Morning of the Cat Show

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 12,595
    Susan Cook Henry of the Cat Fanciers’ Association talks to us about the morning of the show.

    Susan Cook Henry: Hi, I'm Susan Cook Henry. And I'm teaching you how to show a cat. Now it's the morning of the show. And there're a few things we're going to need to do with the cat cosmetically to make sure that its' ready to be judged. So let's get started. First thing we're going to need to do is make sure that the cat has its claws clipped. What you're going to need is a pair of human nail clippers. I find it easiest to do that with the cat seated. Roxy, our Japanese Bobtail is going to be our model here. She can sit comfortably on my lap while I expose her claw by pressing down on one of the knuckles. And what you're going to do is clip the claw right to below the pink area called the quick. She is not too happy about this situation. But you're basically blunting the claws so that they're not a danger to yourself or to the judges. Another thing you can do if you don't have anybody to help you, you can put the cat on its back on your lap and gently hold the scruff of its neck. That can sometimes give you a little bit more control of the situation. We show you what I'm talking about by putting it on your back and gently putting the scruff of the neck between your knees, holding her gently while exposing the claws and then gently nipping the claws one by one. Yes. That'll also allow you to get the back claws as well. This is obviously something that's easier done with two people but you must do it by yourself. It can be accomplished. The next thing we're going to do is need to make sure that the cat's eyes are clean. Gently rub the cat's eyes. Make ensure that any matter that's accumulated in the corners is cleaned. On any cat you'd also want to check the nose and make sure that the nostrils are clean as well.

    The next thing you're going to want to do is make sure that the cat has clean ears. To accomplish that, the easiest thing to do is use little bit of rubbing alcohol on a cotton ball. Hold the ear back to expose the inner flesh, gently swab the inside to remove any debris that's visible. Cue tips can be used but you need to use caution. You never put a cue tip represent farther into the ear than the tip of the cue tip itself always remembering to go parallel to the head. In other words straight down into the cavity of the ear, make a swab up, clean the crevices, never loosing the tip of the cue tip. Do the other side as well. If your cat needs to have a bath that's a good thing to do the day before the show, but a good rubbing with a wash cloth, a good combing with a comb or a brush that suits your cat's coat texture is always a good thing to do. Make sure all the fur is combed and sometimes commercial coat preparations work very well to spray gently over the coat and sleek it down.

    Now that we've got the cat ready to show, we're going to organize our supplies that we'll need for the show. You've got your entry information. You also have your confirmation from the show that the entry clerk has sent to you. Once you arrive at the show, you'll go to the check-in line the. The check-in line is usually a table at the show that has the show catalogs placed on the table with your name on top. By picking up that catalog you're letting entry clerk know that your cat is present and competing. Any catalogs that are left on the check-in table when checking is closed, indicates to the entry clerk that those cats are not present and will be marked absent. Your catalog should have a label with your name, your entry number as well as your roll number on it. If there's not a diagram of the show hall, it should be pretty easy to find out where the rows are labeled. You'll walk to that row, find the row letter and walk down the aisle to find your cage which is usually indicated with your name written on the base of the cage. You're going to need to set up your cage for your cat's display. Cage drapes can be made to fit the dimensions of the cage. Those dimensions are always noted on the entry information. Pick a fabric that's easy to clean and that compliments your cat's color. It's easy to set up a cage with the base, panels in the back then also something to know across the top to cover. This gives your cat a feeling of security in addition to showing off the cat's color and features.

    You'll need to go to find where the litter is located in the show. Quite often it's located very close to where you checked in for your entry. You'll have a cat's litter box. You may even choose to bring your litter from home. It's entirely up to you. You'll want to make sure that you have food and water for your cat. It's always a good idea to bring your own bottled water from home. If your cat's used to drinking your tap water, you're less apt to have stomach upsets. Dry food is easy to serve in the cage. And the cat will be working with the next as a Persian. That's why he has a special water bowl with a very small aperture for drinking. It helps keep his coat neat during the show. Now that you're ready for your cat to go into the cage, you're going to also want to take a moment to familiarize yourself with the set up of the show hall. Locate the judging rings which are usually numbered numerically in order from 1 to 6 or 1 to 8. If you have any questions at all it's really a good idea to look for the CFA Ambassadors. They'll be the ones wearing the Ask Me buttons. They're there to help you. They can answer your questions and point you in right direction if you have anything that's you're not quite sure about. They'll be able to help you out. Up next it's show time for your cat.