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Paws for Felines and Fanciers at Weekend Show in Anaheim

July 16, 1988|DICK RORABACK | Times Staff Writer

America is no longer going to the dogs. As many an ailurophile has known for a decade, the cat has surpassed Fido as the country's favorite domestic pet--60 million to 50 million, according to the latest census.

The phenomenon has spawned a number of exhibitions and competitions, each bigger than the last, the latest of which is the International Cat Show at the Anaheim Convention Center, 800 W. Katella Ave., today and Sunday from 9 a.m.-6 p.m.

Along with myriad contests--best of breed, most beautiful eyes, best shelter-adopted cats, longest whiskers, best of show, owner-cat look-alike, etc.--there are booths purring the virtues of a number of exotic breeds: Manx, Cymric and Scottish Folds from Britain; Bengals, California Spangled Cats and Sphynxes among new breeds. Examples of the breeds are displayed, as well as photos and people to tell you how to get one, and how to care for it.

A marketplace sells just about everything imaginable for cat and cat lover; kittens are for sale by some of the nation's top breeders, and Kinky Friedman, author/character/musician/iconoclast will be on hand today at 4 p.m. to autograph copies of his new book, "When the Cat's Away," and generally "do whatever he feels like," according to show spokesperson Elinor Silverman.

Cat shows, Silverman says, are big-ticket now, and total Anaheim attendance threatens to surpass that of this year's Madison Square Garden show, when "More than 31,000 crazy people showed up to wait in line--in a blizzard."

Moreover, "cat shows are big breeding grounds," Silverman confides. "It's like 'The Mating Game.' Oh no, they're not bred at the show. Let's just say, arrangements are made. . . . "Then there's going to be a seminar on fat cats. American cats tend to be obese." Like their owners? "You said it, I didn't."

Lions' share of the proceeds will benefit Actors and Others for Animals.

Entry is $8 for adults; $4 for seniors 65 and older and children younger than 12. Information: (818) 896-3875.

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