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Colin's On Her Way Back From Korea

Media Release from WHISKAS

4 December 2001

COLIN'S ON HER WAY BACK FROM KOREA

Colin's, the world-famous cat from New Plymouth, has been safely collected in Yeosu, Korea, by Westgate Tanker Terminal Superintendent Gordon MacPherson.

The adventurous cat, who normally lives at Westgate's tanker terminal, Port Taranaki, has spent the past two weeks on the methanol tanker Tomiwaka, after stowing away when it was in New Plymouth.

Westgate spokesperson Jon Hacon says the company's staff are delighted to hear from Mr MacPherson that Colin's was fit and well.

"We're anxiously waiting to get Colin's back at the Port where she belongs," Mr Hacon said. "She's a key part of our community and it will be great to see her again."

Whiskas spokesperson Jeff Herkt says the pet food makers decided to help bring Colin's home after hearing from Westgate about the close relationship between the port workers and the much-loved moggy.

"Colin's is a wonderful example of an animal that brings a lot of pleasure to people everywhere. That's something we're delighted to support," Mr Herkt said.

"Animals are beneficial in the workplace. For shyer people or new people at work, animals are a great way of breaking the ice. They're a great conversation starter and it's easier to go and meet other people when there's an animal around."

"Pets at work can also increase camaraderie among employees and improve staff morale."

Mr Herkt said research presented at an international conference earlier this year showed that companion animals have a positive effect on human physical and psychological well-being.

The 9th International Human-Animal Interactions Conference was sponsored by the Waltham Centre for Pet Nutrition, which provides the science behind the pet food brands Whiskas and Pedigree.

The conference, which was held in Rio de Janeiro in September, saw the release of a variety of research studies.

Findings from the University of Bonn, Germany, indicated that pet dogs can have a stabilising and therapeutic effect for children caught in the conflicts of a divorce crisis. Other results from Warwick University proved that pets provide valuable support to women adjusting to and coping with breast cancer, and studies from France and Italy showed the benefits of animal assisted therapy in communicating with and treating geriatric patients.

ENDS

For more information:

Jeff Herkt - 64 21 973 829 Catherine Etheredge - 64 9 309 1494, 64 25 276 9712


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