Cape Town - This year has turned out to be the "Year of the Persian" in the most prestigious cat show in the country which took place in Cape Town at the weekend.
The South African Cat Council's (SACC) Cat of the Year, or Coty, as it is affectionately known in the cat world, is the annual culmination of a year of intensive campaigning by cat owners and breeders at various shows across the country.
Show cats are awarded qualifying points and, at the end of the show season, only the very best are selected to represent their regions at this high-profile, glamour event.
The event this year was themed “The Great CATsby” and took place in two stages - the actual judging of the cats followed by a gala dinner where the winners were announced.
In the Neuter section, the top three cats were all Persians, with Triple Supreme Premier Carmandale Malakai, a Blue Classic Tabby Bi-colour neutered male winning the title of SACC Neuter of the Year. Malakai is owned by Petrina Huelin.
Top honours in the Entire section, as well as the overall title of Cat of the Year, went to another Persian, Laurent van der Merwe-Deetlefs’ imported red tabby-point male, Supreme Champion Alomi’s Bamboozle of Lauvander. Laurent and Petrina were both from Cape Town and between the two of them took home a range of silverware and prizes.
In the Kitten section, top honours this year went to a black-and-white Devon Rex female, Taldi Shebangs, owned and bred by Johan Groenewald and Ian Taylor, from Port Elizabeth.
The title of Domestic Pet of the Year went to the Supreme Master Gabriella, a Calico Medium-hair spayed female, owned by Irene Sommerfeld from Cape Town. Judges were Ngaio Crawley, Veronica Knight, Rita Wiseman, Jan van Rooyen and Ingrid de Wet.