We are Nick and Simone Ensor, of Kittah Birmans, hobby breeders of Birman Cats.
It all really started in 2004, when we bought a lilac point birman kitten that we had been told was show marked.
We entered him into a show, held by The Southern and South Western Birman Cat Club, and were amazed when, later that day, he'd won overall best kitten in the show!
From then on we were hooked and went back to the same breeder later on that year, bought two girls (who became our foundation breed queens) and starting breeding kittens under the prefix of Kittah.
As our brand has grown we have never strayed from the principle that, first and foremost, our Birmans are our much loved family pets.
Any kittens we have are brought up as part of the family, in our family home, which results in all the kittens we sell being well adjusted, confident and loving.
Some 12 years on we have become experienced breeders and are well established in the cat fancy. Simone is a committee member of The Birman Cat Club and, as part of her duties, sits on the Breed Advisory Council for the Birman Breed. Nick is membership secretary for The Seal and Blue Birman Cat Club.
We regularly show our cats all over the UK (doing about 15 shows a year), and Simone quite often helps out at the shows by donning a white coat and becoming a steward for the day.
We have had lots of fabulous litters of kittens over the years and bred some very successful show cats, the most famous of which is UK and Olympic Bronze, Imperial, Grand Champion (UK & OB I GR CH) Kittah Artemis. Tess is the only entire Birman to have ever gained an Olympian title, and we are so very proud of her.
We now have a number of breed queens of all colours, including torties and tabbies, all of which we've bred ourselves. We also now have two stud boys.
Of course, things don’t always run smoothly; life isn’t like that I'm afraid.
Last year, just before we moved house, we were victims of a burglary and, aside from losing our car and a number or treasured possessions, when the burglars left they took with them four ten week old kittens!
To say we were heartbroken would be an understatement.
Amazingly, thanks to the power of Facebook and the help of local press, we were lucky enough to get some leads for the police to follow up and one of them led to the arrest of those involved.
A week after they were taken we got them back, hungry, dirty and covered in fleas.
Though all four of them had been traumatised we were just thankful to get them back, and after lots of TLC, a good bath and a course of flea treatment they soon picked up.
The two boys went to very special homes, some weeks later, and the girls who seemed most affected still live at home with us.
In 2013, we had another very special boy, Grem, who was born with a serious cleft palate defect.
Against all odds, we nursed him through to adulthood, and (being a special little boy) he used to go with us everywhere. He even had his own Facebook page!
Sadly, after numerous attempts at surgery, he lost his fight and passed away in September 2014.
We try and give our cats the best life possible and certainly don't overbreed our girls.
Unfortunately, from time to time we find that our breed queens (once neutered) don’t like being around kittens and other cats. Though it happens rarely, we sometimes find ourselves in the unfortunate position where, for the good of the cat, rehoming is the best (and right) thing to do.
If you feel you could offer that kind of one on one companionship then please do drop us a line to see if we're looking to rehome.