Why does India need a cat registry?
The Feline Club of India (FCI) records details of the father and mother of each kitten who is registered with them. Now when these kittens will grow up and have their own kittens, we will know who the parents and grandparents are. With each passing generation of kittens, we will be able to distinguish the lines more and more accurately.
Inbreeding causes genetic problems. Inbreeding from the same lines causes a lot of genetic problems in the kittens. These include weak immune systems, deformities, stunted growth. The results of these issues are severe and often cause death too. All too often we have seen half a litter die off just because of a fever or a simple skin infection. So the obvious solution is to breed our cats with newer lines, i.e., unrelated blood. However, importing cats from other countries into India is banned by the government. We can only breed the cats that we already have in India. Feline Club of India (FCI) will have information to inform breeders which lines should not be bred together, and thus avoid inbreeding. The best part is that even though most cat breeds in India are inbred, we can keep their lines separate from each other, moving forward! This will ensure well-structured kittens with better immune systems, and we will have healthier kittens with each passing generation.
- Promoting the welfare of all cats, both Pedigree and feral, through progressive actions which range from legislative advocacy to the support of feline research and providing breeder assistance.
- Maintaining a focus on the quality of its breed standards and the validity of its registration and Pedigrees.
- Providing support to its member clubs who serve as ambassadors to the general public.
- Promoting the interest of breeders and exhibitors of Pedigreed cats.
- Holding FCI commissioned cat shows following FCI rules.
- To educate cat pet parents on how to help their cats live long, healthy and happy lives by spreading information on cat health issues, how to spot, prevent and cure them.
- To encourage our members to take an active role in the community and encourage responsible pet keeping by holding awareness campaigns for public education.
- To become active in voluntary service at local animal shelters or outreach programs for schools and/or senior or disabled citizens.
- To prevent inline breeding
- To improve the indian breeds’ standards
- To provide a common platform
- To introduce tracking for individual cats
Our country has a large cat population since thousands of years. Until recently, they were not recognised nor were they given the status they deserve. Only cats of other breeds were valued and even in cat shows, our indigenous cats couldn’t compete. They are called feral or stray cats. But now, FCI is recognising them and has given them their own breed name – Indimau. They will also be getting FCI breed registration certificates, just like Persians and Bengals. Having an added sense of value with this breed means that people will be more attached to their pets of this breed and the number of abandoned cats will go down. This will reduce pressure on NGOs and shelters who have a tough time getting their cats to new homes. (Saquib Pathan is President and Founder Member of The Feline Club of India (FCI).)