Cat shows, while not as well-known as dog shows, are still pretty popular. The first modern cat show took place in London in 1871. The Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA) has been running cat shows in the U.S. since 1906.
Cat shows work in a similar fashion to dog shows. Each breed of cats has its own standard and the cat closest to that standard will win the prize. Cat shows usually also feature workshops, sale of cat-related products and handing out of free samples. Not only purebreds can compete, there is also a category for Household Pets. Altered (neutered or spayed) cats can also participate in cat shows.
Like dog shows, cat shows have accrued criticism for focusing on the external appearance of the animals instead of their personalities. However, some cat owners feel that cat shows are a fun way to meet great people interested in cats and become knowledgeable about different breeds. Additionally, because they allow mixed breeds to compete, many rescue cats have been adopted as a result of participating in a show.
Cat shows are much noisier than dog shows and are quirkier. For instance, each cat’s cage is decorated and some are done up very elaborately. Glitter and sequins are a common sight.