An adorable friendship that mirrors a much-loved TV ad has been formed between two natural enemies – a CAT and BUDGIE.
The screen advert melted hearts when it was first aired to advertise Freeview television.
It shows a happy cat opening the cage of a bird which hops on its back and the pair sing Marvin Gaye with Tammi Terrell’s “You’re all I need to get by.”
The real-life version has now been found with Frankie the budgie and Gemima the cat who gaze into each other’s eyes and go for strolls together.
Frankie was a timid bird when he was bought by his owner at just a few months old.
But when Sara Parker, 43, introduced him to Gemima he came to life and the two year-old budgie now brims with confidence.
The pair have now formed a special bond and are best friends living in harmony in Thornton-le-Dale, North Yorks., as Frankie is even allowed to hitch a ride on Gemima’s back.
Sara said: “I bought Frankie when he was a baby and he was only about three-months-old.
“My boyfriend at the time, who is now my husband, always had birds and I was fascinated by them so I bought one of my own.
“When Frankie came home with me he was very timid and shy. Although he was very nervy, the only time he was relaxed was around the cats.”
Sara, who also has a cat called Tiger, said she was amazed when Frankie made friends with both cats despite being nervous.
She said: “Frankie never gets locked in his cage but he spends most of his time in there. We have to be really careful when he is walking on the floor.
“The first time the budgie had contact with the cat he just plopped on to the floor and went straight to her. The cat was actually scared of him and hid under the kitchen table.”
Sara, a housewife, lives with husband Simon, 48, an IT director, and the pair have six children between them.
She added: “I have always loved animals and I usually have much more. We are low on numbers at the moment but I am looking to buy another cat soon.
“Frankie is still good around humans. Whenever I tell him to hump up on my hand, he will. He’s very placid and my husband said he is odd for a budgie. He can be quite stressy.
“Budgies are curious by nature but Frankie isn’t really like that. He does like to sit on Gemima’s back and has no problem being face to face with her.
“I really love their relationship and like that Frankie has some company, even though it is slightly unusual.”