Minutes of the November 2003 Breed Council Meeting

Persian Breed Council Secretary Anna Sadler called the meeting to order at 8:15am on Saturday, November 22, 2003. The meeting was held in Houston, Texas, in conjunction with the CFA International Cat Show.

Anna started the meeting by thanking the people who worked on this year's breed booth on display at this show, in particular Karen Malesh and Janet & Carissa Altschul.

Copies of this year's Persian Breed Council poll were distributed. The polls will be mailed from the CFA Central Office earlier this year in an attempt to give BC members living in Europe more time to receive the polls, complete them, and return them. There are questions in the General section for members of any Persian Division as well as for members of the Solid, Tabby, and Parti-Color Divisions. [See the poll]

  • General - Susan Henry had submitted the questions on this section of the poll and she explained that she was simply trying to change some of the wording to clarify the Standard:
    • Balance/Refinement - not previously defined in the Standard.
    • Skull Structure - emphasize that we want a smooth & round skull with no bumps or ridges
    • Muzzle - addresses the more pinched muzzles which are not desired
    Gary Powell said we rejoice when we get the essence of a round head - the awesome underlying hear structure is the final frontier. He'd love to the the Standard go further. He appreciates judges with hands-on experience that feel the structure. He recalled judging a cat that looked gorgeous but in feeling the head it fell away above the eyes. He asked, "Do judges know what they're supposed to feel?" We need to define "smooth." The Standard describes the ideal we're striving for. The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.
  • Solid/Tabby Divisions - Eliminate the Peke-Face red and red tabby. Susan Henry explained that she contacted the CFA Central Office for data on how many of these cats have been registered. Last year there was only one such cat registered and only three such cats in the previous two years. We don't even know that these were actually Peke-Face cats as described in the Standard or simply someone erroneously registering an extreme Persian as a Peke-Face. The numbers do not support keeping these cats. The Standard for the Peke-Face calls for a different head structure than the other Persians, with a brow ridge, dimple, and a double dome. This is the only place the word "dome" appears in the Persian Standard. Susan asked those attending what the word "dome" means to them. Most people think of a building such as the Capitol in Washington, DC. That's not the shape we want in our Persians; we want a round head. We're trying to get away from the head structure described in the Peke-Face Standard. Anna commented that she doesn't know of anyone still working with the Peke-Face Persians. Some years ago the Smiths (Smithway) and Kim Wheelwright worked with them.
  • Solid/Parti-Color Divisions - The Solid and Parti-Color Divisions would be replaced by the Dominant and Dilute Divisions. Kitty Angell commented, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." She further commented that while the proposal places the Whites in the Dominant Division, in reality they could be masking BiColor, Tabby, or Dilute. Anna commented that everything is arbitrary in showing. For example, a Smoke-&-White could be shown in the Smoke Division rather than the BiColor Division. Donna Jean Thompson commented that while we understand the genetic reason behind this proposal, we don't judge based on genetics. Barbara Nyhart agreed that was a valid point; however, she felt we've lost the better part of our dilutes and the emphasis on paleness. She believed people would be more inclined to work for pale color if there was a Dilute Division. Susan Cook responded that breeders can work for pale dilute color now. Donna Jean explained that in the 1960s "the blue was king." Today dominants are added to dilute pedigrees and few, if any, breeders are using only dilutes today. Kitty said how we show our cats doesn't affect our breeding programs. Anna conceded that the proposal might help new breeders to understand. Wayne Trevathan said CFA would be out of step with the rest of the world. He also felt it would hurt the Parti-colors.

Money - Anna explained that the Breed Council has no budget. We are allowed to do one mailing a year at CFA expense. Some breeders had put their own money into this year's breed booth to help cover some of the costs. If we want to continue to have a breed booth, we need to raise some money. Anna asked for suggestions to develop a treasury. How do we want to go? We don't have a breed club to support us. Our numbers are going down. The Breed Council can address some of this. A raffle was suggested with raffle tickets passed out in different areas of the country. Gary Powell mentioned that a local cat club to which he belongs had put some of his old "Cats" magazines on eBay and it raised $1,000. He suggested that we could try something like this. Sue Ostlund in Region 2 offered to co-chair the fund-raising. She volunteered Virginia King to knit an Afghan to raffle. Chuck Ober said he would talk with Royal Canin about possible corporate sponsorship.

Membership - Anna commented that we're losing Breed Council members. Several people attending the meeting stated that they had not signed up. Rhonda Fox agreed to head up a membership drive.