Cat Show Terminology

Know the lingo when you attend a cat show.

Know the lingo when you attend a cat show.

Benching area: Rows of tables where caged cats and their exhibitors wait to be called for judging.

Household pets: Unregistered, nonpedigreed cats compete in this category based on health, cleanliness and personality.

Judge: A veteran breeder evaluates each cat according to the specific standard for the breed.

Judging ring: Each show includes six to eight rings, each with a different judge, and composed of a table, cage area and spectator chairs. Cats can compete in every ring.

Points: Awarded for each placing in top cat category. Cats earn points for regional and national wins based on the number of cats they defeat in each ring. The top cat in the nation will typically accumulate more than 10,000 points. Each judge will display the 10 best cats he or she has judged and will rank them from 1 to 10. Rosette: Ribbons awarded to top 10 cats in individual judging rings.

Specialty ring: May evaluate a single breed, but commonly evaluates only longhaired or shorthaired breeds.

Standard: An aesthetic ideal for a particular breed approved by breeders within the association, used to evaluate cats. The standard at each show varies, depending on which cat association sponsors the show.

Steward: Employed to disinfect cat cages at judging rings between showings.

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