Aby-a-Day – September 8: The Angel’s Tail

It’s hard being a shy Abyssinian.

angeltessiestailN4890

It seems like no matter what you do, you always end up in the background.

angeljakestailN4951

Of course, some days are worse than others…

This weekend’s show is definitely going to be interesting…

The breed summary for this weekend’s cat show in Groton, CT was posted today, and I think this is going to be the most interesting show Jacoby’s ever been to. At least, it will be if everyone shows up.

There are four Abyssinians entered in this show: One Grand Champion, two Premiers (one of whom is Jake), and one Grand Premier! Premiers don’t compete with Champions, but this will be the first time he’ll face another Aby in Premiership, let alone a Grand Premier. I wonder who they are?

But even more interesting than that…there’s a Somali entered in this show! I don’t think I’ve ever seen a Somali in person; I know I haven’t seen one since I’ve been going to shows in New England, and, since when I went to shows in Northern California Somalis were a new breed, I don’t really remember seeing any back then. Even better, the Somali entered in this show just happens to be a Grand Premier, so not only will Jake be competing against him or her, but I’ll be far more likely to see him or her being judged!

The other thing that makes this show interesting is that there are two Specialty rings, and the shows Jake’s been to so far have only had Allbreed rings. All this means is, in two rings he will only be competing for ribbons and finals against other shorthairs; the longhairs in those two rings will likewise only be competing against each other.

However, the CFA does have a confusing (and, in my opinion, somewhat annoying) quirk as far as which breeds are considered to be longhairs or shorthairs. You would think it would be based on, you know, the length of the cats’ hair, but because of the way the breeds and their show classes evolved, it’s not that simple. Somalis, Balinese (longhaired Siamese), Javanese (longhaired Colorpoint Shorthairs), and longhaired Japanese Bobtails, Manx, Scottish Folds, Oriental Shorthairs and Selkirk Rexes are all considered Shorthaired breeds by the CFA, and Exotics (shorthaired Persians), and American Bobtails and American Curls (which can be either long- or shorthaired) are considered Longhaired breeds. The reason for this is the body types and originating breeds (ie, Somalis came from Abyssinian breedings, so they are Shorthairs, but Exotics came out of Persian breeding programs, so they’re considered Longhairs), but it can definitely be confusing to watch a Shorthair Specialty ring and see cats with long hair!

(I have a hard time remembering which breeds are Longhairs in the CFA – moreso than the Shorthairs, because I’m much more familiar with the Shorthair breeds – and I had to look up the breed divisions in the CFA rules!)

So, even though Abys have short hair and Somalis have long hair, they are more alike than they are different, and so Jake will be competing with this Somali in the Shorthair Specialty rings along with the other Abyssinians.

Like I said, it’s going to be an interesting weekend!