Cat shows are a strange place if you have never been to one before.

The show preparations start during the week before where the cats are often bathed and groomed to look their best. Amazingly these show cats are bought up having baths and get use to the routine. The must have their claws trimmed and be ready to meet with a vet on arrival to the show hall so must be in tip top health.

On the morning of the show exhibitors will arrive with their cats, cages and chairs. The cats are vetted in. This means that a qualified vet or vet nurse will check them over fully to ensure no sign of disease and that vaccinations are up to date. They will be looking for any sign of illness and also will check their claws have been trimmed. The cats then enter the show hall.

Exhibitors will set up their cat cages. These are where the cats will spend the majority of their time during the show. Each cage has a surround that is water proof so they cant mess up each others cages or gain contact to each other. Show cats are very use to spending the day in their cage, again its something that they have done from a young age and they know what to expect. 

 

Cats will sleep up to 16 hours in a day so they are not to fussed about having their own small room for the day. If you visit a cat show in the afternoon be prepared to see many sleeping kittycats. 

 

Once the cages are prepared with their curtains and the cats are in them, they are given food and water and a litter tray. The judging will usually start fairly soon after vetting in closes. There is often 2-3 judges for each ring of cats for each show. That means that a cat might be judged more than once in a day. When a cat is judged, they are taken from the cage and put on the “bench”. This is where the judge will have a good look at the cat from the shape of its skull, body and tail to the texture of its coat. Each cat breed has a standard that they must meet and its that standard that the judges are comparing each cat to.

There is different groups of cats and judges will be qualified to judge particular groups. Some judges are all breed judges and can judge any group. These judges have done thousands of hours of training and practice to get to that point. Groups will vary dependant on the location of the show and the association that that show is under. Each group have a set of breeds that have something in common. Entrants compete for best of their own breed, and for best of group. Then there is the supreme which is the best of the show.

Each cat is also hoping to win their challenge point. These are certificates received that go toward their titles. Titles are what you will see pedigree and show cats listed as. So for instance, our neutered (desexed) Abyssinian is Double Grand Champion Vivace Derrick Bennett. So that means he has won at least 18 challenge points at shows to get to that level. Vivace is his breeders prefix. That is the cattery that breed him and Derrick Bennet is his name. His Brother is Bronze Double Grand Champion Vivace El Leon deOro  and is our stud boy. He is a bit higher up the titles than his brother. Derrick Bennett has retired from showing on a regular basis and only comes out every now and then for a bit of fun. They compete for their challenge points. If there is a cat of the same level champion then a judge will have to decide which cat gets their challenge point.

Once the judge has had a good look at all of one particular breed they will decide on the best of breed award. Once they have done the entire group (known as a ring), they will then do their group awards. Depending on the size of the show will depend how many cats they put in their top group awards. Often, they will have a top 10. So, they will pick out their top 10 exhibits in that ring and announce them in order from 10 to their top pick at number 1.

At the end of the day the judging is tallied up and the supreme cats are announced.

It is a great way for breeders to socialise and learn from each other. The can share to the public information about cat breeds, good cat ownership and cat regulations. For many it is all about the love for your breed and a good day out. And everyone gets to take home the best cat of the day, their own. What happens at a cat show and why should I care? It is a great way for breeders to socialise and learn from each other. The can share to the public information about cat breeds, good cat ownership and cat regulations. For many it is all about the love for your breed and a good day out. And everyone gets to take home the best cat of the day, their own.

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