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PandEcats

The Premier Online Magazine
devoted to Persian & Exotic Shorthair Cats

Search
Close this search box.

PandEcats

The Premier Online Magazine devoted
to Persian & Exotic Shorthair Cats

Search
Close this search box.

(TICA) LA SGC (GCCF) GC Zendique Zut Alors

TICA’s 6th Cat of the Year 2015 and Best Cat Europe West is (TICA) LA SGC (GCCF) GC Zendique Zut Alors, more familiarly known as “Alfie”. This stunning red and white male Persian from England was bred by Jane Allen and is owned and shown by Candice Higgins. This is his story…

My name is Candice Higgins. My home is in Preston in northwest England where I am a partner in a chartered accountancy firm. I love Persian cats. Because of the demands of my job, I am not in the position to be a cat breeder, however I started showing cats in 2008 after I bought my first show baby—a black and white van Persian named Bam Bam. Bam Bam’s breeder, Margaret Thornburn, suggested that I show him. I began showing him in GCCF . . . and I was hooked.

After GCCF GC & GP Alinda’s Bam Bam, I added several more boys to my family including a gorgeous black Persian, RW SGCA Heathrose Barney Rubble, a red and white boy, QGCA Cullykhan Tinkywinky Woo and a self red, TICA RW SGCA & GCCF GRCH Heathrose Saint Elmo’s Fire. 

(upper left to right) RW SGCA Heathrose Barney Rubble, QGCA Cullykhan Tinkywinky Woo (lower left to right) TICA RW SGCA & GCCF GRCH Heathrose Saint Elmo’s Fire, GCCF GC & GP Alinda’s Bam Bam

A Twinkle In His Father’s Eye

Alfie’s story begins even before he was a twinkle in his father’s eye. His father is RW SGC Cullykhan Limited Edition, known as Edi for short. I was benched next to Edi’s owner and TICA and GCCF judge, Jane Allen of Zendique Persians & Exotics. She was showing Edi and he had an amazing show. I was impressed with his beauty but I fell in love with his sweet temperament. 

Alfie’s father, RW SGC Cullykhan Limited Edition, with judge Jean Marc Lagarde
Breeder Jane Allen (Zendique Persians & Exotics) with Alfie’s father, RW SGC Cullykhan Limited Edition, and judge Rob Seliskar.

Limited Edition began ‘working’ just a few months later and soon was siring kittens. Jane emailed me to say he had been busy with her Exotic girls and if there was a nice longhair kitten produced would I like to have one to show? My answer was an enthusiastic, YES!

Baby Alfie

In June of 2013, Jane’s Exotic girl, a tortie tabby & white named RW SGC Daisy Daisy Bumble Bea, gave birth to three babies by Limited Edition. There was a brown tabby and white longhair, a red and white longhair boy and a tortie and white Exotic girl. 

Alfie’s Exotic SH mother, RW SGC Daisy Daisy Bumble Bea (Photo by KS Digital Photography)

I live more than four hours drive away from Jane who is in the south of England. Our mutual friend, Anna McEntee, is only two hours away and regularly goes to visit Jane. Anna took photos and videos of all the babies, but especially of the red and white longhair boy that Jane called “Edi”. I was in love with Edi before I even met him in real life.

When he was 10 weeks old I traveled to Jane’s to meet him in purr-son. He spent most of the time cuddled on my knee. I think it was inevitable that we would be together. As they say. “The rest is history”.

We had always referred to the kitten as “Baby Edi” because he looked so much like his papa. Jane registered him as Zendique Zut Alors. “Zut Alors” is French… and basically means “shucks”, which was Jane’s comment when she realized he was not a shorthair around 3 weeks of age. (He was way too fuzzy).

Baby Alfie

When I picked him up at four month of age I christened him Alfie. Except for Bam Bam my other kitties all have old granddad names. I have an Elmo and Dougal. Alfie fit in nicely with with his new feline family.

Even as a kitten, Alfie had “big hair”.
Alfie at 8 months old

Alfie

From the word go Alfie had immense boning and size with a wonderful massive coat that was a challenge for me to work with. I experimented a bit and soon found the products that suited his coat best. To this day I do not shift from that special formula because I know I’ll be in big trouble. 

In full coat Alfie takes approximately three hours to dry using two powerful dryers. Throughout the process he lies on the table chilling out. When he is taken out of his pen in the judging ring there are regularly gasps from the spectators. At a show in Toulouse, France, he drew a crowd of people just wanting to take pictures of him. I must admit that it made me smile and makes all those hours of preparation worth it. 

He is a very large boy, but in proportion. He weighs in at 6 kilos (over 13 pounds) but still retains the short cobby body the standard calls for.

I showed Alfie in TICA as a kitten and he did really well by earning a Kitten Regional Award in 2014. The last show of the 2013-14 show season was his first show as an adult. He completely surprised me by earning enough points to win another Regional Award as an adult. My Alfie was a double Regional Winner!

Following his double RW wins, and after receiving encouraging critiques from the judges and fellow exhibitors, I decided to I would campaign Alfie to try for an International Win in TICA in the new show season.

Not Just A Pretty Face

Alfie is not just a beautiful cat. He has quite the personality too. And talented! He loves playing cat games on my iPad. He is actually pretty good at it. He is so good that has perfected the art of scrolling down my Facebook feed! 

In the hotel room Alfie often enjoyed an entertaining game on his iPad

My garden is cat proofed so when it’s warm the kitties can go in the garden and cool down and run around without them wandering. Alfie may be a big lad with tons of hair but that doesn’t slow him down or prevent him from behaving like a “regular” kitty. He enjoys romping and chasing bugs in the garden. He regularly comes inside with half the garden stuck in his coat.

In-between show trips, Alfie often enjoyed frolicking in the English garden, standing on his hind legs to catch a bug.

The Travel Challenges of Campaigning In Europe

During the campaign we showed all over Europe as well as the United Kingdom . . . by car, plane and boat. Alfie was always cool, calm and collected, taking everything in his stride.

We began Alfie’s campaign in Ireland. It was our first experience on a ferry. While that voyage went well, naturally, no show campaign is all smooth sailing.

During the campaign, we traveled to shows all over the the United Kingdom, to Ireland, France, Germany, Holland and Belgium. Of course, we drive on the left-hand side of the road in the United Kingdom, while most of Europe drives on the right—so driving abroad is a bit scary. My friend, Nicki Fenwick-Raven of Amisti Birmans & Kurilian Bobtails, drives abroad regularly so it doesn’t phase her. She was kind enough to let Alfie and me hitch rides with her to shows as she campaigned her Kurilian Bobtail kitten, Amisti Unawatuna.

I’ve slept in my car more than once when I was too tired to drive home safely. Alfie of course had full ensuite facilities in his large Sturdi tent in the back so he was always comfortable. There was also the time we were stuck up a snowy mountain in Germany for more than four hours. That is an experience I am in no hurry to repeat.

Alfie is very much a mummy’s boy and I think that’s mainly because we’ve spent so much one-on-one time together. But the things that have made me smile the most has been children’s reaction to him; they just are in awe and are so happy just to touch him. When Angela Millican’s daughter, Charlie, met him at a show she spent the weekend constantly stroking,cuddling him and talking to him. That is the effect Alfie has on people.

Alfie with friend and admirer, Charlie, the daughter of Angela Millican of Cullykhan Persians.
Candice with Alfie—big hair, big cat, Best Cat win.

New IW and LA Titles

The Persian class was extremely strong throughout the season. There were three stunning Persians in particular that kept coming up against each other at nearly every show; from France came Nathalie Decuzzi of Maneki Love Persians & Exotics with her gorgeous black tortie, IW SGC Dark Angel De Longua Aqua; Maryline Brun with her red & white boy, IW SGC Riascatz Sweet Love; and of course, Alfie. 

Nathalie, Maryline and I developed a great friendship, sort of a UK-French union that cheered each other on throughout the campaign. At the end, our three kitties were the top three Persian cats internationally in TICA.

Alfie ended the TICA 2014-15 season as 6th Best Cat internationally and Best Cat in the EW region (Europe West) and added the IW title to his name. His IW combined with his two previous RWs meant that Alfie had completed the requirements for the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award—and so, at the tender age of just shy of two years old, his official name in TICA became LA SGC Zendique Zut Alors! 

Friendly TICA competitors from left to right: Best Cat IW SGC Dark Angel De Longua Aqua, 6the Best Cat LA SGC Zendique Zut Alors and 9th Best Cat, IW SGC Riascatz Sweet Love (from left to right) Photo by Katkrin Gerz, Kat Photography — Photo by Amy Thomson, Inxi Photography — Photo by Christophe Hermeline

What an incredible year… filled with treasured memories. I had an amazing time and met many wonderful people and their cats. So many people supported and contributed to Alfie’s success, but especially Nicki, Angela and Anna, and Jane — no words can thank you enough.

But this is not the end of Alfie’s story… He has now turned his attention to showing at GCCF shows in the United Kingdom. As of August 2015, he is two certificates away from his Imperial Grand Champion title. He has won Best Overall Persian on five occasions. I’m hoping to bring him back to TICA next season where he will be shown in the Alter classes. 

I am looking forward to seeing how he does without his pom poms!

More photos of (TICA) LA SGC (GCCF) GC Zendique Zut Alors

Photo by Amy Thomson, Inxi Photography
Photo by Amy Thomson, Inxi Photography
Photo by Amy Thomson, Inxi Photography
Alfie waiting to be judged.
A candid photo of Alfie shows off his magnificent coat.
Alfie impresses TICA judge Phillipa Holmes at show in Doncaster, UK, February 2014.
Alfie with judge Francesca Gagern in Peterborough, UK.
Alfie with judge Delsa Rudge.
Alfie’s traveling companion, TICA IW, QGCH Amisti Unawatuna, Kurilian Bobtail Male.

Article copyright © PandEcats.com. All Rights Reserved. Photos copyrighted by the individual photographers.
Copying or redistribution of this article is strictly prohibited without the express written permission of PandEcats.com.

ABOUT THE IMAGE AT THE TOP OF THIS PAGE

(TICA) LA SGC (GCCF) GC Zendique Zut Alors

Red and White Persian Male

TICA’s 6th Best Cat 2014-2015
TICA’s EW Best Cat 2014-2015

Born June 21st, 2013
Sire: RW SGC Cullykhan Limited Edition
Dam: RW SGC Daisy Daisy Bumble Bea
Breeder: Jane Allen
Owner: Candice Higgins

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