In this handout photo released by Northampton College, Smokey, a gray and white tabby cat prepares to receive a treat from owner Ruth Adams, in Northampton , England. A British community college says it has a recorded a house cat whose lawnmower-like purr hit 73 decibels, 16 times louder than the average feline. Northampton College in central England said Wednesday, March 30, 2011, that it had dispatched a music team with specialist sound equipment to record 12-year-old Smokey. The recording has been submitted to the Guinness World Records. (AP Photo, Alisdair Tait, Northampton College)
LONDON (AP) — A British community college has recorded a house cat named Smokey whose lawnmower-like purr hit 73 decibels, which is 16 times louder than the average feline.
Northampton College in central England said Wednesday it received a request from Smokey’s owner, Ruth Adams, to provide the equipment needed to file a world record application.
The college agreed, dispatching a team with specialist sound equipment to record Smokey purring in the comfort of Adams’ home in the nearby village of Pitsford, about 70 miles (110 kilometers) northwest of London.
The recording has now been submitted to Guinness World Records for vetting.
The 12-year-old gray-and-white tabby has already made several media appearances, with journalists comparing the purr to the sound of a Boeing 747 from a mile away. A video posted to the cat’s website made it sound more like the cooing of an angry dove.
“Sometimes she purrs so loudly it makes her cough and splutter,” the site said. “She even manages to purr while she eats.”
Smokey is camera-shy, according to Adams, who said in a statement that the recording session had to be kept quiet and low key to keep the cat from getting upset.
All the attention may have made the Adams household media-shy as well.
“Oh God,” said a man who answered the phone at the Adams’ home Wednesday. “You’re not the only caller.” He then hung up.
Guinness World Records spokeswoman Amarilis Whitty said that she was “anxiously waiting” for the recording to see if it meets the group’s standards.
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