I can honestly say I did something that I thought I would NEVER do... go to a cat show. Don't because I don't like cats (even though I am allergic to cat dander), but because its just not anything I ever really thought I would want to go to. But when I saw in the paper that the Wichita Cat Fancy Show was coming up I figured it would be an interesting place to take pictures. Not because the cats were interesting, but because I knew the people there would be. The moment I stepped foot into The Cotillion, I knew I wasn't going to be disappointed.
The first thing that hit me as i walked in was the smell. The urine filled air was strong, which I was expecting, but not to that degree. I soon realized to my astonishment that it wasn't the cats urine I was smelling but the men's bathroom which I was heading to. It was a relief to know that the smell wasn't the cats, but I also wasn't to thrilled because I had to hold my breath to use the bathroom after drinking a huge bottle of water on the way there. Needless to say I got a bit lighted, but hey when you got to go, you got to go right?
It's a hell of a thing to walk in to a place and see hundreds of modified and personalized cat cages in one place. Most of the cages had an area with the cats name on it. I can't tell you how many Mr. Whiskers or Mr. Fancy Pants cat names there were. It was odd to me how many cats had "Mr." in front of there names. Almost as if that was essential in helping to win a ribbon. I guess it sounds a lot better to say the winner is "Mr. Whiskers" than just "Whiskers".
I also found it fascinating how each cage was decorated. Most had a blanket (made by the owner I'm sure), and a theme or color scheme behind it. I was told by many of the owners that it "represented the cats personality and what they like". Seemed to me like it represented more of the owners likes than the cats.
Even though it was a fun event, there was still judging for the best cat going on. Every couple of minutes you would hear on the speakers a judge doing a call for the next round of "contestants" and which category was being judged next. While the judges were doing there thing there wasn't to much laughing or clapping. I quickly understood how serious these people were about there cat shows and ribbons. I can't say for sure, but from the looks of it the cats could have gave a damn whether they won or not. This was strictly something for the owners to boast about.
I do have to say what was impressive was everything that went into getting the cat ready for judging. Clipping, trimming, brushing, combing... you name it, they did it to get the cat ready. Some of the tables looked like a beauty salon. The only difference was that it had cat treats next to the combs.
Something I found extremely strange was I didn't see one cat on a leash. Everyone was walking around carrying their cats. A cat in one hand and a feather toy in another. Made for an extremely strange scene. It was very Freudian in a way. I heard people calling the cats they owned there babies, and would refer to them as "Mommies" this or not. so it is no wonder that they walked around holding their cats as if they were a baby. Interesting to say the least.
Now remember how I said I have cat allergies? It took me about an hour and a half before they start kicking my ass. I could feel my eyes watering and throat swelling so I knew it was time to go.
This was definitely an experience that I had never had before. Next time I will just make sure and bring some allergy medicine along with me! ~ @RoyceOnTheRadio