At the age of 23, is Flame the oldest cat living in Hampshire?
THE owners of a cat the equivalent of 108 years old believe they may have the oldest feline in the county.
Bob and Rhianon Gallagher, from Emsworth, live with a ginger cat called Flame – who is now 23 years old.
Now, the couple are wanting to find out if there are any other cats around that have reached a similar age.
Bob Gallagher has looked after Flame for her whole life.
He said: ‘Flame has always been very inquisitive ; she’s quite a character really.
‘There was one time when we left a really spicy curry out – I think she regrets that one, but she’s always been up to things like that.
‘I think the world record is somewhere in the late 20s, but 23 is a fair old age for a cat – she’s outlived all the other cats we have had.
‘She’s on some medication for her arthritis but aside from that she has a clean bill of health.
‘She looks after herself very well, and is of course looked after by us.
‘Flame loves playing out in the garden and is forever catching things like slow worms – those natural hunting instincts have never gone away.’
The oldest cat ever was Creme Puff, who lived until the age of 38.
Going by the 2010 Guinness World Records, Flame would be in the top 40 for the oldest cats in recorded history.
The couple say that Flame will always have a special place in their hearts, with countless memories of her escapades over the years.
Bob said: ‘Having had Flame for her whole life, she really does mean the world to me. I don’t think it’s much of a secret that she runs the house – but I really wouldn’t want it to be any other way.’
Rhianon said: ‘Flame is such a special cat to us.
‘We’ve got so many incredible memories of the many adventures she has been on in her life.
‘It’s quite amazing to think that she could be the oldest cat in Hampshire.
‘I think it would also be nice to find even more people with cats like her; there may even be an older cat lying around somewhere.’
n If you know of any cats that are older than Flame living in Hampshire, you can contact The News by emailling [email protected]