Meeting the Mooners at the Crab and Mallet

My sister lives in Baltimore, and I went to visit her the same weekend that the Crab & Mallet CFA show was being held in town. Originally, I had hoped to enter Jacoby, as that is a well-known show with a lot of entries and “famous” cats and cat people in attendance.

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In the end, Jake and I went to the TICA show in Providence instead, but my sister and I went to the Crab and Mallet show as spectators on Sunday afternoon.

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As soon as we walked in the door, we saw a sleek, steel-blue form in a harness greeting people at the entry tables. My sister called me over, and as she was telling me, “Look!” I heard the name “Twyla.” (These photos, I think, are Racy. Twyla was wearing a little walking jacket, but none of the photos of her really came out well, sadly).

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“Whoa, wait a minute,” I said. “Did you say her name was TWYLA??”

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And then followed the leash up to the person at the other end of it and asked again, “Did you say Twyla?”

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And the woman with the blue Aby said, “Yes! This is Twyla.”

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And I said, “Oh, hi! I’m Coco. From the Daily Abyssinian!”

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And she said, “Hi! I’m Lisa-Maria!”

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And then Lisa-Maria led my sister and me over to her benching area, where Twyla’s daughter Racy Mooner and her grandson, Banjo Mooner, were hanging out.

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(You may want to go back and refer to my previous posts about the Mooners.)

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All three of these Abys are just amazing. Busy show hall, second day, and they’re still playing with toys, rolling over for treats and just showing off all over the place. It was awesome.

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It seemed like it happened as soon as we met, but Banjo was called up to a final in Nancy Dodds’ ring.

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He looks a little crabby about having to stop playing in this photo, doesn’t he?

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He waited patiently (well, as patiently as an Aby can be expected to wait) for his rosette.

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As it happened, he was Nancy’s Best Cat in Premiership!

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No sooner had Lisa-Maria taken Banjo back to his cage, but Racy was called to a final in Gene Darrah’s ring.

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She, too, had to wait her turn.

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But when her turn came, she was awarded Best Shorthair Premier and Best Allbreed Premier!

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Look at her schmoozing!

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Isn’t she adorable?

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Back at the benching area, she was clearly very pleased with herself!

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“I did good, right, Mom?”

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Eventually, I had to tear myself from the Mooners and go see all the other cats at the show. There were 24 HHPs entered (more than I’ve ever seen at a New England show), including this pretty brown ticked tabby named “MyAbby.”

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I suspect this is what Abys looked like 150 years ago when the breed first started.

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I thought this black Oriental Shorthair was so handsome. And I love his name, too: GPR Kat-Tres Dashiell Hammett.

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I have to show you this little man, though. He was just four months old (the youngest a kitten can be to enter a show) and he was adorable.  I got to hold him (that’s my shoulder he’s flopped on)!

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He’s a European Burmese called Bijouxcats Dewey. Tessie actually has Bijouxcats European Burmese in her pedigree (Her paternal great-great-grandmother was Bijouxcats Krystal SheerRose of Bes, and if you look at the EuroBurm section of the Bijouxcats website, you’ll see a photo of GC Bes Payton of Bijouxcats, International BOB 2002 – Bes is the cattery Tessie is from!), so they may be distantly related.  He really did remind me of Tessie, though. Such a little sleepy sweetheart..!

I thought I saw some Somalis, too, but I wasn’t able to get photos of them as people were packing up; I was pretty impressed that the show was pretty much over and packed up by 5pm!  There were a lot of great vendors at this show, and Chanan was there, too. Next year, I really want to go to this show as an exhibitor, because it’s every bit as good as I’ve always heard.

11 thoughts on “Meeting the Mooners at the Crab and Mallet

  1. What kind of age limits and requirements are there for the cats in the household pet division? I’ve always wondered if my handsome man Sebastian wouldn’t do well in a show if he ever had the chance. He looks spot-on like a Snowshoe. He just doesn’t have papers and happened to be born in a barn back in NC. It’s crazy how he turned out considering that neither his mom or any of his siblings looked anything even remotely like him.

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    1. Well, the pointed Siamese gene is recessive, both parents could have carried it and not looked like Siamese, and then all the other siblings could have just not had both recessive genes (or they could have had different fathers entirely), so that does happen. The famous cat Scarlett who saved her kittens from a fire had one little Siamese-pointed kitten amongst her litter of five… That plus the white spotting gene = Snowshoe. I had a cat, Sgt. Pepper, in high school who looked like a Snowshoe, too, except with too much white.

      sgtpepper-82show

      That being said, I don’t think there is an age limit for HHPs, except they need to be over 8 months old in CFA (there’s a kitten class for HHP in TICA), they need to be neutered/spayed, and they can’t be declawed in CFA (I think they can be in TICA). They also can’t be registrable as a purebred (there was an Aby in the last CFA show we were in who didn’t have her CFA registration yet (it was applied for but not yet received), so her person entered her as a HHP so that she could at least get some practice at being in a cat show. She was disqualified in one ring that I know of because the judge could tell she was a showable Aby and she did have papers.

      So Sebastian should be fine to enter! We never entered Kylie at all til she was 6 years old, and she turned out to be a natural! She loved it!

      kyliemilfordshowN2640

      She turned out to be a total schmoozer! And she’s not our most social kitty, so you really never know who will turn out to be a good show cat until you enter them in a show!

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      1. Cool! Good to know. Sebastian is 8 now, but you would guess closer to 5 by looking at him.

        Hey, so about the genes… do you mean that both of his parents would have had to have a recessive gene to produce him? Or could his father have had a dominant gene and his mother no recessive ones and still get the same result? He was born on my grandparents’ farm (nothing anyone could ever say could get them to spay or neuter their barn cats >_< ) and the suspected father (the only tom around at the time) definitely had some white in him… kind of a white base… but very light yellowish tabby accents. His mom was a calico and one brother was solid black and the other I'm not sure about because it died during birth and my grandma never mentioned its color.

        Anyway, I always figured he must be a case of recessive genes cropping up just right since I can't imagine that where my grandparents lived in the middle of nowhere in very rural back country farmland where cats are generally only good for mousing and often only get fed table scraps that anyone would have a purebred Siamese around.


        Probably one of the few photos I have of him sitting up properly as opposed to wrestling, playing or wallowing.


        Achoo! (Or actually just mid-yawn, but I totally think he looks like he’s about to sneeze.)

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        1. HA! I had that problem on Sparkle’s blog, too! No worries, I could follow the links.

          Sebastian is so handsome!

          Both parents would have had to had a “hidden” Siamese gene, and then they’d have had to both match up in the kitten for it to look Siamese. Siamese is actually incomplete, thermorestrictive albinism, with the genetic symbol c(s). Full colour is C, and each cat has two “c’s” – one from each parent. Sebastian, somehow, got two c(s)’s while all his siblings were either CC or Cc(s). I’m not 100% sure, but I think it can also appear spontaneously, since it is a type of albinism.

          It’s also incompletely dominant to the other colour mutation, c(b), which causes the Burmese colouration. Tonkineses are genetically c(s)c(b), because neither the Siamese gene or the Burmese gene are dominant to one another.

          c(a) is full, white, pink-eyed albino, but it’s rare in cats (although common in rats, mice, rabbits and ferrets).

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          1. I’m admittedly not fully understanding everything you’re saying here, but the link and google are helping. So 1) you’re basically saying Sebastian’s parents must have both had recessive Siamese genes?

            But the part that’s kind of confusing me is 2) he has some form of albinism? As in some parts of him are actually just lacking pigment rather than being white pigmented? Or am I totally not understanding this correctly? I’m guessing the thermorestrictive part has to do with the areas that are colored lighter vs. darker. But I’m not sure I understand how that related to albinism.

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          2. Deep breath…no worries, this is kind of tricky…

            Basically, ALL pointed cats, be they Siamese, Colorpoint Shorthairs, Himalayans, Birmans, Balinese, Ragdolls, Si-Rex, Snowshoes, American Bobtails or any other breed in which pointed cats can occur (because they can happen in any breed, regardless of whether or not the pointed colour pattern is recognised by that breed’s registry) are, genetically, partial albinos. This is also seen in their blue eyes and their red eyeshine – blue irises have less pigment than other eye colours, and the tapetum lucideum reflects red instead of yellow-green because of a lack of pigment. The gene that causes “pointing” is partial albino, with the colour restricted to the cooler parts of an animal’s body.

            (One complication: there is a difference between the Siamese breed and the Siamese gene which produces Siamese colour. Breeds are animals bred to conform to a written standard, while colours can occur in any breed, although the written standard may not accept that colour.)

            “True” albinos (complete lack of pigment) is rare in cats, but is common in some other animals (rabbits, mice, rats, guinea pigs and ferrets). This is the all-white, pink-eyed albino.

            Pointed cats have more pigment than “true” albinos, but less than Burmese cats (which are also partial albinos in that they have restricted pigment when compared to “normal” cats), Think of albinism as a spectrum going from least dominant to most dominant:

            c(a) (true albino) -> c(s) (thermo-restricted albino, aka “Siamese”) -> c(b) (semi-albino, aka “Burmese”) -> C (full colour expression)

            (See Messybeast for more on the “c/C” set of alleles)

            Yet another complication with albinos in cats is that there is more than one type of white gene in cats. First, we have Dominant White, which is (as you might guess) dominant. To everything. So no matter what the cat’s genotype is, it’s phenotype (outward appearance) is solid white. And this can happen in any breed, including Oriental Shorthairs, which are basically non-pointed cats of Siamese (the breed) type. These are often called “white Siamese” – check out that link, though, because it rather adorably explains albinism vs. Dominant White.

            Then there is the white spotting gene, which can go from one tiny white patch on the chin or belly, to one HUGE white spot with a bit of the cat’s actual colour peeping out a bit on their head or tail. This is the type of white that Kylie is; when she was a tiny baby, she had two blue tabby marks on her head, which faded as she matured and are now just a few dark hairs on her head. You can see that here:

            kylietess-porch

            Then, separate from all those genes is the Blue-Eyed White gene, which causes deafness. This is why some blue-eyed white cats are not deaf; their whiteness is caused by the spotting gene or the Dominant white gene, and underneath the white coat, they are pointed cats, or perhaps odd-eyed torties.

            Cats can also have odd coloured eyes, including having two different types of blue eyes.Messybeast has an excellent article on the different types of white cats, including a photo of a white cat with one “Siamese” blue eye and one normally-pigmented blue eye.

            Two last photos for you: this is my sister’s cat Madison, who is a blue-pointed cat with white:

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            See, genetically Madison is like Sebastian, just with the dilute gene added (to turn the seal – genetically black – to blue) and a more extensive white spotting gene.

            Hope that all made sense!

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    2. Oh! And also, I just watched a recent episode of “Must Love Cats” that showed a CFA HHP final! It’s the episode called “Tough Guys and Acupuncture Saves Cats.”

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