Charley the Haltwhistle hero cat wins national award

CHARLEY the cat has won a national award after impressing judges with her life-saving skills.

Charley the cat and owner Susan Marsh-Armstrong
Charley the cat and owner Susan Marsh-Armstrong

CHARLEY the cat has won a national award after impressing judges with her life-saving skills.

The black-and-white moggy was the toast of the National Cat Awards after her diabetic owner Susan Marsh-Armstrong told how Charley sprang into action to save her life.

Susan, 47, had collapsed on the bathroom floor of the family home in Haltwhistle, Northumberland, after suffering a potentially fatal hypoglycemic attack in the middle of the night.

Her husband Kevin, 49, slept soundly on, unaware that his wife was seriously ill, but Charley leapt on the bed and continually licked Kevin’s face and pawed his hand until he woke up, then led him to the bathroom.

There Kevin was able to give his wife a life-saving glucose injection.

After hearing of Charley’s heroics, which happened last December, judges in the Cats Protection National Cat Awards made her a finalist in their search for Hero Cat of the Year 2012.

Yesterday Susan and Kevin travelled from Northumberland to London’s Savoy Hotel for a star-studded awards ceremony, where Charley was named the winner in her category.

Model Lucy Pinder judged the category and told Susan personally how amazed she was by Charley.

Susan, who also suffers from emphysema, said: “It was amazing, strange and wonderful all at the same time.

“Charley missed the awards because she was at home, but she wouldn’t have been too impressed ... there were far too many people there.

“I couldn’t believe it when Lucy Pinder read out her name, but everyone I spoke to was astounded by what she had done. I’ve always said she’s amazing though. It’s usually only dogs who you hear of for things like this, not cats,” said Susan, who has a 20-year-old daughter Samantha, who is also her full-time carer.

“I have no recollection of what happened after I went to the bathroom, but when I came round Charley and Kevin were next to me and she was purring away. Kevin explained she had woken him up and raised the alarm and had not left my side since.

“Without Charley I could have died, or at the very least ended up in hospital.”

Charley wins a huge star-shaped trophy and a framed photograph.

Journalists

David Whetstone
Culture Editor
Graeme Whitfield
Business Editor
Mark Douglas
Newcastle United Editor
Stuart Rayner
Sports Writer