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showing a kitty as a standard pet

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Just a quick question, thinking about entering my kitty in a show, the standard one where you can show your pets. (thinking of five/ten years from now showing a purebreed. How do you socialize your cats to get used to these shows? he was born May 23rd, terrifed of even stepping outside the house. (outside on the patio area, he is an indoor cat) but he really is a laid back kinda cat that loves to purr, besides getting in trouble. real people friendly and where can you find good information on showing? I looked at serveral places that tell you how to show, but not how to condition the cat to get used to the whole method. this is my bear on top, you can't see in the photo but he has medium length hair, that is Scooby on the bottom. His brother, (cat escaped before her appointment for getting spayed, she is fixed now.)
post #2 of 7
Good for you for getting into showing! It is a lot of fun.

Since Household Pets aren't judged against a breed standard, personality and condition are VERY important. Make sure he has had a bath, his claws clipped, his ears cleaned out, and any little crusts cleaned out of his eyes before going into the ring. This is a link from the "Happy Household Pet Cat Club" website. It tells all about showing and should give you some good tips.


My experience with showing cats is that there is really no way to prepare them emotionally for shows. Sure, you can have lots of people hold them, bring them for car rides, stand them up on a table, etc. But at the end of the day, either they have the personality to handle it or they don't - and you will find this out crystal clear on show day I'm sure there are exceptions, but I have never seen a cat that was hiding and/or growling turn into a ham in the show ring. I have, unfortunately, seen hams turn into growlers and hiders when they decide they have had enough of shows! That is disappointing, but since an unhappy cat won't show well, it is best to leave him/her at home. Most of the cats at shows are the ones that are able to handle all the smells/noise/commotion of the show hall - they weren't trained.

The household pet class is quite competitive, especially in TICA, where they can be shown for titles (Grand Master, Supreme Grand Master, etc.) and the classes are quite large (I'm not sure whether they can be shown for titles in AACE). Some of these cats have personalities you wouldn't believe, and can be quite entertaining to watch.

Good luck and let us know how it goes!
post #3 of 7
Agree with Cathy. And sometimes you get nice surprises. Our older Russian blue sire is shy as some russians are, and he dont likes to be carried either. And he was fertile. The worst possible combination. Still, he managed quite well. We were never forced to take him back - althougt some judges gave him Ex2 so he wouldnt need to be exhibitet once again this day.
And he get at last his National Champion title, and a couple of Best in Variety too...

But after last exhibition we saw in his eyes he didnt want it any more. So we are not taking him to exhibitions now he is a happy neutered.
post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all your replies!! Looking forward on getting started!!
post #5 of 7
I would first get him used to traveling in the car in a carrier - take him for short trips and see how he adjusts. As far as socializing, have anyone that stops and visits you to pet and pick him up and hold him out (like stretched inbetween your arms (hands under the front legs and at the waist).

Practice this like a judge would do it. Also practice having him stand on a table and also standing on the table with only two back feet.

Make sure he's agreeable with grooming (comb, etc.) And you'll have to bath him too before the show. Make sure all nails (front/back) are clipped. In CFA you cannot show a declawed cat - the other associations allow it but don't encourage it.

When you pick a show, go for a one day show and see how he handles things before investing in a full weekend. At the show, don't be embarrased if he acts up or the judge asks for "owner" to help out - just explain to the judge its his first show - it won't count against you or the cat.

Good luck and hope you win some ribbons - he's a pretty cat from the picture. BTW judges are pretty picky about seeing a longhair cat well groomed!
post #6 of 7
I might have read over this so please forgive me if I'm saying it twice. Fleas and biting can easily get a cat thrown out of a show, so make sure he's really clean and friendly to strangers.

I would start by taking him out to the vet and see how he reacts there, and local petstores where other people and animals will be close to him without having to touch him.

Also, household pets muct be altered (spayed/neutered) to show and be scored.

TICA's quite a fun registry to show in, and you get a lot of judges for your money (generally 12-18 + congresses) that are held in really nice hotels for the most part, whereas CFA is usually half the entry fee but you'll only get 4-8 judges and in gym type settings. Just my personal preference, but you might find you like CFA more.
post #7 of 7
It depends on how adjusted your cat is in the show ring. I found my household pets and pedigree were ok with a maximum of 8 judges for the weekend. Any more then that and they would get a bit stressed out and cranky. My rex LOVED shows and was quite a ham; however he had his limit on how much in one day.

I took him to a TICA show when he was about 3/4 yrs old and he was not happy doing 6 rings a day. I showed him till he was about 8 or 9 yrs old - he started out as a 7 month old kitten so he was used to showing.

For a first time showing I would never put any cat in more then 4 judges in one day - too much stress on them even if they enjoy it.
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