Friday, 7 June 2013

The Ulvika Rules of Moving House

The Ulvika Rules of Moving House

By Darcy 

Moving home is a traumatic life experience for humans, but when you are a member of a family of 9 Ulvika Norwegian Forest Cats, you approach the topic with trepidation.

The first we heard of our impending return to Yorkshire was on Mother’s Day, when I overheard Ulvika Management discussing how nice it would be to return “home”. She was in long discussions with the owner of my grand children, Ulvika Martha Hunter Bills and Ulvika Atticus Skywalker Rasputin of Freshfield. Martha, Cuss and I have had lengthy discussions about the  nature of our owners’ relationship. We were told they “worked” together for 11 years. But it seems to us that they did very little other than stand around chatting and ‘analysing spreadsheets of very dull statistics about Local Authority Performance’. Doesn’t sound like work to us....

Humans talk and talk over their phones –but I twitched my fabulous ear furnishings when I heard the phrase “and you’ll help us with the cats, won’t you?”

I immediately called an emergency meeting of the Ulvika COBRA Committee  set up for the purpose of discussing imminent erratic human behaviour that might affect us. Naturally, I chair this committee, as I am the most vocal and by far the most decisive of the family and the others tend to do as I say – or I simply drone on.... and on....and my followers on Twitter will verify - but I digress. “Not again” was the overall reaction, and several older Ulvikas wandered off for a quick biscuit or two, but I had to remind them that each move we have made has been quite successful as long as the humans understand the rules. I thought you might like me to share them with you.

Ulvika Rules of Moving House

  • If a move looks inevitable, ensure that your owners are reminded of any bad habits you may have picked up over the years. Immediately. This will ensure they look at an alternative property bearing these habits in mind. The clawing of wooden banisters is a case in point. So is peeing by the front door on particularly good quality carpet.

  • If any of the younger female members of the family are about to call, ensure that they are booked in for several weeks with their respective stud’s owner,  so they do not become difficult or distressed during a move.

  • Any relevant “cat paperwork” should be kept to hand in case of emergencies.  Humans do not enjoy searching for vaccination certificates and blood test results when they are lurking in packing cases full of files labelled “Cats/General 2013”.

  • Never allow humans to book removal firms before first checking that their best friends are available at least a week beforehand to deconstruct and reassemble cat pens and cat runs at the new home.

  • A visit to a large pet store is always a good idea to investigate whether there are any cat carriers on offer and purchase immediately.

  • Assigning a family of 9 cats to 4 carriers can be tricky. We don’t all travel well. Neutered males usually don’t even notice they’re on the move, but we girls have our preferences on long journeys, and experience has taught our owners that the two who are most likely to vomit mid M62 are my mother, Daisy, and sadly, myself. This last move was a perfect example of this. I had an accident just 5 minutes after leaving the old house, and hence an emergency stop off in the Aintree Odean Cinema car park was called for so we could be cleaned up before embarking on the aforementioned M62.

  • Food is a tricky subject, as I am very fond of it. I do, however, recommend that only dry food is served the night before travelling, with plenty of water available on the journey.

  • The mode of transport is important. Ulvika cats prefer a large Volvo Estate, but put up with a  Peugeot Partner if we have to. These vehicles accommodate 2 very large comfy carriers and litter trays and afford us a good view of whoever is driving.

  • On arrival, it is important to realise that owners will be tired, cross and in need of a kettle and teaspoon. Sit patiently in your carrier and then emit the odd loud call, or feign a fight, so they remember you are there. They will then move you to an empty room with a “Beware of the Cats” sign on the door. Be patient, you will be allowed to explore later. After they have found the teaspoon.

  • This is the fun bit. Exploring a new house, scent marking your territory and claiming the best windowsill is always more fun than the human preoccupation with paperwork and unpacking. However, if they’ve used packing paper, then hours of fun can be had chasing scrunched up balls of the stuff around the house.

  • Establish where your trays are and also where your food will be served. Once drinking fountains have been plugged in, deter younger members of the family from using them as a bidet. It is also crucial to locate where humans will have lunch. This is a good time for being given titbits of sandwich filling,or crisps. Be one step ahead - sit patiently, awaiting the first piece of cold ham thrown in your direction.

  • Maintain your pecking order. A change of environment can cause other members of your feline family to mount a sudden challenge to your superiority. This must be stamped on immediately. Humans will attribute the odd tiff to having moved, so if you have been yearning to have a go at one of your older Aunties, now is the time to grab the opportunity while you could easily get away with it.

  • It is highly likely that younger, more fertile members of your family will now return. It is also likely that they may be expecting a litter of kittens, though they might not be aware of it. This, too, can lead to outbreaks of hormonal behaviour, which will be excused by humans, so don’t let this chance of a spat slip by.

  • The advent of kittens is a joyful period of time. Extra titbits and tasty food is available, and should be taken advantage of at every opportunity. As chief midwife, I am always extra vigilant at this time, and assert my authority frequently as the expectant Mum will need my attention after 63 days, and must also be aware that I am in charge.

  • Do remember, if you are a social media personality like I am, to inform your followers of your new contact details. If you don’t want uninvited visitors, be vague on Facebook and Twitter as to the precise location of your house.

  • If these Rules are followed, you will have a happy experience in your new environment. Be kind to each other and to your humans. They don’t seem to follow the same rules as we do, and can become very stressed when moving home. Give them some extra attention and purr more than usual. They love you. And you own them.....

©Jane Bancroft  All inquiries re available Ulvika kittens to

Saturday, 30 June 2012

Ulvika Norwegian Cats and Kittens June 2012

Due to popular demand, most Ulvika followers simply want to see photos of the family - so here is a selection of photographs taken in June of the Ulvika Norwegian Forest Cats and Kittens relaxing at home. The kittens are now independent little individuals, each with their own personalities. Gilligan is the fun-loving leader of the pack, who is forgiven any misdemeanour as he is such a loving little fellow. Xavier is very affectionate and purrs the loudest of the whole litter. Harlequin is the biggest, most stunning of the boys, with the most enormous ears and feet, and Matilda has taken over as the leader of the females, always choosing the sunniest spot and very keen to have her photo taken, but not so keen to sit still. Jubilee is now happily settled in Holmfirth, a simply beautiful silver tabby girl, who has already made friends with a very large dog. Cilla, the solid black kitten, and Rolf, the smaller brown tabby are growing fast and very lively and full of mischief. Mystique never stands still for long enough to have her photo taken, unlike the older members of the family who simply adore the moment when the camera comes out and they get the opportunity to pose...either for snaps for Face book or Twitter.

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Ulvika Darcy and Ulvika Blossom share an armchair

Ulvika Harlequin

Ulvika Rolf

Ulvika Xavier

Fun and games in the hall, Matilda, Gilligan and Mystique

Ulvika Jubilee

Ulvika Harlequin

Ulvika Xavier and Ulvika Matilda

Ulvika Cilla, Xavier and Matilda

Matilda does her impression of a bat

Ulvika Darcy - grandmother to the kittens

Ulvika Darcy

Mother and daughter - Ulvika Blossom and Ulvika Misty

Ulvika Blossom - the matriarch of the Ulvika family

Xavier with a grubby nose...

Rolf has a snooze with his granny

Ulvika Jubilee

Xavier, Bono and Misty

Ulvika Adiva, Bono and Misty

Ulvika Myrtle, a proud father

Ulvika Matilda, a blue and high white beauty

Darcy, Myrtle and Adiva take over the furniture

Harlequin, Jubilee and Rolf

Ulvika Gilligan

Gilligan on top of his scratching post



Great Granny Daisy finds a comfy place to sleep

Ulvika Xavier and Ulvika Cilla

Xavier fast asleep

Ulvika Darcy likes to control the remote...

Ulvika Mystique asleep in the sunshine

Darcy grabs the best place in front of a sunny window in the morning

Ulvika Cilla

Ulvika Jubilee

Ulvika Cilla

Ulvika Harlequin

Ulvika Audrey (Rich Dark Honeydew)

Gilligan, Mystique and Rolf

Ulvika Xavier

Darcy and Lilia relax

Bono snoozes on a box

Ulvika Daisy does some dusting on top of the bookcase

Darcy prefers Private Eye...

Gilligan refines his IT skills

Gilligan shows off his whiskers

 Harlequin and Gilligan

Harlequin and Gilligan

Ulvika Lilia still feeds all the kittens last thing at night and loves every minute

Ulvika Xavier



Ulvika Xavier

Xavier finds this book a bit heavy going...

Xavier does love his bookcase

Ulvika Kai  - one of our first kittens, and still one of the most beautiful - son of Blossom and lives in Elland with Elaine and Nick.

Gilligan showing off his white paws