Dr. Denise Spraker, LVT explains the
difference between Egyptian Maus
On Sat. July 13, the Dumb Friends League (DFL) in Denver, CO had their 5th annual CatFest public outreach festival. The Dumb Friends League was founded in 1910 and is the largest community-based animal sheltering organization in the Rocky Mountain region. They are a leader in providing companion animal care, shelter practices and active in local and national animal legislative issues. Bob Rohde is DFL President and CEO and also a board member of the CATalyst Council.
Gary Shubert discusses Somalis
Linda Beck talks about Manx
Jerry Tunnell's British Shorthair
checks his admirers
Joan Miller helped set up CFA's involvement with CatFest and CFA has participated since CatFest's beginnings. It is part of the nationwide CATalyst Council program which has a goal of educating the public as to the value of cats as companion animals. In many cases shelters do not have nearly the problem of adopting out their dogs as they do their cats. Much of the general public still does not view cats as valued companions.
CatFest is an outreach effort in the Denver area, sponsored by the DFL, to raise the awareness of the general public as to the fact that cats make wonderful pets. One facet of this is the world of cat fanciers and cat related hobbies in general.
The CFA contingent came with several breeds, which in many cases the public was allowed to touch and hold. Breeders discussed breed specifics, responsible breeding practices, CFA in general, CFA shows, household pet classes, agility and much more. Breeds represented were European Burmese (Jeanne Anderson), Egyptian Maus (Denise Spraker), Abyssinians, Somalis (Kelli Griffin and Gary Shubert), Ocicats (Sue and Gerianne Riley), American Bobtails (Carol Saine), Ragdolls (Scarlett Smith), Maine Coons (Liz Mueller), Manx and Birmans (Linda Beck), British Shorthairs (Jerry, Carolyn, Megan, Anni Tunnell) and Persians (Donna Waskiewicz). The Purebred Cat Expo is one of the most popular attractions at CatFest and there is typically a long line outside the exhibition room to see them.
Scarlet Smith shows her Ragdoll to an aspiring exhibitor
Over 2000 people attended the event which included live music, vendors of cat related products, educational displays and booths by the Dumb Friends League on feline genetics, nutrition, cat behavior, clicker training and other items. Also a grand total of 102 cats and kittens were adopted out and found new homes! A definite side benefit of this effort is that it helps build a working relationship between CFA and animal shelters by focusing on a common interest.
Cat fanciers and their cats who represented CFA at CatFest