Athos is a black and white Cornish Rex. He was born on the 13th of March 2000, and we first met him more or less by accident. We were at a cat show in Kolding with Oliver on the 2nd September 2000. It was the seventh show with only Oliver, and we got to talking about maybe it would be nice if I had a cat of my own to show. As most of the shows that we were going to were two day shows, we had to limit our thoughts to only cats in the Longhair and Shorthair categories.
That meant that we could not bring Omar, as he is in the Oriental Shorthair category, and several of the other breeds that I liked were also in that category. Walking round the show we met one of our breeder friends, Dorte, and mentioned our idea to her, but not expecting anything as her cats were also in the wrong category. "Oh no," she said "that was changed not long ago, and now they are in the Shorthairs; have a look at my kittens I brought today for the first time." They were Naomi's Cornish Rex kittens and adorable, of course!
She had one male left to sell, and so I introduced myself to him, and then carried him round to see Oliver. They just sniffed each others noses through the bars, so that seemed to be OK. Of course, we thought that such a grand animal would be far too expensive, but when Dorte understood that we only wanted one for a show pet, and it would be an early birthday present for me, the deal was done, and off we went to buy a cat carrier for our new kitten.
It was certainly a surprise for our other cats when we got home tbat we came back with one extra! We went through the usual introduction routine, and after a couple of days, most had accepted him as inevitable. Funnily enough, both our white cats disliked him on sight! As it turned out, although he is a loving little cat, he has a terrible temper when roused; so much so that Peter was always in retreat from him. Poor Dorte found that both his mother and his sisters were the same - one of his sisters died soon after from epilepsy, and their mother Naomi was so bad with Dorte's other cats that she tried to rehome her. No one would have her, so she was later put to sleep. Some months later, Athos and Peter had a BIG fight which Peter won, and for a while, Athos avoided any further clashes.
Eventually Athos tried again, and when I separated them, Peter's white fur was covered in blood! I looked them both all over, but strangely couldn't find any wounds. All was explained at the next meal time when Athos didn't want to chew his food - when I checked him, I found that in the fight, he had bitten his tongue! For a long time now, Peter has remained the boss!
From the first, Omar took to Athos in a big way, and the affection is mutual. They look for each other if they want company and I am not available, and even if they find me, they will lay on me together. They groom each other, play together, and comfort each other on the few times that we have been able to have them both together at a cat show. Most of the time, of course, Athos is at a show with Oliver, and they also are comfort for each other in the strange surroundings. At the very first show, Athos won the Best In Show for his class, and came home with a cup that was bigger than he was!
When we got Zozie, she rapidly adopted both Omar and Athos as her special friends, so now they play, sleep and show together. Oliver will soon get his last certificate, and then Myrtle won't show him again, but Zozie takes care of Athos, and soon Myrtle's new cat Willow, will join them.
At the end of 2003 we took Athos, Willow and Zozie to the World Show where Athos got his certificate. In his own inimitable way, he persuaded his steward to cuddle him while waiting for the judge! Eventually after five more shows (one where he was Nominated) he got his last certificate and the special presentation on becoming a European Premier.