The owner of the 'world's oldest cat' has paid tribute to the veteran feline after revealing he has died at the grand old age of 31.
Geriatric moggy Rubble had been with owner Michele Heritage since she got him as a kitten on her 20th birthday.
Michele, who is now 51, says they had been inseparable ever since, and Rubble became the oldest feline in the world after reaching 31 years old in May last year.
Michele, from Exeter, Devon, put his incredible longevity down to the fact she never had her own children and pampered him like her child.
Paying tribute, she said: "He would have been 32 in May so it was such an achievement.
"He was an amazing companion that I had the pleasure to live with for such a long time.
"I got him just before my 20th birthday when he was a kitten."
Rubble beat the record of Scooter, a Siamese from Texas, who was named as a record breaker at the age of 30 by the Guinness Book of World before he died in 2016.
The oldest cat ever according to the record books is Creme Puff, who was born on 3 August 1967, and lived until 6 August 2005 - an amazing 38 years and three days.
Michele added: "We never went down the route of Guinness Book of Records. I didn't want to do that given his age. The record wasn't of interest to us.
"He grew old very quickly towards the end, I said to my husband at Christmas that I think it would be last we spend with Rubble. He had started to stop eating and only drank water.
"He became very thin. I went to work as usual and when I got home my husband said Rubble had gone over the road as he did every day and never came back, so we believe he went off to die as cats do.
"He was a creature of habit, had his favourite places to sleep and liked his food. So when that stopped happening, we knew."
Michele said she remembers the exact moment that she first met Rubble and claims to be 100 percent certain of the date - because it was her 20th birthday.
She added: "He was part of a litter cat that my sister's friend had and I had just left home. I was lonely living on my own so got him in as a kitten. It was in May 1988.
"I have always treated him like a child - I don't have any children and had another cat called Meg - who passed at the age of 25. If you care about something, no matter what it is, it does last."
What a life, eh? RIP Rubble.
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