U.K. Cat Makes Loudest Purr Attempt

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(Smokey the Purr Machine; Credit: Ruth Adam, Geoff Robinson Photography)

Smokey the cat is happy and you know it.

This feline's purr is so loud that Guinness World Records may soon declare her purr to be the loudest in the world.

How loud is Smokey? According to Northampton College in England, the cat's purr compares to "a lawn mower, hair dryer and even Boeing 747 coming in to land from a mile away." While I doubt that this video clip captures her purr's full power, you can hear some of Smokey's talent:

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The 12-year-old feline's owner, Ruth Adams of Pitsford, Northampton, approached her local college about borrowing sound equipment needed to record the cat's purr for Guinness. The college was more than happy to oblige, and even involved a music team to help with the tech work.

(Credit: Northampton College)

At Adams' home, Smokey "reached an extraordinary 73 decibels — 16 times louder than the average cat," according to a Northampton College press release. The release adds that, "as part of the criteria for the attempt, the College also arranged for Daventry MP Chris Heaton-Harris, Kaye James, Veterinary Nurse, Abington Park Veterinary Group, Diana Johnson, Cats Protection and Alisdair Tait, British Airways Captain to be present. Mr Tait also acted as the official photographer."

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Adams explained, "Guinness has very strict criteria and the College has been very helpful in supplying the specialist recording equipment needed to measure Smokey’s purr and for arranging the official witnesses. Smokey is actually quite camera shy so I was very conscious not to upset her during the record attempt so we kept it all kept very calm and low key. We are very grateful to the College for stepping in to help us attempt the record and now just have to wait patiently to hear the final verdict."

Curriculum Manager in Music Ray Meadham said, "You don’t get asked to help out with a world record attempt everyday, so of course we jumped at the chance. We had a few test sessions at the college’s studios before deciding to make the attempt in Smokey’s home environment where she felt more at ease and would perform at her best."

He continued, "The recording equipment we used to record Smokey’s purr included a Rode microphone, Logic music software and a Category 1 sound metre which measures decibels – it’s the same equipment music professionals use. Luckily Smokey was on top form and rose to the challenge."

But will it be enough? Stay tuned for the final decision from Guinness.