ARISTO STUD'S GUIDE TO SHOWING GUINEA PIGS
|Princess at the North Somerset Agircultural Show 2009
||Aristos Milton II at the North Somerset Agircultural Show 2009 - Best 5/8 Rex and Best 5/8 Coated
||Samson at the North Somerset Agircultural Show 2009 - Best Adult Rex|
****TOP TIPS FOR SHOWING GUINEA PIGS***
1) START SHOWING PET CAVIES
You dont need to have the best quality purebreds to be able to show. All pet quality guineapigs of any breed or cross breeds can be shown if they are in god health and in good condition. If you are unsure whether your guineas are suitable for showing we are happy to give advice and help with putting in your first entry.
|Pet classes are fun and the results are often unexpected. Part coated longhairs and chubby chunky smooth haireds often do well in pet classes and generally speaking the more colourful the better. Showing in the pet classes is a good starting point and practice makes perfect as there is quite a bit of preparation involved to get high in the placings! Bathing, trimming, cleaning grease glands, scrubbing ears and mouths, clean skin, eyes and teeth all count in these classes and its great for teaching children how to groom, handle and prepare piggies for shows.|
2) SPECIALISE IN ONE BREED
If you are thinking about starting up showing we strongly recommend that you specialise in just one breed to begin with. Developing a good bloodline takes time and patience but is extrememly rewarding when your own homebred animals start winning. We also recommend that you select your stock very carefully. It is all too tempting to buy cavies from all different breeders and out of sale pens but buyer beware!!! If you havent seen the breeding stock that produced a cavy it is not a good idea to introduce it into your line unless you know the breeder well.
If you want to ensure good quality cavies and consistency source your stock from well known breeders who have a good competition record. Out crossing bloodlines can seriously alter the quality of the offspring. If in any doubt ask a good breeder to assess the potential stock before you buy. The last thing anyone wants is for you to buy something unsuitable and then later have to move it on to a new home.
When sourcing foundation stock be cautious about breeders who offer several different breeds. Good quality bloodlines are only developed over several generations and a few pairs of each breed are nowhere near enough to build a good line. If you wish to breed and show rex make sure you go to a well known Rex breeder. If you want Peruvians source a recognised longhaired breeer and exhibitor. Generally speaking I would only recommend buying foundation stock from breeders who actually show the breed successfully. There are lots of breeders who dabble in several different breeds for a bit of variety but unless they are dedicated to showing that breed it is unlikely the stock will be good enough to start a new stud with. There is also the risk that they may not be totally purebred so visit the breeder and ask to see their show stock and always obtain pedigrees.
3) AVOID BUYING FROM PET ONLY BREEDERS
There are many pet breeders out there who market their animals as show quality yet have never actually shown any themselves. These are also unlikely to be show quality. Most foundation stock you will buy will be from show quality stock as good show stock are hard to come by and dedicated breeders generally hold on to showable youngstock to show themselves. What you should look out for is the siblyings and offspring of the animals the breeder is keeping to show. These will provide you with a good gene pool from which you can breed your own show stock.
4) DONT BREED FOR COLOUR
Finally never buy Rex or Teddys because you like the colour! Coated breeds are judged purely on type, texture, substance and quality and colour is completely irrelevant. Although you may feel agouti coloured Rex cavies are not as attractive their coats are almost always far better quality than their pretty counterparts and these should always form the basis of your foundation stock..
There are local clubs at the following venues:
NEXT SHOW DATES 2011: