Understanding A Cat Show
Ever wonder just what a cat show is all about? How does a judge compare cats? Can any cat enter these feline beauty pageants?
A cat show is like a beauty pageant for felines. Every breed has unique characteristics that set it apart from other breeds and established standards set the ideal for perfection in these characteristics. A cat show seeks out the quality example of each breed or class.
A cat show is an elimination tournament. No matter how many different breeds or total cats begin, only one can reign as the best cat in he show.
There are numerous cat associations with show rules that vary to some extent. These rules, however, can be discussed in general to give a brief picture of what is going on at a cat show.
There are two types of cat shows. One is the All Breed and the other is the Specialty Show. Specialty shows are usually limited to one of the major cat divisions such as Longhair or Shorthair. In the All-breed shows the various breeds are divided into classes and subdivisions.
There are usually at least four judges to a show. Each judge is provided with a table and about ten cat cages. This area is known as the ring. The judge has no previous knowledge of the cats he will judge other than their catalog listing. No spectator or handler is permitted to speak to a judge while he is judging.
When a judge wishes to see a particular cat in this ring, that cat’s catalog number is placed on one of the cages. The cat’s exhibitor places the cat in the cage for judging. Although different cat associations have varying standards, usually the cat is awarded points for:
--shape of head and ears
--shape and color of eyes
--structure of body, tail, feet, and legs
--texture and color of coat
Some classes for showing are
-championship class – cat must be eight months of age or older. The cats must be registered and of a breed recognized for championship show. This varies.
-alter class- cat must be eight months, be registered, and a breed recognized for championship show, either neutered or spayed.
-any-other-variety classes – for cats not recognized by championships shows. They cannot win championships.
-kitten class-cats from four to eight months who are registered and of a breed recognized by championship shows, but they cannot earn championships.
-household pet class – are for unregistered cats of unrecognized breeds.
The Championship and alter classes are further divided into Novice, Open, Champion, and Grand Champion classes.