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Showing Your Sphynx
Everyone is always welcome at a Cat Show. The cats are available for your appreciation in their show cages and in the Show Ring but please refrain from touching the cats, as any number of ailments may be spread through the casual touching of different cats from different environments. Although at home cats eagerly await a caress, within the show hall things are different. Setting aside the health risks, allowing dozens of strangers to pet them, can become quite stressful to the cat. Cats are especially groomed for the show and oily or sticky hands can undo all this hard work. Please, ask the owners questions about their cats and the breed's characteristics. Most cat fanciers eagerly await the chance to share information, stories and the histories of their chosen breed(s).

Children must remain with an adult at all times and running in show hall or loud play are prohibited. Not only does this behavior scare the cats, it can be dangerous. Help us keep the show hall safe and comfortable for fellow spectators, exhibitors and, of course, the cats.

A cat show has several rings, usually anywhere from 5 to 7 per day and the shows are usually hosted on weekends to include Friday evenings from time to time. Each Ring is presided over by a different Judge. Each cat will be judged in every ring, with the exception of special classes and fun rings. Only the Judges, Clerks, Ring Stewards and Exhibitors are allowed within the show rings. Exhibitors may enter the show ring to deliver their cats or to approach the Judge if called upon. Cats may be removed after the Judge has given his consent. As a spectator please give way to exhibitors trying to get back and forth from the ring with their cats. Please be mindful of not blocking aisles and Judging areas.

The cats are divided for Judging into 4 major classes:

  • Kittens (Pedigreed cats 4 to 8 months old)
  • Championship (Pedigreed cats 8 months and over and unaltered)
  • Alters (Pedigreed cats over 8 months old and spayed or neutered)
  • Household Pets (must be spayed or neutered by 8 months of age)

From these the cats are again divided by breed. Each is judged against all other sphynx with the same color “pattern” and then each is judged against other sphynx in the same color “division.” In other words if there were three black sphynx being shown, the judge would place them against one another by their color and rate them 1st best black color, then 2nd best black color, and then 3rd best black color. The judge then breaks them down by division which would be all sphynx that are of solid colors. An example would be that all of the solid color blues, blacks, reds, and whites would be judged and placed 1st best solid color, 2nd best solid color and 3rd best solid color. He/she would then judge all of the bi-colors against one another and so on and so forth. If there is only one black and that black is the only sphynx solid color being shown that day, this black sphynx would get 1st best color and 1st best division. After the judge has done this, he/she chooses the top 3 of the entire sphynx breed.
After all the cats in a class have been judged, the Judge will recall the 10 cats that in his or her opinion are the best representatives of their class they competed in when compared to the written standard for their respective breed. This is called a final.

There are 3 types of judges you may see at a show. All Breed Judges who examine all purebred cats at the show, Specialty Judges who examine long and short haired cats separately, and Household Pet Judges who only examine household pets.

This is a general outline of the judging at cat shows and may differ from Association to Association. We hope you enjoy your next cat show and please do not hesitate to ask questions.

So You Decided To Show

If your Sphynx is a Bemisu Sphynx then your kitten has already been pre-registered with TICA, The International Cat Assocation. TICA has shows all over the world. Even if they do not have a show in your state they most likely have one in a neighboring state. To find a show near you go to www.TICA.org and find the Show calendar tab. Here you will find listings for all the upcoming shows for the year.

Once you have decided on your show location click on the show and go the the "flyer" link. This will usually take you to a page that was made by the group hosting the show. It should have all the show information such as: location, start time/end time, judges names, fees, and number of rings per day. Most shows last 2 days, but if you are unsure you can sign up for just one day of showing instead of two. There are two forms that need to be submitted when entering a show. These forms should be on the home page of the "flyer" link. The first is the Summary sheet and the second is the Entry form. These forms will ask questions pertaining to your cats registration number, name, color, birth date, long/short hair, and what title you are trying to achieve. We here at Bemisu can walk you through the form fill out process. Just give us a call! Keep in mind that there is a deadline for entries into the show.

Now that you are registered for your upcoming show it is time to get together the items you will need to ensure a successfull fun time at the show!

Things you need to bring to the show:

  • Show cage or show drapes (www.sturdipet.com and www.zippy-cages.com both have a great selection of show cages. Show cages that are inexpensive can be purchased at http://www.zippy-cages.com. Make sure you buy the double sized one with clear plastic front instead of the mesh! These cages break down to pack in a suitcase and are easy to assemble.)
  • Gerber baby food (meat, turkey recommended)
  • Rescue Remedy
  • Food and water dishes (and soap to clean in between show days)
  • Litter box with litter and scooper (most shows will supply litter)
  • Some favorite toys and blanket
  • Kitty bed for in the cage
  • Shampoo
  • Clean rags or baby wipes
  • Regular food
  • Water bottle with water from home
  • Q-tips and cotton balls
  • Nail clippers
  • Registration information (always double check the information in the show programs example:. registry number, spelling of your cats name, color, sex, your name etc.)

When showing you have the option of bringing your own show cage or you can use the cages provided by the show hall. The cages provided by the show hall are simple metal wire cages. If you use the show hall cages you must bring blankets or show cage drapes to cover the sides, back, and top of the cage. This provides your cat some privacy at the show hall as is can be a scary experience the first time and keeping them calm is essential to a successful show. Covering your cage also keeps the cats around you from bothering your cat or transmitting any colds other cats may be carrying. If you decide to purchase your own cage their are many places that sell show cages online. We recommend sturdipet show cages. We also prefer the double show cage to the single. the double show cage provides enough space to have an area for the litter box and an area for bedding and blankets. Sturdipet cages also do not require any assembly...they simply fold down when you are done and come with a carrying case for easy transportation.
We recommend baby food incase your cat is too intimidated to eat. They can't resist turkey baby food! I usually try to mix it with some of their regular food so as to avoid upset stomachs later. Changes in diet and stress can lead to diarrhea so it is important to bring what they normally eat and drink. It also does not hurt to bring some probiotics with you to help reduce the risks of diarrhea.

It is important to bring a favorite blanket from home and a favorite bed that fits comfortably in the cage. Some show halls can be a little chilly and it is important to keep our sphynx comfy and warm. Toys help keep the kitties occupied during a long day of showing. We especially recommend small wand toys that you can wave in front of your kitties...you can use these to help distract them while you carry them to the judges ring.

It is important to find a good shampoo for your sphynx. We also recommend that you bathe your sphynx the morning of the show. If you do it the night before they will sweat during the night and develop a layer of dirt or oil before the show making them appear dirty. You may trim nails the night before and clean the gunk build up off, but we also suggest you clean ears the morning of the show. Also keep q tips on hand to remove any wax that may come free after the cleaning and work it way into a visible area of the ear. Also you can use these q tips to help remove any eye boogers before you take them to the ring. It is a good idea to give your sphynx a once over before you run them up to the ring...make sure they dont have food on their chins or litter on their behinds!

If your sphynx sleeps a lot during the show they may sweat throughout the day...wet wipes can be used to wipe them down if they start to feel oily or build up any dirt...usually on the belly or in the arm pits!

It is important when you get to the show to check your entry in the catalog to make sure name spellings and registration info is correct. If this info is incorrect it may keep your cat from getting credit for all his/her finals in the TICA database. This could result in you not getting the titles you earned. The catalog also contains your cats show number for that show...this is the number they will call when they need your cat in the ring. Try to be prompt when you are called. This catalog will usually contain a form to help you keep track of your points for the day. However, it is a good idea to print one off the TICA website Here. We can help you learn how it works!

If you feed raw and decide to bring it with you to the show remember to keep a cooler fully stocked with ice so you do not have to worry about spoiled meat. It is also a good idea to bring a favorite treat to reward them after a ring.

Most sphynx enjoy showing. These cats love the constant attention and are very curious by nature. However,there are exceptions to the rule. It is best to start showing them as early as possible (4 months old). The sooner they start the easier they adapt to it. Unfortunately, sometimes, despite our best efforts the cat may still not enjoy showing. If they generally just seem upset its not uncommon to give them another try at a different show, and in between shows take them out around town often to get them used to being out side their comfort zone. If the cat absolutely hates it and is threatening or actually bites and scratches you or the judges it may be a better idea to retire this cat. Sometimes if the cat is just mildly upset about showing all it takes is practice and patience. If they seem stressed you can use a homeopathic supplement called  Rescue Remedy to help calm them down. There are also calming sprays you can purchase at your local pet store that can somewhat mask all the other smells in the show hall. Sometimes this is all that is needed to get your cat on the right track.

We here at Bemisu want you to have the best experience possible
 and if you know you want to show before you purchase your kitten
 we will do the best we can to give you the best possible match in
 show personality as well as show quality.For more info on showing
your cat please visit the TICA website at www.TICA.org There are 
rules specific to TICA and they have the break down of how scoring
 works on their website. You are always welcome to contact us with 
any questions you have. Remember you do not have to breed cats to
 show cats. You can show altered cats as well as unaltered cats. Shows
 are a great way to meet other cat enthusiast and some life long friends!