The CFA board has finally taken a decision at the October 2011 meeting concerning the two imported SH Somalis whose offspring have – erroneously – been registered as regular Abyssinians. Here’s an exerpt of the unoffical minutes of the teleconference of the past weekend:
POLICY REGARDING ABYSSINIAN REGISTRATION VIA PEDIGREE
The CFA Board of Directors has devised a policy to resolve the issue of Abyssinians registered via pedigree from other associations which may use different terminology or definitions for their breeds; thus making it unclear to our Registration Department or impossible to determine what the accurate lineage is. For instance, some registering bodies refer to all shorthaired Somali offspring as “Abyssinian” in their pedigrees.
Specific Abyssinians registered with CFA via pedigree from another association may be assigned or reassigned the prefix numbers of 0358 (males) and 0359 (females) when it is shown that one or more cats in the 8 generations behind the cat to be registered by pedigree are, in fact, not Abyssinian by CFA’s definition.
For purposes of showing, cats with the 0358-0359 prefixes will compete in the Abyssinian color class for the appropriate color (example: a ruddy 0358 male kitten will compete and be scored in Class 0380K).
In devising this policy, an attempt was made to take into account the philosophies of all Abyssinian breeders, with the realization at the onset that no “perfect” policy could exist which would make everyone happy. Hopefully, this policy will strike a balance, so to speak, that will be as least disruptive and most inclusive as possible.
Central Office will begin to re-register the Abyssinians known to have been registered via pedigree. This statement will be included in each re-registration and will serve as notice of theneed to re-register certain cats.
The issue has been first brought before the CFA board members in July 2011,
where a decision was taken to de-register the two imports including
their offspring. Unfortunately, that decision was rescinded at the teleconference meeting in August 2011. One of the reasons was that the CFA President “thought” that there were already too many offspring registered and CFA could face legal measures. Fact is, that exactly for such circumstances the CFA registration rules clearly state, that CFA reserves the right to rescind the registration of any cat (and its descendants) at anytime if it turns out it was done in error! Aby breeders around the globe were very upset about this “stepping back” and the Abyssinian Breed Club Europe wrote a letter to the
board pointing to the consequences should these two cats and their offspring
remain registered as regular Abys. Unfortunately, at the September teleconference, the entire issue has been tabled again that’s when the decision was taken to start an official and worldwide Petition “Help saving our Abyssinians”
. Within a very short time we collected more than 100 signatures
and new ones are coming in every other day! We were very serious to initiate legal steps should CFA continue to remain inactive concerning the two SH Somalis and their offspring being registered as regular Abyssinians. Finally, at the
October teleconference, the board came up with a decision. It’s far from being what most Aby breeders around the globe would have liked to happen, but after all it WAS a decision and the cats in question and all of their descendants will be given a new prefix outside the normal breed prefix indefinitely. They will be 0358 (for males for all accepted colors) and 0359 (for females for all accepted colors). In addition, the board has now granted allowance for all new applications for registration via the pedigree process from foreign registries to first go through the screening of the breed council. The board promissed to grant guarantee that from now own the 8-generation requirement for all ancestors having to be bred according to CFA registration rules will be respected in order to be allowed registration, anything else will be rejected for registration and no new cats shall be registered with the 0358/0359 prefix other than those already circulating in CFA registration books stemming from the original imports. We also clearly asked for an affirmative answer that ALL relatives (to that part that lead to this decision) to the 0358/0359 registered cats will be rejected CFA registration. The 0358/0359 can continue to be shown alongside with the regular Abyssinians, can collect show points, are scored for regional/national placement and can grand. Many Aby breeders are not at all happy about that latter decision but it was part of the compromise. The Aby community will certainly keep a keen eye on the whole issue and that current new ruling will be followed or they will be prepared to take further steps in order to protect the breed and its history! We will also keep the Petition alive and we encourage anybody to sign it, if they think the same way and that Abys should be bred as they have been for now well over hundred years!