|The Later Years
the co-operation, friendship and mutual support which our
breeders had shown to one another for many years all fell apart
1999. This was definitely due, at least in part, to what lay
clause in the previous Timeline - ‘Breed gene pool reviewed by
breed founder ( Dr T Straede)
and less vigorous or poor type cats desexed and placed in pet homes.’
We had an FIP problem, not just me, but all of us - I took
single cat to the Sydney University Vet School for testing – but they
recorded Australian Mist as being one of the breeds in which FIP was
most prevalent. I knew there was problem, I spent a fortune on testing
(through a lab in WA) – and as a result, cleaned up my gene pool
have had only a single recurrence - from mating 2 old lines together).
I urged all the other breeders to do likewise
- and many did, but whether or not those who broke away did so,
is unknown to me.
Below is the text taken from ‘On the Spot’, December 1999, as it was circulated to members. It is my belief that ‘truth will out’, and as 13 years have now passed, and these matters have become both obscure, and unknown to many present owners (and breeders) of Australian Mist, many half truths and distortions are now in circulation and it seems to me time to clear the air – and republish this article. This speech was given at the Annual Award giving party December 1999, and published in ‘On the Spot’, December 1999. This event was rapidly followed by the founding of the AMCFA Inc, after the dissenters had departed. It is given in full, though some parts are not particularly relevant to the rupture, but do give some feel for other aspects of our history.
“I would like to title this party ‘Old Home Week’ to commemorate a number of coincidental events.
It is ten years since we celebrated our first two Spotted Mist Champions - the famous Raffles, a beautiful brown neuter owned and bred (despite his Nintu prefix) by one of our oldest breeders, Mrs Sue Martin, and Nintu Dardanos, a blue stud boy, owned and bred by myself, but able to attain his title largely due to the enthusiasm of Mrs Anne Burrows, who took him to shows throughout 1989. The Christmas party of 1989 could probably be considered our first ‘End of Year’ Award event, though it was not till 1992 that the categories started to be formalised, and another year still until points were collected, and special certificates were prepared. It is the second time that we have been able to entice Dr Valerie Hamilton to attend our Christmas party - all the way from South Australia - ‘on the spur of the moment,’ well that would be telling but I will whisper that when she came in 1994 she was worried about the excess baggage bill on her return!!.
Over the years we have had several far travelled visitors, Jeanette Perkins, from WA, Dr Sue Rodger-Withers and Jan Carey from Victoria, Julie and Kelly Fletcher from Tasmania, Cindy from ‘the border’, and this year I would like to welcome another true Victorian, Naomi Taylor, as well as Cindy, and also the return of Kelly, on her own this time, who has been assisting me in preparing today’s party, and all our ‘local’ mist friends - though some of them have driven far to be with us. You are all most welcome.
The second ‘anniversary’ that I want to celebrate is represented by the videos which many of you have been watching. The first of Anne Burrows, with a young (and slim!!) Tammy at a promotion for the 1989 Federal Cat Club show. The most famous of all programs ever recorded on the Spotted/Australian Mist, is the first Burke’s Backyard, shown the same year. A younger(!!) more diffident Truda, and the charming litter, of which Berlese was one, evoked in the viewers the biggest response that the program had ever received to a road test. (One day I must ask Don whether we still hold the record). As many of you are probably unaware of these programs, or perhaps would like to see them again, I dusted them off, and checked them out, so that you could take a look at them, and develop your own sense of perspective on the breed. To this end also, I have brought out the record photo albums and the first National Cat feature for you to peruse - and I am sure that Lynden, who bought Nintu Frith from the very first full register litter (in 1987) would also allow you to ‘peruse’ her recollections.
The third anniversary is a much more personal one, as well as a universal event. Not only is this our last party of the century, to me it is navigation into unknown waters. If I have a superstition, it is that significant things happen to me in double digit years. I was born in 1944, went to boarding school in 1955, started my PhD in 1966, bought this property and went out on my own in 1977, in 1988 in the wake of leukaemia through the cattery, and miscarrying my baby, I hit an all time low, I was vetted out at the Royal Easter Show, and I almost gave up the whole dream. Anne helped me through that with her confidence in and support of the breed.
And what has 1999 brought, the last of these double digits? Dissension, destruction of trust, undermining of that which I have created, loss of friendship. I am ashamed to have to admit to the rest of the Cat Fancy, of whom we were the envy, that our unity, mutual support, trust and enthusiasm for our breed has been shattered. Quite frankly, I have been personally very hurt by the actions of some individual breeders, while I am quite overcome by the loyalty and support of others. It saddens me that breeders who have contributed so much to the breed, have obtained breeding stock by deception, have bad mouthed me to buyers, have done exactly what they like in an effort to change the breed standard and have blamed me for every breeding problem that they have ever had, and have tried to draw less experienced breeders into their net. My personal feelings of fury and frustration I have dealt with, and I am prepared to regroup and move forward, but the damage to our beloved breed I find hard to forgive.
I have brought out for your viewing today archival material to enable those of you who have come later to the breed an opportunity to develop for yourself a sense of the depth of expertise which I have developed throughout the development of the Australian Mist. The hallmark of our society at the end of this century is that it has no time, no time to wait, to learn, to study. But its members still want planes that stay in the sky, Mars Landers that function, cures for cancer, safe food and fabulous new technologies to take us where we only dream of at present. Consequently, I and my ilk, those of an academic turn of mind, those who value research, observation, testing and validation, those whose skills design the planes that fly, find the cures for cancer, who press on into unknown territory, are tolerated only, poorly paid, and barely understood. I don’t hide in academia - I threw away that opportunity to engage in society more openly, I have tried to bend my skills to develop that same excellence, insight, research as I would if I still studied trees. I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised to be treated as the academic I still am at heart!
I do not ask anyone to ‘take sides’, I would simply like every one to evaluate the evidence themselves, and decide whether they wish to unite to support the breed, and to move forward together, supporting our cats.
I am unaware of the results of the questionnaire which was sent out in the last Newsletter, collation and discussion of the results was the responsibility of the Editor. Possibly there is a write up in the December Newsletter. However, I am aware from discussing it with a number of breeders and pet owners, that they were very pleased to be given the opportunity to express their opinions. I would like to thank Valerie for providing the initial impetus for its distribution.
I am also unaware of the detail of correspondence concerning the September Newsletter, other than those letters of which a copy was also forwarded to me. However, I certainly was the recipient of a number of wry comments about the divisions which finally became obvious for all to read, in this Newsletter. I probably should apologise to all our members for having allowed matters to get so out of hand before I acted in any way. I must say that I thought I could confidently delegate authority and that the rift would close over in time. I have been accused of ‘doing exactly what I want’, perhaps true at times, but I simply make the reciprocal allegation! I have been more inclined to allow matters, particularly the attempt to change the breed standard, time to work themselves out.
Standard changes pass through multiple levels of consultation within both CCCA and ACF, being both long drawn out, and generally destined to failure. Australian Mist being the only breed created locally, and with me with my wits still about me, I never doubted (and still don't) that I would be consulted by both bodies prior to any changes being made. Specific changes to the marbled pattern proposed for the ACF standard simply exhibit a total lack of understanding of what we, the breeders, actually decided we wanted, at a meeting where we looked not only at out own cats, but also the possibilities as exemplified by books on the Bengal, containing their ideas on marbling. I will deal with this matter in more detail when I come to the patterns in my series on our standard. I do believe that there are a couple of improvements which can be made to our standard, and when this series of articles is complete, and, I hope, I have had comments and feed back from breeders, I propose that we have a get together to carefully consider these changes, circulate the proposal to all breeders and exhibitors, then after agreement, submit same to all our registering bodies. Again, a long drawn out process. If in the mean time if we could achieve the standard as now written, AND train all the existing judges in an understanding of it, some real advance would be made. Did you know that one of our female cats with eyes like gold coins, without a trace of green, was awarded ‘Best Eye Colour and Shape’ (her owner hadn’t entered her in this class, I hasten to add)?. You will have to admit this is symptomatic of the ‘oh, its just an Australian Mist’ attitude still found amongst some judges. One wonders how they would have reacted if it were known to be imported, and have cost $2-3000 for a brood queen! I am pleased to be able to say that I will have some opportunity to further the understanding of judges in future - I am now a Group 3 Probationary Judge, and able to lecture at the CCCA Annual Judges’ Seminar. I have been engaged to deliver two segments in August 2000 - so I hope the results will be reflected on the bench.
Before closing, I would like to wish everyone the best for Christmas, and a bright New Millennium, or at least, New Year!!. Its rather fun to be in at the beginning of anything, a century is fun, a millennium even better.
Friendship and Joy to you all.
Truda, the Mist Mother.”
this speech, delivered with
some passion, to an audience of
downcast eyes and almost in tears on my part, Lynden Franklin rose and
made an address in reply, in which she underlined the need for our
mutual support of our breed, and each other as Aussie Mist fanciers. I
was most appreciative of both her support, and of the spontaneous round
of applause which greeted her reply. I was cheered to think that we
might go on together.
Several matters were then raised - firstly the distress fund, which is in the keeping of Mrs Sue Martin, an amount now, of nearly $2000. It was suggested that Mrs Anne Burrows and Anne Basser (who is very successful at rehoming distressed Aussie Mists) should take over this fund, as Sue has not been a subscriber to 'On the Spot' for 2 years now. A rather unseemly verbal duel then ensued, the upshot being that the Distress Fund will stay with Mrs Martin, the funds to be used to further the support of distressed Aussie Mists from those breeders with whom she retains contact. Funds contributed in future will be deposited in the general account, which I administer, a separate accounting stream being maintained to account for these funds.
in my ‘double digit’ year
of 55, this was not the last
of the ills to befall me. My beloved John and Cheryl had a car accident
on the way to work one morning, and Cheryl was killed. What
was an upheaval in my life which I had hoped never to face. We were to
relocate to Victoria, my ‘Vale Ridge’ was to be sold…. John received
judicial punishment as a result of the accident, then two of
contested her will, with much painful airing of personal matters,
hurting John even more….. But out of this morass a new hope was born,
John married me in my Mother’s garden on her 80th birthday (the best
birthday gift ever, she said, she always wanted a son-in-law!), and on
St Valentine’s Day 2001 John bought me 5 acres of fabulously fertile
ground in Gippsland, an old house just after my own taste, and a
skeleton garden of lovely mature trees ….
The dream went on, the Australian Mist went on, new breeders, a new organisation to belong to ( FCCV), continuation of my Judging , new friends, and a wonderful new garden to make.
Then one of my new friends (through Maine Coons) brought me a couple of visitors from the UK, and after a year, and another visit, kittens were selected, grown, mated and exported … opening up a whole new story for the Australian Mist.
A Summary of these recent years below: *
||Australian Mist Cat Fanciers Inc formed, the newsletter, On the Spot, and Logo retained.|
||Australian Mist appear on Burke’s Backyard for the third time|
||Write up on Australian Mist in Burke’s Backyard magazine|
26 July 2000
30 November 2000
8 February 2001
18 February 2001
17 March 2001
18 March 2001
Thera litter born ( x Abyssinian), first of the new line of Australian
Kittens Australia Annual features Australian Mist
Totally Wild, Channel 10, segment on Australian Mist
Foxtel screened a ‘Lifestyle’ segment on Australian Mist for several months as a program filler
Second Thera litter born ( x Domestic) for the new line of Australian Mist.
The very First Distinguished Service Award made by the NSWCFA given to Dr Truda Straede in recognition of her service to the Cat Fancy in NSW, in particular for the founding of the Australian Mist.
Fifteenth Anniversary specialist ring at The Siamese and Shorthaired Cat Club Annual Show. Forty three exhibits from all over Australia in attendance.
Dr T Straede invited to Queensland to talk on Australian Mist at a CFCCQ Seminar, which also featured International Judge, and TICA (USA) Board Member, Nancy Parkinson.
Australian Mist featured in the Royal Easter Show Cat Archive display in the Round Room of the Wynne Pavilion.
8 December 2002
Backyard ‘Guide to Pets’, votes Australian Mist ‘Best Apartment
Gold Db Gd Ch Nintu Family Idol runner-up Exhibit at CCCA National Show, and Best Group 3 Exhibit under Byloruss judge Dr Janina Melnikova, who was bowled over by the breed – and gave them their best results as a breed, ever.
A small appearance in Spanish pet magazine, CAES & CIA
Double page spread in Norwegian cat magazine, ‘kattliv’
Australian Mist win two Best in Shows at Royal Easter Show
Australian Mist given a four page spread in the National Hungarian Cat Journal, AMACSKA. The Editor, Erika Laszlo, had fallen in love with the breed at the 2002 CCCA National show.
End of Year Awards and Party reinstated after a break of one year.
Fourth and final appearance on Burke’s Backyard, which finished at the end of the year. Rachel Barendregt ably and attractively showed off the breed.
13 May 2006
30 July 2006
Franklin prepared an article for Cats and Kittens 2004 Annual on
the ‘Character of Cats – with lots of mentions of Australian Mist.
Burke’s Backyard Magazine endorses Australian Mist as a superb family pet.
Publication of ‘History, Development, Analysis & Understanding of the AUSTRALIAN MIST BREED STANDARD’.
Second visit of Mary Stuart to inspect the Australian Mist with a view to importing breeding stock to the UK.
Sixty Australian Mist exhibits gathered in the Bunyip Community Hall for the 20th Anniversary Show of the Australian Mist.
Chinese language double page spread in Singaporian magazine ‘Cat’s Life’
Mary Stuart confirmed her purchase of two female Australian Mist kittens to join her in the UK, to found the first breeding population outside Australia.
Dr Truda Straede judged the first Specialist Australian Mist Ring to be organised in Queensland, by Camille Dumas, enthusiastic populariser of the breed in Queensland.
|10 February 2007
29 March 2007
28 May 2007
11 June 2007
10 July 2007
3 August 2007
13 February 08
13 March 2009
1 May 2010
15 July 2010
17 April 2011
14 July 2011
7 January 2012
7 April 2012
29 April 2012
23 August 2012
15 June 2013
27 March 2014
25 January 2015
|Ch Thera Linaria and Ch Nintu Jelly Wave
arrived in UK, to much excitement. Further two cats chosen.
Linny and Jelly gave birth to the first Australian Mist kittens born in the UK.
Mary Stuart & Jane Lord visited their new stud, and collected all the trophies from Linny & Jelly to take home to the UK.
Small experimental program approved by FCCV for Glenister, Roget & Straede
Australian Mist on ABCTV ‘Creature Features’.
FiFe accepts Australian Mist for breeding, registration and exhibition (to work towards qualifying for competition)
UK magazine ‘Catworld’ features an Australian Mist Kitten on the front cover, 3 page colour spread inside.
First stud, and third queen land in UK.
First totally ‘Made in the UK’ litter is born
Double page spread in ‘your CAT’ magazine (UK)
Six Australian Mists land in UK – the fourth group.
Specialist Australian Mist ring judged by Dietmer Sagurski (FiFe) at the CCCA National Show held in conjunction with the World Cat Congress. Gd Ch Nintu Jester Pete, owned by Patricia Beech Best Exhibit.
Two Australian Mists land in UK, the fifth group.
Prof Judith Wegner announced her intention to breed Australian Mist in the US, booked her first breed queen from Mary Stuart.
US registry, ACFA recognised Australian Mist for Championship status, Judith Wegner as Breed Convenor.
Celebration of 25 years since the birth of the first full register Australian Mist held at home of Breed Founder. Celebratory limited edition book 'Australian Mist 25 years' produced. All copies signed by the party attendees.
Birth of the first litter of Australian Mist in the US.
Landing of second consignment of Australian Mist in US - this time from Australia.
Luncheon held at Founder's home to celebrate the visit of Prof Judith Wegner and Kay Hanvey from US
Mountain Mists Noelani of Karena owned by Karen Henneke, bred by Judith Wegener, FIRST Grand Champion in the US.
Pregnant queen landed in UK, 6th Consignment
FiFE recognition advanced by Australian Mist Presentation Show, at which the breed Founder was present.
Four Mists, 2 boys and 2 girls, one pregnant, arrive in US
Australian Mist advanced to Championship status with TICA from 1 May 2015
First TICA Championship awarded to RoseValleyMists Bathesheba , owned and bred by Mrs Val King (UK).
First TICA Grand Champion Mystic A Mist Dancer bred by Erma Goforth and Kay Hanvey and owned by Erma Goforth.
with my beloved husband having been laid to rest,
I am pleased to say that the breed goes on, gaining love and devotion
from an ever growing band of devotees. More change is in store for me,
to live alone, with my cats ( rather fewer than formerly) and my garden