Our guide to cat show terminology will help you master the lexicon of the show circuit. Click on any letter below to jump down to definitions of terms beginning with that letter.

A  |  B   |   C   |   E   |   G   |   H   |   K   |   N   |   P   |   R   |   S   |   U   |   V   |  

— A —

All Breed Show: For all cats regardless of coat legnth or type

Altered: Spayed/neutered

Any Other Variety (AOV) Class: A registered cat which does not conform to the breed’s standard

— B —

“Benching” Cage: Where cats stay when not being judged

Best in Show: The top cat

— C —

Cat Fancier: Any cat enthusiast

Championship Class: For unaltered, pedigreed cats at least eight months old

— E —

Exhibitor: Person showing a ct in competition

— G —

Grand Champion: The top competitor at a CFA cat show

Grand Premier: The equivalent of a Grand Champion for an altered cat

— H —

Household Pet: Random bred or non-pedigreed cat

— K —

Kitten Class: Pedigreed cats between four to eight months old, altered or unaltered

— N —

Neuter (castration): A surgical procedure to render male cats sterile

— P —

Pedigreed: Purebred

Premiership Class: For altered pedigreed cats

Provisional Class: For breeds who have not achieved Championship status

— R —

Random Bred: Non-pedigreed; mixed breed

— S —

Show Quality: Cats that meet show qualifications

Show Standard: A written description of the ideal cat of a particular breed, by which actual cats are judged

Spay: To surgically remoev the reproductive organs of a female cat

Specialty Show: For cats of similar coat length or type

— U —

Unaltered: Whole; intact. Not neutered or spayed.

— V —

Vetting: Veterinary inspection