Wilson the cat is rapidly using up his allotted nine lives.

According to his owner (or should we say "servant"?) Emma Camden, Wilson has had more adventures than most. He's had a piece of plastic the size of a fingernail removed from his eye; other cat's teeth buried in his skull; he's accidentally had his leg encased in hot wax, and he's had to be rescued from a tree by the police.

"He's rude, he's naughty, he's cost us a lot of money - but he's a great cat."

Ms Camden and her family live on Bell St, and first spotted the big ginger tom cat hanging around the area about two years ago. They adopted him a year ago.


"We've realised since that everyone in the area knew him. The courthouse staff know him. The Kitchen Shop staff know him and call him Tom. The Cosmopolitan Club staff used to feed him and they called him Cosmo. He has at least one other name that we know of.

"He was everyone's cat in the area," Ms Camden said.

She said Wilson, who weighs 7.5kg, likes to guard the front of her property. He is the scourge of any passing dog - he and Ms Camden's kelpie, Vincent, hate each other - and despite being de-sexed, Wilson still loves to fight other cats.

"One day he came home looking like he'd been in a fight, and I was rubbing his head and felt this bump. No kidding, I picked another cat's front teeth out of his forehead."

Ms Camden is a glass artist and Wilson was poking around her studio one day when he got into trouble.

"He decided to step into one of my moulds that had a batch of hot wax in it. So he had a whole leg covered in wax."

That incident earned Wilson a trip to the vet, where he was sedated and his leg shaved.

Wilson broke several hundred dollars' worth of ceramic jewellery made by Ms Camden's business partner, by getting into the box they were being stored in and lying on them.

Most recently, Ms Camden was startled to find a photo of Wilson on the Whanganui SPCA's Facebook page.

"He'd only been gone a couple of hours but someone had obviously handed him in, and there he was in my Facebook feed. I'd really like to impress on people in the area if they see him please don't take him to the SPCA. He's not a stray."

Despite his independent ways, Wilson is also affectionate and very friendly. When he's not prowling the neighbourhood and getting into scrapes, he'll often be found snoozing on a bed or "helping" Ms Camden in her glass studio.

"We love him, he's such a big character," Ms Camden said.