The Premier Online Magazine devoted to Persian & Exotic Shorthair Cats
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The Premier Online Magazine
devoted to Persian & Exotic Shorthair Cats

Close this search box.


The Premier Online Magazine devoted
to Persian & Exotic Shorthair Cats

Close this search box.

Breed Standard For The Generic Cat

Every breed of cat has its own Breed Standard — a written description of the perfect specimen of a specific breed of cat. But for the less elitist feline fancier, we thought we would share with you THE BREED STANDARD for the GENERIC CAT. This provides a written document describing the ideal cat of mixed parentage, that provides a guideline for the judge (or owners or friends) to evaluate any and all kitties that may want an opinion. NOTE: There are no points for folded ears or bobbed tail, short nose or slanted eyes; no fancy pedigrees or show titles. It is all about just being an every-day generic feline.

Schedule of Points For the Generic Cat Breed Standard

All breed standards assign a set number of points for different parts or characteristics of the particular breed of cat. We do no less for our generic cat.




Head (25 points)





Muzzle & Chin






Body (25 points)



Legs & Feet




Coat & Condition (50 points)

Length Of Coat


Color & Pattern


General Condition



The overall appearance of the Generic Cat should be feline (Duh!). A general impression of canine (doggy-ness), bovine (cow-like), equine (horsey) or porcine (piggy) is grounds for disqualification. Size should be within the usual feline parameters. Disqualify: Any specimen that is smaller than a mouse or larger than a German Shepherd.


There must be only one head and it must be located at the front end of the body. Most often the head bone is connected to the neck bone; the neck bone’s connected to the shoulder bone; the shoulder bone’s connected . . . right on down to the tail-bone (if present).


This is best viewed from the side of the cat and is the easiest way to judge nose breaks which, when present, may vary from simple to compound fractures. Whisker breaks may require a more complex approach.


This is the top of the head bone. It contributes to the appearance of the tophead, as in, “this cat has a lovely tophead”. It could also be said that, “this cat has a lovely topheadbone”. The cat must have a topheadbone, though shapes will range from slightly flattened to domed like a cathedral. A concave topheadbone is considered a serious fault.


The muzzle is the first part of the cat to appear through a doorway if the animal is moving forward. It may be identified as the part that sniffs, eats, yawns, meows, growls, hisses, and sometimes chatters. It is the part of the cat to which the whiskers are attached.


The chin lies below the nose. It is frequently responsible for determining a proper or improper bite. The correctness of the bite will vary depending on the initiating circumstances and the viewpoint of the “biter” and/or the “bitee”.


These come in pairs and ideally are located, one on each side of the head. Disqualify: More than two ears, less than two ears or two ear if they appear on the same side of the head.


Eyes also come in pairs and are located at the front of the head above the nose. They may or may not match in color and may be expected to be closed 95% of the time. Disqualify: more than two eyes. One eye is acceptable if cat can provide a written note from their veterinarian explaining that the second eye was deemed superfluous.


The body is usually (but not always) greater in length than width. It is roughly horizontal when the cat is standing, although some length-wise tilt (toward bow or stern) or sideways list (to starboard or port) is acceptable. Sharp divergence from horizontal allowed when the cat is seated. Disqualify: S-shaped or Z-shaped body, single or multiple hump(s), single or multiple dip(s).


Legs are generally located at the four corners of the body, two in front and two behind. Other locations should be penalized. Feet are found at the ends of the legs. There are two different types of legs identifiable by their shapes. Front legs should be found at the front of the cat and back legs (the ones with hocks) should be at the rear of the cat. Legs must be in matched pairs. Penalize: mismatched pairs, legs placed at incorrect ends of body, feet attached to points other than ends of legs.


Yes. Toes must point forward and are positioned at the forward-facing ends of the feet. Mother nature has been more generous in the awarding of toes to some cats than others. Additional toes beyond the normal earn one bonus point/toe when judging.


When present, the tail is ideally located at the rear of the body, and is generally the last part of the cat to arrive through the doorway. There should be only one tail which may be of any length from -0.5 inch to +14 inches. Disqualify: More than one tail per cat.


The coat is most functional when attached to the cat. When unattached from the feline, coat has a notorious and ubiquitous affinity for non-feline surfaces of contrasting colors and is not eligible for showing. Nudity is permissible only in cats born that way.


The topcoat should be cat hair (penalize: camel hair, horse hair or fleece) and is to be securely buttoned in cold weather. Allowance should be made for looser fit in warmer temperatures. Both topcoat and underwear should reflect impeccable grooming.


Any coat length is acceptable. Points are awarded according to how the length complements the style of the coat (such as short coat, long coat, car coat, trench coat, overcoat, primer coat). The coat may also be textured (such as wavy, curled, crimped, wiry). Artificially textured coats (demi-wave, permanent wave, cornrows, dreadlocks) are not permissible.


The coat is available in many colors, but rarely found in primrose, saffron, mauve, puce, magenta, carmine, kingfisher or sky blue. Any green is extremely rare and the authenticity of the color should be verified. Disqualify: Purple (as in cow) and pink (as in elephant).


Coat patterns are nearly infinite in variety. Colors and contrasts should be strong in patterns such as check, tweed and plaid or tartan. Others, such as paisley and tie-dye are more appropriately muted.


Advise the board of judges in which established class you’d like to see a new breed or variety of cat to be shown, how many generations of pedigree you require for import (33 1/3 is a nice round number), and maybe something about a background including an evil genetics lab that injected the ancestors with marmoset DNA or something. You can’t be a new breed or AOV without some drama and controversy. Consider including allowed out-crosses (for genetically modified cats please state preferred non-feline species for donor DNA), and how one might recognize an AOV if it occurred (maybe a union card).

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“A lie is like a cat: You need to stop it before it gets out the door or it’s really hard to catch.”
*Charles M. Blow (Columnist, New York Times)