Preparing For a Cat Show
The obvious essential is to ensure your cat is looking in tip-top condition. This means grooming; cutting nails and even maybe bathing (ouch!) Make sure you can transport safely. One product we have found very useful, if your cat does not enjoy travelling, is Feliway Pheromones spray. This has proved to be very effective in calming Louie (our red Somali) and his nerves. It is sprayed in the car and also in the cat box. Another useful tip is to take tha cats favourite toy cushion or blanket for the car.
As your cat will be at the show all day you will need a provision of food, litter and water. Dustbins are plentiful at the show to get rid of any waste.
Keeping your cat safe
It is useful to have signs on your cats cage such as “Do not feed” or "Do not touch". Quite easy to make up they can also usually be bought at the show. It is also worth thinking about whether your cat would be happier in a single cage or a double cage. Double cages are double the size of a single (and so cost more) and are usually used for special exhibits. But if your cat is likely to find a small area difficult to deal with for a whole day (if so should you be there at all?) would a double cage make things easier?
Any color, so long as its white...
There are strict rules about what can actually be placed in the cage. In short, every thing must be WHITE. This is so the judges cannot recognise any of the entrants from known toys or special dishes etc and so impartiality is ensured. You therefore need to acquire these white items: a food bowl; a water bowl; a litter tray; and white floor covering (usually a blanket). Anything (including food) other than these items must be taken out of the cage before the judging begins.
The white items are again usually available in the stalls at the show but for safety sake it is a good idea to buy beforehand in rediness.
What will the judges do?
The judges will handle the cats in order to make their decisions. They are always gentle and skilled but it will be probably different to what your cat has experienced. So to prepare your cat it is a good idea to get him used to being handled. Before the show make sure you are picking him up every day. Some people have found wearing a white coat (as the judges do) is also useful to help him get used to the experience. When we showed Louie for the first time we were lucky enough to know a judges assistant who gave us an idea of how the judge is likely to hold the cat. They may pick him up and hold him long-wise under the belly, look into his face to distinguish face marking; pick up his paws to check feet etc.
A visit to the vets just before the show is also imperative. It will ensure he is well enough to be seen and not a danger to other cats. Vaccinations can be brought up to date. Your Vaccination history card must be taken to the show. With all the things that need to be taken it is a good idea to pack a bag the night before rather than rushing around frantically in the morning.