Our Sully, the King of Cats, is no more – Susan Morrison

Sully showed remarkably good judgement when he covered Ruth Davidson’s face on a leaflet with his paws (Picture: PA)Sully showed remarkably good judgement when he covered Ruth Davidson’s face on a leaflet with his paws (Picture: PA)
Sully showed remarkably good judgement when he covered Ruth Davidson’s face on a leaflet with his paws (Picture: PA)
Susan Morrison’s cat had long conversations with teenagers, loved the Yorkshire husband’s beard, and attacked Tory party leaflets.

Sully, our big lovable brown cat, left us last week. Peter the vet was very kind, but there was nothing more that could be done for our old boy. The end was quiet and dignified and we were all there. A fitting farewell to a beautiful cat who had been a member of our family for 17 years.

He was a good age, 20 years old. We got him when he was three. He had been the breeding sire at the cattery. Basically, he was the king of the kittens. To this day I see cats wining Best of Breed in shows who clearly have ol’ Sully’s genes in there somewhere.

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Sully was a Burmese, a notoriously affectionate breed. You didn’t pat Sully. You wore him for several hours.

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My son near broke his heart crying. When he was going through a rough patch in his life, his cat was always there to comfort him. Sully was smart enough to read the time. How else would he know it was time for his young master to come home from school?

My daughter was red-eyed and cuddled him to the end. She and Sully had long conversations when she was a teenager. I heard them. He was a terrible blether. You started talking to him and he just would not shut up.

You should have seen his face

Even my stoic Yorkshire husband cracked. Sully was his pal who loved rubbing his soft satiny head against my husband’s face for attention, and nearly always when there was something good to watch on the telly.

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He’s a bit Clooney with the facial hair is my husband, and Sully seemed to like the scratchiness. On one notorious occasion my husband shaved his beard off, without consulting the family in advance, I may add.

Sully raced for his evening tickle, boffed his head into my husband’s chin then recoiled in horror. They say cats don’t do expressions. You should have seen his face.

For a while Sully had a less than pleasant habit. He took to peeing all over the post. This wasn’t a problem with the relentless tide of paper that we get from Iceland, Farm Foods and double glazing firms, but it takes ages to dry off a new bank card.

Don’t try to dry one in the oven. It doesn’t work and you have to go into the branch to explain what happened.

Long and peaceful rest

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We learned to race for the post the minute it hit the mat, but every time the politicians got going, life got problematic. During at least one general election Sully managed to soak leaflets from Lib Dems, SNP and the Green Party. He buried the Labour one in his litter tray. Perhaps he was looking for a more absorbent liner.

The Tory party leaflet got stuck in the letterbox. No worries. Our boy was young and fit then. It took him four goes, but he leapt with the grace of a major league basketball player.

He got it on the ground and stuck his paws over Ruth Davidson’s face, howling like a household lion. I have to admit I let him have his moment on that one.

So, farewell, Sully. King of cats. You deserve a good, long and peaceful rest.

Don’t pee behind the Pearly Gates. Saint Peter might not like it.