Photo Feature by Elio Delgado Valdes (Text: Irina Echarry)
HAVANA TIMES — There are many myths that accompany the smallest of felines; one of the more certain ones deals with their great ability to steal food. It is common in Cuba to hear expressions that denigrate these animals: treacherous, unfriendly, unloving to humans. But it is more common to find them in the street, surviving – or living – despite our misgivings about them.
At the end of May the Kid Chocolate gymnasium hosted the spring 2014 Feline Expo, where pets compete according to regulations in the Cuban Association of Cat Lovers, which have taken place in Cuba for more than twenty years. On this occasion, some varieties of Cuban Shorthair cats were present; the furry tabby Persians; and examples of two Asian breeds: Siamese Thai and the Balinese Thai.
Of course, when it comes to associations and skills you think awards, titles and rules to follow in terms of weight, fur, ears etc. Established beauty standards that exclude those stray cats that abound, whether on garbage cans in the gardens, garages or vacant lots; sleeping, frolicking, hunting; some calm, others more stressed; more or less colorful, but all with equal elegance.
These events promote the advantage of having pets, foster a culture of love for cats, as well as set standards of beauty and purity of certain races. But perhaps for some of the audience believes that the world of cats that should be protected and conserved reduces to those beautifully manicured pussycats.
Luckily, there are many people that continue to put out a plate of food in some garden when they can’t take the kittens home.
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