THE BEAST of Bexley, a cat the same age as Dizzee Rascal and a ‘voldemog’ cat with one ear – we have seen them all.
News Shopper has shortlisted its favourite felines after a rescue charity offered its top mousers to help with the Palace of Westminster’s infestation.
Battersea Dogs and Cats Home has carefully vetted some candidates to bring some order into the Palace of Westminister after MPs complained bitterly about the mice running riot in the corridors of power.
This proactive approach inspired us to share some of the top moggies we have known over the years.
Top five felines which have graced the pages of News Shopper
1. A five-fingered cat from Welling was returned to her family in Welling last December after going on the prowl for seven months.
Richard Ray, 72, of Westbrooke Crescent, Welling, had given up hope of seeing his pet Misty ever again.
He said: "I was looking on Battersea’s website for a cat and there she was with all her fingers and thumbs, we knew immediately it was her because there aren’t many cats who can give you a ‘thumbs up’."
2. In October last year an animal hospital appealed for help in tracing the owners of a one-eared stray cat found in a Mottingham basement.
The white-and-black puss, nicknamed Teddy by vets and was found in Sidcup Road a few months earlier. He has also earned a nickname ‘Voldemog’ for his likeness to the Harry Potter villain.
The distinctive-looking moggy was already missing an ear following skin cancer surgery and had to have his second removed when more cancerous tissue was discovered by vets at Blue Cross Animal Hospital in Victoria.
3. Another cat which tugged on our heart strings was Gert, the puss who had to be rescued by firefighters and resuscitated with an oxygen mask after being trapped in a burning basement.
The four-year-old puss was put in an oxygen tent for two days, and had to have tubes inserted in her stomach to feed her following her ordeal on September 28 last year.
A few weeks later she was helped to walk and lick her food thanks to the tireless work of vets at charity Celia Hammond Animal Trust in Lewisham.
4. The oldest cat in the world was reportedly discovered living in Orpington in August last year.
Cola the black cat turned 28 – 140 in cat years – in November, trumping 27-year-old Wadsworth, a cat from Bedfordshire who was previously thought to hold the crown. He is apparently the same age as Dizzee Rascal.
Cola was born in Cottage Avenue, Bromley Common, in 1985, when Margaret Thatcher was Prime Minister and Back to the Future topped the box office.
Owner Mrs Goldsmith puts Cola's long life down to "a lot of love and attention and just being looked after".
The 66-year-old said: "She cannot jump up and down like she used to but she can still get up into her chair.
"She may not be as sprightly as she used to be but she's still got some zip in her."
5. There are also the sightings of a big cat - known as the Beast of Bexley or the Palace Puma (potentially different cats or perhaps just one which gets around a bit).
Journalist Helen Barrett, was out for a walk with her family in Crystal Palace before fleeing from the Palace Puma, terrified.
She said: "At first we couldn’t believe what we were seeing.
"It was black, the size of a labrador, but walking like a cat.
"It had to be feline.”
The Beast of Bexley was seen by a man who did not wish to be named in 2008.
He told the News Shopper: "I thought to myself, 'Bloody hell! That's the biggest moggy I've ever seen', and then thought, 'It must be a dog'."
Which is your favourite?