the gloriously blue eyes to which both of their parents can lay claim.

"'Attache' (a neuter) was given to me in October, 1900, when six months old, by Mrs. Spencer, of Eye Vicarage, Suffolk ; he is a very large and powerful creature, with massive limbs, and an unconquerable antipathy to all other cats of any description, excepting only my Russian neuter, whose presence he tolerates. So great is his aversion to even the semblance of a cat, that he has attacked a life-size print of an assertive-looking Persian that acted as a stove ornament in the room he occupied during the summer months, scratching it several times across and across, and then retiring behind it, evidently to watch the effect from another point of view ! He has large and luminous eyes, in whose unfathomable depths linger many and varied expressions; he is of a peculiarly jealous disposition, capable of intense devotion. In spite of his living the life of a recluse, he is by no means a victim of ennui, possessing his own special playthings, which he keeps under one particular cushion, hunting them out when he feels inclined to play ; for so large a cat he is remarkably athletic, and as yet his health has caused me no anxiety.

"It is highly desirable that all who own cats should keep a few simple medicines always at hand. Personally, I am never without the remedies previously alluded to. Delay, in neglecting to note and treat at the very commencement certain symptoms of illness, often proves fatal, whereas a 'stitch in time saves nine,' and may even save one of the nine lives that a cat is (or was) supposed to possess."

The love of Siamese cats has not seemed as yet to have developed in America, and specimens of the breed are few and far between. Lady Marcus Beresford sent out two good cats to Mrs. Clinton Locke, and I believe several fine litters have been reared, and some fine exhibits appeared at recent shows. I give an illustration of some of these pets, with Mrs. Robert Locke, on page 256.

In the foregoing remarks of noted breeders of this variety many useful hints are given, and some peculiarities of the breed mentioned.

I would, however, draw attention to a curious and rather remarkable fact in connection with Siamese cats.

When they are ill, a sprinkling of white hairs invariably appears all over the face and head. The bright blue of the eye vanishes, leaving it a sort of pale opal colour. It often takes many weeks before the cat regains its ordinary appearance. Harrison Weir, in his allusions to Siamese, tells us that he had observed a great liking of these cats for "the woods," and goes on to describe them as not passing along like an ordinary cat, but quickly and quietly creeping from bush to bush ; nor do they seem afraid of getting their feet wet - like the feline tribe in general. The male Siamese will take a most friendly and parental interest in the welfare of madame's family; indeed, he shows a great liking always to have the company of a lady, and frets greatly when left alone.

The males are, however, antagonistic to others of their sex, and fight with a terrible persistency. I have heard of a stalwart fellow who, being allowed his liberty, cleared the neighbourhood of all other wandering toms. When made neuter, Siamese become most charming home pets, and can be taught to do tricks more easily than other cats. The sole objection to a Siamese house cat is the trying nature of its unmelodious voice. Siamese are rather prolific breeders, the litters being generally large ones, and the females, as a rule, in the minority.

I do not believe that Siamese will ever become common in England, for many reasons. These cats are expensive to purchase, difficult to rear, and fanciers are afraid to risk them in the show pen ; but in spite of these drawbacks, I think, as time goes on, and the Siamese Club extends its labours, we shall see and hear more of these really curious creatures, for what we call the royal Siamese bears no resemblance to any other cat, and the distinguishing differences, being so great, tend to make the breed one of our best show cats and a clear class to itself, for the Siamese of the purest blood should not be crossed with other cats. We have heard of " any other colour " Siamese, but these cats of varied hue claiming to be Siamese are but the offspring of a cross. We have been told of black and blue and tabby Siamese ; but the fanciers of Siamese look askance at these freaks, and feel that it is worse than useless to attempt to produce any other variety than that which we have learned by custom to designate the Royal cat of Siam.

CHAPTER XXIV. SHORT-HAIRED CATS

IF a census could be taken of the cats in England, or even in London, I suppose the proportion of short-haired cats to long-haired cats would be about ten to one. In the cat fancy, however, the breeders of Persians in comparison with those of the short-haired varieties are far more numerous. In former days, when cat shows were first held at the Crystal Palace, the premier position was given to the short-haired breeds. On reference to the catalogues up to 1895 I find the following heading at the commencement : " Class I. Short-haired Cats : He Cats, Tortoise-shell or Tortoiseshell - and -White." Then followed the rest of the short-haired varieties, including Siamese, Manx, and blue (self colour).

The long-haired breeds, therefore, in those days had to play second fiddle, so to speak. It was in 1896, when the National Cat Club took over the Crystal Palace shows, that the place of honour was given to the long-haired or Persian cats ; and now, as all the world knows - or, at any rate, all the cat world - at every show the short-haired cats are in a very small minority.

At one time - not so very long ago - there was a danger of these breeds becoming an unknown quantity at our shows. This would have been a grievous pity ; so some champions of the household or homely puss arose, and Sir Claud and Lady Alexander founded in 1901 the British Cat Club, to encourage the breeding, exhibiting, and kind treatment of these cats. The subscription first started at 5s., but was reduced to 2s. 6d., so as to try to get. members of the poorer classes to join and take an interest in the welfare of pussy. A goodly number of members' names are now on the list, and much has been done in supporting shows by offering specials - chiefly in money - and in the generous guaranteeing of classes. The hon. secretary and treasurer is Sir Claud Alexander, Faygate Wood, Sussex. There is a Scottish branch of this club, of which the secretary is Miss Leith, Ross Priory, Alexandria, N.B.

It was also in 1901 that the Short-haired Cat Society was founded by Mr. Gambier Bolton, whose name is so well known in the animal world. At most of the principal shows this society is represented, and some handsome challenge cups and prizes are placed for competition. The hon. secretary is Mrs. Middleton, 67, Cheyne Court, Chelsea, and the annual subscription is 5s., and 2s. 6d. to working classes.

In considering the short-haired breeds, I will divide them into three sections - viz. selfs or whole colours, broken colours, and any other distinct variety. The Siamese and Manx cats I have dealt with in previous chapters, and foreign cats will have a corner to themselves later on; so I propose to deal first with those interesting short-haired self-coloured cats formerly called Russian or Archangel, and which in America are termed Maltese.

There has been a good deal of discussion lately as to the points desirable in these cats, which of recent years have clearly become a species of British cats, and therefore are rightly classed as such at our shows, instead of as Russians. Yet this latter name sticks to the variety, and no doubt there are still some real foreign short-haired blues to be found, differing, however, in type from those we have become accustomed to breed and exhibit in England. Harrison Weir and John Jennings, in their book on cats in the early days of the fancy, deal with cats called Russians amongst the long-haired breeds, and these are described by them as larger in body and shorter in leg than Persians, with a coat of woolly texture interspersed with wiry, coarse hairs. In colour we are told they were generally dark tabby, the markings being rather indistinct.

I do not think such cats are to be found now in our midst, and so I presume this species of long-haired cat has died out. Anyhow, the term "Russian," when now used, is meant to designate the self-coloured, smooth-haired cat with which we are all familiar. Certainly, the best blues I have always remarked are those that have been bred in England, or that, at least, can boast an English sire or dam; and, after writing right and left to breeders of British cats, I have had a difficulty in obtaining any really good photographs. I cannot, however, complain of the pictures of blue short-hairs which illustrate these pages, and which have been really showered upon me. I have failed, however, to be able to illustrate the difference between the foreigners and Britishers.

That there are two distinct types of these blue cats is apparent to anyone who observes the specimens exhibited at our shows. The foreign or imported variety have wedge-shaped faces, and are longer and larger in the head, with prominent ears; otherwise, in colour and coat, they are similar to those bred in England, and which partake of the same formation as an ordinary British cat. In describing the correct texture of coat of these short-haired blues, I would compare it to plush, for the hair does not lie softly on the slope, but has a tendency to an upright growth, and yet the coat should not have any suspicion of coarseness or roughness to the touch. We know the difference between silk and cotton plush, and it is to the former I would liken the correct coat of these blues. Needless to say that, as in all self - coloured cats, the colours should be absolutely even - of a bluish lilac tint, without any sootiness or rusty shade. As in other breeds of "sells," the young kit-tens exhibit distinct tabby markings, but these vanish as the coat grows, and many a ringed tail which may have caused distress to the breeder will as time goes on be proudly held aloft without a suspicion of any blemish.

The blues now exhibited appear generally to fail in eye, the colour being yellow, and often green or greenish-yellow; whereas a special feature of this breed should be a deep orange eye, round and full. Another fault which is sometimes apparent is too thick a tail, which is suggestive of a long-haired ancestor. The following is an interesting letter from Mrs. H. V. James which appeared in Fur and Feather

Blue Russians

I am very interested in the discussion on blue Russians, as years ago I had a perfect type of a blue Russian, which had been imported. When Russians were judged as Russians it won well at shows, so you may like to have a description of the cat - which is, I believe, a correct one, according to several authorities on Russian cats. A real Russian should be longer in the leg than the English blue. The head is pointed and narrow ; the ears large, but round ; tail long, full near the body, but very tapering. According to the English taste, it is not a pretty cat, and only excels over the British blue in the colour and quality of its coat, which is much shorter and softer than the latter. The true colour is a real lavender-blue, of such softness and brilliancy that it shines like silver in a strong light. The eyes are amber. I think it a great mistake to give "Russian " in our show classification now, as these are really almost extinct in England, I believe, and our principal clubs have been wise enough to drop the title for "Short-haired Blues," in the same way that "Persian " has been dropped for " Long-haired Cats." The last time I showed my Russian was at the first Westminster show, in a class for Russians. She was, however, beaten by the round-headed British blue, although she was, 1 believe, the only Russian in the class.

In 1901 the class was altered to " Short-haired Blues," which was more correct, as few of the blues shown then had anything of the Russian about them, either in shape or coat. As these classes arc now arranged, it would be unfair to judge them except by the standard of our own short-haired cats, and I think that if a club wants to encourage Russians it should give the extra class, " Blue Russian," and let it be judged as such. I must own it is disappointing for a Russian owner, who, seeing " Russian Blue " only given in the schedule, enters his cat accordingly, and gets beaten by a short-haired blue failing in just the points that the Russian is correct in. I know my feelings after Westminster, 1899,' when my Russian was described as " grand colour, texture of coat, failing to winner in width of head and smallness of ears." The blue short-hairs now shown are, I know, far more beautiful with their round heads and shorter legs ; but, unfortunately, the beautiful is not always the correct type. As British cats, however, they are both beautiful and correct, so why not drop the Russian name altogether ? I had a most amusing talk with a blue Russian (?) owner the other day, and a good laugh with him over the ancestors of his " Russian " blues.

At the Crystal Palace show of 1902 Mr. Woodiwiss judged the blue classes, and awarded first to a cat having the English type of head. He gave as his reasons that although he considered the long nose and thin head the right shape for a Russian, yet, he added, "I am not here to judge on those lines; I have to judge according to the standard, which gives preference to round head, neat ears, and short nose ; and, although I really believe Mrs. Walker's blue' Moscow' to be the nearest in type to those I have seen in Eastern countries, yet according to our English breeders' standard it is out of it, and I can only give it reserve." Mr. Mason, our ablest judge of all classes of cats, upheld Mr. Woodiwiss in his awards, and makes the following remarks in Fur and Feather of February, 1903, in reporting on the Manchester show : - "I hope exhibitors and breeders of short-haired self-blues will take my remarks in the spirit in which they are written. I am glad to see that the Manchester committee named the classes' Blues (Male)' and' Blues (Female).' To call them Russians is a mistake, seeing that a very large number of those exhibited are crosses from some other varieties. To all intents the self blues, as we find them to-day, have little of the Russian blood in them.

Then why call them Russian ? Why not "self blues," and judge them on the same lines as the British short-haired cats ? What I want to obtain is a uniform type. To go for two opposite types in one class of exhibits cannot be right or advantageous to breeders or exhibitors."

Breeders of short - haired blues have never been manyin number, nor has there ever appeared any start1ingly good specimen in the show pen. Mr. Woodiwiss kept and exhibited several fine specimens - "Blue Boy," "Blue King," and " Blue Queen." The two latter have been passed on to Lady Alexander. Mr. Mariner, of Bath, is an old exhibitor and great enthusiast of this breed. Mrs. Middleton,

Mrs. Herring, Mrs. Crowther, Miss Butler, Mrs. Illingworth, and Mrs. Pownall have all from time to time been possessed of fairly good Russians so called. Mr. Cole used to show a lovely fat-faced cat called "Muff," but she had green eyes. Mr. Dewar's "Firkins" and Mr. McNish's "St. Juan" are blues that have made their name.

The three principal breeders at the present time of these cats are Lady Alexander, Mrs. Michael Hughes, and Mrs. Carew Cox. It is at the Crystal Palace shows that an opportunity is given of admiring the fine team of blues from the Faygate cattery. "Brother Bump" has won a first prize whenever he has appeared in the show pen, and, curiously enough, each time under a different judge. He is a full champion, and special prizes have been showered upon him. Besides this handsome fellow, Lady Alexander owns another male - "Blue King" - and two good females.

At Sherdley Hall, in Lancashire, there is quite a colony of blues owned by Mrs. Michael Hughes.

The cats are reared in outside and unwarmed houses, with ample wired-in runs. All the Sherdley cats are prize-winners. I am able to give illustrations of "Alexis Michael " and the two "Sachas." The first named has been quoted as a typical British blue.

Mrs. Carew Cox is a most ardent supporter and successful breeder of short-haired blues. As she has had a long and varied experience, I asked her to send me some notes. I have pleasure in publishing them for the benefit of my readers : "Blue short-haired cats - many of them imported from Northern Russia - make very desirable pets, presenting, as they do, a neat, smart,' tailor-built' appearance all the year round, and possessing the great intelligence usually to be met with in all short-haired breeds. They have the advantage over many other varieties in that they are, as adults, strong, healthy cats - not at all liable, as a rule, to pulmonary attacks. Kittens, however, require both care and patience to rear successfully, and, strange to say, attain sounder constitutions when brought up by healthy English foster-mothers. Females are more difficult to rear than males. A Russian cat should be of an even shade of blue throughout, even the skin itself being often - in fact, generally - of a bluish tinge. There should be no stripes or bars, and - for exhibition purposes - there should be no white patches. Kittens frequently have body markings when very young, also rings on their tails; but in pure-bred specimens these defects generally become effaced before they are many weeks old.

In one case a kitten (now a large neuter) had until five months of age two broad black stripes down his back on either side of his spine; they were so decided in appearance that it seemed very doubtful that they would ever disappear. However, at six months old he was a perfectly self-coloured cat ! This is, of course, most remarkable and unusual, and amongst all the many kittens of this breed that I have reared for the past thirteen years there has never been another presenting a similar appearance.

"The eyes of a Russian should be golden in colour, or deep orange. To procure deep-coloured eyes, experiments have been made in crossing Russians with Persians, but the results - so far as I have seen - have not proved satisfactory, and to an experienced eye the cross is perceptible. I believe there is no really recognised standard of points for this breed, which until quite recently was comparatively little known. I note that there is a very fair demand for Russians at the present time - chiefly, strange to say, from the North of England. The shape of the head in many of those imported is more pointed than round; indeed, some have long, lean, pointed heads and faces, with big ears. The backs of the ears should be as free from hair as possible ; some, I remark, are entirely devoid of hair on the upper parts of their ears - at least, if there is any, it is not perceptible to the naked eye. Others, again, have ears covered with peculiarly fine, close, silky hair. Some imported blues are very round in face and head, with tiny ears, and eyes set rather wide apart.

These are surely the prettiest, and are generally given the preference at shows; but, of course, it cannot be denied that the long-faced variety present the most foreign appearance, more especially when this type also possesses a lithe and rather lean body. The whiskers, eyelashes, and tip of nose should all be dark blue.

"The coat should be short and close, glossy, and silver}'; sometimes it is rather woolly and furry, Nature having evidently provided these cats with their warm, close coats to enable them to resist the severities of their native climates, short-haired blues existing also in the north of Norway, Iceland, and - I am told - in some parts of the United States. Many years ago some blues (with faint tabby markings) were imported from the north of Norway; these were called' Canon Girdlestone's breed.' I owned two very pretty soft-looking creatures. Blue-and-white cats have been imported from the north of Russia, and are particularly attractive when evenly marked.

"Some blues are far paler in colour than others. Amongst my kittens are frequently some very beautiful lavender-blues; I have remarked that these are rather more delicate in constitution than those of darker hue. As these cats advance in years they frequently become a rusty brown during the summer months, or when acquiring a fresh coat ; this discoloration asserts itself principally at the joints of legs and feet. The fur of a very old cat becomes dull and rough, losing the soft and glossy appearance identical with the blue Russian in his prime.

"There are some people who appear to wish to assert that there is an English breed of blues, and I have been told strange tales of unexpected meetings in country villages with cats of this colour, whose owners declared that both parents were English bred. As, however, it is not always possible to identify the sires of household cats, I venture to doubt these assertions. It is sometimes possible to breed blues from a black English female mated to a Russian male. This experiment does not always succeed, as some blacks never breed blues, although mated several times consecutively with Russians. A white English female mated to a blue male simply produces white kittens - at least, this has been my experience. Cats imported from Archangel are generally of a deep, firm blue throughout; the eyes and ears rather larger than those of English cats, the head and legs longer. In many of the Russian peasants' cabins can be seen a curious coloured print (executed in Moscow). It represents the burial of the cat after a dramatic fashion, and derives its origin from a very interesting Russian legend.

The cat is represented as slate-coloured.

"It is often impossible to decide the ultimate colour of a kitten's eyes until it is four months old. They vary very much, sometimes giving one the impression that they are green, and perhaps a few days afterwards one discovers them to be yellow ! As these cats become better known they naturally increase in popularity, and I should not be surprised to hear of several well-established kennels of this breed in the immediate future.

"It is many' years ago since I first made acquaintance with this breed ; but I find I made no notes at the time, so cannot give full particulars. In 1889, however, I purchased a smooth blue, whose owner declared her to be a Siamese - she certainly resembled a puma-shaped Siamese in her body outline and movements - and I believe I entered her in the stud book as such. 'Dwina' won many prizes at Crystal Palace and other shows in' any variety' classes, was a most faithful creature, reared many families, and lived until June,

1901. In 1890 I owned a very pretty soft-looking blue female - she was, in fact, a blue tabby (one of Canon Girdlestone's breed); also a male of the same variety. They had evidently been the victims of tape-worm for a considerable period, and finally succumbed owing to the presence of these odious parasites in overwhelming numbers. That same year 'Kola' - a very pretty blue-and-white female - became mine. She was imported from Kola, and after changing hands more than once whilst at sea she was finally exchanged at the London Docks for a leg of mutton ! A very lovable little cat was 'Kola,' with very round face and very soft fur. She lived until November, 1900, and evidently died from old age, becoming feeble and toothless, but quite able to enjoy the soft food that was specially prepared for her. These two old pets - 'Dwina' and 'Kola' - were a great loss, after twelve and ten years 'companionship.' Ling-popo' - an extremely beautiful blue - was imported from Archangel, very sound in colour, rather long in face and legs, sleek, sinuous, and graceful, peculiarly lethargic in her-movements, and dainty in her deportment. I bought her in 1893, when she was seven months old.

Unfortunately, a disease of the kidneys carried her off when in the flower of her existence.' Moscow' (1893) was a very successful blue Russian sire of many kittens; he won many first and special prizes ; he died in 1897, during my absence from home. In 1895 Lady Marcus Beresford presented me with a very handsome kitten - a male - with a very thick yet close coat, and very compact in shape.

Mrs. Carew Cox's "Yula." 'Olga' came to me in 1893 or 1894, and still lives ; she was imported, and has been a great winner in her time, but is getting an old cat now. She is the mother of my stud cat 'Bayard,' who was born in 1898, and whose sire was' King Vladimir." Fashoda' was born in 1896, and was imported ; she is a large, strong cat, and a winner of many prizes. 'Odessa' is a daughter of' Fashoda' by 'Blue Gown.'

'Yula' came to me in 1901, and was imported from Archangel.' Sing Sing' (neuter) is the cat that as a kitten had the peculiar black stripes down his spine alluded to previously He was born on Easter Monday, 1899, a son of 'Fashoda' and 'Muchacho.' He has two toes off one of his hind feet - the result of a heavy weight falling upon his foot when a kitten ; he suffered greatly from shock, and every day for three weeks he paid visits to the doctor, who dressed his foot, having previously amputated the toes. The little fellow had a sad time, but he does not miss his toes now.

"'Muchacho,' the stud cat that has sired so many winning kittens, is a son of Mrs. Herring's (late)' Champion Roguey' and my (late)' Lingpopo.' I sold him as a kitten, but after two people had had him I again became his owner, and now he will never leave me until he is called to the' happy hunting grounds' that I hope, and think, must be prepared for all faithful creatures somewhere 'beyond the veil.' "

In America the classification given for these cats at the Beresford Cat Club show is " Blue or Maltese," but I have not heard of any ardent fanciers of this breed over the water. More will be written on the so-called Maltese cat by one well qualified to give information later on in this work.

I have always been told what delightful pets these blues become, being extremely intelligent and affectionate. Mrs. Bagster, the Cat Club's hon. secretary, owns a splendid fellow - one of Mrs. Carew Cox's well-known strain. At the time of writing there is no specialist club for short-haired blues, but they are included in the list of the British Cat Club, founded by those ardent supporters of the short-haired breeds, Sir Claud and Lady Alexander. No standard of points has been drawn up for these cats, but the following definitions are descriptive of the two types exhibited at our shows

British Blue (Short-Hair)

Head - Round and flat, with good space between the ears, which are small and well set on.
Shape - Cobby in build, round quarters, and good in bone substance.
Coat - Short and close, of sound blue colour throughout. Legs and feet shade lighter in colour, with no bars or markings.
Eyes - Deep orange in colour.

Russian Blue

Head longer in formation, has space between the ears, more prominent in ears, and well-tapered face ; fairly round under the cheek bone, thin, falls away under the eye.
Comes out rather longer in back. Less bone substance.
Colour same as the British short-hair, with no bars or markings.
Eyes deep orange colour.

CHAPTER XXV. SHORT-HAIRED CATS

AND now I will take a general glance over . the other short-haired breeds commonly called English or British cats. As regards points, these are the same as in the long-haired varieties. I give a list as drawn up by a sub-committee of the Cat Club for the use of fanciers and judges

Short-Haired Cats

White - Colour, pure white. Eyes, blue.
Black - Colour, pure and rich black ; no white. Eyes, orange.
Tortoiseshell - Colour, patched yellow, orange and black ; no stripes ; no white. Eyes, orange.
Tortoiseshell And White - Colour, white, patched with yellow, orange and black ; no stripes. Eyes, orange.
Silver Tabby - Colour, silver grey, marked with rich black stripes or bars; no pure white. Eyes, green or orange.
Spotted Tabby - Colour, any shade of light colour, evenly marked with spots of a darker shade or black ; no stripes ; no pure white. Eyes, orange, yellow or green.
Brown Tabby - Colour, golden brown, marked with rich black stripes or bars ; no white. Eyes, orange or green.
Orange Or Red Tabby - Colour, light orange or red, with darker stripes or bars ; no white. Eyes, hazel, or golden brown.
Tabby And White - Colour, any shade of tabby with white. Eyes, orange or green.

N.B. Where more than one colour is given for the eyes, the first one is to be preferred to the second or third.

It will therefore be seen that texture and length of coat are really the distinguishing points between the two varieties. It is just as grave a mistake for a Persian cat to have a short, close coat as it is for one of British type to possess any of that woolliness or length of fur which denotes a mesalliance. The commonest species of all short-haired cats may be said to be represented by broken-coloured specimens - that is, orange-and-white, tabby-and-white, and black-and-white. These sorts of cats we most frequently see about our public streets and in the homes of country cottagers. At our shows this type of cat - which would be classed as "any other colour" - is fast disappearing from our midst. In America I observe that a class is still specially reserved for orange-and-white cats, and it would seem that this is rather a favourite breed with our cousins over the water.

A good black, with rich glossy coat and deep amber eyes, is, to my mind, one of the choicest of our short-haired breeds. These cats are often marred by the white spot at the throat, and, of course, green eyes predominate to a very great extent. As in the long-haired cats, blue-eyed whites are coming much more to the fore, and on the show bench, at least, we do not see many other specimens with yellow or green eyes.

Our British tabbies - orange, brown, and silver - are always well represented at the principal shows, and of late years competition has been much keener in these classes. It is when we come to markings that the longhaired breeds must take a back seat, so to speak; and the British puss has an easy walkover. In the short, close coat, the broad or narrow bands of the darker colour show up in grand relief on the ground-work of a rich, though paler, shade. The rings round the neck and tail, and the bars on the legs are seen to great perfection. It will be easily understood, therefore, that markings in short-haired tabbies claim the first and greatest consideration, and that these should be sharp and distinct, great care is needed in mating and breeding.

A serious and rather common defect amongst silver tabbies is a tinge of brown about the face - generally on the nose. Orange-tabby females are rarer than males. The peculiar species known as spotted tabbies is becoming very rare, and whereas formerly some of this breed were generally exhibited at large shows, we now seldom see them. Spotted tabbies are usually brown or silver. I do not recollect having heard of an orange-spotted tabby. The spots should be spread uniformly over the body, feet, and tail, and if on the face so much the better. A perfect specimen should not have a suspicion of a stripe or bar anywhere. Harrison Weir considers that the spotted tabby is a much nearer approach to the wild English cat and some other wild cats in the way of colour than the ordinary broad-banded tabby.

Amongst writers on cats - such as Harrison Weir and Mr. Jennings - priority of place is given to the tortoiseshell cat, and this breed heads their list of short-haired breeds. So also formerly in the Crystal Palace catalogue, to which I have before alluded, tortoiseshells lead the way. Here, again, the patchy nature of the three colours-is - or, at least, ought to be - the distinguishing feature, and the long-haired cat of the same variety loses some of its individuality by reason of the length of fur, causing a mingling or blurring of the colours.

It is a strange fact in natural history, which no one has attempted to explain, that the tortoiseshell torn is a most rare and uncommon animal. A number of clever fanciers and breeders have used their best endeavours and patiently persevered in the fruitless attempt to breed tortoiseshell male cats. In my long experience I have never known of anyone who has succeeded, and those specimens that have been exhibited from time to time have been picked up quite by chance. I recollect, many years ago, at the Crystal Palace show, seeing the pen of a short-haired cat smothered with prize cards, and the owner of the puss standing proudly by, informing inquirers that it was a tortoiseshell torn that lay hidden behind his awards. This man had been paid a shilling by a London cook to take away the troublesome beast out of her area! He had taken it away to some purpose, and his surprise at finding himself and his cat famous was amusing to behold.

A very beautiful cat is the English tortoiseshell - and -white when the colours are well distributed, the red and black showing up so splendidly on the snowy ground-work. I must say I far prefer those cats to the tortoise-shells, which are often so dingy in appearance. In this breed the male sex is conspicuous by its absence. The two breeds that have made great strides of late years amongst long-haired cats - namely, creams and smokes - are very rarely met with in the short-haired varieties. I know, however, of a silver tabby that, when mated to a black, throws smoke kittens. These are quaint and pretty, with bright green eyes. The under-coat is snowy white, and gleams through the dark outer fur, giving a very distinguished appearance. It is a pity some fanciers do not seriously take up the breeding of cream short-haired cats, as I think they would repay any trouble spent over them. They should, of course, be as pale and even in colour as possible, without any markings, and with deep amber eyes.

I can only recall one or two, and these not at all perfect specimens.

Amongst our present-day fanciers of short-haired cats I may mention Sir Claude and Lady Alexander, who have splendid specimens of many of the breeds. Mrs. Collingwood has recently almost discarded Persians for the British beauties, being specially partial to silver and orange tabbies. Lady Decies for many years owned the invincible "Champion Xenophon" - a brown tabby of extreme beauty - who died in 1902. There are several fine short-hairs at the spacious catteries at Birchington.

Mrs. Herring's name has always been associated with "Champion Jimmy," the noted silver tabby, and she is also the owner of " King Saul," one of the few tortoiseshell toms that appear at our shows. Many other specimens have been bred by this well-known fancier. Mr. Harold Blackett has a trio of famous prize-winning silver tabbies, and Mrs. Bonny is a noted breeder of browns and silvers. This enthusiastic fancier writes : - "For many years past I have devoted myself to the cult of the British tabby cat ; it has been my one hobby. Really good specimens of browns and silvers are scarce. Certainly silvers have increased in numbers during the last few years, and the quality has improved. They are difficult to rear, more especially the males." Mrs. Bonny's celebrated brown female tabby, "Heather Belle," died in 1903. A silver tabby, "Dame Fortune" - her daughter by . Mrs. Collingwood's "Champion James II." - created quite a sensation at the Westminster and other shows. Miss Derby Hyde has always been faithful to short-haired, blue-eyed whites. Mr. Kuhnel is noted for his gorgeous-coloured and finely marked orange tabbies.

Many breeders of Persians keep one or two short-haired specimens, and I cannot help believing that, as time goes on, we shall have a larger number of fanciers taking up British cats.

Harrison Weir, in comparing the two varieties, writes : - "I am disappointed at the neglect of the short-haired English cat, by the ascendancy of the foreign long-hair. Both are truly beautiful, but the first, in my opinion, is far in advance of the latter in intelligence. In point of fact, in animal life, in that way it has no peer; and, again, the rich colourings are, I think, more than equal to the softened beauty of the longer-coated. I do not think that the breeding of short-hairs is yet properly understood."

A correspondent writing to Our Cats, complaining of the classification for short-hairs at shows, says - "All fanciers of that beautiful animal the British cat feel how they are handicapped when they receive schedules of the various shows and compare the classification of short- and long-haired cats. Far better it would be honestly to announce a 'foreign cat show,' with a rider that a few English may compete ;if they choose.'Tis a pity, in many ways; for, given a little encouragement, the standard of the poor, everyday, homely pussy would be raised, and we would not see so much wanton cruelty and neglect attached thereto."

In America short-hairs have not "taken on," and at the various shows the specials offered are as small in number as the entries made. I never hear of any exportations of British cats to American fanciers ; but perhaps some enthusiast of the breed will start a short-haired cattery. There is certainly room for such an enterprise, and the sturdier Britisher would more easily resist the trials of an Atlantic trip and the terrors of a three days' show.

I have been fortunate in obtaining the kind assistance of two of our best authorities on short-haired cats - namely, Mr. H. E. Jung and Mr. T. B. Mason. Some notes by these competent judges will be read with interest.

Mr. H. E. Jung says : "It is a matter of regret that this variety at shows is not so fully represented as it should be, taking into consideration the large number of cat exhibitors. There is no doubt that the prettier long-haired variety secures greater support from the lady exhibitors.

"In addition to the characteristic of being a native production of the British Isles, they have certainly a great advantage in their racy, workmanlike appearance, which is lacking in the long-haired variety. What is handsomer than a sleek-coated black, with its grand, golden-amber eyes; the workmanlike spotless white, with its clear blue eye ; the aristocratic silver, with its rich tabby markings, its soft emerald or orange eye ; or the pale, lavender-hued blue, with its coat of velvet-like texture?

"Thanks to such enthusiastic breeders as Lady Alexander, Mrs. Herring, Lady Decies, Mr. Sam Woodiwiss, Mr. R. P. Hughes, Mr. Kuhnel, Mr. Louis Wain, and several others, we are not likely to allow the English short-haired variety to deteriorate. I myself think there has been a great improvement in the specimens penned the last few years. The fault we must guard against is the loss of size and stamina, which can only be averted by judicious mating. The increasing number of shows in America, the Colonies, and even on the Continent, should stimulate breeders of the short-haired variety to extend their catteries, for no doubt in a few years there will be a strong demand for the English-bred, short-haired cat. Up to the present only in England has anything like a systematic rule been followed out, which is most essential : in fact, the only course possible to obtain good specimens is to follow out a system of breeding as near perfect as possible - for, as in everything else where breeding is concerned, the old maxim of' blood will tell' holds good.

"The stud books should be kept up to date, and stud registrations should be followed out, just as in the dog world. I can imagine many of my readers who do not take up cats as a hobby saying,' The ordinary common garden cat suits my purpose ; he is affectionate, he catches mice, and that is all I require.' But how much more satisfactory it is to be able to say,' My cat is blue-blooded, has an aristocratic pedigree, is handsome; he goes to shows, perhaps wins, and he is still affectionate ; he also catches the mice as well as his brother of lower birth and less striking appearance.' You must also bear in mind he does not require any daintier feeding. I consider it is always pleasanter in cat, dog, or horse to own a distinguished-looking animal than an ill-bred, ungainly one that neither pleases nor satisfies the eye.

"I would here remark upon the absence of men who take up breeding cats as a hobby, and yet the short-haired variety is essentially a man's breed. They require very little grooming and attention compared to the longhaired varieties.

"Several of the most prominent judges of cats are also recognised authorities in the dog world. I may mention the late Mr. Enoch Welburn; Mr. F. Gresham, the keen,' all-round' judge; Mr. L. P. C. Astley, also at home both in one or the other ; Mr. Sam Woodiwiss, the well-known fancier and expert; Mr. Lane, who also adjudicates on both breeds ; and Mr. Louis Wain, to whom we are indebted for those delightful pictures depicting cat life. "Tortoiseshells are most difficult cats to breed. Either they come too dark or too light, or the colours are not sufficiently well blended. One of the singularities of the breed is the nearly entire absence of males in every litter; in fact, I remember the saying was that a tortoiseshell torn was as scarce as the dodo. At the present time, however, we have two good toms - viz.

'Champion Ballochmyle Samson,' winner of no fewer than twelve first prizes and championships, the property of Lady Alexander, and 'Champion King Saul,' winner of numerous championships and first prizes, owned by Mrs. Herring. Both these males are very good, and whenever they have been penned together it has always been a difficult matter for me to decide the winner. In females,' Ballochmyle Bountiful Bertie' (sire,' Champion Ballochmyle Samson'), also the property of Lady Alexander, winner of several firsts and championships ;' Fulmer May,' the property of Lady Decies, winner of many firsts - they are both grand females, of the right colour and type; the tortoiseshell-and-white' Champion Ballochmyle Otter,' the best tortoiseshell-and-white I have ever seen penned, winner of nine first prizes and championships, the property of Lady Alexander. This cat has held her own in her class for the last seven years - a most remarkable feat.

"Silver tabbies I must certainly class among the most aristocratic of the breeds. Fanciers will tell you how difficult it is to obtain a good one. Either the tabby markings are not clear, nor sufficiently defined, the black is not dense enough, the butterfly markings are not distinct, or the eyes are not of the correct colour. To get anything like a perfect type in silvers is a great feat, and only the outcome of judicious mating. One of the great faults of many silvers on the bench today is that they are deficient in size, and unless we attend to this I am afraid that shortly we are likely to produce a diminutive type which, of course, is greatly to be avoided. I hardly think this breed is sufficiently supported, taking into consideration the richness in colour and markings of the silver tabby.

"Among the many winning males,' Champion Jimmy' stands out very prominently, having won numerous championships and first prizes ; he was the property of Mrs. Herring.

Others of note were' James II.,' the property of Mrs. Collingwood; 'Sedgemere Silver King,' owned by, Mr. Sam Woodiwiss. Prominent in the female classes were the noted queen,

'Champion Shelly,' owned by Mr. H. W. Bullock, shown some years ago ; by that noted sire,' King of the Fancy,' owned by Mr, Sugden. It is notable he sired both 'Champion Jimmy' and 'Champion Shelly.'

'Silver Queen,' winner of many firsts and specials, the property of the Hon. Mrs. McLaren Morrison; 'Sedgemere Silver Queen.' owned by Mr. Sam Woodiwiss; 'Silver Queen,' the property of Mr. Harold Blackett; and that grand female, 'Sweet Phillis,' the property of Mrs. Herring.

"Very few good brown tabbies are benched,, and breeders, I am afraid, get very disheartened at the result. of their efforts. I despair to think of the litters I have seen, and not a good one amongst them. The rich brown sable colour is. very seldom met with, and now that the world-renowned champion of champions, 'Xenophon,' is no more, we have only 'Flying Fox' and 'King of Lee' anything like the type you expect in this handsome breed. Of 'Champion Xenophon' I am afraid we can truly say, 'We shall ne'er look on his like again.' His wonderful colour, markings, and size approached the ideal short-haired cat. I believe he was either bred by Mr. Heslop, or came under his keen eye, and, like a good many others, was brought down south by that fancier to make a name.

"He was claimed by Mr. Sam Woodiwiss, who showed him for some years, and he secured for his owner numerous championships, first prizes, and specials, afterwards changing hands and becoming the property of Lady Decies, still following up his winning career after an unbroken record of 'second to none.' I think I am correct in saying this cat has won more money and specials than any short-haired cat ever exhibited.

" Red tabbies, again, are one of the difficult varieties to obtain. The dense, dark red tabby markings against the light red ground is only the result of judicious mating and breeding.

"Among the many notable males, 'Ballochmyle Perfection,' the property of Lady Alexander, winner of some 100 first prizes, championships, and specials, the sire of 'Champion Ballochmyle Goldfinder' and 'Ballochmyle No Fool' (the mother of 'Ballochmyle Red Prince'), stands out very prominently. 'Champion Perfection,' despite his ten years, has still the grand dense markings and colour as of old. In 'Ballochmyle Perfection' we have a chip of the old block. Then a later red tabby, Mrs. Collingwood's 'Clem,' is a good-coloured red. Mr. Kuhnel, of Bradford, for many years held his own in this handsome breed - in fact, most of the present-day winners can be traced from that fancier's cattery.

"Blues (self-coloured). There seems to be a great difference of opinion as to the shape and make of head of these cats. Some judges look for a round, full head of the English-bred cat; others, the long head of the Eastern variety. I think that difference arises to a great extent according to where these cats originally came from. I have heard the opinions of some who give Archangel as the port of origin; others, Malta. If the cat originated from Archangel, one would naturally expect a long head of Eastern type. The specimens, however from Malta have certainly the round head and more of the English-bred type. The chief points, in my opinion, apart from the shape of head, is body colour, shape, colour of eye, and closeness of coat. They are no doubt a very handsome breed. In colour they are a light blue, with a delicate lavender bloom pervading the whole coat.

"Of the many good ones that come to my memory, 'Moscow' (Russian-bred), a big winner, owned by Mrs. Carew-Cox; 'Champion Ballochmyle Blue King,' winner of seven championships and first prizes, owned by Lady Alexander;' Champion Brookside Iris,' late owner Mrs. Pownall; 'Blue Boy,' owned by Mr. Sam Woodiwiss; 'Ballochmyle Brother Bump' and' Ballochmyle Sister Goose,' the property of Lady Alexander - a big winner.

"White English cats appear to have lost less in size than many others, as two of the largest winners of to-day - viz. 'Ballochmyle Snow King' and 'Ballochmyle Billie Blue Eyes' - will testify. The white retains the racy, workmanlike character of the true English-bred cat. One fault is very prevalent: they lean very much towards a broken coat (a good many of the white cats penned to-day have this failing); it is, no doubt, a very difficult fault to breed out. It is noticeable that the females in this breed are so very small, and in marked contrast to the toms.

"The chief points one desires in this breed are closeness of coat, size, and a distinct light blue eye (not washy). Among the numerous winners are 'Ballochmyle Snow King,' formerly owned by Mr. Sam Woodiwiss, and now the property of Lady Alexander; 'Ballochmyle Billie Blue Eyes' and 'Biddy Blue Eyes,' the property of Mrs. Herring.

"Blacks, I am sorry to say, are somewhat neglected, considering how striking they are. The dense black coat, the contrasting grand amber eye, should always find a weak spot in the heart of every exhibitor of the short-haired varieties. The points we look for are chiefly closeness of coat, the black of great density, pure amber eyes set in a good round head topped with small ears. I can well imagine my readers will say, 'A pure amber eye - how is it to be got ? It is such a. rarity.' I know, however, that by careful mating it is not only possible, but most distinctly certain, as Mr. R. J. Hughes, the late owner of that lovely female 'Amber Queen,' one of the best-eyed cats I have seen, can testify. He, in fact, has bred many of the best-eyed winners of late years: 'Amber Queen,' winner of numerous firsts and championships, the property of Miss Una Fox;

'Ballochmyle Black Bump,' owned by Lady Alexander, and formerly the property of Mr. Hughes; 'Sedgemere Black King,' winner of several championships and first prizes, originally owned by Mr. Sam Woodiwiss.

"An explanation may be deemed due to my readers for having included blues amongst the English types, but as the clubs have recognised this breed, and sanctioned their being catalogued amongst the English exhibits, I felt justified in adopting this course; more particularly as the country of origin still remains a matter of speculation."

Mr. T. B. Mason's name is a household one in the cat fancy, and this most popular judge has been kind enough to set down some of his many experiences, and a little of his universal knowledge, for the benefit of my readers.

"For more than twenty-five years I have taken a very great interest in all our minor pets, so the breeding and exhibiting of cats has had a large share of my attention. I look at the past, and compare it with the present, and I am more than satisfied with the progress made and the high-water mark of excellence attained. In the 'eighties, when that noted North Country breeder the late Mr. Young, of Harrogate, was hard at work laying the foundations of markings and colour in the silver tabby, orange tabby, and the tortoise-shells, which has resulted in making the strains of the North Country short-hairs so far ahead of all others, he had little or no idea that in so brief a time the cat fancy would develop into such an important one as it is at the present time. In recent years we have seen the National Cat Club, the Cat Club, and a great many specialist clubs formed for the special object of breeding cats to perfection in colour and markings. Standards have been made and issued by noted breeders, who have met together and have exchanged ideas, so that at the present time we have standards that are ideals of perfection. Shape, colour, markings, coat, and colour of eyes for each separate variety are all plainly stated.

All this interest, together with the holding of many big shows in different parts of the kingdom, have brought into prominence a great host of fanciers, including many ladies holding high positions in the best class of society. No wonder, then, that there should be a call for a standard work dealing with all varieties of cats. In the few remarks I have to make on short-haired cats I shall take the self colours first. They are, I believe, our oldest variety; the black or the white cat is to be found in many a household. In some parts of the North when I was a boy it was said to be a sign of good luck to have a sound-coloured black cat, with a coat like a raven's wing, with not a white hair to be found in it. If you have one like this in your home, with a good round head, neat ears, and rich orange eyes, let me ask you to take great care of it. If you reside in a district where shows are held - either in connection with the local agricultural society or in the winter time in the town hall in connection with the local fanciers' society - by all means enter it, and you will find you have an exhibit of real value.

We possess grand examples of first-class blacks in Lady Alexander's 'Black Bump, 'Lady Decies" Charcoal' and 'Shamrock,' Mrs. Nott's 'King of Blacks,' and many-other present-day winners. In self whites Lady Alexander's' Snow King," Billie Blue Eyes,' and 'Snow Bump' ; Mrs. Western's 'Prickly Pearl'; and the Hon. A. Wodehouse's 'White Devil' are about the best living, and in condition and coat hard to find fault with. The eyes of the self white must be a rich-coloured blue. The shorter and fuller you can get both the self black and the self white the better will be the chances of their winning prizes; a long, coarse coat, big or badly set-on ears, and long, thin, snipy faces are little or no good in the show pen. In your breeding arrangements you do not need at this time of the day to make many experiments. In breeding self whites the great aim is to obtain shape and colour of eyes. So many good sires are to be obtained that if you are deficient in bone, shape, or colour of eyes, you can with careful mating obtain these - in some cases with the first cross. My opinion is that in breeding whites no other colour should be mixed with them. In the breeding of blacks you are altogether on another matter. It is a well-known fact that the cross with the self blue is a most distinct advantage.

It not only gives tone and soundness to both the blue and the black, but it also adds lustre.

"For a long time we have called the self blues Russians. No doubt they, in the first instance, came from the East ; but since they were imported into this country they have been mixed in a great measure with self blacks, and in some cases with long-haired blues, to get strong, short, round heads, so that at the present time we have very few pure-bred Russians in this country.

"My advice to those who are breeding self blues or self blacks is, by all means put one cross of blacks in the blues, especially if the black has orange eyes. It is in eyes that most of our self blues fail. Let me, however, give here a word of warning. Do not mix the colours too often, or you will get the blues too dark or nearly like black. If you get one cross of the black and blue, use it as it should be used, by mixing the offspring well together. I know a great many breeders are not in favour of this in-breeding. This is, without doubt, their loss. In all branches in-breeding is the sure road to success.

"To go outside at every cross, or too often, brings with it a lot of trouble and disappointment. To all my advice is, having got the strains of noted sires in your youngsters, so mix them that all the good and little of the bad points will come out as the result of your breeding. That you will not get all winners is a sure conclusion, but my experience is - and it is formed after thirty years' breeding of fancy pet stock - that in this way you are more likely than in any other to breed winners. Anyone who has seen Lady Alexander's 'Brother Bump,' Mrs. Hughes 'Alexis,' Miss Butler Ayton's 'Blue Bell' and' Blue Stockings, 'Mrs. Carew-Cox's 'Fashoda,' and Mrs. Dewar's 'Firkens' cannot but fall in love with this colour. All that is needed to make this one of our most popular varieties is uniformity in shape. In my opinion these cats should be judged on the same lines as our self blacks and self whites.

" I now come to the tabbies - silver, orange, and brown. What a lovely variety they are, and what a fine picture any of the three colours makes if they are seen in full coat and clear markings! In silvers the old-time champion' The Silver King' was without a doubt the foundation of most of our present-day winners. Mrs. Herring's 'Jimmy,' the noted female 'Shelly,' and a host of others that at the moment I cannot remember are worthy of the great deeds of the past. In the present day champions are to be found - Mrs. Collingwood's 'James II.,' Mrs. Herring's 'Sweet Phyllis,' Mrs. Bonny's 'Heather Belle' and 'Dame Fortune, 'Mrs. Turner's' Masterpiece,' Mrs. Western's 'Princess,' and last, but not least, Mr. Blackett's noted team, including 'Silver' and 'Silver Star.' In the orange we have a strong lot, including Lady Alexander's capital team - 'Perfection,' 'Red Prince,' 'Miss Perfection.' and 'Mother Pop' - Mrs. Temple's 'Dr. Jim,' Mrs. Collingwood's 'Clem' and 'Belle of Bradford,' Mr. Thompson's 'Red Rufus,' and Mr. Kuhnel's' Coronation King,' all of them getting close on the standard both in colour and markings.

"In browns the old champion 'Xenophon' is, to my mind, the best tabby of any colour ever seen in the show pen; his picture is before me as I pen these lines. I well remember giving him the first and special for best cat in the show; since that time how many times he has won the championship I cannot say. His loss will be great, both to the fancy and also to Lady Decies. 'Flying Fox' (the property of Messrs. Ainsley and Graham), Mrs. Pratt's 'Tommy Jacks,' and Mrs. Oliver's 'Danefield Vera' are all good ones; but in this colour of tabbies the competition is not half so keen as it is in silver and orange.

"One standard governs all the three colours. The ground or body colour must be pure, and clear from any other colour. In a great many well-marked ones I meet in the show pen the rusty brown tinge on nose, ears, and brindled in the body markings puts them out of the prize list. It is a great mistake to cross the silver tabby with the brown tabby or with one that has in its pedigree the brown tabby blood. If the black markings need a darker shade, my advice is use for once the self black. If you do not get the desired effect the first cross, the youngsters mated together have been known to breed some really good ones. By all means, if possible, get into your silvers green eyes. I am aware that the standard says green or orange eyes; but in all cases where the competition is very keen the orange eyes are a distinct disadvantage.

"In the breeding of the orange tabby you need to be very careful. The use of the tortoiseshell has been found to be very advantageous; in fact, some of our best orange tabbies have been bred from the tortoiseshells. The mixing of these two varieties, if done carefully, will bring success on both sides ; but care should be taken not to bring too much of the tortoise-shell into the orange, or, on the other hand, carry too much orange into the tortoiseshell. The pale yellow eye in an orange is a great point against it winning in the keen competition which we have at the present time.

"The eyes must be a very rich orange, to match the body colour, which should be two or three shades lighter than the markings.

"In the browns we have two distinct colours - the sable colour and the old brown colour. The old cat that I have referred to of Lady Decies' was a sable tabby. No doubt this colour is the more taking of the two, but both are useful, and the old brown colour must not by any means be overlooked in our liking for the sable colour. In all the colours of tabbies we find that the chief bad points are the white lips in the sables mostly, the white spots in the chest in our orange, and the rusty mousy colour in our silvers. The colour of eyes, too, in our browns and sables is far from what it ought to be. Some eyes are a pale green, some a pale yellow. All this proves that the breeders at times go too far in the outcrossing, and bring in with it faults that crop up when those crossings are nearly forgotten.

"In the breeding of browns nothing more is needed than what we have - namely, the sable colour ones and the old coloured browns. The blending together of these two colours will put any breeder on the highway to success. I am more than surprised that this variety is not stronger than it is at the present time. I am sure, of all the race and colours of tabbies they are the easiest to breed, and yet we find they are the fewest in number at our big shows. In looking for a real good tabby, do not miss the chest, feet, and tail. We have a great lot of good cats if body markings and colour were all that was needed, but when it comes to the ringed tail, the rings around the chest, and the markings right down to the toe ends, then they 'come a cropper,' as we say in the North.

"One more important point before I finish. What a painful task it is to the judge to find very good all-round exhibits that have plain head markings. The face and cheeks are right in ground colour; and the pencil markings on the fore-face, running into the markings behind the ears, and those on the cheeks are of the faintest colour, and in many cases broken. Such head markings and colour spoil many otherwise really good cats.

"I now come to the tortoiseshells - a mixture of orange and black. I have dealt with mixing of colours in my remarks on the orange tabbies. All I need say here is, mind that in your tortoise-shells you do not get the orange markings. The most successful breeder in the North of this variety - the late Mr. Young, of Harrogate - made tabby markings in a tortoiseshell a disqualification in the show pen. The presence of any white is also a very great drawback, and this is often found in small patches on the chest or on the belly. You can have both too light and too much orange colour, or you can have them too dark or too much black. Equal colours and well mixed is about the right thing, with good orange eyes. At the present time we have Lady Alexander's and Mrs. Herring's males - 'Champion Samson' and 'Champion King Saul.' Females are very strong, and well represented in Mrs. Pratt's 'Tib of Rochdale' and Messrs. Graham and Ainsley's 'Sunine.'

"The tortoise shell-and-white is a most lovely and taking variety, commonly called the 'chintz-and-white' in our homesteads. Very few and far between are good specimens to be found, and yet in the show pens these tri-colour cats have a great advantage over their fellow-felines. Lady Alexander has exhibited some splendid tortoise-shell - and - whites, 'Bal-lochmyle Otter' being one of the best (see illustration, page 289). A very common drawback in this variety is the mixture of tabby with the orange and white, instead of the patches of black. I feel sure if this variety were only taken up more we should see a remarkable advancement both in markings and in colour. The patches - white, orange, and black - in an ideal specimen should be, if possible, about equal in number, and well placed on the body, head, and feet ; they look very charming when you see a really good one. I hope a few more fanciers and breeders of short-haired cats will be coming forward, so that the number exhibited at our shows may steadily increase."

In this hope I do most heartily join, for although my name is mostly connected with the long-haired breeds, I am such a lover of all cats that I feel as anxious for one variety as another to obtain friends and favour. It is specially in the South of England that the interest in our short-haired breeds is on the wane, and it behoves all fanciers to strive to assist in keeping alive the love of the British cat in our midst.

In 1902 Sir Claud and Lady Alexander most generously guaranteed the whole of these classes, and although they themselves made a very numerous entry, yet there was a deficit to pay of several pounds, a thing which ought not to be.

I find that the Manx, Siamese, and blues are generally able to take care of themselves at shows, or they have clubs and secretaries who look after their interests; but the " common or garden "puss needs a kindly hand to assist in drawing him to the front, for, as that well-known lover of "the domestic cat," Harrison Weir, writes, "Why should not the cat that sits purring in front of us before the fire be an object of interest, and be selected for its colour, markings, and form?"

CHAPTER XXVI. SOME FOREIGN CATS

IT is not intended in the following notes to enter into a description of the various beautiful and interesting wild felines, for although some of these - such as the Ocelot, the Geoffrey's Cat, and the Wild Cat - are not infrequently seen in the pens at our leading shows, such matter really comes more within the province of a natural history than of the present work.

Two varieties alone may justly claim some slight attention here, these being the Egyptian cat (Felis maniculata) and the European wild cat (F. catus). It might reasonably be imagined that our common cat was derived from the last-named, considering that at one time it was a common animal all over England, as well as on the Continent. The untamable ferocity of this variety - which is probably the least amenable of all living creatures - has doubtless prevented its ever having been domesticated, and the high value which, as we learn from old writings, was placed upon the domestic puss at a time when the wild cat was a common animal in England, plainly show that F. catus was not the ancestor of F. domestica, although the two will freely interbreed. Many years ago, for instance, the old Spanish wild cat which used to be kept at the Zoological Gardens in the so-called aviaries, now occupied by the civets, mated with his cage mate - a tortoiseshell-and-white queen - and of these cross-bred kittens both Sir Claud Alexander and the writer of these lines possessed specimens.

It is usually assumed that the Egyptian or Caffre cat is the progenitor of the majority of the domestic cats. This is the variety which was domesticated, revered, and embalmed by the ancient Egyptians. It is found over the whole of Africa, and it is quite easy to understand how, with its eminently tamable disposition, it gradually spread over Europe. Our so-called Abyssinian cats, to which reference will be made later on, bear a very striking resemblance to this handsome variety of cat.

The domestic cats of other parts of the world, however, are undoubtedly derived from the smaller wild cats of the countries in question. Thus it is probable that several varieties have a share in the creation of the Indian domestic cats, of which Blyth distinguished two varieties. The fulvous variety he considered to be derived from the Indian jungle cat (F. chaus), a fulvous cat which in its high legs, shorter tail, and slightly tufted ears - and it is worthy of note that some of the best Abyssinians have large and slightly tufted ears - marks the approach to the lyncine group. The spotted kinds he traces to the leopard cat, the desert cat, and the rusty-spotted cat.

A most extraordinary variety, of which next to nothing appears to be known, is the hairless cat, and we cannot do better than quote in extenso the description given by the owner of what, if his surmise should unhappily prove to be correct, was the last pair of these peculiar animals, a portrait of which we give.

Albuquerque, New Mexico,
February 3rd, 1902. Mr. H. C. Brooke.

Dear Sir, - Yours of January 20th is at hand. In answer would say my hairless cats are brother and sister. I got them from the Indians a few miles from this place. The old Jesuit Fathers tell me they are the last of the Aztec breed known only in New Mexico. I have found them the most intelligent and affectionate family pets I have ever met in the cat line ; they are the quickest in action and smartest cats I have ever seen. They are fond of a warm bath, and love to sleep under the clothes at night with our little girl. They seem to understand nearly everything that is said to them ; but I have never had time to train them. They are marked exactly alike - -with mouse-coloured backs ; with neck, stomach, and legs a, delicate flesh tint. Their bodies are always warm and soft as a child's. They love to be fondled and caressed, and are very playful; will run up and down your body and around your waist like a flash. "Nellie" weighs about eight pounds, and "Dick" weighed ten pounds ; but I am sorry to say we have lost "Dick." We have never allowed them to go out of the house, as the dogs would be after them. They were very fond of our water spaniel, and would sleep with her. "Dick "was a sly rascal, and would steal out. One night last year he stole out, and the dogs finished him.

His loss was very great, as I may never replace him. The Chicago Cat Club valued them at 1,000 dollars each. They were very anxious for me to come on with them for their cat shows, but I could not go. They were never on exhibition ; as this is a small city, I feared they would be stolen. I have made every endeavour to get another mate for " Nellie," but have not been successful. I never allowed them to mate, as they were brother and sister, and I thought it might alter "Nellie's" beautiful form, which is round and handsome, with body rather long. In winter they have a light fur on back and ridge of tail, which falls off in warm weather. They stand the cold weather same as other cats. They are not like the hairless dogs, whose hide is solid and tough ; they are soft and delicate, with very loose skin. " Nellie " has a very small head, large amber eyes, extra long moustache and eyebrows ; her voice now is a good baritone, when young it sounded exactly like a child's. They have great appetites, and are quite dainty eaters - fried chicken and good steak is their choice. Have never been sick an hour.

The enclosed faded picture is the only one I have at present ; it is very lifelike, as it shows the wrinkles in its fine, soft skin. " Dick " was a very powerful cat ; could whip any dog alone ; his courage, no doubt, was the cause of his death. He always was the boss over our dogs; I have priced " Nellie " at 300 dollars. She is too valuable a pet for me to keep in a small town. Many wealthy ladies would value her at her weight in gold if they knew what a very rare pet she is. I think in your position she would be a very good investment to exhibit at cat shows and other select events, as she doubtless is the only hairless cat now known. I have written to Old Mexico and all over this country without finding another. I would like to have her in some large museum, where she would interest and be appreciated by thousands of people. - Trusting this will reach you in safety, I am, very truly yours, F. J. Shinick.

We can only add, whilst deeply regretting that Mr. Shinick did not mate his cats, the earnest hope that we may hear that he has discovered the existence of other specimens. Should it prove that a parcel of street curs are responsible for this curious variety becoming extinct, even such confirmed dog lovers as ourselves are almost tempted to acquiesce in a universal and everlasting muzzling order ! It is to be regretted that no information is given as to whether the dentition of these cats was abnormal and imperfect, as is the case with the Mexican hairless dogs.

Very curious and handsome is the Indian cat "Indischer Furst," exhibited by Mrs. H. C. Brooke. His most striking peculiarities are the length and slenderness of his limbs, the extreme shortness of his coat, and his thin and tapering tail, which reminds the observer of that of a pointer. His ears are small, but as a kitten they were of enormous size, and with his long and pointed head gave him a most weird appearance. The voice of this cat is very variable, and far more resembles the raucous call of the Siamese than the voice of any European cat.

This cat has had a very adventurous existence. He, with his litter sister, was originally stolen from a hotel in Bombay by an English sailor. On the way home he twice fell overboard, but, more fortunate than his companion, was safely rescued. He also suffered shipwreck in the Sobraon on Yung Yung Island. On arriving nearer home he disappeared, and was only after several days' absence discovered in the bowels of the ship, as black as the coal amongst which he had been sojourning. His last exploit was to fall in the docks, after which the sailor handed him over to a shoemaker at Leytonstone, where he was discovered by his present owner. After he had twice escaped from bondage and astonished the natives of that place by perambulating the housetops, lamenting in the tones of a lost soul, his owner arrived at the conclusion that he had no convenience for restraining him, and at last yielded to persuasion, and handed him over to his present proprietors for consideration of sundry gold coins of the realm and a kitten with seven toes on each foot.

It is a very remarkable thing that the Asiatic cats are so subject to abnormal formations of the tail. The Siamese cats, as is well known, very frequently possess kinked tails. In Burma also cats are found - some tail-less, some with crooked or twisted stumps. These cats, when spotted, are very striking ; when of an ordinary colour they simply recall an indifferent Manx.

Japan also possesses tail-less cats ; but those with ordinary caudal appendages also occur, and are probably the most numerous. There is said to be a variety of Chinese cat which is remarkable for its pendent ears. We have never been able to ascertain anything definite with regard to this variety. Some years back a class was provided for them at a certain Continental cat show, and we went across in the hope of seeing and, if possible, acquiring some specimens; but, alas, the class was empty ! We have seen a stuffed specimen in a Continental museum, which was a half-long-haired cat, the ears being pendent down the sides of the head instead of erect; but do not attach much value to this.

We have seen specimens of a very tiny domestic cat, full-grown individuals of which weigh only about three pounds. Those we saw came from South America.

A cat called the Mombassa cat, from the East of Africa, is said to have a short coat of a wiry texture. There are, of course, no cats indigenous to Australia. An American writer gives it as his opinion that a certain strain of Australian cats is derived from imported Siamese cats. A specimen we possessed last year, which was born on a ship during the passage from Australia, and which exactly resembled its dam, certainly had every appearance of being of Eastern origin. It had the marten-shaped head, and a triple kink in the tail ; its voice also resembled that of the Siamese. In colour it was grey, with darker spots.

A very taking variety is the Abyssinian. A good specimen should very strongly resemble what one might well expect the Egyptian cat to become after generations of domestication. Since the death of "Sedgemere Bottle" and "Sedgemere Peaty" there have been no cats penned of such superlative merit as were these two specimens. The photograph of" Sedgemere Peaty" which we give hardly does justice to the cat. The colour of an Abyssinian should be a sort of reddish-fawn, each individual hair being "ticked" like that of a wild rabbit - hence the popular name of "bunny cat." The great difficulty in breeding these cats is their tendency to come too dark and too heavily striped on the limbs; the face should be rather long, the tail short and thick, and the ears large. These points are well shown by "Little Bunny Teedle Tit," first in the Abyssinian class at the 1902 Crystal Palace cat show, though in colour she was not the best penned. The Abyssinian should not be a large, coarse cat. A small cat of delicate colouring and with the above-mentioned body properties is by far to be preferred to the large, coarse, dark specimens one sees winning under some all-round judges, merely because of their size.

More than any other varieties have the foreign cats suffered from the negligence of show committees and the awful judging of all-round judges, plus the equally awful reports furnished by all-round reporters! At the best, knowledge of the different varieties of foreign cats is absolutely in its infancy. It should be the aim of large shows to provide, whenever possible, judges for these interesting strangers who do really take some interest in them. I am bound to say that of late years the National Cat Club has done its best to meet the wishes of owners in this respect, and with gratifying results, as witness the good classes at the Crystal Palace show, where there were no fewer than eleven Abyssinians penned - a record number!

The Cat Club, on the other hand, has persistently neglected them, having on almost every occasion handed them over to some all-round judge who knows little and cares less about them, with the natural result that exhibitors are disgusted. Take, for instance, the last show, when a very dark, almost sooty Abyssinian was placed above a very fair specimen merely because the latter had about a dozen white hairs on its throat! The value of the winner may be gauged from the fact that its owner, a lady well known in the cat world, expressed her intention of having him neutered and keeping him merely as a pet. The same judge, in dividing the prizes amongst the Manx cats, appeared to think the colour of the throat of far more importance than the shape of the hindquarters in this section. Again, of what value does the reporter flatter himself his writings can be when we read in a so-called critique of a spotted Geoffroy's cat and of an ocelot that they are "pretty tiger-marked specimens"? We wonder if the gentleman ever saw a tiger.

There is much that is fascinating - much, nay almost all - to learn, the most beautiful colours and arrangements of- markings to be studied, by those who will devote their attention to foreign cats. To the search for something new we owe the beautiful Siamese. Will no one pay some attention to the other varieties of the feline tribe from distant lands? They are well worth it, and the addition of more foreign cats at our shows would be interesting and instructive. H. C. Brooke.

CHAPTER XXVII. CATS IN AMERICA

A REVIEW of the cat fancy in America carries us over so vast an expanse of territory, that it is not easy at one fell swoop really to do it justice. The only way that seems feasible is to take the fancy by districts ; and as the cat fancy - exemplified by shows - may be said to have arisen in the east, this district should, I think, have the pride of place, though it has for a time to give way to the reign of the cat further towards the setting of the sun.

On referring to Mrs. Pierce's notes, it will be seen that Maine had its cat shows long before we had - some of us - come to America. The cat fancy - as it is now - in America may have been said to have sprung into a steady existence with the first show held in the Madison Square Garden, New York, on May 8th, 1895. This show was organised by Mr. James T. Hyde, an Englishman, who has been closely identified with the horse shows at the Garden for many years, and the idea of holding a cat show came to him suddenly, from having attended the Crystal Palace show.

The first cat show in New York was a great success from the time the doors opened till its close, though the temperature - which was for part of the time as high as 96 degrees - was hard upon the cats, especially those that had just come from England. When we returned home the morning after the show there was a white frost! Part of the judging was done - and well done - by the late Dr. Huidekoper, who had picked up a good deal of his cat lore while a medical student at Paris and Edinburgh and in London. Miss Hurlburt and Mr. T. Farrer Rackham were the other judges.

In regard to this show - which marks the beginning of the cat fever in America, that spread outside of the State of Maine - I think I ought to point out what was chiefly remarkable, and the parts of the show that were destined to bear upon the future. In the first place, the prize for the best cat in the show was won by a brown tabby - a native, or, as some people designate them, Maine cats. This cat was in every way a good one; but he was a gelding, and, of course, in May, much ahead of the breeding cats as to plumage; but, still, there was little dissatisfaction at the awards. Of English cats there were not more than about eight, and several died soon after; and of all those shown at this our first show the only ones that have really made any mark or real impression upon the cat fancy in America may be mentioned "King Humbert," "Topaz," "Minnie," and "The Banshee." The first-named were all brown or grey tabbies, the last a white. Cats bred from these are still winning, and their descendants keep their names green in the annals of present-day stud books.

White cats had always been popular in America, and the first show produced specimens as good as, or even better than I have ever seen in this city ; up to now, in fact, we have never had anything to beat "Ajax," who made his first and last bow to the public here.

No other shows occurred for some time till the autumn, when an exhibition was held at Newburgh, sixty miles up the Hudson River, to be repeated the next year, with the New York show of 1896 in between. At this latter great improvement had been made in colours and varieties; and, in fact, all concerned had made considerable advance in the meantime as to knowledge of different varieties of cats.

At the second show in New York a club was formed, intended to be the National, but it died, and affairs were in a comatose condition as regards shows in New York until the consent of Mr. Crawford, the manager of the poultry show, was obtained for the holding of a cat show in January, 1902, in the concert hall which opens out of the main hall at Madison Square. This show, though a small one, was well attended, and though the entries only numbered about no, the quality of many of the cats was very much ahead of the five years before, and the classes of silvers were good enough for any country. The impetus gained by this show and the results obtained were not overestimated by those who promoted the show, and the bringing together of many staunch breeders who had sprung up in the meantime made it possible to organise the Atlantic Cat Club, which has gathered such headway in the year of its existence that it is becoming one of the most powerful factors in the American cat fancy. The show held at Madison Square in 1903, with the fine collection of challenge cups and the many other valuable specials, speaks to the gathering interest and the strength of the fancy in the district, and the club is being every day still further strengthened; and, if the treasury balance is any indication, the future of the Atlantic Cat Club will be very marked, especially as many people of wealth and influence are being enrolled upon the books and are becoming most enthusiastic upholders of the cat in New York.

In discussing the eastern affairs, we must not leave out the Boston shows, which have been a steady factor for some years, and gave opportunities to the more northern cats to meet and compete together. These shows have been kept alive by Mr. T. Farrer Rack-ham, to a great extent, and from the opening of the cat fancy up to now he has been a steady promoter of the interests of the cat, and has steadily worked to keep up the interest.

In thinking of the breeders of the eastern portion of this continent we have to range over a good deal of territory, and even the State of New York alone takes us quite out west, and from Mrs. Conlisk (who lives at Gowanda, and who owns "Bitterne Silver Chieftain" and a daughter of "Whychwood," besides "Silver Belle," who came from England lately) our thoughts drift down to Pittsburg to Mrs. L. T. Hodges, who is making a speciality of smokes and silvers, and has commenced well by winning in kittens at Cleveland with "Wahanita," "Southampton," and "The Dusky Pilgrim" - a capital smoke, since sold for 50. Mrs. Mix, although in New York State, lives 180 miles to the westward of New York City; but, still, the effect the cats that she has imported from England have had upon the young stock and the future of our cats in certain lines has been very marked. As a sire of good ones no cat has exceeded "King of the Silvers," and his children have been picked on several occasions for best in show, and the influence that these may have in the future cannot yet be fully estimated. The winnings of this cattery have been many, but as the home of good breeding stock and as the practical founder of a strain for the future this cattery is destined to rank very high in our annals.

At the Old Fort cattery reside "King of the Silvers," "Jack Frost," "Tortie Diana Fawe," "Lady Lollypop," and many other good ones, and from this cattery to many parts of the country have gone cats that for type and quality have not been excelled.

Not far from here - at Saratoga - is the summer residence of Dr. Ottolengui's cats, under the care of Mrs. Hall, and these at the present time are doing a great deal of winning, not so much by cats purchased as by home bred ones. For instance, I may mention "Lord Lossie," who has some of the cream of the English blood in his veins; and lately has come to this cattery "Sir Robert," the black, a winner at the Crystal Palace, and who repeated his triumphs at other shows here. "Dollie Dutton," a black daughter of "Persimmon," is largely aiding this cattery as a mother and a show cat.

Dr. Ottolengui's advent into the fancy in January, 1902, as secretary of the Atlantic Club gave an impetus to things in general that only future times can show the full effect. The cat fraternity needed an organiser and a worker to bring it together, and he was found just at the right time.

Miss Lincoln, of Worcester, Massachusetts, has done quite a little work for the good of the majority; but has not had the best of luck with her cats so far, and Mrs. A. G. Brown, of Melrose, Massachusetts, is a steady breeder of whites and other colours, and she has in her cattery "His Majesty," the white that has won many prizes and is the sire of winners.

Mrs. Neel, at Urbana, New York, established a cattery, and has been a very hard worker in the cause, doing good from her experience in a medical way, by writing for the papers, by upholding the shows - often a good distance from home - and by the general support she has afforded to all who made use of the help she was willing to give.

Whilst in this direction I must not forget Mr. C. H. Jones, who commenced as a breeder and exhibitor, though his business kept him away from home a great deal; yet the fever grew upon him until he started a newspaper called The Cat Journal, which, no doubt, is one of the principal factors in keeping up the interest in the cat in general. Though on account of Mr. Jones's other business engagements it is not possible for him to report shows, he brings out this paper monthly at great personal cost to himself and with little chance of profit on anything like a fitting scale at present; so that we may say that, considering the work of the paper is done after business hours and is largely supported by his own purse, we cannot help but think that it is most probable the cat family never found a more enthusiastic and disinterested devotee in the whole course of its history. Mr. Jones gave up his exhibition cats, and yet for sheer love of the race and from motives of pure humanity he still continues to move heaven and earth for their support, and must always be reckoned one of the foremost exponents of the cat in America, and one of the staunchest friends the cat ever had.

Among fanciers in the vicinity of New York must be enumerated Miss A. L. Pollard, who has imported and bred a few good cats, and has made a name for herself with " Omar," by "St. Anthony." Miss Pollard's place is situated at Elizabeth, New Jersey, about fifteen miles from New York, and so is practically in the metropolitan district. "Purity," the white which was so successful in England, and the tortoiseshell "Woodbine," are factors in this cattery, which is quite a large one, and very well arranged. The crops of kittens have been most successfully reared and distributed, in fact with more success than many of our fanciers have been able to show.

Mrs. W. S. Hofstra, the president of the Atlantic Cat Club, lives on Long Island, the other side of New York, and devotes herself to her Siamese and Persians, and has had a very decided influence in the development of the club over which she so ably presides.

The Lindenhurst Cattery at Ridgefield, New Jersey, is also becoming prominent, and in Brooklyn the Misses Ward have done very good work and have reared some fine cats and kittens. The keynote of this establishment has been "Robin," an orange tabby son of "Persimmon," who seems to breed back to his sire, and begets a good many brown tabbies as well as oranges.

We must not leave New York State without remembering Mrs. F. L. Norton, of Cazenovia, who has built one of the most beautiful catteries in America, and has spared no expense or trouble to stock it with good cats; and here reside "Sussex Timkins," "Sweetheart," and many others known to fame.

Mrs. Champion, now settled at Hart Park, New Brighton, Staten Island, New York, with her two daughters, is doing a great deal for the cats of America, and the two Misses Champion will probably have to do for some time a good deal of the judging for us. Mrs. Champion's cats did well at the first New York show at which they made their appearance, and "Lord Argent," "Silver Flash," "Argent Puffy," "Moonbeam II.," and "Lord Silvester" are becoming household words. " Argent Moonbeam II." was best in the show of January, 1903.

Mrs. Gotwalts, of Pottstown, Pennsylvania, must not be omitted from the eastern contingent, for she has the nucleus of a good cattery, and owns a son of "Blue Boy II." called "Amesh," and she has some "Persimmon "blood in the cattery, and also some of the smoke blood of the " Backwell " strain obtained from Mrs. Harold James. Mrs. Gotwalts keeps fine cats, and is very fond of breeding her own, in which she takes much pride.

Mrs. Brown, of Millerton, New York, has bred and kept cats for some time, but does not favour the shows much.

Washington has come to the fore of late, but has not within her borders many regular breeders outside of Mrs.

Hazen Bond, who exhibited with a good deal of success during the season of 19011902, and Miss Eleanor Burritt, who most successfully brought to a termination a good show in Washington in December, 1902; and this will, no doubt, be followed by others in years to come.

Our travels in search of cats do not take us very far south, for in these regions the fleas alone make the rearing of cats in anything like numbers an impossibility. Mrs. B. M. Gladding most pluckily tried it at Memphis, Tennessee, but has been obliged to give it up, though she was one of our most promising cat lovers.

The Connecticut cats bid fair to be quite a factor in the American race for prominence in catty matters, and within the borders of Connecticut we have to record a few breeders. In 1903 we have a show at Stamford, Connecticut, which is an important place, and where the show now begun might assume quite extensive proportions; for at Stamford are many large country houses, and it is a centre that can well afford to have the best of everything.

Connecticut has within her borders the possibilities of future greatness, and is at present emerging from comparative obscurity, though always having had some good fanciers. Miss Lucy Nicholls was, for a time, perhaps one of the best, known, but she died in the spring of 1902. Dr. Frank Abbott is stirring up the fanciers of Connecticut, and a little while from now there would probably be a good deal more to say about this region, which holds such breeders as Mrs. Copperberg, Miss Anna Marks, Mrs. Ida Palmer, and others.

I leave the Maine and the northern division to Mrs. Pierce, who was born there, and has known this region and its history for many years, and who can cover it so much better.

Mrs. M. B. Thurston was much missed as an exhibitor, as for a time she was very successful, but more with cats she bought than with cats she bred.

Miss K. L. Gage, of Brewster's, New York, is not now so prominent as of yore, but still for a time was energetic in disseminating good cats, and was the owner of the silver tabby "Whychwood," who bids fair to leave a name behind him.

The New York show of 1903 revealed to us that we are making steady progress in long-haired silvers, and the probability is that at the present time, if we could make up a team of four or five of our best and take them to England, we should give a good account of ourselves.

At this show the blacks, thanks to recent importations, were much better than heretofore; and Miss Hurlburt's "Eddie Fawe," Dr. Ottolengui's "Sir Robert" - a previous winner at the Palace - and Miss Lincoln's "Jack Fawe" made a trio that we may be proud of.

The blues were a decided improvement on last year, and so were the whites ; and Miss Pollard had "Purity" and the blue-eyed "Fairy" put down in splendid shape, and won well.

Orange cats are always pretty popular in America, and are, owing to Miss Ward and Mrs. Copperberg, coming well up to the front.

In the silvers Mrs. Champion's " Argent Moonbeam II." carried all before him in males, and Mrs. Conlisk took first in queens with "Silver Belle" - a big one and a good one. The "Blessed Damozel" is perhaps our best queen, and there is really nothing to beat her in the female division ; but she was not put down for competition, as her owner does not approve of a four days' show. Mrs. Mallorie had a big strong silver - "Silver Glen" - second to "Argent Moonbeam II." The silver tabbies are coming along well, and so are the smokes, and one - "TheDusky Pilgrim," a son of " The Passionate Pilgrim," who has been altered - was sold for 50. "The Passionate Pilgrim," a very light and massively built cat, promises to be a great loss to breeders, as he is an almost complete out cross, but he has left severa good kittens. Mrs. Mix, who was judging, brought out some beautiful silvers, and her home-bred "Jack Frost" was a notable cat.

"Arlington Hercules," the brown tabby, made his first appearance in New York, and was very much admired. Prices ran high for good cats, especially smokes and silvers, as these are new to Americans. The blue colour they are more familiar with from the long acquaintance with the short-haired blues or Maltese; but there is no denying the fact that the blues are always dangerous when it comes to judging for specials, for in their all-round quality they show the care that has been bestowed upon them in England.

Old "Tortie Diana Fawe" is still our best tortoiseshell, without much apparent chance of being deposed.

Mr. H. T. Draper - an old Londoner, who has exhibited short-hairs steadily since 1895 - is still with us, and taking prizes as before ; he has been a very steady supporter of the short-hairs for years.

Cat District No. 2 - Chicago

District No. 2, that we shall consider next, is the city and region of Chicago, which is not placed second as a matter of its importance, but simply comes in in chronological order. The first show to be held there was three years after the first in New York, and was promoted and managed by Mrs. Leland Norton; and this show was such a decided success that a club was formed, called the Chicago Cat Club, which held together for some years, but was in the end dwarfed by its rival the Beresford Cat Club. This came into being in 1899, and grew to such dimensions that the club soon numbered over 300 members, and reached in January, 1902, to the highest place by far of any American cat club, having at the show in Chicago over 250 cats, which was at least 100 in excess of any show ever held up to that time in America.

Not the least important work done by this club was the inauguration of a stud book, which has now three volumes, and contains a record of nearly all of the cats that have been factors in the development of the fancy in America. No doubt a greater part of the success of the Beresford Club has been brought about by the energy and management of Mrs. Clinton Locke, aided by the corresponding secretary (Miss L. C. Johnstone), and it is impossible to compute the work they have done. The mass of information collected in the stud books will always be the basis for the future, and on this may be built the stud book in use by the whole of America.

The vicinity of Chicago has been the centre of the cat fancy in America, and in this city and its vicinity there have been more steady breeders and more people who have selected, bred, and reared the best cats they could obtain, so that, of course, the shows have been the biggest and best ever held in America. The one striking feature of the Chicago shows has always been the white long-haired cats.

Of late another club has started, called the Orange and Cream Club, which may be said to have had Chicago for its birth-place, and this club flourishes and prospers.

We can best gauge the Chicago division by looking over the breeders and taking a glance at the shows, and as I was judge there at the show of 1901 and also in 1902 I have had the opportunity to make acquaintance with many of the owners and many of the cats. If we turn back to the Beresford Cat Club stud book we find among the officers of the year many of our best known breeders, and I commence with Mrs. Clinton Locke, the president. It must not be imagined that this was her first attempt at cat breeding, for she had been a breeder of long-haired cats for years, and I must say I had heard of Mrs. Locke many years before I ever had the pleasure of meeting her, and her cats were well known before the advent of cat shows. Mrs. Locke has made a name with several colours and breeds, and has imported and bred Persians, Siamese, Russians, etc., and the last two shows displayed the fact that she held a strong hand in most of these. "Melrose Lassie" - a blue sent over in 1900 from England by Miss Frances Simpson, and who developed into a beautiful quality cat with lovely orange eyes - was the best at the Chicago show in 1901. This cat the next year was not shown for competition, and the premier honours went to her kennel mate "Lupin," and these two when mated together have produced several winners. "Lupin" was bred by Miss Beal, and is by "Romaldkirk Midshipmite" ex "Daisy Belle," by " Romaldkirk Toga." "Lupin" was selected at Romaldkirk by myself when a promising kitten of six months, and to say that he fulfilled his promise is sufficient, for he grew in size and stature, and retained his beautiful golden eyes. He is now owned by Mrs. White.

The winning kitten of the 1901 show was from the two ("Melrose Lassie" and "Lupin"), and Dr. Ottolengui's two winning queens in 1902 - "Lady Lola" and "Isis" - are bred from the same two. It is curious to watch how blood will tell, for in the winning blue male at Washington, December, 1902, we had some of the same blood again in "Lord Lossie," by "Lucullus" ex "Dollie Dutton," who was by "Persimmon," "Lucullus" being a son of "Lupin" ex "Lucy Claire" - late the property of Mrs. Falconer Sinclair, and known in England as "Baby Flossie." Among other celebrities of Mrs. Locke's cattery were "Lord Gwynne " - the white imported from England through the kind offices of Mr. A. A. Clarke - and this cat at once made a name for himself as the sire of " True Blue," "Mars," "Prosper Le Gai," and many other good cats. "St. Tudno" and "Blackbird" were two blacks that did well for Mrs. Locke, and " St. Tudno " sired the winning black in 1902, who very nearly annexed the prize for best in show. The " Beadle," another of Mrs. Locke's blues that must not be forgotten, was a cat bred by Mrs. Dean, and he did yeoman service in his time, and has left many promising young ones.

Mrs. Locke has been the owner of good Siamese, and from "Siam" and "Sally Ward" she bred "Calif" and "Bangkok," who carried all before them at the Chicago show of 1902, and were the best pair I have seen this side the water, and would have given a good account of themselves anywhere.

Mrs. Locke's Russians - "Blue Royal" and "Schuyla" - were respectively obtained from Mr. Towlerton, of Wakefield, and Mrs. Carew-Cox, and have passed into other hands after winning many prizes. Among other Chicago ladies who have been very prominent in cat breeding for many years we must not forget Mrs. Cratty, who built up a beautiful strain of whites from a pair she obtained in Switzerland twelve years ago. Mrs. Cratty has now given up breeding, finding the rearing of kittens too great a tax upon her powers ; but as a consistent and steady breeder, instead of simply a buyer and exhibitor of other people's efforts, she will be much missed.

Mrs. W. Eames Col-burn has at the present time probably one of the largest and most successful catteries in America. In 1901 she made a reputation with her cat "Paris," which was bred by herself, and which, besides winning in the strongest of company, has been a most successful and prolific sire of white kittens, a good many of which have taken honours on the bench. Mrs. Colburn also possesses two very fine blacks - "Blackthorn," which she imported from Asia, and "Blackberry Fawe," sent to her from England by Miss Frances Simpson. Many people who have visited the cattery of late are heard to speak enthusiastically of the quality of the inmates and of the perfection of the appointments and the way the cattery is fitted up. Miss L. C. Johnstone, the ever busy secretary of the Beresford Club, has been a prominent exhibitor, and has taken many honours with "Blue Flash," "Persimmon Squirrel," and "Kew Laddie." "Blue Flash" grew into a beautiful cat, taking at the Chicago show, 1902, the special for best queen in the show.

Mrs. Jerome H. Pratt has usually been an exhibitor at the Chicago show. She won her championship with "Sir Henry Irving," a very richly marked silver tabby by "Whychwood," who was by "Charlbury Silver King." Mrs. Tolman has always been an energetic officer of the Beresford Club, and is very energetic at the shows, and in cats her fancy runs to creams, of which she has brought out several winners. Mrs. L. Nicholson (formerly Mrs. F. Fisk Green) has been a prominent and good supporter of past Chicago shows.

Mrs. F. W. Story has been known as a successful breeder of orange cats and some whites, and in having obtained possession of the fine orange "Hamish" will, no doubt, find herself in a few years in the position of being a prominent breeder of this colour. "Bunch," the former stud cat belonging to this cattery, did good service in his day, and is responsible for a few winners; but the absence of any details in the American catalogues of the shows makes it difficult to arrive at a very accurate estimate of all his performances.

In speaking of Chicago we shall have to include Miss Hazelton, who has turned out several winners, all descended from "Sapphire," that she bought of Mrs. Barker in 1896. Mrs. Fred E. Smith has been one of the shining lights among the Chicago breeders, and has been a consistent winner at Chicago shows; she now holds a strong hand in the white division, and was fortunate enough to pick up on the Pacific coast a fine male in "Light of Asia," who was imported from Asia. "Swampscott," another good cat, makes his appearance every year, and usually finds himself in the prize list, and he has the most fascinating way of turning up in splendid coat at most of the shows. This cat is a pure Maine cat, if we may so call him ; but as an example of vigour and good health, year after year, he stands pre-eminent. Mrs. Smith is now building up a strain of silvers of her own composing, which may be very valuable to the attenuated strains of the ordinary breeder, who is only too glad to welcome something that will be an out-cross and will not spoil the silver colour.

Mrs. C. E. S. Blinn is another breeder who is always present at the shows, and whose cats usually find their way into the prize list. Mrs. Blinn is a consistent breeder who does not always make herself very prominent, but she obtains the results on the quiet.

Mrs. Blanche Robinson has bred several of her own prize-winners, and her black "Othello," of which we spoke previously, is more than a good one. The name of Mrs. McKenzie will always be associated with "Prince of Orange," whose name will designate his colour, and this cat is a hard one to beat in any orange class, for he is very rich and deep in tint.

In 1902 there were two shows held in Chicago by the Beresford Cat Club, one in December, 1902, or just a month earlier than usual, really representing what would have been, in the natural course, the 1903 show. This show did not reveal to us any very great changes ; there are a few new home-bred ones, but the principal wins in the highest of the specials were made by imported cats. The advent of some nice new whites was welcomed, as usual, and "Toddles" is an addition to our list of white males, and is a nice cobby sort, bred from "Light of Asia." "Little Miss Eiger," one of Mrs. Cratty's breeding and own particular strain, won in the blue-eyed white queens. "Lupin" kept on his winning career, and took the prize for the best in show once more, and this, under judges who had never seen him before, seems to endorse the estimate made of him heretofore. "Melrose Lassie," shown this year again for competition, took the first prize in blue queens. Blacks, taking the open and novice together, came out strongly, and black seems to be one of our strongest colours. "Prince of Orange" is still invincible at this show in orange males, and the orange queens are coming along nicely. Mrs. Sarmiento's "John Bull," in much better form than last year, again sweeps the deck in the silver class.

The silver tabbies still continue to prosper. "Arlington Hercules " went down, for the first time, at this show, largely on a question of eye colour.

Smokes in the year gone by have not made much advance in the West, and this year the cream females outnumber the males, and a descendant of "Kew Laddie" takes the eye of the public with colour, coat, and points. Mrs. C. A. White, who in the spring bought "Lupin" and "Melrose Lassie," was most successful at this show, and is probably destined to be one of our successful breeders, and with the co-operation of her husband (Dr. White), who is very clever with animals, the assistance she will receive will very largely help to bring her to the front.

Mrs. White is the lady who is organising a home for deserted dogs and cats, with a hospital attached, and on a scale and with a foresight that is certainly remarkable. Considering that Dr. White is the head of the Veterinary College in Chicago, the benefit that may accrue to the dogs and cats in the future from the opportunity of humane study that this will give will be incalculable. This, when put alongside of the horrible revelations that we are treated to anent vivisection, may, I hope, have the effect of swinging the balance the other way, and help to show the rash experimenters that there are people in this world who recognise the individuality of the animal creation, and that we who use them for our own ends and have crowded them out of their place in Nature to a certain extent should at the same time look at the other side of the picture, and should consider the debt we owe to them during their short lives - that humanity, practised towards the dumb animals, is nothing more than their just due.

A great many of the same cats won at Chicago at this last show, " Lupin " being again best cat in show, and among the younger brigade the most remarkable was a lovely cream kitten owned by Mrs. Locke, which is by "Kew Laddie." "Toodles," a white son of "Light of Asia," was the best white.

Cat District No. 3 - Detroit

District No. 3, which we shall assign to the Detroit contingent, is certainly one of our most important. The Detroit fanciers are situated more in a central position - that is, as regards getting to several shows a year, for Detroit is accessible to Cleveland, Rochester, Cincinnati, and Chicago, all of which are good shows; so this gives the Detroit fanciers the chance to come out at several shows besides their own in the course of the winter. At Detroit reside several of our most enterprising and successful breeders and exhibitors ; for the Detroit fancier is not content simply to stay at home and only take part in the one local show of the year, but is to be found at a good many, even so far away as New York. In the list of these we place Mrs. F. J. Sarmiento and Mrs. Dwight Cutler, who own the well-known cats "Arlington Hercules," "Bar Abdul," "Marriame," "Dingley Belle," "Champion Floriana," "Brownie Pink," etc. The history of these and their wins is written on the sands of time and will not be lost for many years, and they represent the enterprise of buying and importing the best English strains and taking care of them.

Mrs. Owen, at the Owena Cattery, has been an important factor at many shows for the last two years. Mrs. W. M. Chapman is well known to show-goers, and has won a good many honours, and rather in a way not too common here - that is, by breeding her own cats. This has been done with skill and patience ; for Mrs. Chapman has selected the parents with forethought, and has not been one of those who has paid large sums for breeding stock. The keynote, more or less, of this strain has been a fine brown tabby obtained from Canada some years ago - viz. "Prince Rupert," who goes back in his pedigree to cats owned by Mr. A. A. Clarke, and also to some imported by Mrs. Cumberland, of Port Hope, Ontario.

Mrs. W. J. Stanton deserves mention in the Detroit list as a breeder of short-haired orange-and-tortoiseshells, with and without white, and I must say I watch this lady's career with interest, for she has brought out several winners in her specialities, and is probably destined to make things interesting in the short-haired division.

Mrs. N. C. Ellis is another of the Detroit breeders likely to be heard of at show times, and Mr. and Mrs. Franklin have both made a name for themselves with cats of their own breeding. We must not. forget Mrs. Hemen-way, who was the owner of "Royal Bengal," a fine brown tabby, and several good orange cats bred by herself.

Cincinnati is our next point of interest, though I have not had the opportunity of meeting so many of the Ohio breeders as I should like, but this is destined, I feel sure, to be one of the prominent fancier sections in the future. In passing through Ohio we must never forget that Ohio has the two important shows of Cleveland and Cincinnati, and holds within her gates Mrs. E. R. Pierce, whose tastes run to orange and creams ; Mrs. Chas. McCloud, of Marysville, Ohio ; and Mrs. Wagner, of Sandusky, who brought a very fine lot of long-haired cats to Cleveland this year. Mrs. Wagner is well known, and has been for some time a breeder of blacks ; her silver tabby "Queenie" was the sensation of the Cleveland show in 1902, and is destined to win a great deal more in the future.

Mrs. Ferris has developed a faculty for bringing out good orange and brown tabby cats. Mrs. C. F. Russell, Mount Pleasant, Michigan, is also well known. Mr. G. G. Brown, of East Cleveland, Ohio, deserves more than a passing mention, for though not a cat breeder, he has made it his business for two years to organise and carry through two of the best shows in the country at Cleveland, which have been of material help to the fancy, and did a great deal of good. What cats are kept at the Brown homestead are short-hairs and some nice Manx, but in other lines, such as poultry and dogs, Mr. Brown is hard to beat.

Mrs. D. E. Peters, of North Baltimore, Ohio, has owned quite a few good cats, including some that came from Romaldkirk, but of late she has signified her intention of selling out.

Indianapolis, though rather south-westerly, is more in this division, and contains a good many cats and some breeders, though they have not been able up to now to come to shows and meet the more northern and eastern cats. Miss N. H. Wilson, whose prefix is " Spokane," is well known; and so is the cattery of Mrs. Ida M. Shirk, who has carried on the business under the name of the Linden Cattery.

District No. 4. - Canadian Cats

The two pioneers of the cat in Canada - i.e. the two who were most prominent as breeders when I went to the first Canadian shows - were Mrs. Cumberland, of Port Hope, Ontario, whose prefix or affix of "Demain " bespeaks her early efforts. Even earlier than Mrs. Cumberland, the cats belonging to Mr. A. Burland, an Englishman, attained prominence, and the blood that he brought from England - mostly from Mr. A. A. Clarke - is now diffused into or among many of our best-known catteries.

We had a dim suspicion - in fact, more than a dim suspicion - that there was tucked away in Canada more than one good cat ; and so, being in Toronto, we made an exploration, thanks to the help of Mrs. Ellis and Mr. Boyd.

Our first visit was to the Pioneer Cattery, where we found the ravages of gastritis had been severely felt only the week before, and, of course, some of the very best, including some we had portrayed lately, had succumbed. The most noted inmate was "Marie," a cat of good type, very sound and in good condition, with capital eyes of a good, rich orange - she should breed something good; and - we hope we can say it without offending anyone - this cat, old as she is, is the peer of any brown tabby put down in America last year, and we only hope she will live to breed one more good litter, which should be retained to perpetuate the race.

It was only a short walk to Mrs. Mallock's, who is rejoicing in the possession of a very cute young black male, capital in style, with a lovely coat and colour, named "Furzo," bred by Mr. Empey, of Montreal.

After lunch we drove to see Miss Cox, who has the same nice white male we saw there six years ago, and he has done yeoman service in the meantime. "Cadi," a young brown tabby male, is a year old, and a credit to any cattery. Miss Cox is also the possessor of a nice white queen by "Fluff," who is responsible for some of the good kittens.

We next journeyed to the home of Mrs. Bell, who has one queen and two very strong kittens. Mrs. Bell, however, intends to strengthen her cattery soon by the acquisition of some good queens.

Leaving Mr. and Mrs. Bell, we journeyed to the ferry and went over to the Island, getting a glimpse of the beauties of Toronto and a fine view of the water front and the suburban attractions. We landed at the house of Mrs. McAdley, and were introduced to the grandest lot of brown tabbies we ever remember to have seen, outside, perhaps, Mrs. Cutler's, which we should not like to compare, not having seen them. We may safely say that nothing so good was shown last year as Mrs. McAdley's. At the head of the list is "Prince," a grand old cat, imported from Ireland seven years ago, and there are few cats extant to-day, or ever were, that can take his measure. His head is magnificent, and he is short on the leg, has plenty of bone, grand colour, no weak colouring around the lips or chin, and, what is more, he sires the right sort. " Paddy," his daughter, is the peer of any brown tabby queen we have seen in the ring for a long time, and we saw nothing to beat her in England two years ago.

Mrs. Ellis has adopted the kittens, and these will not pass out of Canada under pretty stiff figures, and wherever they appear in the show room they will have to be reckoned with by the very best.

We got back to our hotel at 11 p.m., after a most enjoyable day among enthusiastic and painstaking fanciers, and we had unfortunately to leave out one house for lack of time. Another cat enthusiast who has some good Romaldkirk stock to sell - viz. Miss Cottle - journeyed over from Kingston on purpose to have a catty talk at the dog show. We feel sure that the Canadian contingent will have to be reckoned with in the future as breeders, and in brown tabbies are a hard proposition. As soon as they get hold of some better cats of the other colours they will be up with us, though we do not see some of the best of the other colours, notably Miss Cottle's and the Montreal blacks.

Cat District No. 5 - California

California is a district by itself, which can never be in active touch with the east, and the future cat of California may probably be the Siamese, for the demand for them is growing everyday, and the climate favours them. California is too warm to coat the long-hairs, and the vermin are too promiscuous in most parts to make the rearing or caring for the long-hairs a pleasant occupation. Mrs. C. H. Hoag and Mrs. C. E. Martling have been two of the most energetic in promoting the cat as a fancy in California, and several shows have been held, but at present - in the language of the slang - "there is not much doing," except in Siamese ; so that in taking a look over the past from a high point and looking down, we cannot say that up to now we can point to many families or strains that have yet made their mark in America; that is, a mark that is very conspicuous, for there has not been time. But still there are signs of strains that will be matters of history, and there are families that may be called distinctive, because the descendants win under different judges with sufficient regularity to make this noticeable.

Some of these I have sketched in my other notes; but probably the most far-reaching of the families that win in all colours is the "Humbert" strain, which emanates from Mrs. Barker's "King Humbert," imported in 1895. Not only did this cat sire a lot of winners himself, but cats with the "Humbert" blood to the third and fourth generation, such as "Prince of Orange," etc., are still winning all over the country. Judging by present appearances, the "King of the Silvers "family, coupled with his sire "Bitterne Silver Chieftain," is forging to the front, and is marking out a path of its own as regards winnings in public. One cat - "The Blessed Damozel," bred by Mrs. Barker in England, and by " Champion Lord Southampton " ex "Peggy," by "Champion Silver Mist," is making a big reputation through her children, and the second generation is now beginning to win as did the first. This blood is very successful wherever found, and this is, no doubt, largely owing to the kittens by "King of the Silvers," though "The Passionate Pilgrim," who goes back through his sire to " Whychwood," is as good as anything Mrs. Barker has yet produced; and this is saying a good deal, for she has bred a great many winners in many colours, and the effect of cats imported or bred by her is seen at every show we go to, and the ramifications of blood lines spread over America would make a book in itself.

The very best cats from England will win here every time they are shown in good trim, and in picking cats for best in show the greater part of the prizes go to English cats, or to cats bred from English parents. The crossing of the natives with the English is very successful in some cases, and, no doubt, the changes of blood will in the future work to the good of the majority, for in size, shape, and coat many of the American cats are very good, but fail in type and quality.

The cat fever in its present form may be said to be so comparatively new as an industry that it has not been easy to give a comprehensive view of the whole. Some exhibitors have come up suddenly, and after seeming to have carried all before them have disappeared as suddenly as they came, while others have kept on right through, though these are few by comparison with the great possibilities. We are now passing through the early days of organisation, and the future is not always too clear; but, still, I have tried to give the most prominence to those who have braved the light of day and have supported the shows, and this, really, is the only practical test of where we any of us stand. If I were to enumerate all I have heard of, and the many people who are interested in, the cat in America, there is no doubt but that a good deal more space than I have at my command would be used two or three times over; and such is the size of the country that it is only possible to give a light sketch of the whole; and I do not expect that I shall, or anyone else could, begin to do justice to, or could in any way really gauge, the number of people interested in cats in America. In ten years' time I expect to see cities that now bring together perhaps 100 cats, then having shows containing hundreds; for in most places, even where shows have been held, we have hardly scratched the surface, and in perhaps only one out of 100 important and possible towns have we ever had a show.

The extent of the possibility of the future can only be slightly grasped by those who have touched the fancy, but those of us who have worked for many years at it see signs of growth now that may increase the fancy as a snowball will grow - the further you roll it the faster it grows in proportion. We are only just waking. The future alone can say whether we shall succeed; but we must face the fact that in America the cat fancy, as a whole, is an impossibility, and that cats as exhibition cats can only, as a rule - unless belonging to rich people - meet each other in competition if within reasonable distance of each other.

Cat Judging In America

In 1900, I am not afraid to say, we had not more than two judges capable of judging a small show correctly all the way through. To-day we have a great many breeders who could do very fair work, and would not make many mistakes if the classes were not too big for them. Of course, the fact must be recognised here, as elsewhere, that a judge improves with experience, and I hazard the opinion that the fewer cats he owns the better he may judge, though I personally prefer for my own stock a judge who has at some time bred the variety. I cannot say that I have found the judging of cats in America a very difficult matter, up to now, for classes have been, as a rule, small, and in most cases the winners stood out well; and though, no doubt, there have been differences of opinion upon what I have done, I have not had many qualms of conscience, over past doings. The weakest spot in the American cat shows has been the tendency of owners to over-estimate the value of their cats in many cases, and the disappointment of defeat comes sometimes severely upon very enthusiastic people; but there is no hope for a fancier who cannot suffer defeat and come again for some more, so I think we need not waste our tears upon these, for they were never destined to succeed.

Want of quality is another weak spot we have to contend with, and this often comes from the eye not having been trained to the best. Size as a factor of beauty is another fetish we have to destroy with a rude hand, but our people are apt pupils, and those who stay in the game are very anxious to be on the right track, though it will take some a few years longer to learn the give and take, to withdraw gracefully, and to admit that there may be another side to a question. My own position to-day is that I am as much interested in the fancy as ever, but I do not find the necessity for doing the work in so severe a manner now, for there are so many capable of carrying on what has been done, and the future is pretty well assured ; so that for the health of the fancy at large it is better that too much should not be monopolised by two or three pairs of hands, and some of us old-timers who began in 1893 and 1894, and before that, are allowing the younger blood to take its share of the tasks.

In judging cats, as in other stock, it seems to me that one of the greatest criterions as to the success of our efforts as judges is the success in many cases of cats or kittens bred from those we have put in the front rank. And only time can tell the force of what we have done. If in the future I see cats doing as well as they are this season, bred from those I have put in the prize list, and judged by other judges, then shall I feel repaid for work done in the past, and not until then can I be sure I have been right. It would be impossible to go back through the last eight years and their troubles and experiences, and though in many cases I know I may have been called a " beast," I hope posterity will say I was a " just beast."

It might be as well to refer to the score card to show where in cases such as we have had to contend with it has done a great deal of good. One hundred points make perfection, and the question arose in one's mind before using the score card as to whether the budding exhibitor would be for ever crushed by finding that the cherished one came out of the score card ordeal with about 75 points instead of the possible 100 ; so that when it has been selected by a club for a show I have warned the owners of the danger; but to the everlasting credit of our fanciers I may say that I have not had to register a kick because of a low score, and many - even novices - were more than pleased with a score of eighty. If I may point out a failing in English judging - and we see the same thing here in the dog fancy - the criticism is left to the reporter, who has not the time or the opportunity for finding the real faults nor the space at command to do justice to the exhibits.

The task of explaining to exhibitors why their animals have lost is not an agreeable one ; but in a land like this, where nearly all have been beginners, this has been an absolute necessity, and the dose must be swallowed or no progress is made, and, as in the case of the score card, no doubt the having to give a reason is likely to keep us from giving prizes to one point at the expense of all the rest. Two great factors we have had to consider here are type and quality, the two weakest points in our cats; and if we had run to extremes in eye colour we should have made no progress in type or perhaps quality. Great stress has been laid upon markings in tabby cats, with very good results, and we are rapidly accumulating a good lot of tabbies - especially in the Detroit district, where tabbies are popular, which is a thing to be grateful for. We have never thought it well here to discourage the orange tabbies for the sake of unmarked orange, and we have some very good orange tabbies whose number is on the increase; and if the plain orange can range up beside the orange tabbies, all well and good.

But I shall be an advocate, if there is a danger of one hurting the other, of making separate classes, for we do not want to drive out the good orange tabbies, which are very popular, and the average American who loves an orange cat at the present moment does not care whether it is marked or unmarked. Cats with white hair are much in favour, as is the case with Madame Ronner and the Continental fanciers ; and, if so, there seems to be no reason for discouraging them, and we may as well first make up our minds to the fact that, in trying to force English ideas down the throats of the people of another country with too violent a hand, we may do a lasting injury to the fancy at large.

Another thing I might refer to, and that is that the average American exhibitor does not favour giving prizes to long-haired cats when out of coat, and the strength of the fancy and its future popularity lies in presenting to the public the cats in their best dress, and this mostly is the only logical way we can give out the principal prizes and appeal to the good sense of those who come to see them ; for the general public, when not experts, can only judge from appearance. The strength in England lies in the fanciers themselves, who have the opportunity of seeing so much more and of learning. Our future here lies in being able to gather recruits by presenting the cats to them in as perfect a form as possible, and therefore we have to depend upon the public. Our shows have to be in the winter, when the cats are in coat, and the dangers of exposure to the weather are very great, all of which is a good deal to the disadvantage of the fancier.

Maltese Cats

A great deal of interest has been taken in England in the subject of blue cats in America, which are often called Maltese, and really among the rank and file of the public this is the name they go by. So celebrated had some strains become that off-coloured cats bred from these cats are sometimes called Maltese, and the idea seemed to have gained considerable ground that this was a separate breed ; but evidence of this fact is very much lacking in most parts, and in travelling over a good deal of the country and finding them thousands of miles apart, I must confess that I have never been able to trace the origin of these cats nor to find out any reason for their numbers.

I have been led to think that they are the same, or were the same, in the beginning as the blue Russian or Archangel cat, and that they were brought to this country many years ago, and that the name was given them by sailors or others. The tradition possibly has been handed down in the same way as the name of Angora has remained fastened to the long-hairs with the average public here, and will be many more years in dying, for the band of fanciers who know better is but a drop in the bucket in this great land. No doubt the name of Maltese moved with the cat to the west as families moved, for in the case of native-born Americans the migration west has been often gradual: thus some moved, we will say, as far as Ohio, their sons and daughters moved to Illinois, and the next generation went still further, and the much-prized Maltese cat drifted on with his name.

Probably a good many of the so-called Maltese are just blue specimens of the ordinary short-haired cat ; and, in fact, there has never been anyone of my acquaintance who had any ideas as to points or type ; but the colour was the feature to be looked at. We find Maltese cats of the short and cobby type besides the long and more extended species, but the latter predominate, and I am inclined to agree with some English judges that the fairly long cats with a cleaner cut head are the purer type of blue cat. On some, when judging, I find very good heads with clean-cut features, round, well-developed cheeks, with fairly long bodies, very even in colour. No doubt the preponderance of blue cats before the advent of the cat shows was largely owing to the selection of blue kittens in the litters, which left a great many blue sires to roam the streets by night and sire blue kittens.

In many cases I have found families who had never heard of cat shows that had strains of blue or Maltese cats, and took pride in keeping the strain as pure as possible. And one great factor is that the blues have always had the name of being excellent mousers, and were valued as such. Besides this supposed strong point in their composition, they have always had a reputation for great intelligence and of being good-tempered and reliable about the house with children and young folk.

Like the Plymouth Rock fowl, the Maltese cat has been one of the institutions of the American continent, and there seems to be. some ground for believing the original tradition connected with the name Maltese - that the Maltese cat came from the East and was treasured as something out of the common, and fell among friends. Some are light and some are dark, and some have the white spot on the chest, but on most there is not much evidence of tabby markings ; neither do you see this in the young kittens in the same way as the Russians are said to be at an early age. I have seen five and six pure light blue kittens in a litter, and the father and mother were both of the same colour.

In quite out-of-the-way places you will, upon going to judge the short-hairs, find some blues, and often with deep brown eyes ; and if I were to make a comparison between the average American blue and what I saw in England as Russians, I should say the American cats are mostly lighter in colour, and do not have quite so glossy coats. Perhaps if taken up and selected for a few generations, these features would come out more strongly.

One of the worst features of the popularity of the Maltese, from the point of view of the breeder of long-hairs, has been that the blue colour has been so common that when the blue Persian was introduced he was not, in this country, considered peculiar. Among the Maine cats, so called, the blue or Maltese colour was not at all uncommon, and plenty of this colour are to be found. Some people who bred them obtained their stock from Paris, and no doubt the Chartreuse blue of olden times had a good deal to do with many of these.

The oldest blue cat I ever saw was one reared on a farm; he had always lived out of doors, more or less, and was the farm cat. His age was twenty-four years, and as he was born at the same time as the oldest son, who was also twenty-four years old, the evidence was pretty good that the age was correct.

It must not be supposed from this that blue cats are so numerous as to overshadow other colours in North America, for we have short-hairs in all the common colours, and lots of them ; but, still, the fact is pretty evident that short-haired blues have been a popular colour for a long time, and there are so many that everyone, whether cat fancier or not, is quite used to the colour. The native-born American, as a rule, calls this cat the Maltese, and the name, as I said before, will cling for many a day to come. In judging these cats, I must say that the proportion of small or short, round-headed cats is small, and that these - in America, at least - are not the most common type of blue cat; and I, personally, in judging have usually inclined to the more lengthy cat with longer face and bigger ears, though I think it is possible to find plenty without absolutely mean-looking heads. We do not want a ferret's head on a cat, for there is a happy medium.

Wild Cat Species

We cannot leave the American exhibition cats without saying a word upon the wild species, some of which find their way into the show rooms on more than one or two occasions. Of course, the cougar or mountain lion - our biggest species - is out of court on account of his size; but still, if history is to be believed, this fine animal was never injurious to man, and has not been known in recent times to attack man, though he is fitted by size and strength to do a great deal of damage. The next in order is the lynx, and though this animal is pictured as very fierce, there is as much evidence to show, in other ways, that if taken young and domesticated, the lynx is amenable to reason and is very intelligent, full of humour, and not afflicted with excessive nervousness. I have seen specimens exhibited, and one in particular that was the constant playmate of a little child ; and this cat spent four days in a show playing most of the time with all the children that came along, and was the coolest and most unconcerned cat in the hall.

Evidently the lynx shares the great brain power of the cat family which those who are well acquainted with cats are willing to concede to them, added to a calmness of temperament foreign to some of our so-called domesticated breeds that ought to have inherited by now, perhaps, more savoir faire under show conditions.

When on a ranch in the wilds with a few cats and dogs, where quarters were limited, I could never see that there was a natural antipathy between cats and dogs, for the bitches would rear kittens and vice versa, and the friendship was great between them - so much so that they would play together for hours, and there was no danger in leaving dogs and cats together, shut up in the house, when we were absent. In later times I have had twenty cats or more running around with as many dogs, and never had a cat killed, and only two or three occasions when any trouble started. The supposed antipathy between cat and dog seems to be an acquired taste in a certain measure, and personally I do not believe in the antipathy being natural or a fact, for the two will live together in peace if not set upon each other by man.

From a few observations I believe the lynx is capable of domestication ; of course, his size precludes his being numerous, but in this variety there are possibilities as yet not sufficiently tried out.

Of other cats, in contradistinction to this, we may mention that beautiful cat the ocelot. This cat is fairly plentiful, and is not very difficult to obtain when young; and though they are so handsome and can be reared and left to run about the house till a year old, as they arrive at maturity they become what the ladies call "impossible." The ocelot with increasing age grows hopelessly savage, and will kill anything put in his cage that he is capable of handling, and even to his keeper he is a problem. This evidence is not hearsay, but is from one who tried for a long time to do something with these beautiful animals. They are, when in condition, one of our handsomest specimens of the cat tribe.

One of the most fascinating little cats I ever judged was a little Marguay cat from Brazil, exhibited by the Zoological Society of Chicago, and though quite small and delicate-looking, it seemed perfectly healthy, and, as in the case of the lynx, was as tame and affectionate as possible, and seemed delighted to be noticed and handled. I cannot help thinking that if obtainable and kept pure this would make one of the most beautiful of exhibition cats. Small, of a reddish-brown colour, and clearly spotted all over, with beautifully shaped and small ears, which are black-and-white, this cat is gentle, sweet, sizeable, and possible as a pet. I have never seen it excelled by anything among the cat tribe; and having handled this cat a good many times during the show, I may say it was one of the tamest and best-natured cats I ever came across in the show-room, and certainly the most beautiful short-haired cat possible to imagine.

On one or two occasions we have had Australian cats exhibited, and they were funny little beasts, sitting up like a squirrel, and with much the same shape of head. When genuine they are most quaint, but do not seem to live long here. A very clever fake was carried out with these cats at some of the early shows - or, rather, I should not say with these cats, but an imitation of these cats. When the supply became limited, someone became clever enough to augment the number by shaving the long and ragged native short-hairs, and so well was it done that they not only won prizes, but on one occasion one was bought by a judge after winning, when to his purchaser's disgust a month or two later he turned out to be an ordinary yellow torn with his coat on!

The Australian cat fell into disfavour after a few of these experiences, and it has not been possible to resuscitate him.

We often hear of the Pampas cat of South America being in certain catteries, but so far at the shows none have been produced, and I am inclined to think these also are of the impossible brigade on account of their savage disposition. It is a pity that some enterprising fancier does not try to tame these wild species.

Some Of The Difficulties With Cats In America

Our English readers will, no doubt, wonder at a good many things we do in America; but, never having had the experience of our conditions, they would not be able to appreciate what it is that keeps the fancy back. In the first place, on this continent anything except poultry shows and dog shows is an unknown quantity, and many of those who take up the cat fancy with enthusiasm are perfectly innocent of any show experiences, and have few to teach them; so that until a show or two has been held in a certain neighbourhood our affairs are apt to be a little mixed. For instance, the common idea of a tortoiseshell cat is as often as not a heavily marked tabby of the brown tabby persuasion, or it may be an orange tabby, or it may be a mixture of many colours. Until a show has been held in a town, very few of the inhabitants know whether they have good cats or not, and they are as likely to bring the bad as the good. The idea has prevailed to a large extent that it is very expensive to get up shows, and so the only opportunity made use of has been when a poultry show is being held and the promoters of this are asked for a little space, which they may grant, as the cats are found to be very conducive to a gate; but the drawback of this arrangement is that in most cases the poultry people want to make as much money as possible, and so keep the cats penned for four or five days, which in many cases means death to the cats.

The cost of the hall being so great, and the prize money being consequently kept down to try to balance things, with the entry fees also put away up, which, all added to the travelling long distances and the added expense of hotel bills, makes the lot of the American cat exhibitor not too rosy, and it is something to wonder at that the fancy has ever developed at all.

Distance from place to place is another factor, and when you read in England of the New York and then the Chicago show the week after, you hardly realise that they are 1,000 miles apart, and that if living in New York and you want to show in Chicago it may cost you 20 in travelling expenses alone.

Another thing show committees have to face is the expense of the judge, and the difficulty of finding suitable sires within reasonable distance is one of the many drawbacks with which American fanciers have to contend.

CHAPTER XXVIII. MAINE CATS

FROM my earliest recollection I have had from one to several long-haired cats of that variety often called Maine cats. As to how and when they came, I would say, like Topsy, they just "growed," for their advent reaches far back beyond the memory of the oldest inhabitant.

Our own family circle was never complete without one or more cats - not always longhaired, but that variety always held the place of honour.

As early as 1861 my younger brother and myself owned jointly a beautiful long-haired black, pointed with white; he bore up for several years under the remarkable name of "Captain Jenks of the Horse Marines." I have no recollection of his earlier history or advent. I fancy, however, that these cats came into Maine much in the same way and about the same time that they did in England.

The Maine people having had them so long, it is difficult to arouse any great enthusiasm about them there. They are much like other people - they go into heroics over things they know less about.

Not until the craze for long-haired cats struck the West did they think much about selling cats ; their very best would be given to their dearest friends. When I think of the number of beauties that I have had given me on my return visits because I would be good to them, it makes me wish for the good old times when the little dears were beyond price in "filthy lucre."

I think the first really important development of the cat fancy that took deep and lasting root in me occurred in 1869, when I saw for the first time a pair of blue-eyed white Persian kittens that landed, to say the least, free of duty, in a sailmaker's pocket, from a foreign vessel, which put into a seaport town for repairs after a severe storm.

This Mr. P------, being a great lover of cats, while on board the vessel making repairs, admired a beautiful white Persian cat with a family of kittens, belonging to the cook, who gave him a pair of them. They grew and were nursed with tenderest care, the female developing much the better quality in hair ; but females were not highly prized at that time. They were both kept two or three years to get a good male for a gelding. I was told that they destroyed all the female kittens ; but at last they were rewarded, and then the original pair were sent to a relative in the country.

From that time on long-haired blue-eyed white kittens sprang up in most unexpected places. At intervals they have appeared and almost disappeared several times for want of care in breeding, but with this drawback they will still frequently come forth in the same fine type.

I owned a very fine specimen called "Dot," who became a noted winner, and who came from this strain about eleven years after the kittens landed. I think he was quite as good a specimen of Persian as the one that came from the original kittens. They were both cat show winners at the same time, although "Baba" (or "Babie") was in his dotage when "Dot" was in his prime. We were not thinking of pedigrees then, but merely who had the best cat.

"Baba" at that time belonged to Mrs. Mason (formerly Mrs. Philbrook), and won the cup over everything in the Boston show. "Dot" was not at the Boston show, but won first in his class at Bangor, Maine, which was held at about the same time. "Dot" was sent to the Bangor show to please Mr. Robinson, owner of "Richelieu," who had the management of it, and without the slightest thought of winning. He brought home a gorgeous silver butter-dish, elaborately inscribed, which sat about at least ten years before being given to the cook. Oh, that I had it now, that its picture might grace these pages!

For intelligence and affection "Dot" was by far the superior cat. I have never seen his equal. Although deaf, his other senses were so keen that we hardly realised he did not hear. He would answer to the slightest beckon, and was always watching for a call. He was quite proud of his beauty, and never failed at his mistress's receptions to speak to each person present before taking his seat in the window.

At one time some office girls who passed our house every day on the way to their work told me he was usually on the gate-post at seven o'clock in the morning to salute them and wave his plume to them. Each one stroked his head, said "Pretty kitty!" and passed on. He then took his morning roll on the lawn, and was ready for his breakfast.

His benevolence and tender feeling for cats of low degree was displayed by his keeping a cat two winters ; his protege was an example of the sad-eyed forlorn cat (one sad eye, the other closed beyond repair); spirit completely broken by neglect. As soon as the weather became cool, "Dot" would usher his sad friend into the kitchen every morning and ask for breakfast for him, then sit back on the rug the while, and with utmost satisfaction - expressed in song - watch the tramp cat eat it. Where he kept his friend when he was not eating we knew not; he was invisible.

He also excelled as a traveller, making several short journeys. When with me he scorned a basket, much preferring to sit on the seat and look out of the window and incidentally entertain the other passengers by his unusual privileges in cat travelling. He developed an unusual taste for moisture, often sitting on a garden bench through a heavy shower, while his frolics in a light snowfall were most entertaining. Taking him all in all, I have not yet seen a finer pet cat. We sent him to rest in the happy hunting grounds at the age of ten years.

I would like to say a few words here in regard to American cat shows. We are continually hearing it stated, or seeing it written by the clubs and those who are new to the fancy, "The first cat show ever held in this country," and so forth, was, we will say, according to their light, some three years ago. That is true so far as clubs go, but large cat shows were held spasmodically in all the large and some small eastern cities as far back as the 'seventies.

I have a photograph of "Richelieu," owned by Mr. Robinson, of Bangor, Maine, who had won first in his class at Boston, New York, and Philadelphia previous to 1884, when he was shown at Bangor, Maine, in a limited show of the one hundred best cats. He was a silver or bluish tabby, very lightly marked; about seven years old at the time; weight about twenty pounds; he was, as his picture shows, rather a coarse-grained variety; a drug store cat. 1 know nothing of his early history ; but his owner had the cat fad - a well-developed case - and travelled from city to city to show his cat, much as we are all doing now twenty years later.

At that time Maine, near the coast, was rich in fine specimens of the long-haired cats. That was before they began to sell. I have in mind their brown tabbies.

We often hear it said by people who know them not that the Maine cats are unhealthy, that they have worms ; and I have to admit it, and that they sometimes die like other cats ; but here is one that didn't until he had rounded out his full seventeen years.

On page 329 is a picture of "Leo," brown tabby, born 1884, died 1901; presented to Mrs. Persis Bodwell Martin, of Augusta, Maine, by Mrs. E. R. Pierce, when he was six months old. He lived a life of luxury and ease, having his meals served by his mistress's own hand in the upper hall, where he chose to spend his time for the later years of his life.

If I may be permitted, I would ask comparison between the picture of "Leo" and any thoroughbred brown tabby - first, colour of muzzle, length of nose, size and shape of eyes, breadth of forehead, size of ears, length of hair in the ears, and on the head. In body markings "Leo" would fall off, as his hair was so extremely long that the markings became somewhat confused.

They have had some extremely fine brown tabbies in Maine. In the summer of 1900 I bought "Maxine" there - the mother of "Young Hamlet," who won over his sire "Prince Rupert" the first year he was shown. She was, or is, very much the type of the "King Humbert" stock, though she has no pedigree whatever. It is one of Nature's own secrets how they keep bringing forth - now and then, not always - these fine types.

I have before me a most interesting letter from a Maine lady, one of my contemporaries. I will first explain that Maine at that time was one of the largest ship-building States in the Union, residents of the seaport towns and cities being often masters of their own floating palaces, taking their families with them to foreign countries, and having in many towns quite social sets, like the army set or official set in other sections.

Mrs. Thomas, to whose letter I refer, was the daughter of the late Captain Stackpole, who commanded his own ship for many years, taking his wife and little daughter with him. That was before our Civil War. She says : "I was always very fond of cats before they had to have a pedigree. In my younger days, en route for California, we stopped at Juan Fernandez, and I got a little wild cat.

"Later on, when in Europe, I got a Manx cat from the Isle of Man ; it was a great curiosity, and not considered very handsome, with its bob-tail, and hind legs so much longer than the front ones. It came to an untimely end by running up a flue, and was smothered to death.

"The wild cat did not flourish on condensed milk, and lived but a short time. Bad luck has followed me right along, but I keep right on like an old toper, and don't know enough to stop."

In writing of her own cat, the mother of "Swampscott," she says : "I cannot tell you much about my cat's pedigree - only that her great-grandfather was brought to Rockport, Maine, from France; he was a blue-eyed white."

This line of whites, while in the same locality, are quite distinct and unrelated to the first whites mentioned, of which "Dot" was given as a type.

But her reference to her early exploits with Manx cats clears the air as to how these different varieties first got root in Maine. This instance is only one in many where pets of every variety were bought in foreign ports to amuse the children on shipboard ; otherwise, as in one case I can call to mind, the children would make pets of the live stock carried to supply the captain's table with fresh meals - chickens, lambs, etc. - until it would be impossible to eat the little dears after they were served by the cruel cook.

Therefore birds of plumage and singers, cats, dogs, and even monkeys, found their way to nearly all the coast towns - many more in the past than at this time, when sailing vessels have passed their usefulness as money-making institutions, and those that do go out are not commanded by their owners ; paid captains, as a rule, cannot take their families with them, and the supply of cats from that source has been cut off for many years, so those we find there now can safely be called natives.

Up to this point I have been writing of the cats of the long, long ago, and perhaps only interesting to myself, being as full of plain facts as Gradgrind.

Before coming down to some of the fine cats of the present day, I will say that I am told by an eye-witness that on a little island quite well off the coast which is inhabited by only three families, and where a few gentlemen have a quiet nook to fish in summer, they found pure white Persian cats with the most heavenly-blue eyes. So far as is known, no other cats are on the island. I had the promise of a pair last year, but cruel fate had visited them in their sheltered nook, and the kittens that year died. The promise still holds good, and I do not want to believe it a " fish story." Time alone can finish it.

I really know nothing of the cats that are said to be found on the islands ; but no doubt they are much the same as those found all along the New England coast.

For a long time the long-haired cats seemed to be confined mostly to the coast towns and cities; but the giving their best to "their sisters and their cousins and their aunts" have spread them inland, as well as scattered them over nearly every State in the Union. They thrive as well as any other long-haired cat. No doubt they do still better in Maine, but the difference comes from the fact that they have the freedom of living a natural life, without dopes or over-coddling. Their offspring are beautiful, because they are from their own choosing, and not from compulsory mating - often distasteful, no doubt.

About 1895 or 1896 the cat fad struck the Middle West. The time was ripe for its development. The high, the low, the rich, the poor have all felt its force, as the real love of animal pets is no respecter of persons, and this fancy has made the whole world kin.

A few people who had never seen a cat show in their native land "go across," attend a cat show, or pick up a cat at a bargain on the streets of London ; they "fetch" it home, and, lo! their neighbour has seen something very like it while at their summer home on the coast of Maine. The fad is contagious, and if they have the fever running very high they send back east to their "handy-man" to get them a long-haired cat, and these cats become popular. Clubs are formed to discuss points and exchange knowledge, shows become a necessity, large premiums are offered, numerous valuable specials become a feature, cats must be found to fit them, the home market at a low figure is looked over, many Attic treasures are brought out, and have often tipped the scales in favour of the Yankee cat. We all turn green with envy. Before another show we must import a ready-made winner at any cost! In the meantime, the demand for the home-grown article is increasing, and prices are getting much inflated, the dealers in large cities keeping their buyers busy in the New England field during the fall and winter months.

But the stock of kittens has been looked over by the summer residents or visitors; the real cream disappeared with the first frost to some winter homes in the big cities; the dealers get what is left at almost any price they please to pay, many of the specimens being indifferent, and some, no doubt, mongrels.

In the last few years I have known less of the Maine cats, except through the shows and a few that I have owned myself, which have not been shown much or proved remarkable in any way; but among the gems that have shown out with more or less brilliancy when on the bench we find "Cosie," a brown tabby, taking first and special for best cat in show in New York, 1895. Mrs. Lambert brings out "Patrique" in New York in 1896 - blue, and a nice one.

"Yellow H. 14th Beauty." Owned By Mrs. Staples "King Max" - first brought out by Mrs. Taylor - won in Boston first in 1897-98-99, only to be beaten by his sire "Donald" in 1900.

Mrs. Mix has shown a fine Persian type from Maine called the "Dairy Maid." I believe she has also "Imogene," from the same place - a tortoiseshell.

Mrs. Julius Copperberg's "Petronius," of whom we all expected great things, was from a line of creams coming well down from a fine cream brought from some Mediterranean port by one Captain Condon about fifteen years ago. I have secured for friends several kittens from his cat's descendants, which are now somewhat scattered, but all showing great strength, form, bone, and sinew.

Mrs. Chapman's "Cusie Maxine" - a fine type of brown tabby, dam of "Young Hamlet," who won over his sire "Prince Rupert" - was also a Maine cat.

Mr. Jones, of The Cat Journal, has from time to time had some fine brown tabbies of the Maine stock, winners at some of the larger shows.

A fair representative of the whites, who has acquitted himself well at the various shows in competition with large classes, is "Swamp-scott," owned by Mrs. F. E. Smith, of Chicago. He comes from Mrs. Georgia Thomas's white cats at Camden, Maine, his maternal great-grandsire coming from France.

"Midnight" - a younger black cat, winning second at Cincinnati to a cat from New Hampshire in better coat, and second in Chicago in 1901 in large classes - has since become a gelding and pet of Mrs. J. J. Hooker, of Cincinnati. He comes from a line of blacks owned by a retired sea-captain named Ryan, who had at one time four generations of black cats. They loved their cats like babies, and for years looked for people suitable to give their kittens to. I have been the flattered recipient three times in the last dozen years of these beautiful black diamonds.

"Antonio," a gelding, now owned by Mrs. A. B. Thrasher, of Cincinnati, Ohio, is also a fine representative of this stock. See photograph.

In the last few years, since cats there are at such a premium and old age getting nearer every day, these good people have hardened their hearts, and now sell like others to the highest bidder.

I can also think of "Peter the Great," a neuter cream and white, owned by Mrs. Carl Schmidt, shown at Detroit, Michigan, 1901. Also "Black Patti" - originally owned by Miss Ives - and "Rufus," both Maine cats, now owned in Detroit, and winners in some of the Middle West shows; and many, many other winners whose place of nativity is a sacred secret with their owners, which we will not wilfully expose to public gaze until our native cats have been accorded the place that is due to them.

I would like to tell you of some of the handsome geldings in Maine. No cat is too good for a pet with them. They may be seen on nearly every lawn or stoop ; but as that is a little out of the province of this story I will only describe one - a beautiful smoke owned by Dr. and Mrs. E. A. Wilson at their beautiful home in Belfast, Maine. He is now ten years old; his mask and feet are black, or nearly so; his hair is very dark, rather brownish at the tip, but as white as snow at the skin. I have begged them to show him at Boston or New York. The answer is always the same : "Not for any amount of money or prizes. 'Tags' wouldn't like it; he would be unhappy. Wouldn't you, 'Tagsie' ? "

The smokes have not been well developed there yet. In a letter lately received in regard to that variety, I am told that one of the regular agents said he found only about one in 200. The silvers and chinchillas are not common. The strong colours predominate, whites, blacks, blues, orange, and creams, tabbies also being well divided and distributed along the coast, and for quite a distance back, perhaps sixty miles or more; but I have not known of their appearing to any extent in the northern portion of the State, which is less thickly settled.

Having had this fancy from my infancy and before it became a fashion, I took kindly to all the new developments. I have since had some experience with imported and kennel-bred cats, and from time to time had opportunities of seeing the best we have in our shows, and I fully believe that cats that have their freedom, as most of the Maine cats have for the greater part of their lives, are healthier than kennel cats can be. The cool climate and long winters, with clean air full of ozone, is what is needed to develop their best qualities, and, with a few years of careful breeding for types, they would be able to compete quite successfully in an international cat show.

F. R. Pierce.

CHAPTER XXIX. CAT PHOTOGRAPHY FOR AMATEURS

ALL lovers of the cat who are also amateur . photographers must have seen with envious admiration the lovely cat pictures by Madame Ronner, the more racy and amusing sketches by Louis Wain, and the many beautiful photographs which so greatly enhance the instructive and pictorial value of this "Book of the Cat."

To the amateur wishing to take up this fascinating, though somewhat difficult, branch of photographic art, I venture to offer a few suggestions.

The subject naturally divides itself into two distinct branches - the commercial and the artistic. By the "commercial" I mean all photographs taken with the special aim of showing the shape and points of the cat from the fancier's, owner's, or purchaser's point of view. In the "artistic," I include all those pictures where the cat is used as a model only.

In either kind of work almost any sort of camera and lens will do, providing it will yield a fair definition and admit of rapid exposures. If one possesses a portrait lens all the better. At all events use a lens which will give you good definition at a large aperture. A good make of roller-blind shutter is an important accessory, with a sufficient length of tubing to the pneumatic release to enable one to move about freely while holding the ball and to get close up to the cats while making either time or instantaneous exposures. The camera stand should be very firm and rigid. I like best to work in the open air, my studio being the small open run of my cattery. If the light is too direct or strong I diffuse it by stretching light blue art muslin curtains above the table or stand upon which the cats are arranged. These curtains run with rings upon cords stretched from the boundary walls on each side, so that they may be moved in any way the lighting may require. For background a dark plush curtain will be found useful. Avoid figured backgrounds, as they detract from the value and crispness of the cats and accessories.

An example of what I mean will be seen in my picture on page 158 of the present work, where the feathers in the hat, one of the motives of the composition, are almost lost in the scrolls of the curtain used for background.

Three things are absolutely necessary to successful photography of cats for either commercial or artistic purposes - time, patience, and an unlimited number of good quick plates. Of all animals the cat is possibly the most unsatisfactory sitter should we attempt by force to secure the pose we desire. By coaxing we can generally get what we wish. Patience is the keynote of success. Before commencing, make up your mind as to what points you wish to show ; then pose your cat gently and wait patiently until the pose becomes easy. She may jump down or take a wrong pose or go to sleep a dozen times or more, but never mind, give plenty of time. It is here where patience tells. Wait and coax until you see just what you desire, then release the shutter and make the exposure. At this point never hesitate or think twice - especially with kittens - or the desired pose may be gone, and will possibly cost you hours of waiting again to secure it.

Before photographing a cat for its general appearance or for any special points, it is essential to have it thoroughly groomed and got up as carefully as for show. Speaking generally, the coat of a long-haired cat should never be roughened; it altogether spoils the shape of the animal, and does not in any way improve the appearance of length, quality, or texture of the coat. In all cats where their markings are one of their chief points - such as tabbies and tortoiseshells, etc. - this roughening should be specially avoided. There is, possibly, one exception to this advice, and that is in the case of smokes, where it may be, and sometimes is, desirable to turn back a small patch of the fur to show the quality and purity of the silver under-coat. In such cases the turning back must be done only for this purpose, and in such a natural way as not to interfere with the general flow of the fur or the shape of the cat. In posing a cat, it is well to remember its faults as well as its good points, so that the former may be hidden as much as possible and the latter displayed to the best advantage.

Let us take this somewhat extreme example : A friend has a domestic pet - a so-called Persian, but with weasel head, long back legs and tail, large ears, small eyes, short coat, but some slight pretence to a frill. What can we do ? To take him in profile will result in a very sorry caricature of the noble Persian ; so we coax pussy to bend her back by sitting on her hind legs, and so partly hiding them as well as apparently shortening her back, inducing her also to curl her long and scanty tail round her feet. We brush out the ear tufts, if she has any, and press up the fur at the base of the ears, for this will tend to make them look smaller. Having placed the camera well in front of and nearly on a level with the cat, so as to foreshorten the nose and head, while showing what frill there is, a sharp squeaking sound will make pussy open her eyes to their full extent ; we press the ball, the exposure is made, and we have secured a fairly presentable photograph of our friend's perchance charming pet, yet most indifferent Persian cat.

A few good examples of cats taken for the purpose of showing points should prove useful, especially to the novice, and many such examples are to be found in this present work on the cat - for instance : p. 29, " Litter of Siamese Kittens"; p. 100, "Champion Jimmy"; p. 138, "Star Duvals"; p. 139, "Omar"; p. 145, "A Perfect Chinchilla"; and p. 150, " Dossie." With these examples and the many others that are to be found scattered through the pages of "The Book of the Cat," the would-be photographer of the cat for her show points should have little difficulty in setting up a standard to work to, and by patience and perseverance succeed in attaining it.

Turning now to the more artistic side of cat photography, we find our real difficulties begin, for in photographing for the showing of points we seldom have to deal with more than one cat at a time. It is when we attempt deliberately to pose two or more cats or kittens, to carry out a preconceived idea, that our real troubles begin, and also that the patient skill of the amateur wins its best reward. Looking through the pages of "The Book of the Cat," we find many good examples of how the cat should be used in picture making. The reproductions of Madame Ronner's charming pictures show how they may be handled with palette and brush ; but, alas ! here we photographers labour under an immense disadvantage. However artistic our taste, however good and pretty our intended composition may be, we cannot, as the artist with pencils and brushes can, make individual sketches of pussies in the different positions needed and bring them together in the finished picture. Whether we use two or more cats, they must each be kind enough to take the pose we desire simultaneously; hence our greater difficulty. However, the illustrations on pages 1, 37, 49, 88, 128, 199, and many others indicate the wide field open to the photographer with a little taste and vast patience.

In this class of photography it is of no use to go to work in a haphazard fashion, snapshotting our cats in all kinds of positions, trusting to mere luck to yield something worth keeping ; then to give a sounding title to it, and so hope to make a picture. Accident does occasionally present us with something worth having, but far more often it offers us results only fit for the waste-paper basket.

Before commencing, be sure you have an idea to work out in your picture, and of the lines you hope to follow in giving it expression. If possible, make a rough sketch - no matter how rough - of this idea, showing the position not only of the cats, but also of the accessories needed. Be careful to keep the composition simple and not to overcrowd it. This sketch will greatly assist you in arranging your picture and posing your cats. Before you attempt to pose the cats it is absolutely necessary that all accessories should be fixed so that they cannot be knocked over, or the cats will get frightened and be useless as sitters for a long time to come. That cats are nervous should never be forgotten, and any chance of startling them strictly guarded against. When your background, table, and accessories are all in their places, put your camera in position, arrange the picture on the ground-glass, and see that you get all well within the size of the plate; it is safer to have the picture on the ground-glass a little smaller than the plate will allow, as, if one tries to get it to its utmost size, one may find in developing that one of the models has moved back on the table an inch more, perhaps, than calculated upon, and as a result have half a cat on one side instead of a whole one.

The background, however, should be large enough to fully cover the ground-glass. Focus the foreground and nearer accessories, stop down to F. 8, set the shutter to about 1/30 to 1/50 second (according to light and nature of subject), insert the slide containing the rapid plate, draw the flap under the dark cloth, and if at all windy tie this last to the camera. Now you are ready for the cats and a suitable moment of light.

As I have already remarked, I do my photographing out of doors. I therefore choose a bright warm day, when there are plenty of fleecy clouds about; so that by taking advantage of their position in front of the sun, and by the help afforded by my muslin curtains, I am able to modify the harsh contrasts incidental to working in broad daylight.

"The Artist" (page 128) was, perhaps, one of the most difficult subjects I have attempted. Without apparent life and go such a subject would be worthless.

The rough sketch of the cat in the basket was first prepared, and the brush attached to it in such a manner that it would move freely up and down for about an inch or so; then it and the rest of the accessories were firmly arranged upon the table. The cat. in the basket was then made to take her place, but keep in she would not ; as soon as the brush moved to attract the artist paw, out she would jump ; so for the time she was allowed to run, until the artist was posed and an endeavour made to infuse life into him by moving the brush. But it was "no go"; sit down he would, until the introduction of a feather woke him up. His companion was then slipped into the basket; but, alas ! success was not yet. For about two hours we had to begin over and over again, when at last the pose of both kittens was obtained simultaneously and the picture taken in 1/50 of a second. Such a subject with the kitten tamely sitting at the handle of the brush would not in any way have realised my intention.

I must again point out the great convenience, especially in this class of work, of the extra length of tubing, which allows you, while holding the release in one hand, to pose your models with the other, and then expose without the fatal loss of time that would be entailed by having to step back to the camera or by giving the word to an assistant.

A subject suggestive of a picture will often turn up when least expected and, at the time, impossible to take. I always make a note of these, and they come as a basis for future use and to be worked out at leisure. "Thieves" (page 79) was suggested by noting the fondness of two of my kittens for melon, "Amateur Photographers" by a group of kittens playing round some photo frames put out to print, and "Mischief" (page 88) by a frolicsome kitten overturning a small bottle of ink and playing with the little black pool.

Isochromatic plates should be used in all cases where there are mixed colours in the cats' furs, as in tortoiseshells, brown tabbies, etc.; mixtures of red, black, and yellow cannot be truly rendered with ordinary plates. The only extra precaution necessary in their use is absolute freedom from actinic light in the dark room. Double ruby glass in the window, or, if artificial light is used, an extra thickness of red tissue paper round the developing lamp, will answer the purpose and make everything safe. With this little extra care, nice crisp negatives are obtained, while the relative value of the red, yellow, and black seen in our furry friends are well defined in the resulting picture.

Cats used as models should, if possible, be in the pink of condition - the prettier the model the more pleasant the picture. The best time to photograph a cat is about one hour after a light meal. Immediately after a meal most cats want to wash and sleep. A hungry cat or kitten makes the worst of sitters ; its thoughts are too much turned towards the inner man. Never overtax your cats, give them plenty of rest during a sitting, and never lose your temper and attempt by force to secure a pose ; it only frightens the cats, and can never result in satisfactory work. Time and patience should always in the end achieve what you desire.

Artistic photography having been for some years a pleasant and recreative hobby with me, I can assure my friends who keep cats for pleasure, and those who find pleasure in the camera, that by uniting the two hobbies they will discover a field of enjoyment and artistic possibilities which neither pursuit alone can afford. To all such the preceding notes are offered as humble finger-posts, indicating rather than assuring the road to success.

Lucy Clarke.

CHAPTER XXX. REARING OF KITTENS

IT may truly be said that the subject most interesting to cat fanciers is the successful rearing of kittens, and pages might be written on what to do and what not to do in order to bring up a family of kits in health and strength. Experience teaches us many things, and certainly during the number of years I have been breeding Persian kittens I have had ample opportunity of judging what food suited the little mites best, and which was the surest method of bringing up a wholesome litter of kittens. I am sure that in the olden days there was less delicacy amongst Persian kittens than at this present time.

With the advent of the first family the anxieties of the novice begin. Perhaps a goodly sum has been risked in the purchase of a pedigree queen, or else with much carefulness and taking thought a valuable kitten has been reared to happy matronhood. So far well; the trouble has been slight, but the account book shows all on the debit side. Now, as we gaze upon the tiny blind bobbing atoms, over which the mother croons and purrs with pride, here is the investment that has to swell our credit column. And ignorance here spells loss.

If a large number yearly are successfully raised, a still larger number sadly "pass out," and might claim the baby's plaintive epitaph:

"Since I am so quickly done for -
I wonder what I was begun for!"

Neither does the comfortable law of the "survival of the fittest" seem to hold good here. At least, Nature and the exhibitor arc at variance in their ideas of such, for always it is our choicest, our sure and certain champion, that slips our too eager grasp.

Here is our experimental nest of champions ; they are but two days old, and in this early stage of their existence the less they are handled and examined and the mother interfered with, the better. Attend to two things - darkness and fresh air; and leave them alone till they introduce themselves of their own accord to your notice.

Shift on to a clean nest the second day after birth. It is safer not to do so before, as I have known a belated kitten arrive twenty-four hours after the rest of the family, and in the case of an excitable or inexperienced mother she will by then be more composed, and can be coaxed out to feed while the change of bed is being made. Hay, short and sweet, is the best bedding - much better than blankets or cushions. Many fanciers use boxes turned on their sides and curtained. These, while giving the necessary darkness, are not sufficiently ventilated; the air in them cannot circulate freely, and becomes stuffy and foul, vapours ascend, and the wood becomes unsanitary in a very short time.

Bad eyes follow as a matter of course, and the anxious, worried novice wonders "how they can possibly have taken cold when they have been so guarded" - from fresh air! - and seals them up still more! If, therefore, a box is used, let there be holes for ventilation, or arrange for the covering to reach only partly over the top.

In an outside cattery or attic or room guard against too much light and any draught, but let in the outside air by keeping the window open during the day. If winter kittens are to be reared, heat the room to an average of 55 degrees, and have the window open, taking precautions naturally against rain or snow beating in.

When the kittens reach the age of three weeks, they will require some food beyond that provided by the mother, who, if nursing a large family, is perhaps showing signs of wear. It is when the process of weaning begins that trouble generally arises.

I am inclined to put down the growing delicacy of Persian kittens to the injudicious feeding with solids at too early a period of their existence. I never used to allow my kittens meat until they were about four or five months old, and during the period of weaning from their mothers it is most essential that all food given - such as Mellin's, Ridge's and Benger's - should be made very thinly at first, so as not in any way to try the tender digestions of the little creatures.

I believe that most of the ills that kittens' flesh is heir to, proceed from indigestion. The tendency in fanciers is to overload the stomach of the wee kittens, forgetting that it is not the amount of food eaten that nourishes the tiny creatures, but the quantity they are able to digest, and this must necessarily be small for some weeks after they have learnt to feed themselves. Another mistake that is made is giving milk that is too rich. In large towns we generally get our milk watered for us, but in the country the milk is richer, and needs mixing with warm water. It is not so important in the country as in London and other large towns to have the milk boiled, but it is at all times and in all places a wise precaution. In preference to risking the town dairy milk, flavoured with boracic, and most deadly to the systems of both kittens and babies, I advise a good brand of Swiss milk - such as Nestle's - being employed, or, better still, Plasmon powder, made to a jelly according to directions on packet, and one teaspoonful of this jelly thinned out with hot water and sweetened.

Do not give raw meat till the teeth are fairly through and they can bite sharply; then give it scraped with a blunt knife, not cut; and remember that raw meat is three times as digestible and nourishing as cooked meat - one tiny meal of meat a day, a teaspoonful per kitten to begin with. Do not give them fish while under three months old.

Rice is a very indigestible food for kittens, especially cold ; but rice-water, strained from rice boiled to a pulp and given quite cold, is useful in checking diarrhoea. Melox is a most useful food for kittens of ten weeks old and upwards, soaked for an hour or two in a little good gravy, and given crumbly (not sloppy), and a little scraped raw meat mixed with it. For younger ones a tablespoonful of red gravy from a cooked joint, poured over some breadcrumbs, proves an appetising meal.

Small meals at short intervals are infinitely better than heavy meals at long intervals, and if a young kitten is left for many hours till half famished, it will in all probability eat too much and suffer in consequence. From four to ten weeks six or seven meals in the twenty-four hours are none too many. 1 am presuming that till that age they will be with their mother at night, which will do away with the necessity of providing food between 9 p.m. (when the last meal should be given) and 8 a.m. Give always a light and warm meal for the breakfast. After ten weeks lessen to five meals, after three months tour, and give four till six months old, when they may be fed as adults, unless one should be delicate or has been through severe illness.

The best test of a properly thriving kitten is its weight, and 1 lb. for each month of age is a fair average, occasionally exceeded by very big-boned and robust kittens. For young growing kittens a teaspoonful of limewater added to a saucer of any liquid is very advisable, as it strengthens the limbs and forms bone. If a kitten under a month or six weeks old is unfortunate enough to have a severe illness, whether epidemic or accidental, my advice is to chloroform it. At so tender an age the constitution rarely recovers from the strain.

Although this article has no intention of encroaching upon that treating specially of diseases, our aim and object being to rear such healthy sturdy families of kittens that they shall never have any diseases, vet, en passant, it might not be amiss to remark what a valuable medicine for the first symptoms of distemper is Pacita, a herbal medicine that can be obtained in both powder and pill form. The latter is to be preferred, as, the smell being very nasty, kittens rebel against it. Half of No. 1 size pill is sufficient for a kitten under three months, to be given fasting in the morning an hour before food for three mornings. It reduces fever and clears the system in a wonderful manner.

The question of outdoor exercise must now be discussed. 1 speak of summer kittens only. Winter kittens - viz. those born from November to February - are, I think, a mistake. Out of season, like forced green peas at Christmas, they have not a good start in life ; the damp and darkness of those months is very deterrent upon young life. Nature's plan of arranging for the new lives to come chiefly in the spring when days are lengthening and sunshine has power, is the wisest. They grow with the days, and have the summer to romp through and grow big and strong before the leaves fall. It is a mistaken policy - that of exposing to risks under the intention of hardening. We must remember that the Persian cat is an exotic, and that the present system of breeding for coat and show points does not tend to make the race hardier; on the contrary, probably the constitution is more delicate than in its native country, imported cats invariably boasting a vigour and hardihood that our pedigree specimens sadly lack. It is not cold that injures ; frost and snow can be borne by grown-up Persians with impunity, and even enjoyment.

It is the damp that kills, and upon consideration we shall see that this is largely a question of coat.

Look at your English sleekly groomed puss as she comes leaping across some dewy field in the early morning, pressing through a thick, wet hedge. She gives herself a shake; examine her fur : not a dewdrop has adhered, hardly are her pads damp. Now pick up your Persian gentleman who has taken a slight hunting stroll through the same ground : his stomach fur is soaked, clinging like wet linen to him; his "knickerbockers" are disreputable, his frill clammy ; and it will take him a good hour to get himself clean and respectable once more. The soft woolly under-coat of the Persian holds water like a sponge, where the close short coat of the British cat shakes it off as from duck's feathers. This is the true secret of the delicacy of the Persian. So in rearing kittens, let your first care be, avoid damp.

A sick kitten generally forgets its manners, however carefully it has been trained to the use of the dry earth or sawdust box ; it seems to feel too bad to care how it behaves, so due allowance must be made at the time; but in health, cleanly behaviour must be insisted upon from the time they begin to trot about their nursery. Begin by placing a very shallow tray of nice dry fine earth in one or two corners that the kittens seem to have a predilection for ; it may even be necessary to put them in all four corners for a little while to convince some obstinate or dullard member of the family.

A cat's confidence is harder to win than a dog's, but once you have gained it the animal will trust you implicitly, and will bear pain or nasty dosing at your hands without resentment. I think kittens should be handled from early days. I do not advocate a valuable kitten being sent up to a humar nursery, to be hugged flat or carried head downwards by the too-adoring occupants; but kittens should be thoroughly accustomed to human society and to being picked up, caressed, and handled. It will make their subsequent show career far less of a terror, and greatly augment their chances of success; and in the case of all male cats, whether for stud or neuter, it is very convenient to train them to walk on a lead. Begin by using a light ribbon, and two kittens led together on separate leads will come more willingly than one. The first lessons in walks might terminate at the feeding dish, so that the kits would quickly associate this new form of exercise with something to eat.

It sometimes happens that young kittens are too early bereft of maternal care from some cause or other. Mr. A. Ward, of Manchester, has invented an artificial foster-mother (see page 343). This consists of a glass vessel covered with flannel, and having indiarubber teats. This is filled with warm milk and water, and the kittens help themselves!

It is only of comparatively recent date that any serious attention has been given to the successful breeding of Persian kittens. A demand has arisen for animals that approach perfection, according to a recognised standard of points, and it may not be unprofitable to devote a few pages to the consideration of how these can be best obtained. Formerly a long-haired cat was not much thought of unless he really deserved his name, but nowadays coat is rather at a discount on the show bench.

Points, points, points - colour of eyes, colour of coat, shape, expression, and what not these are all considered first, and length and beauty of coat are rather apt to be overlooked. The amateur cat lover should provide himself with a female cat or kitten of fine health and luxuriant coat, and treat it precisely like any other "well done by" domestic pussy. Probably by the time she is twelve months old she will have insisted on matrimony. This is worth a little consideration and trouble, but if the choice lies between a healthy, hardy longhaired torn at large in your own neighbourhood and a pedigreed prisoner at a distance, I should recommend the local monsieur.

What you want is physique and a fine appearance, and you are more likely to get them in this way.

Many owners of Persians have been quite content to rear saleable kittens of average merit, and trust for their show reputation to fine animals bought from others.

To encourage breeders special prizes are offered at shows to those who win a first prize with a cat whose mother was in the exhibitor's possession at the time of the kitten's birth. They are very handsome trophies, and have to be won four times before becoming the property of the exhibitor.

Over against the mistaken motto of "Haphazard" we must place the password of "Selection" if we would become successful breeders. Selection - clever, thoughtful, painstaking selection - lies beneath all real success. I am not denying that excellent results are obtained occasionally by accident, but these happy flukes want following up if any permanent good is to be effected.

Having a queen of a given colour, you should, as a rule, mate her only with a cat of the same colouring, and be especially careful not to cross self-colours with tabbies.

Now selection, as too often understood, means just this : A male cat makes a great sensation at a show and wins many prizes. He is the right colour, therefore to him you will send your queen. What can be simpler ? Why this fuss about the difficulty of breeding ?

But you are a novice, and know nothing of the value of the pedigree owned by the winning monsieur. It is not so much he himself as his inherited tendencies you have to consider, for assuredly they will reappear in his children.

An old hand will tell you, "Yes, a grand head, but where he got it from is a miracle, with such parents" ; or, "Colour? Yes, first-rate, but he was the only one clear from sandy in the litter." Well, what can a bewildered novice do? Remember, you have to try to cap each of your queen's defects with a corresponding virtue in her mate. If she is snipey in face, make head a chief point ; if she fails in colour, lay great stress on colour; and so on. My advice is, do not send her to a new star who has but just arisen in the sky of the cat world until you know a little more about your business. Mark your catalogue at shows. Study the cats and kittens whose points please you and who are filling the prize lists, and then notice their sire's name. When you find the same name repeated again and again, and always attached to animals of consistent merit, you will not do far wrong to choose the owner for your queen's mate.

But after having exercised all possible care in the selection of a male cat, we must not expect the litter of kittens to be perfection. All breeders know that there is, as a rule, one kitten in each litter which far surpasses its fellows in beauty.

Perhaps one will possess the type of head you so covet, but the colour is inferior. Another has colour or markings to perfection, whilst the head is poor Well, then, they must be mated with an eye to remedying these defects, and a near relative possessing these strong points will be likely to prove the most successful cross; for in-breeding - careful, cautious, and judicious - is another secret of the successful breeder. But one word of caution to the novice : Never be persuaded to breed from an unhealthy animal, be his or her points what they may, and never allow your queens to mate when thoroughly debilitated and out of health; for this lies at the bottom of the difficulty experienced in carrying out the next point we have to consider - i.e. the successful rearing of kittens. If cat fanciers could learn this lesson, we should hear far less of infant mortality.

For the ordinary mode of kitten rearing it is essential to have proper out-door quarters, and, if possible, quarters isolated from each other. There is nothing more suitable than the portable houses so readily obtained ; but these must be on a dry foundation.

Sunshine, fresh air, and wholesome food are the essentials of a kitten nursery. Moreover, there must never be many young things kept together. Otherwise, some unlucky day you will find a sad-faced kitten looking down its nose, and in two or three days more your whole tribe will be down with distemper and your hopes for the year shattered.

I know it sounds brutal, but I cannot refrain from saying that sentiment is the ruin of successful kitten rearing. Some tiny morsel develops a skin trouble, has chronic diarrhoea, bad eyes or snuffles, and we tenderly nurse it for many weary weeks and perhaps save it.

A victory? Yes, if the morsel were a gem of great value, one of the "surprise babies" in colour or shape that now and again visit every cattery, it may have been worth paying the cost. For pay we shall have to, make no doubt of that. Your kitten nursery will never be quite so healthy again, and in spite of all precautions yon will very probably carry sickness to your other stock. I would never breed from unhealthy animals, and I would at once destroy a very sick kitten of tender age. Lethal boxes rob the act of inhumanity, and you will probably have one little tombstone to erect instead of a dozen !

One great feature of success is the boarding-out system. Any woman really fond of cats who will take a kitten into the bosom of her family and rear it is a perfect boon. Of course, she must be well paid, but if she is successful you can afford to be liberal.

In these cases it is better only to put out your choice specimens that you wish to attain some age before sale or to keep for stock. The others should be sold off at about eight to ten weeks old at moderate prices.

Far more of the trouble with kittens comes from defective digestion than from any other cause, and I suspect we frequently overload their little interiors. When nature makes the small cat turn away from its dinner, we fall into a panic and pour beef essence down its throat. Probably a short fast was all that was required, and it is a mistake to force food until some hours have elapsed. In fact, healthy surroundings and common-sense treatment are the main secrets of successful kitten rearing.

CHAPTER XXXI. COLOUR BREEDING

COLOUR breeding is a most fascinating pursuit ; but, unfortunately, the average cat fancier lacks the patience to follow it out to a satisfactory conclusion.

There is no doubt that by judicious crossbreeding new colours could be produced, and I think that they will be produced in time. I have seen a chocolate-brown cat and a yellow cat with black stripes, and no doubt they will appear again ; also chestnut-brown cats and white cats striped with black may be bred.

The point which I wish to discuss on this occasion is not so much the experimental cross as the cross which is desirable to improve existing colours. I do not consider that a white cat should be crossed with any other colour. There is no advantage to be gained in this case by crossing, as we already have white cats good in bone, substance, head, shape, etc., and no other colour of cat possesses blue eyes. I do not for a moment suggest that good white cats have not been bred from coloured parents, but this is unnecessary and undesirable, because there is a risk of introducing coloured patches and smudges and yellow or green eyes, and there is no corresponding advantage to be gained. In the same way I do not consider that it is a good thing to breed from white cats with yellow or odd eyes. Blue-eyed kittens have been bred from two yellow-eyed parents, and frequently when one parent has yellow or odd eyes the kittens are all blue-eyed, but this can in no way be depended upon.

Black cats are a little more difficult to handle than whites, because a white is necessarily white, while there is sometimes a diversity of opinion where a black is concerned. The most important point to keep before us in black-breeding is the colour of eyes. Whatever we cross with we must be careful that we do not lose the orange eyes, for they are most elusive, and we are, theretore, somewhat limited in our selection of suitable crosses. A smoky or dirty black is an abomination, and for this reason I consider that from the point of view of the black cat all crosses with blues, smokes, or silvers should be avoided ; in any case a good silver would be impossible because of its green eyes. A rusty black is undesirable, but a rusty kitten usually makes a better-coloured cat than a smoky one, though there are notable exceptions to this rule. A good orange-eyed tortoiseshell or red tabby, or an orange, are all suitable mates for a black. A curious thing I have noticed is that the best blacks are bred from bright clear-coloured cats, and that dull colours, such as smokes, blues, and fawns, do not, as a rule, produce good - coloured kittens. For this reason I should prefer blacks bred from an orange-eyed silver tabby to those bred from a dark brown tabby.

On the whole, a brightly coloured tortoiseshell will be found to throw the best blacks.

Of the crossing of blues with any other colour I do not approve, because we have many different blue strains, among which can be found all the different points which are desired. Comparisons are odious, but if I refer to the Bath show of 1903 I can explain what I mean. "Skellingthorpe Patrick" is a beautiful cat in all points except eyes, but "Don Carlos" and several other blue males in the class had glorious orange eyes. I have often heard that crossing a blue with a white will produce very pale blue kittens; I have not found this to be so, and it seems unlikely, for mate a black cat with a white one as often as you like, and you may wait a lifetime before they breed a blue kitten ; therefore why should a dark blue and a white produce a pale blue kitten ? Sometimes crossing with a black is recommended "to get the orange eyes," but it must be remarked that the proportion of black cats with good orange eyes is quite as low as that of blues. When this cross is resorted to, let the black parent be the male, as otherwise the kittens may very likely all be black.

It is the misfortune of the smoke cat that it has been indiscriminately and unintelligently crossed with the black and the silver tabby, and, worst of all, with the blue. Strangely enough, there seems to be some close affinity between the smoke and the silver tabby, and it should be our object, as far as possible, to keep them apart. To this connection is attributable the prevalence of green eyes and leg and face markings among smoke cats. In crossing smokes there are many difficulties to contend with. We must keep the light undercoat, but avoid markings; we must have the black face and legs and retain the light frill; and we must have orange eyes. All crosses with tabby must be avoided, or we shall never get rid of face pencillings ; but judicious crosses of black, blue, or (best of all) chinchilla may be of service. A black cross is better than blue because, though either endangers the undercoat, it will intensify the black mask and legs. The one advantage of a blue cross is that it will, sooner than any other, help to eliminate markings ; but the blue kittens from such a cross must be sternly rejected, as their colour will never be satisfactory.

The chinchilla is the best cross for the smoke so far as colour is concerned, and an orange-eyed chinchilla should be of service for breeding smokes with light frills and good under-coats. A cross of chinchilla may with advantage follow a black cross.

We now get to the subject of chinchilla breeding ; it is a matter of common knowledge that chinchillas were produced as the result of careful in-breeding, and, therefore, until the breed is more firmly established, any sudden outcross is likely to cause a reversion to the barred ancestors. The idea, then, is to cross with whatever is least likely to introduce stripes - i.e. a self-coloured cat, or preferably a shaded one. Of course, any tinge of red or brown is to be avoided, and, therefore, the only shaded cat left to us is the smoke, and a green-eyed smoke is certainly the safest cross we can get,, as it is sufficiently akin to the chinchilla to obviate the risk of a violent out-cross. The black is, I think, the next best cross, for it is just possible that the colours may not interfere with one another, and that we shall get pure black and clear silver kittens - of course, a green-eyed black must be used. Third on the list comes the white; but this cross makes for absence of markings, and therefore demands great caution, as thereby the black noses and e ye1i ds which add so much to the charm of a chinchilla may be lost and the result be merely a dingy, dirty white cat.

This animal, though not particularly attractive in itself, is, I need hardly say, invaluable for crossing again either with a clear-coloured chinchilla, a black, or even a blue.

A blue cross is, as a rule, rather objectionable, because it seems to produce a muddy, dull colour, but there is no doubt that it may occasionally be resorted to with success. I should suggest that the blue parent (a green-eyed one, of course) should be the sire, as when the reverse is the case the kittens are frequently blue tabby.

I do not think any colours besides those I have mentioned should be crossed with chinchillas, though I must confess that chinchilla kittens occasionally turn up most unexpectedly. I recollect a very pale one appearing in a litter whose sire was a cream of brown tabby and cream parentage, and whose dam was a pale blue bred from a blue and a blue tabby. There may have been silver tabby blood in the strain, but certainly no chinchilla. For all this I do not recommend a cream or tortoise-shell cross, as the chances are all against the kittens being any good, and it is laying up a store of disappointments in the next generation. We have all possessed cats which, though beautiful in themselves, never threw a kitten worth keeping. I had a little cat myself bred from two chinchilla parents. The dam was a well-known winner, and her ancestry was, I knew, irreproachable, and the sire's appeared to be equally so, though I was told afterwards that he often sired brown tabby kittens. But my queen (herself a prize-winner), no matter how she was mated, invariably threw brown tabby kittens.

We now come to the very fascinating subject of tabbies, and I may as well say at once that any amount of crossing is for the present desirable and even necessary, but it must be done systematically and under a careful and experienced eye. The novice is likely to fail because he does not understand the essential points of a tabby. Let him keep before his mind the fact that if two distinct black stripes run the whole length of the spine and if the chest markings are good there is not likely to be much wrong with his cat's other markings.

In the brown tabby, the markings have become too heavy, they have run together and spread into a heavy black saddle ; while the ground colour has lost warmth and white chins are prevalent. With the "sable" cat, be it understood, I have no fault to find; I can forgive him even his white chin, because he is such a magnificent animal; but he is not a tabby, and should not be shown as such.

In the brown tabby we want dense black markings on a clear golden-brown ground. The black is there right enough, but it wants " breaking up." A cross of strongly marked red tabby is the thing; not a " self - orange," mind you - that would only make things worse - but the best-coloured red, with a dark chin, that can be found. When the markings want intensifying, as may be the case after the red cross, we must mate with a black; but I do not think this will be necessary, as brown tabbies rarely "wash out" as silvers do. It is curious to note that many years ago I bred quantities of beautifully marked silver tabbies and brown tabbies from a brown tabby sire and a sandy, silver tabby dam, both of unknown pedigree. The silvers were clear and pure in colour, with capital black markings, and the browns had good rich colouring. This is a cross I should certainly hesitate to recommend, but there are possibilities concealed therein, and it is worth an occasional experiment with the sole object of rescuing the degenerate tabby markings.

It is a curious fact that while the tabby is supposed to be the common ancestor of all our cats, the tabby markings should be the most difficult point to retain in the pedigree cat. A brown tabby cat with a good-coloured chin should always be retained to breed from, even if it fails in some other points.

It is, I know, the general opinion that the craze for chinchillas has ruined the silver tabby, but I do not feel convinced that this is so. I am of the opinion that the constant breeding of silver tabby to silver tabby will eventually result in the production of poorly marked cats. Let me give an example : "Felix Mottisford" was a very heavily barred son of "Champion Felix," and "Patz" was also heavily barred and bred from silver tabbies. Two of their kittens were "Silver Midget" and "My Fairy." "Midget" was a prettily marked silver tabby, but much lighter than her parents, and showed a strong tendency to throw unmarked kittens. "Fairy" was certainly a silver tabby, but her markings were entirely on the surface, and as she grew older faded away until she was more shaded than barred. Mated with a blue, she produced four chinchilla kittens; mated with " Lord Southampton," there were two well-marked silver tabbies and two chinchillas (this litter included "Dimity" and "Abbess of Broomholme"); mated with "Silver Lambkin," there was one chinchilla kitten - "Fitz Eustace" - and the rest were silver tabbies ; by "Tuan," a much more marked cat, the kittens were all chinchillas ("Tuan," I may mention, was a distant cousin of "Fairy") ; by "Silver Lustre " there were two chinchillas and two silver tabbies.

I then parted with her, and she afterwards had, by " Silver Chieftain," a litter of silver tabbies and chinchillas, including "Silver Tangle" and "Silver Sprite." After that date I have no record of her doings, but it can be seen that she certainly showed an inclination on her own account towards chinchilla kittens, and this, I take it, was the result of the continued mating together of silver tabby cats. I do not consider any other cross than black is admissible in a silver tabby strain, but the introduction of black blood is necessary from time to time if markings are to be retained. I go so far as to say that a cross of green-eyed black in every third generation would be a wise precaution.

The red tabby, the orange, and the tortoise-shell are rather hopelessly mixed up at present. The self-orange (so called) did not exist a few years ago, but of late a premium has been put on absence of marking, and a lot of cats with self-coloured or shaded bodies and striped faces appear in the orange classes and win all the prizes. I have no fault to find with the shade of colour of these cats ; they are a beautiful bright clear orange, but if they are to be self-coloured the face markings must go. Crossing with blue gets over this difficulty, but we immediately lose brightness of colour and get dull yellows and fawns. Tortoise-shell is a safe cross, but the ancestry of the tortoiseshell must be carefully inquired into, and one bred from black and tortoiseshell is best, or we can go direct to the black. Tabby cats or any of a blue or grey colour should be-avoided in this connection.

Clear, pale yellow creams may be bred from oranges and tortoiseshells ; but these must not be confounded with the fawn-coloured cats, often called creams, which are more common and easy to breed. Though creams and fawns occasionally appear in the same litter this is generally the fault of their ancestors, and can be accounted for if the pedigree is known on both sides. As a matter of fact, I have never seen one of these clear yellow creams which was not descended, however remotely, from Mrs. Kinchant's strain. Examples of the colour I mean are "Cupid Bassanio," "Zoroaster," "Dairy Maid," "Mistletoe," and a few of their descendants.

To breed fawn creams is, comparatively, a simple matter, as a cross of blue and orange will almost invariably produce some fawn kittens, especially if the dam is blue. When the dam is orange or tortoise-shell there will often be a number of blue tortoiseshell kittens which are valueless. Some people like them to breed fawn creams from, but I have never found them more useful for this purpose than a correctly coloured tortoiseshell.

Tortoiseshells are entirely neglected by fanciers nowadays, and are only used as a stepping-stone to more fashionable colours. There is no doubt that a tortoiseshell can be got to breed anything ! I knew a queen which bred magnificent blacks, blues, creams, oranges, fawns, and smokes, whether mated to a blue, a cream, or a smoke, and I believe she also threw chinchilla kittens to a chinchilla sire. To breed tortoiseshells for the show pen we must not indulge in any haphazard matings. The fault of the tortoiseshells is, as a rule, that the red and yellow has run all over the black, and instead of having a clear patchwork of red, yellow, and black, we have a blur containing a preponderance of yellow. The obvious remedy is our old friend the black. All the best tortoiseshells are bred from blacks, and a black and a red tabby or orange will generally throw some good tortoiseshells. To produce tortoiseshell-and-whites cross a tortoiseshell with a black-and-white rather than with a white, but avoid red tabby, as a tortoiseshell-and - white cat frequently shows tabby markings for this breeding.

The red tabby has nearly died out among long-haired cats, though it flourishes in the short-haired variety, but by crossing a brown tabby with an orange it might be revived. No doubt there would be a few mis-marked kittens in the litter, but the chances would be in favour of a good red tabby, and the colour could then be preserved by crossing with black and tortoiseshell only.

Of course, it is no use trying experiments in cross-breeding in the hope of obtaining definite results unless we are satisfied as to the pedigree of the cats employed for at least two generations, or all our calculations may be upset. For example, when breeding for chinchillas, if we used a black bred from a brown tabby mother the results would be disastrous.

A point to be carefully noted in crossbreeding is to select a cat with eyes of a colour desired in the breed which he is destined to improve, whether those eyes would be correct in his own family or not. This suggests a use for our rejected green-eyed blues and blacks and our orange-eyed silvers.

My notes, as may be observed, are on the subject of long-haired cats, but they will be found equally applicable to short-hairs.

Hester Cochran.

CHAPTER XXXII. THE CAT'S PLACE IN NATURE: ITS ANCESTRY, CLASSIFICATION, STRUCTURE, AND DISTRIBUTION

AT a very remote period in the history of animal life when the struggle for existence was rife, the carnivorous and predaceous animals (to which the existing cat belongs) occupied a position in the scale of creation as important as the one they hold today. We find locked up in the rocks of the tertiary and recent pleistocene formations the bones and teeth of these ancient cats along with those of the animals upon which they lived.

These ancestors of our cat had a tolerably wide geographical distribution, and they apparently differed considerably in size, as do the different members of the existing cat family. The crested cat (F. crestata) was probably as large as a tiger - more recent remains having a closer affinity to existing cats are found plentifully in caves and in the deeper beds of rivers and lakes almost all over the British Islands.

Probably the most remarkable of these extinct cat-like creatures is the Machoerodus, the skulls of which (Fig. II.), with portions of its skeleton, associated with the bones of other animals, have been found in the cave deposits in Brazil, North and South America, India, Persia, many parts of Europe, as well as in the British Islands - viz. Kent's Cavern, Creswell bone caves, and other places. The skull, which is very typical and cat-like in form, is remarkable for the extraordinary development of the upper canine teeth, which in some species exceed seven inches in length. The Machcerodus was about the size of a lion. The ancestors of our cat were certainly more specialised in parts of their organisation. The nearer we approach the recent forms a greater uniformity in structure prevails, until we get in the existing cat-like group (Felis) probably the most consolidated and uniform of all the generic mammalia.

Family Characteristics

Under the generic title of Felis are included over fifty-one distinct species, of which the lion, tiger, leopard, puma, and our common domesticated cat may be taken as representative. They inhabit every region on the earth's surface, except the extreme northern latitudes, and vary in size from the tiger and lion to the little red-spotted cat of India, which does not exceed fifteen or sixteen inches in length. But it is, as already indicated, very uniform in order as regards structural points. All have well-developed, retractile claws, the only exception being the cheetah, whose claws are only partially retractile; all have five toes on the fore feet, and four on the hind feet ; all the teeth are cusped, or pointed, and specialised for flesh-eating, as well as for aggressive purposes. The incisors in front of the upper and lower jaws are small, the four canines well grown and long, with a cutting edge on the inner side; the molars, or cheek teeth, have one to five cusps, points, or lobes. All the members of the family are digitigrade (i.e. use only the extremity of the toes in walking); the tympanic bulla, or ear-bone, is large and prominent; the general form of the skull is rounded and broad across the orbits, or eye-sockets (the latter are, with two exceptions, open or incomplete behind); the clavicle, or collar-bone, is reduced to a short, curved, splint-like bone; in many species it is absent.

The stomach is always simple, intestines relatively short, tongue covered with minute spines. In many species the pupil of the eye contracts in one direction only, thus giving it a linear and upright form. The majority of the species are nocturnal; the habits of the genus are very diverse. The lion apparently prefers the drier, sandy areas covered with short, scrubby vegetation; others prefer the dense forests, and live much in the trees. Many species are found at considerable altitudes, the snow leopard being found at 18,000 feet. All the members of the group can swim, and several species (i.e. the fishing cat of India and Southern China) are adepts at catching fish, but immersion is invariably avoided.

The colours of the different members of the genus Felis vary considerably. It may be a uniform, tawny, pale brown, or a grey - as in the lion, puma, eyra. The tiger is striped transversely; the ocelot has bands or rows of more or less fused spots ; the serval and several other species have solid black spots; the leopard, clusters of spots, forming a kind of star; the jaguar has the spots arranged in an open ring. In the clouded leopard of Southern India the markings are composed of irregular groups of lines and spots, merging into the ground colour of the animal's coat. A black variety of the common leopard is occasionally found in a wild state. Albinos, or white forms, are extremely rare in nature, though quite common in the domesticated cat.

General Structure Of The Cat

The natural food of all the cat tribe in a state of nature is carnivorous, and the whole organisation of the group is specialised and adapted for aggressive or, if need be, defensive purposes. The body is compressed laterally, and has a considerable amount of flexibility in it as a whole.

The bony framework or skeleton is light, and, for the purpose of an elementary description, is readily divisible into three parts - viz. (1) the skull; (2) the axial skeleton, comprising the bones of the neck, thorax, loins, and tail ; (3) the appendicular skeleton or limbs. The skull is short, rounded, and broad across the orbits or eye-sockets, which are large in proportion to the skull. The posterior rim of the orbit is, with three exceptions, out of the fifty-one species - viz. the fishing-cat (F. viverrina), the rusty spotted cat (F. rubiginosa), and the flat-headed cat (F. planiceps) - incomplete or open. The teeth of the fully adult cat should be thirty in number - sixteen in the upper jaw and fourteen in the lower. They are divided by the comparative anatomist into three sets or groups - viz. incisors, canines, premolars, and molars - their number and position being concisely expressed by a dental formula thus : - I'3/3, C. 1/1, PM.2/3, M. 1/1. The six incisors in the upper and lower jaw are small, simple-pointed teeth, with a simple fang or root. Then we have a long canine or flesh tooth C C', the most important functional tooth the cat has, for with it and its fellow the living, struggling prey is seized, retained, and killed.

In the upper jaw, immediately after the canine, are three premolars PM. These are the second or permanent series, and succeed the kitten's milk-teeth. The first one is very small, and has only a single cusp; the second is larger, and has two cusps; the third is the largest, and is sometimes called the " sectorial " tooth. It has three pointed cusps and three fangs, or roots. Immediately behind it, and placed somewhat transversely, is the single true molar. It is a small tooth, of obtuse form, and indefinitely cusped ; it has no predecessor in the kitten's milk set.

In the lower jaw, immediately after the canine tooth, there are only two premolars (PM. PM'.) in the permanent set which have predecessors, the last tooth (M.) being the only true molar, and having no predecessor in the milk set. Occasionally, in the lower jaw there is a small premolar corresponding to the first premolar of the upper jaw. In the kitten from about six or seven weeks to about five months old, there are only twenty-six teeth, the number and form being very similar to the adult set. The two permanent molars in the upper and lower jaw are absent.

The Axial Skeleton (see p. 354) consists of the bones forming the neck, thorax, loins, and tail. The neck is relatively short, and consists of seven bones - a. number almost constant throughout the animal kingdom, the giraffe, the hippopotamus, and the whale having the same number. Succeeding these are the dorsal, or thoracic, vertebrae (thirteen in number), each one supporting two ribs - one on each side. Then follow the seven vertebras composing the lumbar region. They are stout, thick bones, with long, transverse processes for the attachment of certain muscles supporting the body cavity, etc. No ribs are attached to these bones. Immediately behind are three smaller bones forming the sacrum, to which the pelvis, or hip-bones, are articulated. The terminal bones of the axial skeleton are the tail, or caudal, and vary from nineteen to twenty-one.

The Ribs (thirteen on each side) are extremely light, elastic, and slender. Nine of these on each side join the sternum or breastbone directly, and are called true ribs ; the remainder are free, and terminate in cartilaginous points, which are adherent to the true rib terminations, for support.

The Sternum, or breast-bone, consists of eight bones, from each joint of which springs a rib-like costal cartilage, to which the true ribs are articulated. The cat's collar-bone or clavicle is very short and rudimentary ; it has a slight attachment to the acromion process of the scapula, the other end terminating in the muscles of the chest. It is often absent.

The Appendicular Skeleton includes the fore and hind limbs. The fore limb in the cat, as in the majority of mammals (see plate, P- 355). is a subtriangular flat bone, with a ridge on the outer side for the attachment of certain muscles moving the leg.

In a small hollow on the posterior or lower border is articulated the head of the humerus (4), or arm-bone ; its lower or distal end is expanded, and receives the end of the ulna (10), which with the radius (9) forms the bones of the forearm. The wrist or carpal bones (8) include seven small bones, the upper row being attached to the radius, the lower row to the five pha-langes of the toes (7); to these latter are articulated the bones of the digits, or fingers.

The terminal bones of the cat's foot are encased by powerful hooked claws (Fig. III.). When at rest, the claw is brought to the outer side of the middle phalanx by the elastic ligament F, the flexor tendons being relaxed. When the cat is on the point of seizing its prey, the greater power of the flexor tendons stretches the weaker elastic ligament, the claw is brought down, and so a powerful grip is obtained. The under-surface of the cat's fore and hind feet is protected by certain hardened pads of subcutaneous and fibrous tissue - viz. the plantar pad, giving chief support to the leg, and the digital pads protecting the claws, etc. These pads are, of course, of additional use in aiding the cat's noiseless and stealthy progression.

The cat's hind limb is articulated by a ball and socket joint to the hip-bone or pelvis (20), which is again firmly united to the three bones forming the sacrum D. The thigh-bone or femur (19) sustains the whole body, and has many powerful muscles attached to it concerned in the springing movements so characteristic of the animal; to its lower end is articulated the principal bone of the lower leg, the tibia (13). At the union of these two bones on the anterior side is the knee-cap, or patella (12). On the outer aspect of the tibia is a slender bone, the fibula (18), its outer end being attached to a prominence on the tibia, the lower end to one of the large bones (the astragalus) which form the tarsus of the foot. The Tarsal bones (14) consist of seven bones, the largest of which is the os calcis (17), or heel-bone, to which powerful muscles are attached. Succeeding the tarsal bones are the four bones forming the metatarsal bones (the fifth or inner toe being absent, though often present in the dog). To these are attached the phalanges of the toes, with the claws, etc., similar to the fore foot.

A better idea of the superficial muscles of the cat is obtained from an examination of the plate than by any technical description. It will be seen that for its size the cat's muscles are well developed; its kin, the lion and tiger, are known for their prodigious strength in bearing away young oxen, deer, antelopes, etc., upon which they live, as well as for their leaping powers and agility and courage.

Although the cat's muscles are identical with those of its more powerful relatives, it lives too much in the lap of luxury for them to attain to a proportionate development.

A well-known writer has estimated that there are 500 muscles concerned in the movements of the cat's body.

The cavity of the cat's body is separated into two unequal compartments by a muscular partition called the midriff or diaphragm. In the anterior or foremost cavity are the two lungs, and the heart and its blood-vessels ; in the larger or most posterior compartment is the stomach, intestines, liver, kidneys, etc. Without a considerable number of diagrams it is difficult to convey in a popular manner some peculiarities of these internal organs. The cat's tongue (Fig. x.) is, however, very characteristic of the order, and is easily observed. It is supplied with the usual glands common to all mammals - viz. tonsils (b), flattened soft papillae (c), four circumvallate papilla; (d), conical papillae (e), and the more minute fungiform papillae (f). The peculiarity of the cat's tongue is that the conical papilhe are specialised into horny processes or hooks, as shown in E f, and are of value not only in assisting to clear the flesh from bones, but are of undoubted use in cleaning the animal's fur.

Fig. X. - Surface Of The Cat's Tongue.

A. - Epiglottis or upper cartilage of windpipe.
B. - Tonsil.
C. - Flattened or soft papillae.
D. - Circumvallate papillae.
E. - Horny conical papillae.
E.I. - The same enlarged.
F. - Fungiform papillae.

The cat also has the parotid, sublingual, and other glands concerned in the preparation of the food for primary digestion.

Fig. VII. - Superficial Muscles Of A Cat

1. - Maxillaris.
2. - Caninus, or Nasalis.
3. - Orbicularis.
4. - Temporalis.
5. - Mastoideus.
6. - Cephalo-humeral.
7. - Posterior and anterior portions of
8. - Infraspinatus. [Trapezius.
9. - Latissimus dorsi.
10. - Great Oblique.
11. Prominence of Hip-bone.
12. - Gluteus medius.
13. - Prominence of Thigh-bone, or Femur.
14. - Gluteus maximus.
15. - Muscles concerned in the movements of the Tail.
16. - Fascia lata covering deeper muscles.
17. - Biceps femoralis.
18. - Semi-tendinosus.
19. - Gastrocnemius.
20. - External Saphenous Vein.
21. - Point of Heel, or Os Calcis.
22. - Plantar or Flexor Tendons of Sole of Foot.
23. - Extensor Tendons of Toes.
24. - Internal or Inner Saphenous.
25. - Sartorius.
26. - Rectus abdominis.
27. - Serratus magnus.
28. - Pectoralis major.
29. - Elbow, or Olecranon Process of Ulna.
30. - Flexor carpi ulnaris.
31. - Superficial Extensors of Toes.
32. - Annular or Wrist Ligament.
33. - Extensor communis digitorum.
34. - Flexor carpi radialis.
35. - Extensor carpi radialis.
36. - Triceps.
37. - Scapular deltoid.
38. - Acromion deltoid.
39. - Mastoideus.
40. - Sterno-hyoid.
41. - Parotid Gland.
42. - Masseter Muscle.
43. - External Maxillary Vein.
44. - Zigomaticus.
45. - Zigomaticus labialis.

The cat's liver is mainly on its right side ; it is divided into several lobes, which give it a complicated appearance as compared with the simpler livers of other animals. The gallbladder is present in the usual position. The cat's heart is somewhat small for the size of the animal, and is not so pointed at its apex as in other animals; the veins entering the heart, and the branching of the arteries leaving it, are nearly identical with those of closely allied animals. The time required for the complete circulation of the blood throughout the body of the cat is fourteen to sixteen seconds. The pulse, each beat of which corresponds to one contraction of the left ventricle of the heart, may easily be felt on the inner side of the fore-paw, about an inch above the prominence of the radius ; it may also be felt at the same place as the horse's pulse - on the inner side of the lower jaw. There are two other situations on the cat's body where it may be felt, but to find the exact point requires some intimate anatomical knowledge.

The temperature, or normal heat, of the body of the cat is 100 F. ; it may, however, be slightly above or below this.

Fig. VIII.----Skeleton Of A Cat

A. Cervical or Neck Bones (7 in number).
B. Dorsal or Thoracic Bones (13 in number, each bearing a rib).
C. Lumbar Pones (7 in number).
D. Sacral Bones (3 in number).
E. Caudal or Tail Bones (19 to 21 in number).

1. - Cranium, or Skull.
2. - Scapula, or Shoulder-blade.
3. - Clavicle, or Collar-bone.
4. - Humerus.
5. - Sternum, or Breast-bone.
6. - Phalanges of the Toes.
7. - Metacarpal Bones.
8. - Carpal or Wrist-bones.
9. - Radius.
10. - Ulna.
11. - Costal cartilages, uniting ends of Ribs to Sternum.
12, - Patella, or Knee-cap.
13. - Tibia.
14. - Tarsal Bones.
15. - Metatarsal Bones.
16. - Phalanges of Hind Toes.
17. - Heel-bone, or " Calcis."
18. - Fibula.
19. - Femur, or Thigh-bone.
20. - Pelvis, or Hip-bone.

The brain of the cat, following the general structure of the higher mammals, is divided into very similar areas or divisions. The larger or more anterior portion is called the cerebrum (Fig. I., a), and is divided into right and left hemispheres. Its surface is divided into convolutions or gyri (e) by certain shallow fissures, which have received specific names. Very intimately attached to the under-surface of this part of the brain are the olfactory lobes (d), in which are situated certain nerves concerned in the sense of smell. The hinder and smaller part of the brain is called the cerebellum (b), and is much darker in colour than the cerebrum. Its surface is made up of numerous small foldings of its substance, which, on section, look like the branches of a small tree ; these branches finally fuse and terminate on the under-side of the base of the brain.

Intimately associated in a most complex manner with the cerebrum and cerebellum is the medulla oblongata (c), an enlarged part of the spinal cord. The brain of the cat, it may be remarked, is not nearly so highly organised as that of the dog.

In all the higher mammals the eye can accommodate itself to the varying influence of light. This is mainly done by means of the central black part or pupil (Fig. ix., a). The pupil is merely a hole in the iris, or coloured part of the eyeball (b), and it is by its contraction or expansion that the exact amount of light necessary is admitted to act upon the sensitive retina at the back of the eye. The form of the pupil varies considerably in different animals. In the cat's eye during bright sunshine it is reduced to a thin vertical line ; at dusk it expands to a nearly circular form. This vertical reduction is by no means common to the entire cat family. In very many species the pupil retains a rounded form even when contracted to its minimum.

On the inner angle of the cat's eye there is a curious semi-transparent fold of skin, called by naturalists the plica semilunaris, or nictitating membrane. In reptiles and birds this is a very important factor in the preservation of the eye from external injuries, and it acts also as a regulator of the admission of light. It is well developed in nocturnal reptiles and birds, and as the cat's ancestors were doubtless more nocturnal than they are now, it probably was in active use. It is, however, useless now, the cat having no control over it. It is one of many interesting vestigial structures the cat carries about with it of its former ancestry from a lower-organised animal.

The Distribution Of The Cat Family

Long-continued and systematic study of the habits of living animals has led to the division of the surface of the world into specific, areas, called Zoogeographical regions, of which there are six - viz.

(1) Palaearctic region;
(2) Ethiopian or African region;
(3) Oriental or Indian region;
(4) Australian region;
(5) Nearctic or North American region; and
(6) Neotropical or South American region.

The cats of the Old World and of the New World are, with the exception of the debatable northern lynx, specifically distinct. No native cats exist in Australia.

The Palaearctic region comprises the whole of Europe, part of North Africa, and extends eastward to Kamtchatka, and includes the islands of Japan. There are about twenty-one known species of the cat family inhabiting this extensive area, the best-known being the tiger, which is found in Mongolia; the common leopard, widely distributed in Southern Siberia; the snow leopard, wild cats, the lynx, and many others. The Ethiopian or African region includes the whole of the continent of Africa up to the tropic of Cancer, and the greater part of Arabia and Madagascar. About nine species are known to inhabit this region. The best-known are the lion, leopard, serval, Egyptian cat, caracal lynx, and cheetah. The Oriental or Indian region includes a strip of southern Persia, the whole of India, China, and the Malay peninsula, Borneo, and other islands of the East Indian Archipelago. There are about sixteen species inhabiting this region. The best-known examples of the cat family here are the lion (inhabiting the southern portions of Persia), tiger, leopard, cheetah, clouded leopard, and a great variety of the smaller species. The Nearctic or North American region includes Greenland and the whole of the continent of North America down to Mexico City and Vera Cruz. There are only seven indigenous species of the cat family, the best-known being the puma, which also extends into the neotropical region, the northern and the bay lynx. The Neotropical or South American region extends from Vera Cruz in Central America, through the whole of South America to Patagonia. About thirteen well-marked species of the cat family inhabit this region. The better-known species are the puma, jaguar, ocelot, margay, pampas cat, and the curious eeyra.

Robert Holding.

The Diseases Of Cats, And Their Treatment. Administration Of Medicine

IN the treatment of the diseases of the cat, the correct method of administering whatever medicaments are deemed necessary is a most important consideration. To the uninitiated and timid the task is generally a difficult one, and may, in some cases, appear almost impossible; but with a little practice, aided by courage and determination, the difficulties can nearly always be overcome. The administration of medicine, however, is seldom so easy in the case of the cat as in that of the dog.

Some cats are so gentle that the mouth can easily be opened by means of the index finger and thumb of the left hand acting as a wedge between the jaws. The palm of the hand rests on the top of the head, while the finger and thumb gently but firmly press the cheeks at the angle of the jaws inwards, until they intervene between the finger and thumb of the operator and the posterior teeth of the patient.

The jaws being thus kept open, and the head at the same time raised, the right hand of the operator drops the pill or powder at the back of the mouth between the tongue and palate. This having been accomplished, the right hand is passed under the lower jaw, so as to keep the head raised until the animal swallows, while the left hand is withdrawn from its previous position and the jaws allowed to close, thus facilitating the act of swallowing. For the administration of liquid medicine it is not necessary to open the mouth. The operator grasps the head with his left hand, and taking the spoon in his right he slowly and carefully drops the liquid between the teeth, or into the space between the cheek and teeth, at the angle of the mouth. For the cat, a coffee-spoon is preferable to a tea-spoon, and care must be taken that too much is not poured into the mouth at once. The dose should be administered drop by drop, and time allowed for swallowing.

Diseases Of The Stomach in Cats

Vomiting, though a symptom common to many diseases, may be quite natural in some instances, such as over-feeding or during the weaning period, when the mother-cat eats a lot of animal food and then brings it home and vomits it up for her young kittens to feed upon.

The act consists of ejecting the contents of the stomach up through the gullet and then out of the mouth.

The causes of vomition are various : Worms travelling from the bowel into the stomach, emetics, expectorants, poisons, foreign bodies (as hair, cork, pins, etc.); bad or altered food, blood-poisoning, distemper, gastritis, tumours, tuberculosis, jaundice, diseases of the kidneys, etc., may produce it.

It may also occur from parasites in the ear, foreign bodies in the mouth, and as a symptom of brain disease, such as meningitis.

Treatment

This depends upon the cause, which should be removed if possible. When due to foreign bodies or altered food, an emetic (especially the hypodermic injection of 1/40 to 1/20 grain of apomorphine hydrochloride) would most likely remove the source of trouble. If the foreign body cannot be removed by simple means, an operation may be deemed necessary. If due to inflammation of the stomach, bismuth and aerated soda-water are of great value. Ice and cocaine or chloretone are occasionally useful when these have failed. Sometimes it is necessary to wash the stomach out with mild antiseptics. If of nervous origin, a hypodermic injection of 1/12 to 1/8 grain of morphine, or five-minim doses of tincture of opium or bromide of potassium, given by the mouth, may prove successful. When resulting from tumours or tuberculosis, humanity dictates that the lethal chamber should be called into requisition and the animal put out of its misery. Easily assimilable and non - irritating food only should be given for a few days.

Aerated soda-water forms the best drinking fluid.

Gastritis, or inflammation of the stomach, is sometimes called gastric fever, and when of a mild type, gastric catarrh. Its causes are variable. It may be due to altered or decomposed food, distemper, microbes of various kinds, large doses of emetics or aperients, mineral poisons, chills, absorption of dressing applied to the skin, or licking the same off. It is also caused by worms, especially the broad-necked tapeworm (Taenia crassicollis), travelling into the stomach and setting up irritation. Again, diseases of the uterus, liver, kidneys, and other organs give rise to gastritis. It frequently rages as an epizootic, causing considerable mortality in some catteries, especially after cat shows.

Symptoms

The disease is ushered in by sudden vomiting of the food, followed by the repeated rejection of ropy mucus, and then, if the case is severe, this is succeeded by a thin, clear, greenish yellow or bloody fluid ; saliva flows from the mouth, the thirst is great, especially for cold water, which is generally expelled almost as soon as taken ; there is a distressed appearance, restlessness, or a frequent shifting of the posture. As a rule, the animal prefers to lie on its belly full length, with its limbs resting on cold objects.

Pressure on the region of the stomach causes moaning and sometimes vomiting. After the lapse of some time, when a fatal termination is advancing, the eyes appear sunken, the pupils become dilated, the expression is sad, the animal becomes cold and indifferent to his surroundings, the mouth gives off an offensive odour, and the coat is dull, open, and lustreless. The animal dies either in a comatose state or from sudden failure of the heart during a fit of vomiting. Treatment. - If recognised early, an emetic is sometimes very useful in cutting short the complaint. No food or ordinary water should be allowed until twenty-four to forty-eight hours have elapsed since the last vomiting ; but a teaspoonful of Brand's essence of beef jelly and two to four teaspoonfuls of aerated water should be given every four hours. Bismuth subnitrate or carbonate in five-grain doses may be shaken on the tongue an hour before these two latter are administered.

If this means of treatment should prove ineffectual after twenty-four hours, one may conclude that the disease is of a severe type, and in this case one to five minims of the liquid extract of opium in a little mucilage, or chloretone, 1/2 to 2 1/2 grains, should be given every three hours. Feeding by means of rectal suppositories, or injection of an ounce of milk containing a little common salt, may be attempted. Finally, if this fail, washing out the stomach with borax or boracic acid, or chinosol and warm water, and a hypodermic injection of bullock's or sheep's serum might be tried. In gastric inflammation due to infection the hypodermic injection of quinine hydrochloride or trichloride of iodine will sometimes answer when everything else has failed. Cocaine and orthoform have no advantage over opiates, especially the denarcotised preparations, in soothing the stomach. Ice in small pieces pushed down the throat sometimes answers in assuaging the thirst when the soda-water does not. In the chronic form, doses of 1/8 to 1/2 grain of calomel or mercury with chalk given with bismuth three times a day are beneficial in many instances.

Enteritis, or inflammation of the intestines or bowels, frequently co-exists with gastritis, and then the disease takes on the term of gastro-enteritis. The causes, like those of gastritis, are various. It may be. due to infection, bad food, drugs, foreign bodies, chills, distemper, intussusception or irritating enemas, etc. There also seems to be a special contagious type of this disease which frequently causes great mortality in catteries, especially with kittens. Generally the small intestine forms the seat of the disease, which may in rare cases, however, extend the whole length of the bowel, which is sometimes lined with a croupy or diphtheritic membrane.

The symptoms are restlessness, great pain, frequent crying or moaning, offensive and profuse and frequent diarrhoea, the dejections varying in colour and consistence and frequently containing blood, and sometimes vomiting, especially when the stomach is implicated; thirst is intense, food is refused, the animal is cold, haggard, and depressed; its fur is dull, open, and lustreless, and becomes soiled, giving off an abominable odour. When the abdomen is manipulated, the animal cries or moans from the pain caused. If the pupils are dilated and the expression has an anxious appearance, and emaciation is rapid, a fatal termination may be anticipated.

The treatment varies according to the cause. If the case is seen in the early stage a tea- to a dessert-spoonful of castor-oil containing 1 to 2 1/2 minims of liquid extract of opium may be given at once, to clear out any irritating material from the bowels and also to allay pain and irritation ; or morphine in 1/16 to 1/12 grain doses may be injected under the skin every four hours. Bismuth salicylate, in five-grain doses, should be dropped on the tongue about the same time. Starch enemas containing liquid extract of opium may also be administered. Boiled milk containing bicarbonate of soda should be given in small and repeated quantities.

Turpentine stupes frequently applied to the abdomen are recommended, but, where this is objected to, the floor of the abdomen may be painted with tincture of capsicum, or tincture of iodine, until soreness is produced, the hair being first clipped off.

In those cases of epizootic nature, isolation is called for. The food and surroundings should be changed, and the catteries and utensils thoroughly cleansed and disinfected. In the chronic form a powder composed of bismuth salicylate 2 to 5 grains, and 1/3 naphthol, 1 to 2 1/2 grains, should be shaken on the tongue three times a day. Milk and rice form the best diet.

Diarrhoea, like vomiting, is not a disease of itself, but an expression of many different affections. It may be salutary or otherwise. It may be due to aperients, irritating or indigestible food, microbes, diseases of the bowels, kidneys, and liver. It frequently results from distemper or gastro-enteritis, tuberculosis, intestinal catarrh, and from licking applications put on the skin in the treatment of skin affections. Sour milk, tainted milk or fish, and chills will also induce it. In kittens improper food, especially during hot weather, is a common cause.

The symptoms are a looseness of the dejections from the bowels, which are passed several times a day. The stools vary in colour according to the food taken by the animal, or according to the severity of the cause ; they are generally of a very offensive odour, and may contain blood.

Treatment

If the cause of the diarrhoea is due to irritating food, a dose of castor-oil will be beneficial. When due to catarrh of the bowels, the carbonate, subnitrate, or salicylate of bismuth, in five-grain doses, two or three times a day, is the most appropriate treatment. If it is associated with distemper or typhus, the bismuth salts mentioned above, or tannablin or tannigen, in 2 1/2- to 5-grain doses, are suitable. For chronic diarrhoea, 2 1/2 to 5 grains of salicylate of bismuth, with 1 to 5 grains of naphthol, given three times a day on the food, is generally followed by recovery.

Failing this, a mixture composed of dilute sulphuric acid, concentrated infusion of cloves. and concentrated infusion of haematoxylin should be tried.

When the diarrhoea is due to irritation of the so-called large or posterior bowel, injections containing starch, laudanum, and tannic acid should be used.

As long as the diarrhoea lasts, no meat or meat infusions should be given, but milk, rice-pudding, bread and milk, and such-like food are suitable.

Constipation is an impaction of faeces in the hind bowel, and is generally due to weakness of this portion of gut, or results from a cleanly animal having no place to evacuate its faeces in. Sometimes it is due to a ball of fur, and occasionally foreign bodies, such as cat's-meat skewers, being swallowed along with the meat by a greedy animal. When due to paralysis of the bowel, which is occasionally seen in young cats, the abdomen becomes distended by the faeces in the bowel. It also occurs as a symptom of spinal paralysis. The non-passage of faeces seen in cats when not well and not taking solid food must not be confounded with constipation.

The symptoms, as a rule, are the non-passage of faeces for some time, distension of the abdomen, and impaction of the bowel with faeces which can be felt by manipulating the abdomen.

Treatment

A dose of castor-oil and an enema of soapy water or glycerine will generally put matters right. If these means do not succeed, massage or kneading of the bowels, by grasping the abdomen with the hand and alternately compressing and relaxing the grasp, will assist to stimulate the intestines to force on their contents. Of course, this only applies when impaction is due to soft material and not hard foreign bodies, which, in this latter case, should be removed by the fingers or forceps. If any irritation of the mucous membrane, evidenced by frequent straining as if to pass faeces, remains after the bowels have been relieved, an enema of warm salad-oil, containing a few drops of liquid extract of opium, will allay it, and prevent straining. In case of the bowel remaining weakened or paralysed so as to bring about a recurrence of the constipation, pills containing 1/16 grain of the alcoholic extract of nux vomica should be administered morning, noon, and night after food.

Worms, Or Internal Animal Parasites in Cats

Cats, like all other animals, are liable to be infested with worms, which may not cause any disturbance, unless in great numbers or when another disease is in existence.

The Common Round-worm is very prevalent in young kittens, generally when they are living on milk, upon which these worms thrive.

Their natural residence in the cat is in the small intestine, but sometimes they wander from here into the stomach, and set up vomiting and occasionally convulsions.

Treatment

The worms should be expelled and the animal fed on nutritious and stimulating food, such as raw fish, raw meat, and fresh birds. The milk, to which is added a pinch of salt, should be boiled. The best remedy to expel these worms is santonin given along with or followed by an aperient. The following is a convenient formula :

Santonin . . 1 grain.
Calomel . . .1/2 grain

This powder is to be dropped on the back of the tongue of an adult cat after fasting twelve hours, every other morning, until four doses have been given. Half this quantity is suitable for a cat three or four months old, and a quarter for a kitten of a month to six weeks of age.

The commonest Tapeworm of the cat is the Taenia elliptica var felis, with which fifty per cent, or more are affected. It is caused by fleas, lice, and mange-mites which have at some time or another infested the cat.

They do not seem to cause much harm, even when numbering hundreds. In one case that I encountered the cat was in the pink of condition, and yet I found 700 of these worms.

It is a delicate tapeworm with joints resembling a cucumber in outline. The ripe joints, which are often of a reddish tint, frequently become detached, and pass with the faeces, on which they are seen. They are generally termed by fanciers maw-worms.

Treatment

The worms should be expelled, and fleas, lice, or mange-mites destroyed, so as to prevent a recurrence of the trouble.

Another tapeworm of the cat is the Taenia crassicollis, or broad-necked species. It is seen only in cats that kill and eat rats and mice, in the liver of which the larval form of this parasite resides.

It is a- big, coarse tapeworm, measuring eighteen to thirty inches in length, and having no well-defined neck.

Treatment

For the expulsion of tapeworms there are many remedies, the best of which are areca nut, kamala, oil of male fern, pomegranate, and kousso, but as the dose of these in the crude is generally too bulky for the cat, it is advisable to give either of them, with the exception of the male fern, in their alkaloidal form, as :

Koussein . . . . 1/2 to 2 grains.
Kamalin . . . . 1/2 to 2 grains
Arecoline . . . . 1/4 to 1/2 grain.
Pelletierine . . . 1/4 to 1/2 grain

Any one of these may be given either in pill or tabloid form, or rubbed up with milk sugar, as a powder on an empty stomach after the animal has fasted at least twelve hours, and repeated every third or fourth morning. A dose of castor-oil or jalap should be given an hour after. The oil of male-fern is best administered in a capsule. Powdered pumpkin seed may be sprinkled on the food,

Diseases Of The Kidneys in Cats

Diseases of the kidneys, such as degeneration, fatty degeneration, parasitic disease, tuberculosis, cancer, acute and chronic Bright's disease, and calculi are not rare, but, as the space at our command is limited, we only mention them.

Incontinence, or the involuntary passage of urine, is usually due to weakness of the bladder, brought about by over-distension. It sometimes results from injury to the spine and calculi.

The treatment that is best suited for this is the administration of 1/16 grain of the alcoholic extract of nux vomica and grain of quinine in a pill three times a day. If there be irritability of the bladder, soda bicarbonate 2 grains and extract of henbane -1/8 grain in a pill should be given.

Retention of urine is generally caused by a calculus or chalky material blocking up the urethra or canal leading from the bladder, and preventing the exit of the fluid. If relief is not given to the bladder - that is, if the obstruction is not immediately removed - the urine decomposes and then sets up inflammation of the bladder, and death takes place from uremic poisoning.

Symptoms

The cat seems in pain, and makes ineffectual attempts to pass its urine; it strains to no purpose; it seems restless, getting up, lying down, rolling on its side, swishing its tail, looking towards its side, and crying. After a time the animal becomes drowsy and indifferent. If the abdomen is manipulated, the bladder will be felt to be distended, hard, and painful.

Treatment

The only rational treatment is to remove the obstruction and pass the catheter immediately, a special silver catheter, half the size of the smallest human catheter, being required for this purpose. If the urine is bloody, it may be necessary to wash out the bladder with a warm solution of boracic acid and alkalis and sedatives, but no meat or meat extracts should be given.

Diseases Of Air Passages And Lungs in Cats

A Common Cold, or coryza, or acute nasal catarrh, or cold in the head, is caused by exposing the cat to the inclement weather, or washing it and not thoroughly drying afterwards. It may also be due to the irritating vapours of chloroform or ether used by inhalation to produce anaesthesia. Letting a cat out in the cold and wet after it has been used to a warm, dry dwelling sometimes results in a cold. It is not contagious, but is frequently mistaken for distemper.

Symptoms

There is frequent sneezing, and sometimes a cough ; a clear watery discharge trickles from the corner of the eyelids and nostrils. After a time this discharge becomes gluey, thick, and yellowish or greenish ; the eyelids become partially closed, and the haw protrudes over the front of the eyeball ; food is refused, or sparingly eaten ; the fur is dull and open; warm or dark corners are sought for; the animal trembles and seems miserable. If the throat is sore, there is a cough; the breathing is wheezy, and a discharge may issue from the angles of the mouth. These symptoms generally pass away in a few days.

Treatment

Where many cats are kept, an animal suffering from "a cold" should be isolated from the rest as soon as possible, as it is difficult to distinguish a simple case of " catarrh " from the early stage of a case of distemper. A warm place, well ventilated, but free from draughts, is essential.

Raw meat, scraped and given three times a day, is the best diet. Fish, milk, bread-and-milk, or rice-pudding should be offered.

A small pilule of half a grain of quinine sulphate should be dropped at the back of the mouth three times a day. The nostrils and eyelids should be sponged with a warm solution of boric acid, containing eight grains to the ounce of water, and afterwards smeared with a little white vaseline three times a day. Sanitas or turpentine should be sprinkled on the floor of the room. Great relief is often given by inhaling the fumes of eucalyptus oil dropped into a jug of boiling water.

Chronic Nasal Catarrh, sometimes called "feline glanders," differs from the preceding complaint, inasmuch as it runs a longer and more persistent course ; it may, however, follow on simple catarrh which has been neglected. Distemper is one of the commonest causes of it, but it is also seen after diphtheria. It may occur as a symptom of tuberculosis, foreign bodies in the nasal channels, malignant growths, such as sarcoma or cancer attacking the turbinated bones, diseased bone, or teeth, etc.

When neglected, it may last for months or even years, and is frequently incurable.

Symptoms

There is a persistent gluey, odourless, or sometimes foetid discharge either of a gelatinous or yellowish appearance, with or without streaks of blood from the nostrils, the outsides of which are sometimes ulcerated. The throat may be swollen; the appetite and general condition of the animal are often preserved. Sometimes there is an abscess in the inner corner of the eye.

Treatment

In those cases that are due to malignant tumours or tuberculosis, and, in consequence, incurable, merciful destruction of the animal is called for. If due to foreign bodies - as fish-bones, pieces of grass, or food, or to diseased teeth - they should be removed.

Syringing the nostrils, so as to wash the diseased lining membrane of the nasal channels, with some mild antiseptic is the only means to insure success. The mode of procedure is this : A skilled assistant must firmly secure the animal between his hands - that is, he holds the limbs firmly - then the operator grasps the head with his left hand, taking care to keep the mouth shut by means of the thumb and index finger, and steadies it on the table ; and with the right hand he carefully and gently passes the pipe of the syringe up one of the nasal channels and then presses out the fluid. When this is finished, the other nostril is served the same.

The following is a suitable formula tor the solution to be injected :

Alum . . . . .30 grains.
Boric Acid . . . . 2 drachms.
Liquid Extract of Hydrastis . 2 drachms
Warm Water . . . 1/2 pint.

This should be used every other day until some benefit is derived from it. If the disease is not amenable after a fortnight's adoption of this treatment, the following should be substituted :

Tincture of Iodine (B. P.) . 10 minims.
Glycerine . . . .6 ounces.
Warm Water . . .1 ounce.

Pills of iron, quinine, arsenic, and such-like, as well as plenty of flesh food along with cod-liver oil, should be given. Fresh air is invigorating, and a change to the seaside sometimes does miracles. Eucalyptus sprinkled about the cat's box is useful, because it acts not only as an antiseptic, but as a stimulant to the mucous membrane of the nostrils.

Bronchitis, or inflammation of the bronchial or air tubes, may occur as a sequel to catarrh or during its course, and may also accompany distemper. It is also due to small worms in the tubes; washing followed by exposure to draughts ; medicine, especially light powders, going down the windpipe, etc. It is frequently due to tuberculosis.

Symptoms

There is a frequent cough, the breathing is wheezy, and sometimes quickened or difficult. The desire for warmth is great ; there is shivering, and perhaps a discharge from the eyes and nose. On listening to the chest by means of the stethoscope, wheezing or hissing or bubbling sounds will be heard.

Treatment

The animal should be kept in a constant temperature of 6o F., and have warm milk and beef administered to it. The throat and sides should be rubbed with oil of mustard. Inhalations of steam are useful when expectoration seems difficult. Kermes mineral (two grains) and powdered squill (one grain) should be given.

Pneumonia, or inflammation of the substance of the lungs, may be due to various causes, such as exposure to cold, chills after washing, medicines passing down the windpipe, foreign bodies, blood-poisoning, small worms, and principally distemper or tuberculosis. It may be associated with pleurisy or bronchitis, and is then termed pleuro-pneumonia or broncho-pneumonia respectively; and also sometimes with a purulent collection or tuberculosis, and then it receives the names septic pneumonia or tubercular pneumonia, or phthisis.

Symptoms

At first there is intense shivering, a great desire for warmth, loss of appetite, dull appearance, dull cough, sickness, difficulty of breathing, which after some days becomes laboured or panting. On auscultation of the chest the characteristic sounds may be heard. At first fine crepitations, then a day or two after the tubular or blowing sounds, and when convalescence sets in the fine crackling or crepitating sounds are heard again. The cough becomes more frequent and the appetite increases. On the other hand, if there be no improvement, the coat becomes dull and open, the eyes sunken, and the pupils dilated; the flanks move up and down like a pump-handle, and the breath becomes foetid; food is totally refused, and diarrhoea sets in, a fatal termination is to be anticipated.

Treatment

The animal should be kept in a temperature of 6o F., and fresh air, but no draughts, allowed. The sides are to be rubbed with oil of mustard, or painted with tincture of iodine, or an ointment composed of one part of tartar emetic to eight of lard. Quinine sulphate, grain; alcoholic extract of nux vomica, 1/16 grain; and extract of digitalis, 1/8 grain, in a pill, may be administered every four hours, and nourishing food given. In the case of tubercular pneumonia, which is generally chronic, the animal should be destroyed.

Pleurisy, or inflammation of the covering of the lungs or internal lining of the chest cavity, in the cat as well as in the dog, is chiefly due to tuberculosis. It may, however, result from pneumonia, abscess in the lung, cancer, parasites, injuries, foreign bodies, gunshot wounds, cold, etc. It is generally accompanied with a dirty sanious, or clear amber-tinted, or port-wine-coloured fluid, sometimes containing yellowish-white strings of lymph floating in it in the chest cavity. One or both sides may be affected. It is usually fatal.

Symptoms

The cat has an anxious, painful facial expression, and moans, or rather grunts, and sometimes attempts to bite when the chest is touched or made to move ; the abdomen is retracted, and the breathing, which is short and jerky, seems to be performed by the flanks. There is a slight or suppressed cough, but this is often absent. The animal wastes away, the coat becomes dull and open and lustreless, and the hairs are easily pulled out. The creature hides under the furniture and refuses its food, and when a fatal termination is at hand, the flanks move up and down like a pump-handle, the breathing becomes difficult and suffocative, the mouth, which is offensive, being opened at every inspiratory and expiratory effort; the tongue becomes purplish, the elbows turn out, the cat assumes a squatting position on all-fours, and a foetid diarrhoea sets in.

Treatment

Although generally fatal, treatment may be desired to be attempted. The chest should be painted with tincture of iodine or oil of mustard ; if there be much pain, a hypodermic injection of morphine will prove useful, and a pill composed of - grain powdered digitalis leaves, grain sulphate of quinine, and 1 grain of iodide of potassium, administered three times a day. When the breathing becomes difficult in consequence of the accumulation of fluid in the chest cavity, it may be deemed advisable to draw the fluid off by means of a trocar. Nourishing liquid food, such as milk, Mosquera's beef jelly, or eggs, should be given, little and often.

Distemper in Cats

Distemper is a contagious, inoculable fever, due to a specific microbe (the cocco-bacillus, or pasteurella of Lignieres), and is similar, if not identical, to that causing distemper in the dog. Krajewsky, Laosson, Lignieres, and others have experimentally demonstrated its identity, but I have never observed the cat naturally giving the dog distemper, nor vice versa, and I believe this is the experience of most veterinary surgeons in this country.

The microbe of distemper - which belongs to the same class of micro-organisms, the pasteurella, that causes influenza in the horse, fowl cholera, swine-fever, guineapig distemper, etc. - is generally found in the blood, which it alters to such a degree as to make so profound an impression on the system as to diminish its natural resistance to the ordinary germs, which become, in consequence, increased in virulence, and cause the various phenomena by which we know the disease. It is difficult to detect in the body after about a week.

The disease varies in severity according to the degree of virulence of the microbe. If this is very virulent, it causes a very acute or septic disease, as is observed in the typhus or gastro-enteric outbreak, which kills off a large number of animals within a few days or even hours. If it is of a milder strength, we get the subacute form with localisations, such as we usually see in distemper. There is also a chronic form, which lasts a long time, and which tries the patience of the owner as well as the vitality of the sufferer. Finally, a chronic wasting or cachectic form is sometimes observed ; it resembles the " going light " in birds and other animals, and may be mistaken for starvation, which it simulates very much. The microbe may exist in a healthy cat's body for weeks without causing it any disturbance until, perhaps, the animal catches cold, or is depressed in some other manner. However, an apparently healthy animal with this microbe in it may be infective for other cats.

Period Of Incubation

This varies according to the degree of virulency of the microbe and the state of the cat's system and the surroundings in which it is kept. A very virulent infection has a much shorter period of incubation than a mild infection. Whereas the former may cause distemper in from two to five days, the latter takes from one to three weeks. It seems doubtful whether the specific microbe causes the symptoms we usually see in distemper, or if these are due to a secondary infection resulting from the invasion of the normal microbes of the body, which have become virulent, and prey upon their hosts.

Duration Of The Disease

This, like the period of incubation, varies also according to the degree of virulence of the virus. A very virulent virus kills in a few days or even hours, or the animal recovers very quickly. It is not so with a virus of a milder degree of virulence, which may cause symptoms that take from one to five or six weeks to disappear, if the animal recover. In other cases the disease shows itself in so mild a form that it appears like an ordinary catarrh, and recovery is established within a few days.

In a few instances death takes place suddenly before any premonitory symptoms have had time to develop.

The principal sources of propagation of the infection are cat shows, catteries (especially those belonging to people who exhibit), homes for lost and stray cats, and institutions that take in these animals as boarders. The cat dealer's shop is not free from blame - many newly purchased kittens develop distemper a few days after purchase, contracted, no doubt, at the dealer's. Many cases have been traced to the cattery where the female has been sent to stud. Hampers, cages, and persons coming from infected catteries are so many media of contagion. Even if a cat has apparently recovered from the disease, it may still give off infection and contaminate other cats for a variable but uncertain period.

Although the disease may be seen at all times of the year, it is most prevalent during spring and autumn, especially if the weather is changeable and wet.

Moisture of the atmosphere favours the increase of distemper. Wet, following very dry weather, continuous dampness and rain, all predispose an animal to the disease. Where catteries or homes for lost and strays are continuously being washed out and not properly dried, especially in damp weather, before the cats are allowed into the rooms, distemper is very prevalent.

Where too many cats are crowded into a given space, especially if the place is badly lighted and not very well ventilated, this is favourable for the contamination of the inmates.

The mortality varies according to the breed of the animal, its surroundings, and the degree of virulence of the infection. Seasons and periods have also some bearing on it. Common-bred cats allowed to roam out in the open at their will are more likely to recover from the disease, but if confined to cages or in catteries, or in the house, the mortality is quite twenty-five per cent. The long-haired cats are less resistant against it, and as many as fifty percent, die. In the Siamese breed of cats, the fatality is as high as ninety out of every hundred. The younger the animals, the greater the death-rate ; yet, on the other hand, if old animals are very fat or anaemic from want of fresh air and exercise, the mortality is just as high.

Many cats are resistant at one time against the infection, others have it in a mild form, and yet others have it severely; but this does not always prevent them from having it again at some future period. My experience is that a cat may frequently have a recurrence of distemper at least two or three times, and then succumb to it.

One season it may appear as a contagious catarrh, another season as an infectious sore throat, and at other times as a bronchitis or pneumonia, and, lastly, as a contagious gastritis or gastro-enteritis. Frequently all these forms may co-exist in a single outbreak, and often a single animal exhibits the whole of these manifestations. For the convenience of description of the symptoms of this multiform malady we divide it into five principal forms, as follow :

1. The Catarrhal, attacking chiefly the eyes and nostrils.
2. The Pharyngeal or Tonsillar, affecting the region of the throat.
3. The Pulmonary or Chest form.
4. The Abdominal or Gastro-enteric.
5. The Cachectic or Wasting.

The Catarrhal form of distemper is that which is generally seen in the cat, and is the least fatal of any. The first symptoms noticed are a watery discharge from one and sometimes both eyes, the lids of which may be partially or completely closed, so as to hide the front of the eye, and a frequent licking of the upper lip and nose as if they were parched and burning. After a day or so the inner lining of the eyelids may be very much reddened, swollen, and giving rise to a yellow-white or greenish-white thick discharge, which adheres to the lids and seals them together. There may also be shivering fits, a dull open coat, and a great desire for warmth (this being so intense in some cases that the animal frequently gets under the grate when a fire is in it). There is sneezing, followed by a snuffling kind of breathing ; the nostrils discharge a thick, ropy, whitish or greenish matter, which clings to their openings, and very often closes them up. When the pharynx or larynx is the seat of catarrh there are frequent fits of coughing. The appetite is diminished or absent, but thirst is, as a rule, great. There may also be seen at times vomiting, diarrhoea, or constipation.

Emaciation is gradual and slight, or rapid and great, varying according to the severity of the symptoms.

The breathing is not much altered in the majority of cases, but in a few instances it becomes frequent. The temperature rises a few degrees, but this is variable, and it is sometimes normal. The body and limbs feel cold to the touch, and sometimes give off an offensive odour. The tongue, lips, hard and soft palates, and gums (especially around the teeth) are occasionally ulcerated. Now and again the eyes become the seat of ulceration, which on rare occasions becomes perforated ; at other times they become affected with a severe inflammation, which extends to the whole eyeball and destroys this organ. There is at times dulness or drowsiness, and the animal seeks dark corners or gets under the furniture. Many cats from sheer nervousness, especially in strange places, avoid the fire and seek obscure or lofty positions. Recovery generally takes place within a fortnight or three weeks, but death may take place within twenty-four to forty-eight hours from the commencement of the attack.

The Pharyngeal, Tonsillar, or Throat form is the most deadly manifestation of distemper. The first symptom to attract attention is the drivelling of clear, ropy albuminous saliva from the corners of the mouth. The animal crouches upon all four of its limbs; there is a frequent gulping movement, and a sound is emitted from the throat as if there was an attempt to swallow the thick ropy saliva which clings about the mouth and pharynx ; the swallowing seems difficult or impossible ; food is refused, but thirst is constant, although the animal seems incapable of swallowing; there is a great dulness or depression, and the cat appears indifferent to its surroundings.

On examination of the outside of the throat it is found swollen and painful, the glands are enlarged, and there appears to be a gurgling noise at each inspiration and expiration. On inspection of the mouth and back of the throat, the tongue and pharynx are found to be covered with a thick, ropy, bubbling saliva, the mucous membrane is swollen and congested, and the soft palate is of a pinkish or even dark reddish arborescent appearance, due to the congested state of the small blood vessels. Sometimes ulcers appear on the hard and soft palates. After a day or so the depression increases, there is a discharge from the eyes and nostrils, which appears at first as a clear viscid fluid, and afterwards becomes yellowish or dirty green in colour, and, if the animal lives long enough, ultimately bloody, in consequence of it irritating the mucous membranes and surrounding skin of the eyes and nose. There may also be a catarrhal or purulent foetid discharge from one or both ears, but this is quite exceptional, and is mostly seen in cases having a fatal termination.

If the prostration is very great, and there is rapid loss of weight and condition, and the discharge from the mouth, nostrils, and eyes becomes foetid, coupled with total loss of appetite, and no abatement of the other symptoms, a fatal termination is to be anticipated. Late in the complaint the pharyngeal mucus may become of a dirty colour or sanious ; purple spots appear on the tongue, gums, and lips, and there is a moan or cry emitted at each respiratory effort ; convulsive movements of the muscles of the temples, shoulders, and thighs set in, and death takes place from intoxication. The temperature rises at first, but when a fatal termination is to be anticipated it falls below the normal.

The Pulmonary or Chest form, although not so frequently seen in the cat as in the dog, may appear from the outset as a distinct localisation, or follow or intervene during an attack of the other forms as a complication. It major may not be ushered in by shivering fits ; the coat becomes dull and open, there is sneezing or coughing, or both ; tears run from the eyes, and mucus issues from the nostrils, and there is a great desire for warmth. The temperature is elevated, and varies from 102.50 to 1060, but rarely running a typical course. The cough, when present, is frequent and rattling or harsh, and sometimes dull. On listening to the chest wheezing, rattling, or blowing, or rubbing, or splashing sounds may be heard. Emaciation is either gradual or rapid, thirst is generally great, but the appetite is diminished or absent.

The breathing is either quickened or the inspiratory and expiratory efforts may be prolonged and accompanied or not with a moan or grunt, which is sometimes associated with fluid in the chest cavity, which is known by the pumping or lifting action of the flanks, this effusion in one or both of the pleural sacs being either of a clear greenish or amber-tinted or bloody or dirty yellowish appearance, and sometimes of a foetid odour. Besides pleurisy, which is only occasionally encountered, there may be pneumonia, bronchopneumonia, or bronchitis, according to the structure of lung involved in this form of distemper. (For a description of these localisations or complications, see under their respective headings.)

The lesions of the lungs may be slight, and yet the symptoms may be severe ; on the contrary, the lesions may be extensive, and the resulting symptoms comparatively slight. If the fever remains high, the appetite abolished, the pupils dilated, the breathing plaintive and very rapid, and prostration great, death soon takes place from failure of the heart due to intoxication. In many cases, though, the fever is not intense, and yet death supervenes.

The Abdominal, Gastric, or Gastro-enteric form of distemper is oftener seen than either the pharyngeal or pulmonary form, and may occur as a very acute and rapidly fatal manifestation, or as a chronic disease. It frequently accompanies the other forms. In acute cases there is sudden vomiting of food, quickly followed by a frequently repeated ejection of thick, slimy, and frothy mucus, and ultimately by a thin, watery, serous fluid, which is of an olive-green or yellowish appearance. The thirst is intense, and no sooner is water sipped than it is expelled. There is frequent diarrhoea; the stools at first seem fluid, then become watery, sometimes bloody, and very foetid. The appetite is suppressed, and the animal becomes cold and indifferent to its surroundings, the facial expression is pinched, the eyes are semi-closed ; the coat is dull and open, and on pressure over the region of the stomach pain is evinced by a moan or cry, and death usually takes place in a few hours. There is not as a rule any discharge from the eyes and nostrils.

In the subacute cases, beyond a slight catarrhal discharge from the eyes and nostrils, there may be either vomiting or diarrhoea - often both - and at other instances vomiting and constipation. When the bowels are the principal seat of the disease, vomiting is rare, but diarrhoea is generally persistent. Thirst is great, and food is refused or taken sparingly. The animal is dull, cries if moved or if the abdomen is manipulated ; emaciation is rapid, and the animal dies in a state of exhaustion.

In the chronic cases there may or may not be any catarrhal symptoms, but there is a chronic and persistent diarrhoea, and sometimes vomiting. The appetite is capricious or sometimes ravenous, thirst moderate, and emaciation gradual, and liquid faeces may be expelled on the least effort, as by coughing ; the fur or pelage around the tail becomes soiled, and, in consequence, the animal gives off an offensive odour.

In some instances the breath becomes foetid ; the teeth, gums, tongue, and lips are covered with a dirty brown or greenish slimy material; and frequently the gum around the neck of the teeth is spongy, and bleeds on the slightest touch. Occasionally the bone into which the teeth are inserted becomes exposed, ulcerated, or necrosed. Ulcers are at times seen on the lips and tongue.

The Chronic Cachectic or Wasting form is sometimes encountered as a chronic wasting malady, not showing many symptoms beyond gradual emaciation, great weakness, intense thirst, ravenous or capricious appetite, and occasionally diarrhoea. At other times the animal goes off its appetite, sits about in a mopish manner, has a staring and dull coat, the mucous membranes are pallid, the haw protruding over the front of the inner portion of the eyeballs, and becomes light in weight.

It very occasionally happens in these wasting cases that the skin becomes the seat of parasitic mange, and, in consequence, gives off an offensive mousy or mouldy odour. If treatment is not skilfully and early adopted, death takes place, and on -post-mortem examination the remains simulate those of an animal having died from starvation. It may follow on the other forms of manifestation.

Skin eruptions are rarely noticed in distemper of the cat, but sometimes one sees on kittens a scabby eruption resembling ecthyma, the discharge of which mats the hairs in these young creatures. Female cats, when pregnant, frequently abort - in fact, nearly every cat in this condition in a cattery affected with distemper will miscarry, making it appear as if it were a special contagious disease.

The ears occasionally become the seat of acute catarrh or ulceration, and give rise to an offensive discharge. This complication is mostly associated with the pharyngeal form.

The cornea of the eye is sometimes the seat of ulceration, which generally disappears as the animal recovers. The whole eyeball occasionally partakes of inflammation, which destroys it.

When the eyes of young kittens become the seat of catarrh, the eye is generally destroyed, and consequently the sight is lost. The nervous type, showing itself as excitement, convulsions, chorea, meningitis, or paralysis, although seen, is somewhat rare in this creature.

Death may occur either suddenly from convulsions, or rapidly from intoxication, or slowly from exhaustion.

When due to intoxication, clonic, convulsive, or twitching movements of the muscles of the temples, shoulders, and hind limbs precede, and are even seen shortly after, death. Frequently death takes place without any symptoms of the disease having been noticed. In this case it appears to be due to the rapidity of the formation of the toxin or poison of the microbe, which causes intense shock to the system.

Diagnosis

In many instances this disease is mistaken for a simple catarrh, diarrhoea, or sore throat - a mistake unfortunate where other cats are concerned. It is true that the first stage of distemper frequently resembles either of these simple complaints, which are not contagious, and generally only affect one out of several animals kept together, and run their course in a few days ; whereas in distemper the disease usually runs a prolonged course, is very prostrating, and in many instances fatal, and, beyond all, contagious. On the other hand, it may resemble diphtheria, which is contagious, but has false membranes on the soft palate, pharynx, larynx, and tonsils, which are absent in distemper.

Prognosis

Distemper is a most treacherous disease, and one of which even an expert cannot foretell the result. Many instances occur in which an animal appears to be on the right road towards recovery, when a relapse suddenly sets in and carries off the poor creature. If the appetite is moderate, the emaciation not rapid or great, the diarrhoea not intense or too frequent, and no complications set in after the end of the first week, recovery may be anticipated. On the other hand, if the weakness be progressive and prolonged, emaciation rapid and great, an offensive odour is given off from the body, eyes sunken in their orbits, pupils dilated, and the facial expression is haggard, death is to be expected. Again, relapses (which are commonly encountered), early youth, obesity, complications, the breed of the animal (such as Siamese and long-haired varieties, especially light-coloured animals), are generally unfavourable towards a certain recovery.

Chronic nasal catarrh, chronic pneumonia or phthisis, and persistent diarrhoea may also give trouble after the distemper has run its ordinary course, and will have to be reckoned with.

Treatment

An old maxim is, " Prevention is better than cure," and ought to be carried out as far as possible by isolating all those animals that have been in contact with the infection.

Animals coming from homes for lost and stray cats, cat shows, dealers in cats, should be kept apart from those in the cattery for at least a fortnight, to see if they develop the complaint. The place of isolation should have no communication with the building or house in which the majority of healthy cats are kept. The baskets, cages, clothing, etc., should be thoroughly 'Washed and disinfected before they are used again for sound cats. It ought not to be forgotten that persons who have been in contact with sick animals may carry the infection on their hands or clothes.

When distemper has declared itself in a cattery and the inmates have recovered, the place should be thoroughly scrubbed, disinfected, and afterwards lime-washed or repainted. Boiling water and soda, used with the aid of a scrubbing-brush, is much more reliable to remove infection than many of the so-called disinfectants, which frequently do not destroy the virus, but often injure the cats. After the habitation has been scrupulously cleansed, it may be well to disinfect it with chlorinated lime (1 lb. to the gallon of cold water), which should be brushed all over the floor, walls, partitions, etc. Baskets, hampers, etc., should be served likewise. Metal and earthenware utensils may be boiled in strong soda-water.

Before any cats are again put into the place, the doors and windows should be opened for at least a week, and fresh air and daylight admitted, as they are the best destructors of micro-organisms.

Where valuable cats are kept and the risk of distemper is great, it would be advisable for the owner to have the cats immunised, or rendered proof against the disease, by means of the Pasteurian system of vaccination with the attenuated microbe of distemper, as introduced into practice by Professor Lignieres and Dr. Phisalix. Several degrees of strength of the vaccine are used. The animal is at first vaccinated or inoculated with a mild degree of virus, and afterwards with vaccine of gradually increased virulence, so that the most virulent virus (which would quickly kill, or cause the disease in a severe form in an animal not previously inoculated with the milder vaccines) would not produce any disturbance in the vaccinated creature.

Medical Or Curative Treatment

The sick animal should be kept in a well-lighted and well-ventilated but not draughty room, which ought to be dry, and kept at a temperature of about 6o. The floor should be covered with a thick layer of fresh pine sawdust, heaps of which should be placed in tins, boxes, or old coal-scuttles for the convenience of the animals.

If the cat is seen in the first stage of the disease, an emetic of to grain of tartar emetic in a teaspoonful of warm water may be given to clear out the stomach and bronchial tubes. In place of this drug, 1/30 to 1/20 grain of hydrochloride of apomorphine in tabloid form may be injected under the skin. After the emetic has passed off, easily digested and nourishing food, such as milk, should be offered, and, if refused, forced upon the animal. When the appetite is fairly good, 1/8 to grain of calomel may be given twice a day, but must be stopped as soon as it causes vomiting or intense diarrhoea.

When the appetite is bad, quinine sulphate ( grain) given three times a day for a lengthened period may be useful in remedying it.

The eyes and nostrils should be bathed three times a day with the following lotion :

Chinosol . . . 3 1/2 grains,
Rose-water ... .8 ounces;

and then smeared with an ointment composed of

Boracic Acid . . . .1/2 drachm,
Cold Cream . . . . 4 drachms.

When the throat is very much inflamed, it should be painted on the outside, after all the hair is clipped off from ear to ear, with tincture of iodine or the setherial tincture of capsicum, three times a day, until soreness is produced. As it is a difficult job to paint the inside of the cat's throat, the following powder dropped on the tongue will act in a similar manner : Quinine sulphate : . . grain.

Borax.....2 1/2 grains.

To be given morning, noon, and night.

If there is either pleurisy or pneumonia, or both combined, the hair should be cut off over the ribs, and the skin painted with a solution of tartar emetic (composed of 1 drachm of the drug to an ounce of spirit), and then wrapped up with a binder, under which a layer of cotton-wool is placed.

In case there is repeated vomiting, a powder composed of Bismuth carbonate . . 5 grains,

Cocaine hydrochloride . . 1/8 grain, should be shaken on the tongue every four hours until twenty-four hours have elapsed since the last vomiting took place. If there should be a persistent and profuse diarrhoea, it must be moderated, but not suppressed, by means of 2 1/2 grains of tannigen given morning, noon, and night. When there are any convulsions or much pain, 1/6 to 1/4 grain of extract of opium in pill should be administered morning and night.

Light and easily digested food - such as peptonised milk, Mosquera's beef jelly, Benger's peptonised food, etc. - should be given in small and repeated quantities during the earlier or active stages of the disease. Later on, in the convalescent stage, scraped raw beef, boiled fish, rice pudding, etc., may be offered.

Parrish's chemical food and cod-liver oil, given by some cat-owners during the acute stage of distemper when there is no appetite, are harmful and cruel remedies.

Diseases Of The Ear in Cats

The external ear in the cat is short, upright, triangular, pointed, and opens in front. Its apex in some cats - especially Persians - has a tuft of hair growing from the inside. In the outer margin the ear doubles on itself, forming a pouch, in which lumps of dirt, ear-mites, etc., frequently accumulate.

A Serous Cyst, or abscess, forms between the skin and cartilage of the inside, and sometimes also of the outside, of the ear or ears.

The ear is swollen, feels tense, has a bluish or reddish tint, but is not very painful. The contents of this swelling are a thin, reddish fluid and a blood clot, which separate the skin from the cartilage and its covering.

It is always associated with ear-mites, and generally results in the ear shrinking and becoming drawn down, which, when both ears are affected, give the animal a peculiar appearance, resembling some wild variety of the cat tribe that usually carries these organs in a semi-pendulous manner.

Treatment

It can be prevented by keeping the cat's ears clean and free from ear-mites. When it is present, the cyst should be freely opened (which can be done painlessly by previously injecting a few drops of a 4 per cent, solution of cocaine), the blood clot carefully removed, and the inner surface of the cavity washed out with a 5 per cent, solution of chinosol. The ear must be gently pulled every day to prevent shrinking, and, consequently, deformity.

True Canker is an inflammation of the deeper part of the cavity of the ear, accompanied with a chronic foetid, whitish, cheesy, or gluey discharge, and sometimes ulceration, and, rarely, warty-looking growths. It usually runs a long course, unless skilfully treated, and is liable to recur.

Treatment

The ear should be carefully washed out with tincture of calendula, and then well dried with cotton-wool, and afterwards have finely sifted boracic powder blown down the cavity. This treatment should be carried out at least every other day until recovery takes place.

Quite 90 per cent. of long-haired varieties and cross-breeds suffer from Parasitic Canker. It is seen in kittens a month old, as well as in aged cats, and is conveyable to the dog. The ferret also is liable to it.

It is due to the ear-mite called Symbiotes auricularum, which was first found in the ear of the dog by Professor Hering, of Stuttgart, in 1834, and in the cat by Huber, of Memingen, in 1860.

It resembles the mange and cheese mites in general characters, and is only with difficulty seen with the naked eye. When viewed in strong sunlight, it appears as a small whitish or Cinnamon-Coloured woolly speck, resembling a grain of meal or flour crawling about on the brownish dirt in the ears. These mites nearly always collect together in large colonies.

There is frequent scratching of the ears with the hind limb. The cat suddenly stops, sits down, inclines its head to one side, and scratches away as if it gave it great pleasure to do so. In some cases, however, it becomes quite frantic, and swears. Frequently there is an abrasion of the skin behind the ears due to this scratching, and occasionally the flap of the ear becomes the seat of a serous abscess, which I have described.

When the mite wanders over the drum of the ear, especially in warm weather, some cats are seized with convulsions, others become delirious, and many reel about as if intoxicated.

Treatment

The ears should be washed out with warm soap and water, and then well dried with cotton-wool, and afterwards have a liniment composed of oil of stavesacre (2 drachms) and almond oil (6 drachms), mixed together, and poured in every day until all signs of irritation have passed away, care being taken to wipe off the superfluous dressing from the ears after each dressing.

Diseases Of The Eye in Cats

In certain respects the eye of the cat differs from that of the other domesticated animals. It resembles the eye of the dog in its shape, which is somewhat rounded and globular. The membrana nictitans, haw, or third eyelid, is not so well developed as in some other animals, as the cat is able to protect the eye with the paw to a considerable extent. The tapetum lucidum is of a brilliant metallic golden yellow or greenish (in Siamese and albino cats pinkish colour), and is so well developed that it probably enables the animal to see better at night, by reflecting the rays of light a second time through the retina.

It is also the cause of the well-known glare of the cat's eyes in the dark.

The iris, or curtain, is yellowish-green, orange, or golden in most cats; sometimes it is amber-coloured, and in other cases golden, with a tinge of metallic green around the pupillary circumference. Some cats, especially white cats, have the iris of one of the eyes of a bluish white appearance, and the other a golden, amber, or greenish golden colour.

The Siamese cat and many white cats have pale blue or bluish eyes. The shade of the iris generally varies with the colour of the cat's fur, and is taken into consideration in the judging of points at shows.

The pupil, or opening in the centre of the iris, when widely dilated, is circular in shape, but when contracted it becomes vertically elliptical, and may become so narrow as to appear as a mere thin perpendicular slit.

The optic disc, or entrance of the optic nerve before it expands in the cavity of the eyeball to form the retina, is small, round, and cupped, and of a clear grey colour, and the veins in it can be distinguished from the arteries which radiate from the optic disc. The choroidal vessels are rarely seen, but in the Siamese cat they are seen in the red peripheral zone.

Kittens, like puppies, are, as a rule, born with the eyelids closed, and this condition lasts usually from nine to twelve days, when the membrane joining the two lids together wastes and finally gives way. Sometimes, however, the eyelids do not become separated, or only become so at one part, so that surgical intervention may be necessary to separate the partially or completely closed lids.

I have, on several occasions, seen kittens born with their eyes open, but have not been able to satisfy myself if the condition was due to any prolongation of the period of utero-gestation.

The eyelids are sometimes the seat of ring worm, mange, follicular scabies, or eczema, and as these affections are usually present in other parts of the body, they can easily be diagnosed by means of the naked eye or the microscope. The best remedy for any of these diseases, when situated on the eyelids, is :

Yellow oxide of mercury . 4 grains.
White vaseline . . . 1 ounce.

These ingredients are to be well mixed by a competent chemist, and a small piece, about the size of a pea, is to be well rubbed on the affected part or parts every morning. Care must be taken that no superfluous ointment is left on the hairs, as most cats will rub it off with their paws, which they will immediately lick, and so may become poisoned.

The eyelids occasionally become turned inwards, so that the hairs covering it rub on the glassy portion of the eyeball, and frequently set up irritation, inflammation, and opacity, and a copious discharge of tears. This is termed entropium, and requires an operation. When the eyelid is turned outwards from the eyeball, the condition takes the name of ectropium, which rarely calls for any interference, as it does not injure the animal, even if it is unsightly. A very rare anomaly of the eyelid in the cat is when the hairs of it take an unusual direction, and rub on the glassy portion of the eyeball, and, like entropium, set up irritation, inflammation, and smokiness of it. This is termed trichiasis, and requires an operation to remedy it.

The eyelids are also subject to wounds, bruises, abscesses, warts, and Meibomian cysts, which do not call for special attention. The third eyelid, haw, or membrana nictitans - though, as before stated, it is not so well developed in the cat as in some other animals - is liable, in debilitating diseases, such as distemper, anaemia, etc., to protrude persistently over the inner part of the front of the eyeball. It will, however, resume its normal position as the cat regains strength, and should, therefore, on no account be removed. It frequently becomes inflamed during distemper, catarrh, or ophthalmia, or from injuries, but should not in these cases be removed, as if it were a foreign body or new growth ; a simple soothing, antiseptic lotion will put it right as the original disease abates and strength is regained.

Frequently in the cat, as in the dog, just below the inner angle of the eye socket an abscess forms. This is due to pus in the cavity of the jaw bones, called also the antrum of highmore above the teeth, and is generally caused by some disturbance or disease of the tooth. When the tooth immediately below the abscess is removed, and the abscess cavity is washed out with some astringent, recovery usually takes place. It should, however, be borne in mind that the teeth below the eye are frequently diseased, and no abscess is caused by them.

A fistula may form immediately below the inner angle of the eyelids. It results from an abscess which opens, and then heals up, to break out again. This process goes on until a permanent opening or fistula remains, from which a discharge of matter issues. This is connected with some disturbance, or even disease, of the tooth or teeth immediately below it. When the tooth or teeth are removed, and the opening occasionally well washed out with some astringent, it heals up, and no further trouble is seen. However, it is sometimes due to tuberculosis, and the mere removal of teeth does not do away with the fistula. It is mostly mistaken for a lachrymal fistula.

Sometimes the conjunctiva, or the pinkish membrane lining the inner surface of the eyelids and the front of the eyeball, becomes the seat of disease.

A non-inflammatory swelling of it is seen, due to an infiltration of serum. This is called chemosis. It has the appearance of a palish pink swelling all round the eye, which seems sunken in the orbit but does not seem inflamed or painful. It may quickly disappear on dropping a few minims of a 4 per cent, solution of cocaine hydrochloride into the eye. It is liable to recur at some future time.

Conjunctivitis, or inflammation of the membrane covering the inner lining of the eyes and the front of the eyeball, is also termed external or simple ophthalmia. It is frequently seen in the cat during distemper, diphtheria, catarrh, or from an injury to, or presence of a foreign body