Purina® Better Together - Celebrating the special bond that has transformed and enriched the lives of both a feline and human.
Mr Chips - WINNER!
Owned by Anna-Marie McConnell and Ian Turner, of Llandudno, Conwy
Mr Chips has had his share of hard luck - found as a stray with a badly broken leg, he was left with a permanent disability and also spent six months in a rescue centre awaiting a home. But that hasn’t stopped him living life to the full and when new owner Ian Turner was diagnosed with a complex medical condition, Mr Chips proved to be an incredible support.
In the past three years, Ian has undergone a dozen operations, affecting both his physical and mental health, and leaving him at times feeling suicidal. Throughout it all has been eight-year-old Mr Chips, who Ian says has kept him going through times of despair.
Mr Chips was selected as the winner of the Purina® Better Together category by a public vote on Cats Protection’s Facebook page, which received over 1,300 votes in total.
Photo credit - AJAR Photography
Kipper - Runner up
Owned by Paul Greenwood of Buxton, Derbyshire
When Fiona Fenton found a cold, wet and severely undernourished stray kitten cowering in bushes, she knew she had to help. She took him to recover at the home she shares with friend and lodger Paul Greenwood who named him Kipper.
Little did Fiona know what a huge impact the six-week-old bedraggled puss would have on Paul, who suffers with a range of health issues. Almost immediately the two formed a close bond and now, two years after Kipper’s arrival, he has been credited with helping reduce Paul’s anxiety problems, bringing down his blood pressure and even helping to ease his arthritis.
Photo credit - Lee Bradburne
Alfie - Runner up
Owned by Cerian Munn, of Southampton, Hampshire
As soon as Cerian Munn met tiny nine-week-old Alfie, she knew she needed him as much as he needed her. Despite being underweight and covered in fleas, the bold little puss made a huge impression after Cerian took him home and began nursing him to health.
Two weeks later, it was Alfie’s turn to administer the TLC when Cerian underwent a life-saving kidney transplant earlier this year. Facing a painful and long recovery period, Cerian found a constant companion in Alfie who brought laughter, affection and companionship during the toughest of times.
Photo credit - www.snapitnow.co.uk
Jessie - Runner up
Owned by Sophie Jones of Eastbourne, Sussex
Sweet-natured Jessie has helped teenager Sophie Jones through the hardest lessons in life. Having been passed from home to home, Jessie was two years old when she was adopted by Sophie’s family and the pair soon struck up a close friendship.
When Sophie started secondary school at 11 she had few friends but was able to turn to her beloved pet for support. And when a close family member died, it was Jessie that helped Sophie through. Now Jessie is nine, she has developed a stomach sensitivity, so Sophie, 18, has found a job to help pay veterinary bills for her faithful friend.
Photo credit - www.snapitnow.co.uk
Guy - Runner up
Owned by Hazel Norris, of Birmingham, West Midlands
Guy appeared in Hazel Norris’s life shortly after her husband died, leaving her and their two sons Andrew and Christopher devastated.
Found abandoned in a cardboard box beside a busy road, Guy had no-one until Hazel agreed to take him in. She quickly noticed the positive effect the little kitten had on the whole family, most noticeably her youngest son Christopher, who is autistic. By taking responsibility for some of Guy’s care, Christopher, 22, has been able to discuss his needs with a vet, giving him a great confidence boost.
During the past two years, Hazel says Guy, now aged two, has helped Christopher learn many important social skills and has given him a purpose in life.
Photo credit - Alison Barton Photography