About The Cat Fancier’s Association

 About The Cat Fancier’s Association

Are you interested in finding a purebred cat? As you shop for your cat, you may notice the initials CFA in some advertisements. What exactly does this mean? CFA stands for the Cat Fancier’s Association, the largest purebred cat registry in the world. The CFA was created to maintain breed standards and register litters of purebred kittens. In addition, this association holds cat shows, where cats are judged to see how closely they adhere to their breed’s standard. The CFA recognizes only forty-one breeds of cats.

When a breeder registers a litter of kittens with the Cat Fancier’s Association, he or she has the option of deciding the kitten cannot be bred. Unique cats with a pin number on their registration forms will be eligible to have their kittens registered. This allows the breeders to continue to better their breeds. Once the litter is registered, each kitten will need to be individually registered by its recent owner.

The CFA has placed the cat breeds it recognizes into three categories. 

  • Championship Class
  • Provisional Class
  • Miscellaneous Class

Each of the forty-one breeds that the CFA recognizes is placed in one of these groups. When cats are shown, they must win first place in their breed and then their class before they can compete for the title of best in the show.

Championship Class

Cats in the Championship Class are those who are solidly established cat breeds. 

Provisional Class

The breeds in the Provisional Class have been more recently established and are still being closely watched to be sure they conform to the new breed standard. 

Miscellaneous Class

Finally, the one breed currently in the Miscellaneous Class is until now having a breed standard created and cannot actually compete for the best in show title.

If you live in Canada, you retain a second option. You can register your cat in the Canadian Cat Association

Canadian Cat Association
Canadian Cat Association: Image Courtesy Wikimedia

This association was founded by Canadians who did not want to register their cats with an association in another country. Other popular cat registries are the Traditional Cat Association, which supports original breed standards and do not uphold current trends that exaggerate breed characteristics, the Governing Council of the Cat Fancy, which is the United Kingdom’s cat registry, and the Federation International Feline, which is the European cat registry.

Although there are many breeds of cats, they all fit into one of two categories, clipped hair or long hair. Short hair cats include breeds like the Abyssinian and the British Shorthair, while Norwegian Forest Cats and Turkish Angoras are representatives of long-haired cats. Of the forty-one CFA-recognized cat breeds, the most popular is likely the American Shorthair, which has been in the United States for over 300 years. Although non-pedigreed domestic cats often resemble this breed, it has in fact been carefully and selectively bred for generation after generation to develop characteristics that would appear in every kitten. Other recognized breeds were the Siamese, the Rex, the Main Coon, the Persian, and the Ragdoll.

Merely remember, a pedigree doesn’t produce your kitten any more loving and affectionate. There are many wonderful pet cats without a pedigree. However, a pedigree does enable you to pick out a kitten that will exhibit certain characteristics.

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