FIFe & IDP Titles Explained

by Emma Hjälmås
Cybercats Persians


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What is FIFE?

FIFe stands for Fédération International Féline - French for the International Feline Federation. FIFe is a federation of national members representing, as of August 2004, thirty nine different cat organizations in thirty seven countries. The member organizations follow the same rules with regard to cat breed standards, cattery names, shows, and judges.

What is IDP?

IPD stands for the Independent. Together, FIFe and IDP are the two major cat fancy organizations in Europe.


There are certain differences in titles between organizations, different ”steps on the ladder” as well as different ways that the cat gain their titles. In FIFe and Independent (IDP), all titles are gained via the earning of ”Certificates”.

  • A cat competes against all other cats of the same class, sex and color and only the Best Cat is awarded a certificate.
  • There is only one judging (ring) per day.
  • A cat can never earn more than one Certificate in any one day.
  • A two-day show makes it possible to gain two certificates in that weekend but that is the absolute maximum.
  • This means, among other things, that in FIFe and IDP there are no one-show-grands. It is simply not possible within their system of awarding titles.
  • In addition, the cat is judged against its breed standard and given a written point value out of 100.

The Titles

There are 4 basic levels or titles in FIFE. For Unneutered cats, the titles in ascending order are:

  • Champion (CH)
  • International Champion (IC)
  • Grand International Champion (GIC)
  • Champion of Europe OR European Champion (EC)

    Titles in Premiership follows the same ladder, just exchange the word ”Champion” for ”Premier” and the ”C” in the abbreviations for ”P”

The Road To A Title

All titles are gained through the system of earning certificates. A different number of certificates are needed for each title, the number increasing as the title gets higher.

  • The certificates must be earned in other countries than your own for each title above Champion. In CFA, this would be is equivalent to being required to compete outside your home region.
  • The cat must earn its certificates from a minimum number of different judges. This rule is meant to prevent gaining titles by always taking the cats to a show where you know you will get that ”certain” judge that loves your cat.
  • The cat is judged against its breed standard of 100 points and is given a written point value out of 100 points, 100 being perfect.

The table below shows the each title, the number of certificates needed to achieve each title and the number of points out of 100 of the written standard that the cat must be awarded.

(This is a FIFe table, the IDP looks slightly different regarding No. of certificates but the basics are the same)

# of Certificates
# of Judges
# Points/100
# of Countries
International Champion/Premier
Grand International Champion/Premier
European Champion/Premier

*Certain countries are exceptions to the rule of how many countries the certificates must be taken in. Because of quarantine requirements in rabies-free Sweden and Norway, these countries are the exception to the three countries requirement. Portugal and Spain have a similar exemption for other reasons.

European Champion

As you can see from the table above, in order to earn the title of European Champion/Premier, the highest title obtainable by a FIFe/IDP cat, the cat must earn a total of 21 certificates. That means the cat must compete in no less than 21 shows as an adult- assuming that the cat always beats the competition and gets its coveted certificate in every show!

It is rare cat that is undefeated in 21 consecutive shows. Rarely is a cat campaigned as soon as it becomes an adult (10 months in FIFE). It is common for a cat to be two or three years old before earning the top title of EC. For the same reason, fewer females than males ever go the whole way. Keeping a female in condition without breeding her for all that time is simply not feasible.

Distinguished Merit

  • To earn the title of Distinguished Merit, a male must produce 10 offspring who earn their International Champion/Premier title.
  • To earn the title of Distinguished Merit, a female must produce 5 offspring who earn their International Champion/Premier title.


I truly hope I have been able to shed some light on the European title system and that it will be of use to you in the future. At least now you know what the titles of MY cats mean (smile).


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