In September 1986, Blue Peter's long-standing keeper of the pets, Edith Menezes, gave the programme a kitten to replace Jack who had died a few months earlier.
Viewers were asked to send in their suggestions for a name, and by popular demand Willow was chosen, probably because of the kitten's oriental looks.
Rather than follow Willow's progress as a mother, it was decided that Willow should be the first pet to be neutered or spayed. This decision was taken because of the vast numbers of unwanted pets destroyed by the RSPCA every year.
Willow retired from the programme in 1991 to live in Sussex.