Antioch Turkish Angoras
In 1995, Antioch Cattery produced 11 kittens. All of them were males. Late in the summer, we bred Hosca Kal Aktris Scarale, a cream cameo tabby and white. Trissy produced a litter for us, on my birthday, November 13. In her litter, there were three cream tabby boys, and one white girl. This was the only girl we produced that year, so we named her "Antioch Thank Heaven 4 Little Girls". Around the house, she was known as "Maedchen".
Maedchen was a fat little butterball. I thought she would never have show type. However, I kept her, as she represented a breeding between her German momma and her American daddy. Maedchen was a sweet, but ornery little girl.
When Maedchen was twelve weeks old, we decided to place a pet door in one of our interior doors. This was intended to give the cats access to a room of their own, with no canine trespassers. We installed the door according to the directions given, and the cats immediately showed an interest in it, and began using it.
Less than 24 hours later, I discovered that Maedchen had injured her tail. She had caught it in the flap of the pet door, and feeling the door close upon it, she panicked, and pulled. There was a bolt on the inside of the frame of the door, and her tail had been caught between the end of the bolt and the flap. When she pulled, this served to rip a 2 inch gash, lengthwise, in the middle third of her tail.
I rushed her to the vet, who sutured the wound. He honored my request to suture the tail without shaving the hair around the wound. However, during the night, Maedchen gained access to the sutures, and removed them. Worried, I took her to a different vet, who told me that he could not resuture the tail without shaving it. I allowed him to do this, because scar tissue in the tail worried me even more than the loss of hair. He covered her sutures with lots of bandaging.
Little Maedchen had to wear an Elizabethan collar for a few weeks, but even this collar did not prevent her from removing the bandage. Back we went for an even bigger collar, which then proved too large for her neck... and we ended up with a hand-made deal, made out of a paint bucket.
Soon, Maedchen's tail healed, the sutures were removed, and we began the impatient wait for fur to grow on her tail so that we could show her. Luckily, no scar tissue ever formed. It took EIGHT MORE MONTHS for her tail "fluff" to look fairly decent, and so, Maedchen had her "coming out" at the October show, in Buffalo, NY.
Another fiasco! The show hotel in Buffalo, had no heat. It was quite cold outside, winter paying an early visit. There was LOTS of snow... Steve and I bundled up in piles of blankets, and we ran a space heater the hotel gave us, but the room was still bitter cold. I worried about Maedchen getting sick. However, she proved that she was an enterprising little girl after all. She climbed under the covers with mommy, and never left, all night. The next morning, in the showhall, she showed that she had learned a new trick! All day, she slept UNDER her lambswool bed!
I knew I loved Maedchen's eyes, which were unusually large and expressive. She was not as extreme as some cats I had shown, and I wished she had more hair, especially on her tail! I was very pleased, however, when she granded at the Louisville show, in December.
Just for fun, I took her to the Si Sawat show, in Zanesville, in January of 1997. It was a wonderful show! Maedchen won top ten awards in five of the six rings, and had Second Best Cat in the two longhair rings! My friends started to encourage me to campaign my little girl.
Well, this was a bad year for me, financially. I was a substitute schoolbus driver, and was not working many hours. BUT...I hated to stay home, when I had a nice girl to show! So, I took an extra job, working evenings and weekends, for the Columbus Symphony Orchestra. This was fund-raising, and my first time doing anything like that, but it was a good cause, and I learned to enjoy it. Between the two jobs, however, I was exhausted. I finally stopped working at night, in the month of March.
The extra job prevented me from attending the shows, of course. Weekends were mandatory. However, I had a wonderful friend, whom I could trust with my little baby - Sandi Douglass (Teakatut Cattery), a Colorpoint Shorthair breeder. Sandi, and her friend Gail Moser (Pawtrek Cattery), took Maedchen to the shows, and I stayed home and worked. On a rare occasion, I would attend on Sunday only.
GC Antioch Oh Be Joyful!
Another problem cropped up, soon after we began to campaign Maedchen. I would bathe Maedchen for a show, and she would look wonderful. The next day, on the morning of the show, I would find a little hole in her fur, where she had scratched the fur out! Sigh!
I spent alot of money with the vet, only to discover that "we can't find anything". I tried many methods to stop this problem, and finally, near the very end of the show season, I had it! Mimi was ALLERGIC TO SHAMPOOS... ALL shampoos! I began frantically experimenting, and found that I could use Allergroom Shampoo on her. However, Mimi always looked "greasy" after these baths. I finally worked out a method of bathing her that did not leave her "itchy" while still removing the extra oils, and by the end of the show season, I finally had her looking good... I know there were several judges who would have given Maedchen more finals, had I figured this out sooner! (grin)
The second to last show of the season was in St. Catharines, Ontario. We had an exceptionally good time with our Canadian friends, Joanne (my hostess for the weekend), Charmaigne, Karen, and Sue, and the highlight of the show was meeting Maria Reed, and getting a Best Cat, in one ring! However, true to the "Perils of Maedchen", as I was driving down Interstate 71, only an hour from my home, my car died. It died a very expensive and somewhat gruesome death, in fact, by blowing a piston.
When my car died, I had very little money with me, having "blown" alot of it on my trip. I had AAA tow me to a place in Ashland, Ohio, only to find that they did not do such extensive repairs. I had to call my husband at work, and he had to leave work at 5 PM, and drive an hour and a half, to rescue me. To make matters worse, I was developing a migraine, probably from stress, exhaustion from the trip, and the fact that I had spent my remaining food money on towing.
I climbed into the car (a very small Nissan Sentra coupe) on the passenger side, and reclined the seat as far as I could. I let poor little Maedchen out of her travel cage, and she, realizing I was ill, climbed onto my chest and curled up there, purring and washing my face as if I were a kitten. I fell asleep under her ministrations and woke several hours later when my husband arrived. This devotion is typical of many Turkish Angoras.
Well, Maedchen was "neck and neck" with another cat for National Best of Breed at this time, and I figured this would cause me to take second best. However, I was quite happy to have a second best in the nation! Certain that my show season was over, I dragged home, only to find that I have wonderful friends in the cat fancy. Sandi Douglass offered to take Maedchen to her last show, and Jim and Carol Barkley (Bogeycats Abyssinians) transported me to the show, so that I could be with my little girl for her last show. Because of their kindness (thank you again, so much!) and the continued support of the judges who loved Maedchen (you know who you are), she won enough points to become CFA's National Best of Breed Turkish Angora, for the 1996-97 show year!
"Grand Champion, BW, Antioch Thank Heaven 4 Little Girls