All posts in Feline Breeds

Feline Breed Spotlight: LaPerm

A look at the LaPerm!


In the early 1980s, a barn cat had had a litter of kittens, where one of them was born bald, with tabby markings and wide spaced ears. When the kitten’s coat started coming in, it came in curly. The owners named this cat “Curly”. Curly went on to have more litters and all of her kittens were born with the same curly coat. Genetic testing determined that this dominant mutation caused the curly coats. Genetic testing also determined that the LaPerm cat was distinct from other rex-breed cats with curly hair. Breed status was given in 2002.


Feline Breed Spotlight: Korat

The Korat!


The Korat (also known as the Si-Sawat cat) is an ancient breed of cat from Thailand. All Korats can be traced back to their Thai roots, as there has never been any out crossing done during the development of this breed. The Korat is considered a lucky charm had been known to be associated with prosperity and fertility. Because of this they were commonly given as gifts (in pairs), especially to brides. The Korat made its way to North America in the 1950s, and the Korat breeders founded the Korat Cat Fanciers Association to promote the breed. The Korat is a silver-tipped blue cat with a coat that seems to “shimmer”. The eyes can start out amber or yellow/green which gradually become peridot green in an adult cat (by the time they are 4 years old).



The Korat is generally a quiet cat that likes a calm environment. They are known to be a great lap cat, they like to stay close to their owners and prefers the company of the people they know; they can be wary of strangers. They do best with companionship of either people or another cat (hence why they were usually given as gifts in pairs in Thailand) and can develop separation anxiety if ignored or left alone for long periods of time. They are a very intelligent cat with a good memory and like to learn tricks and can be trained to walk on a leash.

Health concerns

Both pure-bred and mixed-breed cats have varying kinds of health problems that may be either influenced by genetics or environmental factors. Here is a look at some health concerns that are commonly seen in the Korat.

The Korat is prone to a  genetic condition called gangliosidosis. There are 2 forms of this condition recognized in cats, GM1 and GM2 and the Korat can be affected by either form. This disease is fatal and cases the buildup of lipids in the central nervous system leading to ataxia, tremors and nystagmus, leading to overall body weakness, seizures and death. Most kittens die at 8-10 months of age.

They tend to be a lean breed of cat with a low percentage of body fat.  This does make them a slightly higher risk for anesthetic and makes them a bit more susceptible to hypothermia.

Feline Breed Spotlight: Persian

The Persian cat


The Persian is a very, very old breed of cat; there is evidence of long haired cats seen in hieroglyphics. The first cats of this kind were imported from Iran (Persia) to Italy as early as 1620. The popularity of this breed spread when they were brought to Europe, and many breeding programs started in Italy and France. They were represented in the first organized cat show in England in 1871, then they made there way to North America in the early 1900s. They are currently the most popular cat registered by the Cat Fanciers Association.



Feline Breed Spotlight: Tonkinese


“Chocolate Siamese” cats were the original Tonkinese cats, however these cats were not bred deliberately.  The deliberate crossing of the Siamese and Burmese- the actual creation of the Tonkinese was done by a breeder in Canada. These cats were considered a crossbreed for quite sometime before the Canadian Cat Association began registering them as an established breed. The name may be a reference to the Bay of Tonkin in Vietnam, even though these cats have no connection with the area.



Feline Breed Spotlight: Siberian

The Siberian Forest Cat!


The Siberian or the Siberian Forest Cat is a native cat from the taiga of Siberia. These cats are known to have been present in Russia for 1000s of years and are often seen as figures in old Russian folktales. They were often kept by shopkeepers to keep mice away from grain and other food. The breed had made it’s way to North America in the 1990s, but it still is not a very popular breed due to the costs associated with exporting a cat from Russia.



Feline Breed Spotlight: American Curl

The American Curl


This breed originated in California in 1981. The original American Curl was a stray cat, who gave birth to a litter of kittens some of which had curled ears. This mamma cat and the kittens became the original breeding stock for this breed. These kittens are actually born with straight ears that begin to curl after about 48 hours. Around 4 months of age the ears stop curling and become stiff at the base of the ear and flexible at the tips. As per the Cat Fanciers Association, a pet quality American Curl may have almost straight ears, but show cats must have ears that curl in an arc between 90 and 180 degrees. Even though the American Curl is a new and uncommon breed, they can be found in small numbers in countries across the world.



Feline Breed Spotlight: Somali

The Somali!


The Somali is the long haired version of the Abyssinian. The name suggests that the breed was found and created in Somalia, but that isn’t the case.  The breed actually came about after the second World War, when breeders were trying to breed back populations of the Abyssinian. Due to the lack of breeding stock, some Abyssinian breeders were using cats of unknown linage, and some cats must have been carrying a recessive long haired gene. Many Abyssinian breeders were not pleased with the occurrence of the long haired cats in their litters, and quickly dismissed them out of breeding programs and placed them in homes as pets. A few breeders did like the long haired version and continued to breed them to create a new breed of cat. The name was chosen because Somalia is next to Ethiopia, formerly known as Abyssinia.



Feline Breed Spotlight: Russian Blue

The Russian Blue!


This breed of cat originated in Russia, in the port town of Arkhangelsk. They are also sometimes called Archangel Blue (named after the port town). The Russian Blue has a thick, dense, warm coat, which allowed it to thrive in the cold Russian climate. The breed made it’s way to other countries via sailors fascinated by the breed who took them overseas when leaving the Russian port town. This is a naturally occurring breed, as it was not created by human involvement. Nowadays, the breed is sustained by many years of selective breeding of only blue short haired cats in breeding programs. This has resulted in a breed with a distinctive appearance and a unique personality particular to the Russian Blue.



Feline Breed Spotlight: Egyptian Mau

Let’s look at the Egyptian Mau!


Ancient Egyptian artwork depicts spotted cats with the same markings as the Egyptian Mau (mau means cat) as we know it today. These ancient Egyptian cats are most likely descendants of a small spotted African wild cat, which may or may not be the origin of the Egyptian Mau as we know it today. The breed as we know it today is fairly new. A Russian princess was very found of spotted cats, and was given one as a gift while in Italy. Later, when she moved to the USA she brought that cat and two of the offspring with her. She started a cattery and began to establish this spotted breed of cat. Selective breeding of Egyptian Maus began in the 1950s, and the breed standard was created.