A Shrewton cat who can sense when her owner is about to suffer a seizure has been named the Most Caring Cat in a national cat award.

Penelope Farthing, an eight-year-old moggy, has been chosen as the winner in the caring cat category in Cat Protection's National Cat Awards 2021.

She was chosen by celebrity judge and actress Tuppence Middleton as the winner of the caring cat category, celebrating cats that positively impact their owner’s health or wellbeing.

The feline was recognised for how she raises the alarm when owner Zoe Elliott, 28, is about to suffer a seizure.

Zoe suffers from Ehlers–Danlos syndrome and craniocervical instability, making it hard for her to hold her head up and causing debilitating seizures.

Penelope watches her day and night, and when she senses a seizure is about to take place, she meows and paces around Zoe's mum, Lisa.

She then stays with Zoe while she recovers.

Zoe said: “Penelope is an amazing cat and things would have been a lot harder for me if it wasn’t for her.

"However tough things have been over the past few years, it’s always been made better by having her by my side.

“I really hope Penelope will help more people realise how amazing cats can be for people with complex health conditions. Raising the alarm when I’m having a seizure has been incredible, but she’s done so much more.

"She’s been there to cheer me up when I’ve been down and keep me company when I was very ill or recovering from surgery.”

The competition's judge, actress Tuppence Middleton, added: “I know first-hand what amazing company cats can be and I was really, really touched by Zoe’s story and moved by how much Penelope helps Zoe every day of her life.

“I really understand what amazing company and comfort cats can be when you’re feeling low, stressed or sad and I feel that she is a very deserving winner.

"It seems like it would be a very hard thing for Zoe to cope with without Penelope and I was really moved by what a great team they are.”

The owners of Penelope Farthing and the three other category winners will now have to wait a week for the overall National Cat of the Year to be announced.

The winner will be revealed on August 12, after being selected by a celebrity panel made up of The Chase’s Jenny ‘The Vixen’ Ryan, BBC TV weather presenters Owain Wyn Evans and Elizabeth Rizzini, journalist Camilla Tominey, Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter Laura White and regular National Cat Awards judges, David and Frankie Seaman.

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