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The Premier Online Magazine
devoted to Persian & Exotic Shorthair Cats

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PandEcats

The Premier Online Magazine devoted
to Persian & Exotic Shorthair Cats

Search
Close this search box.

IW, SGC Cullykhan Licence To Kill

TICA Cat Of The Year for 2014

The TICA Cat Of The Year for 2014 is a spectacular black and white Persian male named IW, SGC Cullykhan Licence To Kill. Nicknamed “Spud”, he is bred, owned and campaigned by English breeder, Angela Millican. This is his story…

My name is Angela Millican and I have been a hobby show breeder of Persians since 1992. I am based in Newcastle Upon Tyne, in northeast England where I live with my lovely husband and two young children.

My fascination with the Persian breed started way before 1992. As a teenager I had horses and one day whilst collecting dewormers from the local veterinarian’s office, a blue Persian cat calmly walked right past the waiting dogs, and leapt up onto the reception desk. With incredible dignity, the Persian stared down at the dogs as if they were his lowly subjects. Being more a ‘dog’ kind of family, I was not brought up with cats, but I was awed by the presence of this wonderful Persian lording it over his less canine subjects. I vowed then to one day own one of this impressive breed of felines. 

Cullykhan

In 1992 I bought my first Persian — a female with breeding rights. She was bred and I really enjoyed the experience of birthing and raising the kittens. I returned to the same breeder a year later and bought a show quality female, a black sister to my first girl.

Taragona’s Unplugged

I was persuaded to show her and she quickly earned her Grand Championship in GCCF (Governing Council of the Cat Fancy). This was my first taste of showing a Persian. A few years later I decided I wanted to focus on showing and breeding bicolors and high white Persians — I just loved their flashy coat patterns. 

I contacted Marika Edgren of Taragona’s Persians & Exotics in Sweden as her cats consistently had the sweet open look that I admired. After three years of staying in touch with Marika, she offered me a young proven boy that she could not keep for herself. His name was Taragona’s Unplugged and he is behind a few of my cats today.

IW, RW Cullykhan Scent Of A Rose

In 2011, Unplugged produced a wonderful female for me, a sweet calico bred out of a Kittiary female. I named her Cullykhan Scent Of A Rose and I showed her in TICA. Born in the fall, I could not show her till February 2012. Her first show was at exactly four months old. The kitten counts were low and we only had three months left until the end of the season, but Rosie did consistently well at the shows and by early April I felt that she had an outside chance of making it into the top 25 and earning an International Kitten win in TICA.

One of the last shows of the season was also the best show for me to enter regarding both the judges and the count. It was in Ekaterinburg, Russia. I had never been to Russia, but my forever friend on the campaign trail, Nicki, persuaded me to give Rosie that final chance to see if she could squeeze into the top 25.

Nicki and I got our visas sorted out and flew to Russia for the final showdown. I was a bag of nerves. By the end of the first day of the show, Rosie had closed the points gap and just needed one more placement in the top three of a final to earn that coveted International Win (IW) title.

On the Sunday she was twice Best Kitten and made more than enough points! She finished the season as 24th Best Kitten and was an International Winner — the first time a kitten from the United Kingdom had ever earned an International Win!

Spud’s dam: IW, RW Cullykhan Scent Of A Rose, TICA International Winner 2012, 24th Best Kitten Of The Year (Worldwide), Best Persian Kitten (Worldwide), Best Kitten Of The Year – Europe West Region (Photo by Helmi Flick)

I was so thrilled. We went out to dinner after the show and the Russian vodka was flowing. I am afraid that I celebrated a little too much — and was so hungover I missed my flight home! It took me a full two days to get over the worst hangover of my life. To this day I still get teased about vodka and that trip to Russia from exhibitors and judges alike!

Spud

Now Rosie needed a suitable husband to start a family. I had imported a wonderful black and white male from Susannah Moore of Kissables Persians. His name is GCCF, CFA & TICA CH Kissables Kick Your Nash. His sire is GC, RW Rhamjoge Nash, full brother to GC, BW, NW Rhamjoge Grand Finale, CFA’s 6th Best Cat 2008.

Spud’s sire: GCCF, CFA & TICA CH Kissables Kick Your Nash

Rosie was mated to Kissables Kick Your Nash and in the fall of 2012 she gave birth to three kittens; Cullykhan Licence To Kill (aka Spud, aptly named as he is a bit of a potato head — not entirely blessed in the brain cells department); a calico sister named Pussy Galore; and one other boy.

At a few days old I thought this was a wonderful litter. There was just something extra special about their look. The kittens grew and developed beautifully and I decided that both Spud and Pussy Galore would remain with me. 

Spud as a kitten (Photo by Helmi Flick)
Spud’s litter-sister, Cullykhan Pussy Galore (Photo by Helmi Flick)

All Grown Up

I didn’t show Spud until he was an adult. There was a 2-day, 12 ring TICA show in Oxford early in the season. Spud was a kitten on the Saturday of the show and an adult on the Sunday. 

I thought that the judges would be good for him so I drove the 4 hours down on Sunday just to see how he would fare in the Championship class.

Spud was Best Cat four times and 2nd Best Cat twice with 46 cats present. It was not a big count, but the only cat that beat him was an 8 year old Himalayan, double CFA National Winner, GC, BW, NW Sulltans Spin To Win.

I had many positive comments from the judges about Spud, including one judge who told me I had to campaign him.

I didn’t need any more convincing.

GC, BW, NW Sulltans Spin To Win (Photo by L. Johnson)

Sometimes you only get one chance at something…. And I felt Spud had lots of potential. My goal was an IW place as high as I could get, but with him being so young I wasn’t sure how exactly he would fare over the season as he would have to compete against much more mature cats – and he was just a ‘baby’ after all!

Coat Like A Cloud

The campaign was on — and Spud was an absolute dream to show. He was a good traveler, ate well on the road and he kept his weight and coat all season.

He is an incredible example of a Persian show cat; short, cobby, huge eyes, sweet expression, tiny ears, beautiful roll-out doming and a spectacular coat. I really enjoyed seeing and hearing the public’s reaction when a judge would take Spud out of his cage — shock and awe both at the same time.

Spud just oozed wow factor and people were simply mesmerized looking at him. Trying to get to the ring and back without delay was impossible. Spectators wanted me to stop for photos and if I did then even more people would gather around. It was a vicious circle — a slightly crazy but still very nice experience.

Spud with a ‘fan’ Judy Bernbaum of MTNest Main Coons, visiting from the USA to attend the TICA show in Europe.

At one TICA show in Moscow early in March, every time I took Spud out of his Sturdi tent for his pre-judging grooming the aisle would become blocked with people stopping to coo and take photos of him.

A very chilled Spud on the judging table.

One little girl asked to touch Spud. As her fingers stroked his glorious coat she said that Spud was like a “cloud”. I thought she was so sweet and endearing.

“Like a cloud” (Photo by Christophe Hermeline)

France

Spud continued to dominate at the shows and zoomed to the top of the TICA standings. The absolute highlight of the show season for me was the final big show, mid-March in St Raphael on the Cote D’Azur in the south of France. I have been many times to this show. It’s set in a breathtaking location right on the marina amidst the yachts and exquisite seafood restaurants.

It was a 2-day, 10 AB ring show. I knew the show would be good for Spud. The judging line-up was tried and true. I knew they liked Spud and the count was huge!

St Raphael on the Cote D’Azur
On Sunday, Angela, Spud and the show manager posed with a French newspaper that featured an article about the cat show in St Raphael and which included Spud’s photo taken at Saturday’s show.

With 111 cats present in Championship, Spud was chosen as Best Cat nine times — and was 2nd Best Cat in the 10th ring! I was really overwhelmed as with the count Spud would smash through the 14,000 point barrier. He even had a chance to break TICA’s all time highest season point total held by a Manx.

It was also Spud’s last show. There was no reason to keep showing him. There were no shows that would have a high enough count to make a difference to his total score. Spud was so far ahead that it was mathematically impossible to catch him. We stayed home and both enjoyed a well-deserved rest.

TICA Cat Of The Year & Highest Scoring Cat In History

When the season ended, Spud officially became IW, SGC Cullykhan Licence To Kill, TICA Cat Of The Year 2014. It is the first time a cat from the United Kingdom has earned the top spot in TICA.

In capturing the top spot, Spud amassed the highest point total in the history of TICA. With a total of 14,314 points, Spud smashed the previous record of 14,155 points that had been earned by a Manx named MinusDeTails Down Pat in 1997. It was a record that had been unchallenged for 17 years.

IW, SGC Cullykhan Licence To Kill, TICA Cat Of The Year 2014 (Photo by Jane Smith)

On A Final Note…

Campaigning for Cat Of The Year takes a team effort. You need massive support at home to be able to be away for days at a time. My heartfelt thanks goes to my rock of a husband who held the fort in my absence. Also my appreciation goes to my partner in crime, Nicki, who is the forever organizer. We traveled many miles together and win or lose, we had so much silly fun. And finally my thanks to all the judges who supported Spud throughout his campaign. I am very much looking forward to flying to the USA for the Annual Awards/ Banquet the last weekend of August 2014.

As I write this, the campaign is over and Spud is still almost in full coat . I can’t quite bear the thought of shaving him down but I know it is something that I will have to do soon . . .

(Check out the last photo on this page if you want to see a retired Spud after a visit to the hairdresser . . . )

Angela with Spud
Spud shows off his “equipment” during a photo session (Photo by Jane Smith)
Photo by Jane Smith
Photo by Jane Smith
Spud at 6 months (Photo by Jane Smith)
Photo by Helmi Flick
While on a month’s break from showing in TICA in January 2014, Spud entered a GCCF joint show (2 shows running concurrently). Spud was BIS Exhibit at BOTH shows and by default was Overall BIS Exhibit. He is pictured with (left to right), Linda Martin GCCF Judge and Tania Murray handling steward. (Photo by Steve Stanton)
Photo by Steve Stanton
Spud relaxing at the St Raphael show, September 2013, aged 11 months.
Spud’s campaign included four trips to Russia. Friends and I enjoyed a night tour of Moscow after the show.
Spud in retirement — and fresh from the hairdresser. While no longer like a cloud, he does remind me of a oddly marked little panda bear!

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ABOUT THE IMAGE AT THE TOP OF THIS PAGE

IW, SGC Cullykhan Licence To Kill

Black & White Persian Male

TICA Cat Of The Year 2014
Highest Scoring Cat In The History of TICA

Born: October 2, 2012
Sire: GCCF, CFA & TICA CH Kissables Kick Your Nash
Dam: TICA IW Cullykhan Scent Of A Rose
Breeder/Owner: ANGELA MILLICAN

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