Cyril was rescued on Christmas Day 2007. It was freezing cold and lashing with rain when a young couple spotted a soaked and dejected cat in the garden of the relatives they were visiting, and discovered it was an old stray that had been hanging around for many months. Being the owners of two spoilt cats they immediately insisted that they brought the poor thing in, and then took him home with them for warmth, food and safety. The search for a rescue group led to CAS and he was soon settled into his own boudoir in a foster home and quickly relished his home comforts. He was a battered looking ginger chap of indeterminate age so it was without too much hope he was put on the website. Then the Christmas miracle occurred. He got an immediate enquiry, and from that he had a visit from two angels, and in less than a week of coming into CAS he was adopted. His story is told below.

Cyril, formally Sandy, came to our attention on your website in January 2008 and after seeing him in the flesh, we just knew he was the one for us. We still remember the welcome he gave us at Liz’s house, running between us across the room. He was clearly weathered due to his time living out doors but his caring, loving personality shone through immediately.

On returning home, Cyril took himself onto the landing and remained asleep for the next couple of hours. He came down stairs, meowed at us around the living room door and since then he’s been our little boy, he has always brought huge joy to everyone he meets and even fellow cat owners speak about how remarkable he is, wanting to be part of the family and craving some attention – he gets loads but it’s never enough.

Cyril immediately stamped his authority on the neighbourhood and before long he’d marked out his territory, bringing his lucky owners a couple of pigeons in the process! He’s developed a taste for some strange foods, including gooseberry tarts and Cajun potato wedges which he’s cheekily stolen from the work tops in the kitchen. He started on standard cat food but before long this was not good enough and his ‘slaves’ have now resorted to buying cat food with premium cuts of chicken to ensure his high standards are met. He seems content with this progression.

During summer BBQs he insists on sitting, like a faithful companion, with a crowd of people in our garden enjoying the sun and the conversation! Always open to the idea of being petted he loves being around us and is firmly part of our family. Unusually for a cat, Cyril sat at our bedroom door, which was open, and never entered until encouraged to do so. Since then he now loves ‘his bed’ and is happy to take up his third of the mattress, purring loudly into the small hours before sleeping soundly with us.

We have had two children since Cyril arrived in our house but he has simply taken both arrivals in his stride – the only problem is his resolve in finding a space on your lap irrespective of whether a child is present or not! Our eldest child loves Cyril so much that on holiday we have to call the cattery to ensure he is ok (in his heated, padded room!) and is a wonderful family pet, who doesn’t run off when approached by little people and, in spite of some over zealous 2 year old cuddles, Cyril never reacts badly and realises that while the family grew in number he was central to our family.

We consider ourselves very, very lucky to have had the opportunity to care and provide for Cyril, who is such a loving and grateful old man enjoying his hopefully long and well earnt retirement. The 5+ years of joy that he has given our family is irreplaceable, a unique personality that is everything we could have wished for in a cat. We’re so lucky to have Cyril and with his fresh chicken dinners, we hope he feels the same way.

His paw prints are now on our wall, as painted footprints from the two children are joined by his on a canvas print to ensure that he knows how integral he is to our family home. Our only wish would be that we’d known Cyril since a kitten, as he would have been an extremely handsome and cheeky boy.

A massive thank you goes to Liz from the Samaritans, who’s always been available for advice during the last 5 years – we were very lucky to have responded to her advert before anyone else had the chance to re home this beautiful cat.