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Reminder to Cast Your Ballot for TICA Judge of the Year
Eleven New Clubs Join TICA's World
Don't Get Tricked: The Truth Behind Whisker Fatigue
CleanHealthy Pets Joins TICA in Donating Pet Supplies For Homeless Pets
Capital Cat Club Takes Its Annual Show to the Next
TICA Member Finds Life Saving Help from Fellow Exhibitor
Members at Work
An Update from the WINN Foundation
Abu Dhabi Hotel Employs Cats to Help Employees Beat Stress


TICA members in good standing are eligible to vote for TICA Judge of the Year.

Earlier this month, ballots were emailed to voting members with a direct link to vote. If you have not done so already, please check your email and vote on or before July 28, 2017.

If you believe your ballot was either lost or misplaced, please contact Frances Cardona in TICA’s Executive Office at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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Help us welcome the following new clubs into our ever-growing TICA family:

  • Aisa Miluku House Club located in Shanghai
  • Cariocat Clube Carioca Do Gato located in Rio De Janerio, Brazil
  • Catsachusetts Cat Club located in Southern New England in the state of Massachusetts
  • Celery City Cat Club located in Sanford, Florida
  • China Star Cat Club located in Shanghai
  • Formosa Cat Fanciers located in Taiwan
  • Heartland Cat Fanciers Club located in Edmonton, Alberta Canada
  • High Country Cat Club located in the state of Colorado
  • Perla Del Pacifico Cat Club located in Ecuador
  • Taiwan Cat Lovers located in Taipei, Taiwan R.O.C.
  • and Western Europe Regional Partnership located in the United Kingdom

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Last month, the New York Times published a story with the headline "Feline Food Issues? 'Whisker Fatigue' May Be to Blame."

According to the Times article, "whisker fatigue is a fairly new diagnosis, one that many (but not all) veterinarians take seriously." Yet, the nearly 800-word article does not cite any studies, peer-reviews or most-importantly, comment from any veterinarians. Instead it sources three companies that make or sell special bowls for cats that are supposedly afflicted with whisker sensitivity issues.

As a result, Boston Magazine reached out to three well-known and respected veterinary groups – MSPCA's Angell Animal Medical Center, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University and the American Veterinary Medical Association. All three groups and their members were not aware of whisker fatigue and surprised that the New York Times published such an article.

AVMA President Tom Meyer noted that "while a cat's whiskers are very sensitive, there is currently no evidence showing that whiskers rubbing against food bowls causes cats stress or discomfort." He went on to advise "if you notice your cat having difficulty eating or showing behavioral changes at meal time, talk to your veterinarian. There could be serious and treatable medical problems affecting your cat, such as an illness or painful problems with their teeth."

While fake news is unfortunately a common occurrence today, these stories typically revolve around trends and steer away from health-related topics. Readers should be cautious when reading about potential medical or behavioral issues that do not quote an established veterinarian or cite a valid well-known source.

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Last April, during the 2017 America's Family Pet Expo in Costa Mesa, CA, TICA was introduced to the nonprofit organization Operation Blankets of Love (OBOL). The group donates food and supplies to more than 1,000 homeless animal shelters, rescue groups, pets of homeless owners, and wildlife sanctuaries in the United States.

While the organization receives regular supplies for dogs, donations for feline resources however are typically overlooked and are in short supply. As a result, TICA quickly joined forces with the OBOL and agreed to help spread the word to create 'Cat Care Packages.'

CleanHealthyPets owner Mark Talt was the first to join forces with TICA. His company donated disposable earth-friendly pet bowls and littler boxes that were immediately distributed the Orange County SPCA and other shelters throughout the U.S.

"Nobody gets in this business without a soft heart for all animals," said CleanHealthyPets Founder Mark Talt. "As soon as I heard about the cause I was happy to contribute. Our feeding bowls and litter boxes are both disposable, recyclable and extremely convenient making them a perfect fit for Operation Blankets of Love."

Over the past nine years, OBOL has provided aid and comfort pet items to more than 655 animal rescue groups and 42 animal shelters. They are particularly in need of nutritious food, treats, blankets, pet beds, toys, and other critical supplies.

To find out more or to donate items for TICA's Cat Care Packages, please contact OBOL's Dana Lavin at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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The intersection of scientific research, feline enthusiasm and practical solutions took center stage in La Plata, MD, June 17, 2017, during the Capital Cat Club's Mid Atlantic Feline Education & Cat Show.

The educational event, sponsored by Dr. Elsey's CleanProtein and Ceva (makers of Feliway), allowed more than 70 TICA Members, TICA judges, scientists and veterinarians the rare opportunity to share insights and practical veterinary expertise, present research, and pointed to comparisons with other domestic species to improve how we observe and select purposely bred animals. The premise of the Feline Education & Cat Show was an equal emphasis on educational seminars about feline genetics, husbandry, health and welfare with the conformational evaluation of a cat show.

TICA judges are required to attain six Continuing Education Units (CEUs) per year to retain their TICA judging license; an Education Show format holds those CEUs worthy seminars during one half of an alternative format show inviting all exhibitors and TICA Members. TICA's continued progress is assured when the membership and leadership are informed and engaged with professional disciplines and corporate innovations that can improve the lives of cats and the lives of cat lovers.

Seminars included:

  • Feline Genetics 101 & Genetic Counseling in the Era of Molecular Diagnostics led by Margaret Casal, DVM, PhD University of Pennsylvania Veterinary School
  • Defining a Population, Breed, Species for Morphology, Health & Understanding led by Brian Davis, PhD Texas A&M
  • Managing Stress and Anxiety in the Multi-Cat Household led by Dr. Edward Koronowski, DVM CEVA Animal Health
  • Pigment and Pattern in Domestic & Wild Felines and other Mammals led by Chris Kaelin, PhD Stanford University
  • Insights and Innovations in Feline Neonatal & Pediatric Care led by Rick Kesler, DVM Royal Canin
  • Observing and Evaluating Healthy Form, Structure and Movement for the Purposefully Bred Feline led by Adriana Kajon, PhD & Vickie Shields TICA Allbreed Judges
  • Insights to Genetic Feline Health Screening at Cornell Veterinary Biobank led by Isabel Hernandez DVM

Comments from TICA attendees include:

"It was fabulous and after 40 years of breeding cats I learned a lot!!! We need to do this more often. All the speakers were so dedicated and interesting" – Pat Killmaier

..."This show featured professional guest speakers from across the country that provided such valuable life saving information that we simply have not been able to find from your average internet search or even local veterinarians. I hope to see more shows modeled after this event as I truly believe this is an amazing productive direction for future growth within breeds as well as the community. Bravo on a job well done!" – Jessica Petras

"This was a fantastically run event. I found something to contemplate from every presentation, and was able to leave with knowledge and inspiration to improve my own program and practices. Thank you and I cannot wait for the next show in this format!" – Sami Kerr

"It was a truly valuable event. As others have said, I learned something from each speaker. Having educational programs as a routine part of shows make the time and cost to travel to the show even more worthwhile. Thank you for developing this format!" – Karen Sausman

For more information on how to add educational seminars to your cat show contact Anthony Hutcherson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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We all know TICA's motto of "fabulous felines, fun, and friendships" but for Rebecca Miller of Sun and Moon Bengals the bond created with another TICA member literally saved her life.

Rebecca, a mother of two, has been a TICA member since 2013 and has been breeding and showing Bengals since 2015. While she loves to attend shows, she enjoys the fun and friendships she has gained from showing cats and is happy to leave an event with just a single ribbon.

Three years ago the unthinkable happened. Rebecca mysteriously started to get sick. After visiting multiple doctors, she was diagnosed with the autoimmune disorder Sjogrens Syndrome. Her immune system mistakenly was attacking her body's own cells and tissues.

After multiple treatments Rebecca did not get better. Upon the advice of a fellow TICA exhibitor Barbara Adcox, Rebecca talked to Dr. Sofia Kirk of Posh Plastic Surgery. Going in to the appointment she was anxious as to what the doctor would or wouldn't find, until she walked in the room and realized the surgeon was actually one of her crazy cat friends she had met who showed Savannahs at past TICA shows.

"I never knew she was a plastic surgeon because at the cat shows we talk cats of course, but little did I know the sweet woman I meet showing cats was going to be the one who saved my life."

Dr. Kirk agreed to perform Rebecca's surgery last January, and after a lengthy operation found that her implants were literally killing her. The doctor found mold inside her implants and as a result Rebecca's body had been rejecting them for many years. She also found massive tissue damage to her chest caused by her previous surgeon. Dr. Kirk performed a double mastectomy and made numerous repairs to Rebecca's chest.

According to Rebecca, "Dr. Kirk literally gave me my life back almost instantly."

Six months later, Rebecca is completely healed on the outside and is now working with an infectious disease doctor to eliminate the mold toxins from her lymph nodes.

"I still have a long road ahead to eliminate the remaining toxins from my body, but I'm on the road to recovery. Even with drains and bandages I continued to push forward and show my cats with the help of my TICA amazing friends and son Devin."

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Albuquerque, New Mexico Mayor Richard J. Berry honored Former TICA President Vickie Fisher with a Good Samaritan award for her exceptional dedication for local nonprofit Albuquerque Kennel Kompadres, Inc. and compassion for all sheltered animals at the City of Albuquerque's Animal Welfare Department.

In 2002, Vickie founded Albuquerque Kennel Kompadres in an effort to help all animals find their forever homes. Over the years, Albuquerque Kennel Kompadres has become a principal partner of the City of Albuquerque's Animal Welfare Department. Its sole purpose is to advance the work of the Animal Welfare Department by encouraging the humane treatment and care of pets and sheltered animals, and promoting the City's support of positive animal population management. This is accomplished through spay/neuter programs and the accelerated adoption of animals in the City's shelters.

TICA couldn't be prouder! Congratulations Vickie!!

Have you worked on a project that helps promote better care and understanding of cats? Or did the media report on your event? If so, we'd love to hear about it and share the news with other TICA members. Please send photos and information about any projects you are working on or media clips to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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Q. How do I keep my cats from getting dehydrated on warm summer days??

A. During the warm summer months, cats are just as at risk of dehydration and hyperthermia as the rest of us. These are dangerous conditions that could lead to serious illness and even death. To keep your cats hydrated and cool in the summer heat, TICA offers the following tips. Among them:

  • Make sure your cats always have access to fresh drinking water. Drinking a healthy amount of water is vital to a cat's well-being however, as most pet parents know, getting them to drink out of their water bowl can be quite challenging. Since cats love to drink from running water, consider investing in a drinking fountain. Thirstycat Fountains are the only handmade ceramic glazed drinking fountains in the world and come in a variety of styles. Check out TICA's Business Classifieds (http://www.tica.org/business-classifieds) for information on how to receive 10% off a Thirstycat Fountain for your feline.
  • Keep your cats water cool. Fill your cats bowl with chilled water from the fridge or add a few ice-cubes to their water.
  • Keep cats inside or provide a shaded spot in your garden. If you have an outdoor cat and there are no shady spots in your garden, create one by placing some cloth or cardboard over an area to keep the sun out.
  • Brush your cat daily. Matted hair is known to trap heat so removing shed fur is vital to maintain proper body temperature in cats. To make grooming medium and longhair cats less of a challenge, try EZ-Groomer Undercoat Rakes. Their unique tooth design gathers undercoat fur in a more efficient and gentle manner than traditional grooming tools. Check out TICA's Business Classifieds to find out about their 100% money back guarantee.
  • Use damp towels to cool down your cat. Stroking your cat with a cold damp cloth. Most cats don't mind a little bit of moisture on their fur, especially when they notice how it can cool them off.
  • Encourage cool play. Limit play to the early morning or late afternoon, when the outside temperature is lower. Also try putting a few ice cubes on the floor for your cat to chase. For an extra treat, try flavoring the ice with a hint of chicken stock.

Take your cat to the vet or nearest emergency clinic immediately if your feline starts panting, drooling, or having trouble breathing. These are symptoms of heatstroke, and if left untreated, could lead to kidney damage, heart dysfunction, or other potentially fatal problems.

Do you have a question to ask TICA about breeding, shows or anything about cats in general? No question is too big or small to ask. Just send your question to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we will answer your question in a future issue of the newsletter.

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Annual Winn Symposium: Chicago based radio personality and Winn board member Steve Dale served as the MC for this year's Symposium in the Windy City, which had a record number of attendees. The program began with an expression of appreciation for Dr. Glenn Olah, Winn's outgoing President, and the introduction of Winn's new President, Dr. Shila Nordone. Susan Gingrich, founder of Winn's Bria Fund for FIP Research, introduced some of the families currently enrolled in Dr. Pedersen’s FIP research projects. Included were Peter Cohen and Hiroyuki Furumoto (Smokey's family), Walt Morris and Scott Mathis (Flora's family), and Deb and Jamie Roberts (Luna's family). Smokey, Flora and Luna were successfully cured of FIP as a result of Dr. Pedersen's latest research. Luna herself even made a brief appearance before the program started, which delighted her fans. A special video was presented by Peter Cohen of Zen by Cat.

Dr. Pedersen has been researching FIP since 1964 and the Winn Foundation has been supporting his work for almost as long. For the first time, he was able to give us a glimmer of hope that there may one day be a successful treatment for this disease, in the form of novel new drugs showing efficacy in early studies. A podcast of the Symposium is available on the Winn website.

Genetic markers of Abyssinian/Somali amyloidosis: Familial amyloidosis has been a longtime concern in Abyssinian and Somali cats, causing early death, usually from kidney failure in the 5-6 year range. Differences in the expressivity of the disease (age of onset, number and type of affected organs) have been recorded, suggesting the genetic background of the cat may affect the clinical presentation. The Winn supported joint project of the University of Missouri and University of Milan to discover the genetic basis of amyloidosis started with the collection of DNA samples from affected Abyssinians worldwide over many years, including unlocking the Academic archives in Milan to recover DNA from stored histological preps from necropsies. Three gene variants have been identified with a correlation to this disease. Analysis of the relationship between these genetic variants and different presentations of the disease is ongoing.

Winn Ads for Cat Show Catalogs: There are updated ads available from Winn for publishing in cat show catalogs. This is an easy way for your club to show your support for feline research. Contact Winn at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for camera-ready artwork.

June Planned Giving Tax Tip: Many Americans take the standard deduction while others itemize their deductions. If you are not sure which is better for you, do not wait until after the end of your tax year. If it is a close call there are steps you can take now to help push you over the line. Since you take tax deductions in the year paid, you might want to make your charitable contributions for next year sooner, before this year ends. That would double up your charitable deduction total into one year. If you donate stock which has appreciated over the years you can get a double tax benefit. You can get an itemized deduction based on the current fair market value of the stock while avoiding the capital gains taxes that would have been due on sale. Certain other deductions can be shifted into this year as well or some income deferred into the next. For some taxpayers it may be advantageous to itemize deductions in one year and take the standard deduction in others. By planning ahead you may have a lower combined tax burden over two years.

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Last month we told you about the Tokyo IT firm Ferray Corporation hiring cats to help combat stress and anxiety in the workplace. Since then, we learned that Jannah Hotels and Resorts, a chain of Bedouin-inspired luxury hotels located in Abu Dhabi, announced it will add feline pets to the workforce to help employees relax and increase productivity.

The company initiated the ‘office cat’ policy in 2015 after reading about the numerous studies that showed that pets help reduce stress and lower blood pressure. Today the hotel’s headquarters is home to eight felines who keep employees cheerful and soothed. Guests visiting the premises can also be found playing with the friendly cats.

Nehme Imad Darwiche, chief executive office and founder of Jannah Hotels and Resorts, said “In an industry like tourism and hospitality where long hours are common, having pets around helps everyone maintain a positive and motivated attitude.

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