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Michievous black cat to inspire people to learn Welsh!

Here’s a book for Welsh learners with a difference! Teach Your Cat Welsh aims to help Welsh learners practise their Welsh with their cat. The book follows the hugely popular Teach Your Dog Welsh, published at the end of 2018, which has now sold over 4,250 copies.


Teach Your Cat Welsh (Y Lolfa) is full of appealing 1950s-style retro illustrations, with a picture and the expressions it illustrates (in both Welsh and English) one double page, as well as help with the Welsh pronunciation. There are over 50 expressions to practise, and over half of these are different from those featured in Teach Your Dog Welsh. Expressions range from ‘Dwi’n dy garu di’ (I love you) to ‘Oes annwyd gyda ti?’ (Have you got a cold?). It’s an excellent and really fun introduction to learning Welsh for all ages – and most of the phrases can also be used in non-cat related situations!


Teach your Dog Welsh has been a number one best seller for the Welsh Books Council over several months and was Book of the Month at W H Smith. Teach Your Cat Welsh will also be W H Smith’s Book of the Month for June 2019.


Teach Your Cat Welsh has been developed due to the huge popularity of the dog version, as well as numerous requests by cat-lovers who are learning Welsh!


“The popularity of the series has been amazing! I was thrilled when Teach Your Dog Welsh was re-printed for the first time – but I’m amazed that it’s been reprinted three more times since! A lot of cat lovers approached me personally or contacted me over social media asking if there’d be a cat version of the book,” says author and illustrator Anne Cakebread.


The mischievous black cat in the book, who – unlike the very obedient dog in Teach Your Dog Welsh – often ignores instructions, has been inspired by two cats: one being Chanel, the cat of Anne Cakebread’s two nieces. Mari and Elin are thrilled to have Chanel in a book.


“Chanel made a lovely model as she’s nice and plump and full of character,” said Anne Cakebread. “The other cat that inspired the personality is the local black tom cat with yellow eyes who prowls and hunts around the old Abbey ruins, and is a bit of a legend here in St Dogmaels. He’s a seriously tough character!”


Originally from Cardiff, Anne and her partner moved to St Dogmaels on the west Wales coast. She wanted to improve her Welsh as it was important to her to become part of the lively Welsh-speaking community in the area.


I first had to unlearn the Welsh I'd been taught in school as it's nothing like the Welsh people speak here. That's why I've made the expressions in the book colloquial, as a large part of learning is listening to what people say around you.