GC, BW, RW Kotchera Carmel Corn

Kotchera Siberians

Published February 2013

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Kotchera is a small Siberian CFA and TICA Registered Cattery in Vancouver, Washington. I started with Siberians in 2003, when I met my first one, Transsiberie Lunar Attack. I fell in love with the Siberian's people-oriented personality and rugged good looks.

I had just started showing my household pets at a few local shows but decided I could help get the Siberians to CFA shows so they could be advanced to Championship status. It was not the easiest thing to do, go from showing a household pet to working on getting a breed advanced, but I loved the breed and wanted to share that with others.

With lots of leg work and tenacity by many people, Siberians were granted Championship status beginning the 2006 season. In July, GP. RW Transsiberie Lunar Attack became the first Siberian Grand in CFA. Since that first grand Kotchera Siberians has had four of the six National Breed winners in CFA.

GP, RW (CFA) DGC (TICA) TransSiberie's Lunar Attack
photo by Jim

Who's Your Daddy?

In the Siberian world there are those who breed color pointed Siberians, called Neva Masquerades in Europe and Russia, and those who feel they have no place in a Siberian breeding program. I got to spend a terrific weekend with Lyudmyla Bruce and her Siberian male, Jean Sineglaziy Angel of Sineglazka ("Jean") at Meet the Breeds show in NYC in 2009. Jean is a well boned lovely type Siberian male, with super personality and good health. He is a seal Lynx point Siberian originally from Russia, living in Las Vegas, Nevada. Jean had won the 2008 Best of Breed award and was on his way to winning the title again in 2009.

GC, BW, RW Jean Sineglaziy Angel of Sineglazka

photo by Chanan

Seeing my personal philosophy was type, personality, and health over color I decided to ask about breeding with him. Lyudmyla and I agreed that Sibaris Blestka and Jean would make a terrific pair. In 2010, I sent Blestka to Sineglazka Siberians in Las Vegas for a breeding.


On April 18, 2010, Blestka had an uneventful delivery of four lovely brown spotted and mackerel tabbies kittens; one girl and three boys. A good friend, Linda Flanigan, and I talked about keeping and showing all four kittens to grand status. It was a lovely litter, all four were good sized and they already were showing the beginning of terrific personalities for showing. Of course, it would be a challenge to show and grand all four, but it was a worthy goal to work towards. We decided to try it and see how well it went.

Sweet Desserts

When it cam e time to name the kittens, I wanted a theme. It all started when a good friend of mine who had a special way of saying brownie, her favorite dessert."Bwonie" was how she pronounced it. I had promised I would one day name a kitten after her special pronunciation. So one kitten was named Chocolate Bwonie — but what about the others? My personal favorite treat is Creme Brulee, so that became the little girl's moniker. Continuing the sweet theme, we decided on Carmel Corn and Cookie Dough to round out our high calorie group.

So the names all started with a dessert order and a special friend...

All the kittens had a simple call or nick name, Creme, Cookie, Bwonie, but Carmel or Corn does not roll off the tongue well. Carmel Corn got his nick name from Linda. He loved people. He greets folks by putting his front legs around your neck and gives kisses. After she said "you are quite a charmer" it stuck and Charmer was his nickname. 

The Fearsome Foursome

Linda and I started showing all four kittens as soon as they were old enough to go to the shows. Nearly every show all four attended, much to the chagrin of the judges.

photo by Zoo Crew

From weekend to weekend the kittens would grow and change, and so the judge's first pick would change from show to show too. By the season's end, the girl, Creme,did better than her brothers, earning enough points for a regional kitten win in 2010-2011.

photo by Zoo Crew

GC, BW, RW Kotchera Creme Brulee

Creme went on to also win a Regional Award in Championship and was Best Siberian in CFA for 2011.

GC, BW, RW Kotchera Creme Brulee
photo by Chanan

The Siberian Breed's First Distinguished Merit

By April 2011, all four kittens were new grands; three in Championship and one in Premiership.

When the last one granded, it meant their mother had produced a total of five Grands. GC Sibaris Blestka of Kotchera, DM became the first Siberian to earn a Distinguished Merit in the Siberian breed since they were first accepted for Championship in CFA in 2006.

GC Sibaris Blestka of Kotchera, DM
photo by Chanan

A National Win? Are You Crazy?

Of all the littermates, there was one male who seemed to love the limelight, travel, and people more than the others. GC Kotchera Carmel Corn, call-name Charmer, seemed to know that he was destined to be a superstar.

After his sister earned the Breed win in 2011, Linda and I decided to see how far Charmer could go for the 2011-2012 season. He loved the shows and we loved taking him. There had never been a Siberian National Winner, and being both a minority and relatively new breed, we knew the odds were not in our favor. But there was the possibility, so we decided to try as long as we were all having a good time in the effort.  

Mr. Personality

Throughout the 2011-2012 CFA show season Charmer was a constant gentleman — and lived up to his name. He would charm people with his good looks, bedroom eyes, kisses, and sweet caresses. Occasionally, when the mood struck him, he would attack the judges toys with fierce determination. So much so that it would take offering him one or two different toys to remove the first one from his clutches. Fortunately, once the toys were "dead" he would return to giving kisses and hugs. More than one judge's toy had to be replaced due to his toy fetish.   

photo by Chanan

We need Passports!

We traveled mostly up and down the west coast of the US with a few adventures out East to Colorado, Chicago, Indianapolis, St Louis, and Texas. Most of the trips involved doing something more than the show itself; a holiday light show in Phoenix, the Peace Arch in St Louis, or just a tour of a city park. Charmer and I wanted to make the most of each visit to a new place.

One thing we did that I had never done before was travel to Europe.

In February 2012, Kotchera Siberians imported a new male, Lince's Papavero Di Sessans from Christina Ericksson of Lince Siberians in Sundsvall, Sweden. Christina flew to the US to hand deliver Papavero to us. While she was here, she invited me to visit her in Sweden anytime... so several months later, Charmer and I took her up on her offer. Going to the Swedish Cat Paws show in Sweden would be a great way to see the sire and dam of our new kitten as well as see Kristina again.

Charmer did wonderfully on the long flights, layovers, and three hour train ride with four dogs to Sundsvall. On the trains in Sweden there are special train cars for people traveling with their pets. There were four very large dogs in our car, all intent in checking out the bag that smelled like a feline. Charmer took everything in stride, just enjoyed being with mom and taking it all in.

His favorite memory of the trip was a large green cat costume that a person wore to advertise the local pet supply store. When the huge green cat crossed his path, Charmer had a puzzled look in his eye I had never seen before or since.

This is the green cat that captivated Charmer in Sweden

Charmer's Final Stats

At the beginning of January 2012, Charmer was in 26th place nationally with just over 4000 points.

Linda and I had set a goal of a 500 point gain per month for the last 4 months of the season. With low counts and already replacing rings it would be tricky but an NW was still possible. He gained over 800 points by the end of January and moved up to 24th in the national rankings, so he was on the right track.

February was again a good month and Charmer gained over 800 points and moved up to 21st. March was a bit more difficult, gaining just over 500 points, but he still was the 22nd Best Cat nationally.

Going into the last weekend of the show season he was in 23rd with a 150 point lead over 25th.

With a bevy of cats and owners scambling for the last few placings, Charmer was nudged out of the top 25. In the end, he finished 27th Best Cat nationally by a handful of points. An NW was not meant to be.

Final Thoughts

Over the season Charmer earned over 6600 points and 220 finals, including 44 Best Cat rosettes. He loved to travel by car or plane. He enjoyed meeting new people and doing new things where ever he happened to be. He did us and his breed proud.

The 2011-2012 season was long, but even though we didn't earn the national win, I do not regret the effort we made in our quest. Charmer more than accomplished our goal of 500 points per month. While it fell just short of enough to capture a National Win, he earned the Breed Win and the respect and admiration of all those who met him. His story goes on through the lives of this kittens and their kittens, passing on his charm, his good looks, and of course, his enthusiastic toy fetish.


Below are photos from the show career of:

GC, BW, RW Kotchera Carmel Corn
Brown Mackerel Tabby & White Siberian Male

CFA's 27th Best Cat 2011-2012
CFA Northwest Region's 3rd Best Cat 2011-2012
Best Siberian 2011-2012

Born: April 18, 2010
Sire: GC, BW, RW Jean Sineglaziy Angel of Sineglazka
Dam: GC Sibaris Blestka of Kotchera, DM
Breeder: Wendy Heidt
Owner: Wendy Heidt & Linda Flanigan

photo by Chanan

photo by Chanan

photo by Chanan

photo by Chanan

photo by Chanan

photo by Chanan


Photos at the top and bottom of this page are by Chanan

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