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The rescue cats that got the cream!

The winners of Cats Protection’s Rescue Cat of the Year Awards 2006 have been announced at a ceremony held at the Copthorne Effingham Park Hotel in West Sussex.

Announced by Helen Ralston, Cats Protection’s Chief Executive, the Overall Rescue Cat of the Year 2006 was awarded to Tee Cee from Sheffield. His ability to sense when his owner is about to have an epileptic seizure makes him a true lifesaver! Tee Cee, owned by Michael and Jean Edmonds, and nominated by Jean’s daughter Samantha Laidler, also won the title of Hero Cat.

Michael’s wife Jean Edmonds and stepdaughter Samantha Laidler collecting the Rescue Cat of the Year Award, pictured with Helen Ralston, CP Chief Executive

Magic from Reading was winner of the Best Friend award. Magic’s owner suffers a muscle disorder which confines her to bed for long periods. Magic dutifully stays by h
er side, makes her laugh and even encourages her to walk around the garden for exercise!

Tee Cee and his owner Michael Edmonds

Most Incredible Story winner was given to Munchie from Northampton. At just two weeks old, Munchie escaped from a car that was about to be crushed by meowing loudly for help!

The Ultimate Survivor winner was Daisy from Leeds. Daisy suffered but managed to overcome horrific injuries after being used as bait in an organised dog fight. Remarkably she still trusts people and will charge at passing dogs given the chance!

TV presenter Wendy Turner-Webster was clearly touched by Tee Cee’s story. “His uncanny ability to sense Michael’s seizures and alert the family is amazing. This is a cat whose contribution to the family is incredible.”

Cats Protection’s Chief Executive, Helen Ralston, agreed. “Tee Cee goes beyond what we would expect from a pet. What he does for the family is priceless and for that truly amazing gift he deserves to be the Rescue Cat of the Year.”

Now in its third year, Cats Protection’s Rescue Cat of the Year Awards honour those felines whose stories of survival, fate, bravery and heroism have inspired the humans who love and care for them.

The Awards struck a chord with cat lovers everywhere, according to Helen Ralston. “We felt that if the stories of some of the cats that come into our care are anything to go by, then there had to be some pretty inspiring tales out there of cats overcoming the odds and making a real difference to people’s lives,” she explained.

“Judging by the quality of entries we received, we were right. We think the winning stories capture the true spirit of the Awards and demonstrate what wonderful pets rescue cats are – well done to all the winners from everyone at Cats Protection.”

Cats Protection received around 400 entries from throughout the UK for this year’s Rescue Cat of the Year Awards. Each year, the charity rehomes 60,000 cats and kittens through its nationwide network of 29 Adoption Centres and 260 voluntary-run Branches.

A full report with pictures by Nick Mays on the CP Cat of the Year Competition will be in the next issue of OUR CATS on 11 August.