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Small numbers as 2020 Pratt County Fair kicks off with hand-pets

Kahrie Stegman
Pratt Tribune
Cara Riffey presents her hamster, Angel, to the judge at the 4-H Hand Pet Show in the 2020 Pratt County Fair.

The Pratt County Fair kicked off on Friday, July 17 with the hand pet show. There were only four participants in the hand pet show this year, with numbers down because of COVID-19 and no open class exhibitors. Typically, the show is at Parkwood Village, but due to risk of infecting residents, it was held at the fair building. 

To show off their hand pets to the judges, every participant had to come prepared to answer questions over how to take care of the pet, vet treatments they may need, and more. To keep social distancing, every participant had a time slot to present. 

This year, there were three junior participants and one senior participant. 

Cara Riffey brought her hamster, Bryleigh Fox showed her dog, and Miley O’Moore won the junior division with her cat. In the senior division was Keesha Humble with her cat, who won by default. 

Cara Riffey spoke about her Hamster named Angel, and what it takes to have a hand pet. 

‘Angel’ is the perfect name for her hamster, according to Riffey. 

“She’s really nice, she’s perfect,” Riffey said. 

Riffey has had Angel for about six months, but she is no stranger to Hamsters. Angel is her third hamster in the last two years, after her first two passed after nine months, and the other four months. 

Riffey said she thinks Angel will live longer than her first two hamsters because it is her first female.

“She’s actually a lot nicer and she’s eating way better,” said Riffey. 

Riffey said Angel is a Panda Bear Hamster, and she plays with her at least once every day. She has to wake up Angel when she wants to play during the day. 

“She likes to sleep a lot in the day because she’s nocturnal,” Riffey said. 

Though having a hamster is a lot of fun for Riffey, she also has to work to make sure Angel’s cage is cleaned once per week or as needed. 

Riffey said it’s important to get hand pets used to others to prepare for the hand pet show. 

“You need to train your hand pet where they’re used to other people seeing them,” said Riffey.