Meet the Dawnmist Fluffy Kitties!

Welcome to our special cat page which includes as many of the cutest and funniest pictures we could find. All our cats are rescued, although in this day and age it is more often thought that cats rescue their owners! You can now also see them on film by watching the video link to Youtube below!

Both are rescue cats which we have adopted through one of the local cat shelters. They are fairly young at no more than 2 years of age (as of 2012) and have settled in quickly and the other four cats have accepted them exceedingly well. They were even discovered curled up together on top of the pottery kiln after only a few days - we think they might be related although we do not know for certain.

Heather chose and named Kyphi whose name is after that of a temple incense used in ancient Egypt. Natalie chose and named Caoimhe whose name is Celtic, meaning beautiful. An easier way to spell it is Keeva -- which is how it's pronounced.

Keeva's first encounter with our other cats was with Fluffball, who in true welcoming style accepted her at once with a big lick on the nose. Kyphi showed her acceptance of our other cats by taking straight away to Kali's favourite nesting box. Kali showed her acceptance in return by burrowing a new nest next to her inside a box of padded envelopes.

We are thrilled at how quickly they took to their new home and they have both been discovering the joy of having a good choice of food, lots of space to run around, as well as neat places to nap when they have worn themselves out from all the excitement.

A game they both like to play, but especially Keeva is "Paw Hockey" with small cubes of Spam (I mean the alleged food, not junk emails!) which she flips all around the kitchen floor and "hunts", pretending they are mice, before finally ripping them to shreds with her claws and devouring her "prey". Heather has filmed these Spam Chaser events and plans to release a short movie on Youtube soon. No doubt there will be plenty more good times to share in coming months.

Caoimhe takes to a warm bed on her first day / Kyphi resting her chin after an exciting first day

I'm KALI... named after the Hindu Goddess Kali -- you know, the one who disguises herself to look like a tiger, goes berserk and trashes half the Universe... so it's rather an appropriate name for me with my "garden tiger" looks and psycho-kitty behaviour!

Kali is younger than Maeve, Fluffball and Mina, but older than Caoimhe and Kyphi. She came to us several years ago as an RSPCA rescue cat, and she had suffered some very nasty abuse by her previous owner. It didn't take long for our "kitty therapy" to make Kali feel a lot better and for her to overcome her fears of people, and she is now a very affectionate and playful cat. Kali is big: Although when the pictures were taken she was not yet full-grown, she is pretty huge for a female cat. Not fat, just all-over big and muscular!

Since we've had her, Kali has earned a reputation for being goofy, or "cute but dim". She is always doing crazy, daft things -- like doing roly-polies on the roof in the sunshine, forgetting she's up on a roof and getting so carried away that she rolls right off the edge! She has done this sort of thing numerous times and is well-known at the local vet's for this reason, though we're pleased to say that her injuries have only ever been minor.

Another goofy characteristic that Kali shows profusely is an ability to get comfortable, and even sleep, in the most unbelievable positions -- she's perfectly happy upside-down or twisted like a contortionist! She loves having her tummy tickled vigorously and rolls around in a frenzy of weird positions when we do this.

Because of the "goofy Kali syndrome", we have to supervise Kali rather more closely than the other kitties when she's out in the garden. She also doesn't seem to have quite got the hang of the cat- flap, preferring to climb on the extension roof and meow to be let in the upstairs window!

In Memoriam...

Sadly, even with the best care, kitties never live as long as we would like them to. The rest of this page is dedicated to our kitty friends who are no longer with us in body, though they will never leave us in spirit, and we remember their lives, characters and eccentricities with joy. That's why we have left the pages for the most part written as though each cat is still alive, with just an introductory paragraph describing how and when we came to be parted from them.

Rest in Peace, Fluffball

Fluffball passed away in June 2020 at an incredible age of almost 21.

Here I am posing for the cover of "Fluffball Magazine"... what do you mean you have never heard of it?!?

Heather named me Fluffball because when I was a kitten I was a tiny "ball of fluff" but my real name (seldom used) is Charista -- which means joy and happiness. My favorite pastime is giving friends a lick and sometimes the only thing that alerts you to my presence is when you find yourself being licked, by which time it is too late to avoid this honour!

I used to hunt leaves when I was a kitten but these days I find more stuck in my bushy tail, along with bits of twig, seeds, spider-webs, slugs, and any other wildlife that cares to use me as a taxi service! I am very independent and outdoor natured, although I will choose a nice warm cushion on long winter days allowing strokies and tickles when I am in the mood and of course plenty of licks in return.

In the summer months I spend time with the sheep although those ticks sometimes get toooo friendly and I have to have them removed, which brings to mind the famous song by Pink Floyd, you know the one... "all in all it's just another tick in the 'Ball". Heather has composed a song which she hopes to finish called "Song for Charista". It is about a warm sleepy summer day in the long grass listening to the sheep and the birds.

Me as a kitten awaiting my tummy tickle and later in the day... shssssssssshhhh I'm composing

I'll ring for service when I am ready and think you need to be licked.

I'm the lightest and fluffiest of them all!

Rest in Peace, dear Mina

Mina passed away in September 2018. She was a much loved cat and had a long life with many years after being rescued. Rest in Peace Mina.

I'm MINA... my name means "Child of Love".

Mina joined our kitty family in 2005. She was found while we were searching for Macha (see story below) and had been confirmed to be abandoned in the area for quite a long time so was skinny as a snake but is much healthier now thanks to all those Whiskas sachets she's been stuffing. She settled in well and is generally fine with the other kitties around the place apart from occasional loud hissing!

Mina started life as a feral (semi-wild) cat and, although she is now perfectly tame and very affectionate with us, she remains timid towards strangers. Her favorite games are chasing after tin-foil balls or rolled up paper, shedding trees or playing hide & seek behind a tree or post while trying to catch some grass.

Mina after a visit to the vets... I'm not sure I enjoyed that!

Rest in Peace, dear Maeve

Sadly, Maeve is no longer with us, and as we usually do, we are keeping her web page as her memorial.

Maeve passed away peacefully on 22 April 2016, aged a few weeks under 17. She had a fast-growing and untreatable cancer and kidney failure. But we were with her at the end and made sure that she knew she was loved, and she'd had a long and happy life.

Praste mukli dre o tanopre, miri kamlori Maeve!
(Run free in heaven, my sweet Maeve)

My name means Celtic War Goddess! I can recycle a fair-sized cardboard box in seconds by first sitting on it, followed by complete shredding with my claws. I more often go by the name of "fluffy trouble" because I am always up to mischief and my sheer size usually causes things to topple when I am around. I was a tiny kitten when young like my sister Fluffball but I have become rather exceedingly large (not all down to my appetite I must add) and people who encounter me usually exclaim in bewildered fright "My! That's a big cat!" I am one of the largest in the region; a great shadow that causes a total eclipse of the sun when I take my place nearby, truly a beast of Devon and I can tell a story or two!

Just want to let you know that I REALLY enjoy fish! If there is food around I will be right there and even though it is perhaps your meal I might share some with you. I will eat and eat and eat especially if it is fish. Did I tell you I like fish?

Rest in Peace precious little Macha

Sadly, Macha is no longer with us, and as with Mori and Maeve, we are keeping her web page as her memorial.

We acquired Macha as a rescue cat early in 2001, although she was already adult, so we never really knew how old she was. Despite the ups and downs she had with her health (see below) she was with us for nine long years. In June 2010 we discovered she had bowel cancer, and although our vets tried everything they could, she just didn't have the strength to pull through after the massive surgery needed to clear out the cancer, and passed away quietly and without pain on 17th June 2010.

We were terribly grief-stricken by the sudden loss of our dear, special Macha... and in fact as a direct result, Natalie was admitted to hospital some five days later, and it took more than a year for her health to recover to what it was before we lost Macha.

I'm Macha...

My name, chosen by Natalie, means Goddess of trouble and strife! Well I'm far too cute for that and how could any cat outdo Maeve for being a fluffy trouble maker? Heather calls me "Macha Bunty Boo" because I like to bunt (note for non-Cat-People: 'Bunting' is when a cat nuzzles you with great enthusiasm to exchange recognition scents with you). I love to have digestive biscuit dipped in Heather's coffee and cooled for breakfast! I also like to curl up on laps and be the centre of attention at all times.

I was rescued when I was abandoned as a young kitty to walk the streets... found my way to one of the nearby vets where there was a friendly nurse who found me a home... I fit in well here and get the most attention because I am small and cute. But my first night here was a bit unsettled as Heather will explain in her own words...

We had a bit of drama with her the second morning. We had to keep her in for a few days to make sure she did not wander off or get chased off by the other cats but on accidentally leaving the cat flap unlocked overnight she vanished. We both searched around the house but there was no sign, so we began to realise she had gone off... So I decided to get dressed and open the garden gate and go up into the field in case she was nearby, but nothing was seen or heard. so I wandered right up into the corner of the field where the kitties often go, and Fluffball and Maeve followed me. It was cold and windy and over the breeze after a few moments I could hear something faint... looked around... nothing... then something made me look up... There she was, 12 feet up a tree in the farmer's field!!! Cat located.

So I told Nali I'd found her and we decided to take the loft ladder and climb over the barbed wire fence and I tried to reach her, but she was too high and she looked cold and was shaking.

Nali then called the Fire Brigade because she is disabled and myself not too good on ladders! Then the RSPCA, and they said they'd get back to us. In the meantime I decided I was now awake enough after my bit of breeze to take the ladder back... along with a climbing harness and some rope. Nali joined me (on the ground, though!) and I went up the ladder again and after about 25 minutes of grabbing her and having her cling with her nails to the tree and also my head, I grabbed her and Nali let out the rope so I could get down the ladder without her jumping back up.

Soooooooooooooooo... she was finally back indoors as if nothing had ever happened and was kept in for a few days longer. Her second and third ventures out were not so troublesome and she's been as good as gold ever since! I wonder why? We named the tree "Macha's Tree".

Sadly Macha suffers from epileptic fits as the result of an early throat infection which spread to her brain. When she was first with us she was hardly able to make a sound but she usually manages to be very vocal if she needs to go to the vet. On one occasion Natalie was worried about her in case she was having a fit and used a small stool to try to reach her on a special high shelf we have. We added a special safety rail so she would not fall off, however, on this occassion, Natalie fell off the stool and broke her ribs! She had used to safety rail to grab on to when the stool gave way and it came off in her hand! Macha was safe and sound, but Natalie needed a trip to the hospital.

You WILL give me strokies and tickles otherwise I'll stand here until you do!

We had a serious scare in June 2005 when Macha disappeared after having one of her fits. We searched eveywhere, put posters up, dropped leaflets around the neighbourhood and even got articles on radio and in the press asking people to look out for her. After more than two months missing, we had given her up for lost, thinking that she had had a fatal fit somewhere and we simply couldn't find her. We knew that without her epilepsy medication she would be quite helpless and unable to fend for herself.

Then, amazingly, we got a call from our vet saying Macha had been found alive, though very malnourished and suffering badly with her epilepsy. After a couple of days in the animal hospital, she came home to begin the long process of nursing her back to health. It turned out that there was an astonishing story to how she had been found...

What had happened was that Fluffball had found Macha, well away from home and very sick, and had tried to lead her home. Macha collapsed in the street, so Fluffball (with stunning intelligence!) went to the nearest house with a cat (easy to tell by smell if you're a cat), sat on the step and howled until the woman in the house came out, then led her to where Macha was lying. Believing initially that Macha had been in a road accident, the woman rushed her to the vet. The vet realised that she was epileptic rather than injured, scanned her ID chip and realised she was our Macha.

After two months of intensive nursing, during which Natalie slept on a mattress beside Macha to be with her 24/7, she was returned to a healthy weight and had recovered as much as was possible. With the help of the vet we were able to change her epilepsy medications to a better regime, and since then she has had no major fits at all, just petit mal epilepsy, which is fairly harmless. Macha is now partially disabled as a result of her ordeal: she's not very steady on her feet and can't jump or climb any more, and needs extra care and attention as well as a special diet because her digestive system suffered badly from over two months' starvation. But she's not in any discomfort, she's happy and always her normal affectionate self. We give her lots of special attention and care, and Heather has built a special section of our garden that is safe for Macha and that she can't get out of to get lost again.

Macha, August 2005 - Not very well, but safely returned and alive!

Macha always enjoyed assisting with new projects in the studio - Quality control of course!

Requiesce in pace, preciosa Mori

Sadly, Mori is no longer with us. We are keeping her page and pictures here on our web site as her memorial.

Mori had a long and happy life, almost fifteen years, after being rescued from a very tough start in life. She was a beautiful and very affectionate pet whom we both adored, and was the 'grand old lady' of our family of cats. I shall never forget her funny habit of going into paroxysms of ecstasy whenever her fur was combed, and the way she used to jump on our laps and beg to be groomed, and I've never met another cat with such a loud purr when this was done.

She passed away peacefully on 16th January 2008 after a short illness, and her ashes were scattered on the green hillside overlooking our home, where she used to sit and sunbathe in summer. I am sure that her spirit is not far away, probably enjoying a plate of fish and a nice lie down in the sunshine.

I'm Mori, a magical black cat. I came to Exeter when Natalie met with Heather and moved down here. Originally I was rescued as a kitten from a building site when I ran into one of those big long ceramic drain pipes and stayed there... next thing I knew there were a load of big hairy builders tipping the tube up and down and poking things down to get me out... of course I stuck my ground although it was like a fairground ride! Eventually they managed to persuade me to come out and I was found a home with Natalie who was able to calm me down and tame me. Life has been pretty good ever since and I'm getting on in years now so I guess I'm classed as an OAP! I also suffer from arthritis and prefer to hide inside in the winter where it's warm.

For a long time I was boss around here but then some other kitties arrived. I tried to frighten them off my territory but they kinda took over the place - yes, the whole place including all my favorite sleeping places... on the bed, in the wardrobe. They even scoff all my favorite foods. After a few years I didn't mind them so much but I'm the boss and I still have to hisssss to keep them in order. My favourite pastimes are having a tickle under the chin and eating 'Iams'. I'm very partial to a nice piece of freshly cooked fish.

A long while ago I decided to pop out for an evening walk (like us felines do) and saw a cute fluffy field mouse. I decided to pick her up and take her home as a gift... when I got home Natalie saw me carrying her so I ran into the lounge and let go of my find there which ran off. This was at three in the morning so getting every one out of bed to look for a mouse was not appreciated. Thing is, this little mouse was only a baby and too young to be let go again - some other cats in the neighbourhood like to eat them whereas I like to play. So, she was kept as a pet and looked after. More about her below.

Here are the words of a song Heather wrote about Mori, they are very simple so don't be shy, sing along...

Fluffy Mori
Fluffy Mori
Fluffy Mori
Fluffy Mori, Fluffy Mori, Fluffy Mori, Fluffy Mori, Fluffy Mori

(repeat this song 50 times every half an hour for full effect)


You are feeeline VERY sleepy... very very sleepy...

You WILL hand over your meal of freshly cooked tender fish to us immedietely because WE want it!
Preferably divided into equal portions and served on the best custom made porcelain Dawnmist Studio plates with our individual names on... oh and make sure you blow on the fish to cool it to the right temperature for us before we eat it all up!

Sammy from number 77 drops in now and then, seen here with Heather's Snow Cat 2010

"Long" Maeve kindly shares her window place with "little" Macha

Cats on TV... of course we always try to ensure we get on film when local TV presenters come to visit.

Kitties enjoy "kiln-bathing" when the pottery is being fired... sometimes they will all get on with each other so that they can get a warm place.

Fluffball and Maeve hunting together as kittens... and later in life sharing their special in-home balcony

Kitties like to sit on the steps in the garden when warm and soak in the sunshine

A Yule cartoon by Heather... spot the cat. More Cartoons on Heather's Cartoon Page!

Other Fluffy Creatures

I'm Chipie, a field mouse. I was caught by Mori while I was wandering too far from my nest. My mum kept warning me but I ignored her, next thing I knew I was in a luxury palace of a cage with lots of nice warm bedding, endless supplies of nice food and plenty of attention. I often popped out of my nest, night or day, and had some food and I was watched by three sets of hungry kitty eyes, but don't worry... I'm safe cos after being around for 3 long mouse years I'm in the little mouse nest in the sky now. I passed away peacefully in my sleep and there are lovely wild flowers planted all around my resting place.

Heather thought also that visitors to this page might like to have a special treat and join in with my Fluffy Shrew song...
Feel free if you want to sing along with me... the words are nice and simple

"Fluffy little shrew"
"Fluffy little SHREW"
"Fluffy little Shroooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooohohohohooh"
"Flllllluuuuuuurrrrrrrrfffffffyyyyy little Shrew"

There, does that feel better? It also helps if you sway a little while singing it and take a deep breath between verse 100 and 101.

Hope you enjoyed viewing and do have a look around the rest of the Dawnmist site...