The Sassy and Fluffy American Shorthair Cat Breed

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white and black american shorthair cat breed rubbing against a wallThe American Shorthair is the nation’s favorite kitty. They also have a long history of helping lay out the foundations for what would become the United States of America. The American Shorthair cat breed arrived in America after disembarking from the Mayflower and from other ships coming from England.

The adorable Shorthair kittens saved many crops and food supplies from being eaten by rats and other vermin. But nowadays, they’re fabulous family kittens. They love the indoors and would rather snooze on the couch than chase mice around the yard.

Want to learn more about Americas most popular kitty? Then read on!

America’s Favorite Kitty! Meet the American Shorthair

The American Shorthair has been around since the 17th century. They might as well also be known as pioneers and colonizers because they helped them a lot in settling the land!

They were working and hunting cats, but now they’re just adorable balls of fur who love to spend their days sleeping and eating.

History of the American Shorthair

When the Mayflower reached Plymouth, Massachusetts, in 1620, these short-haired cats landed in America. They boarded the ships with a mission: hunt and kill rodents and other vermin that try to get into the ship’s food supply. And so they did.

Thanks to this breed, sailors and colonizers managed to reach the “New World” with enough supplies for the voyage.

But their job wasn’t done now that the ships reached their final destination. As early settlers and pioneers got more and more inland, this cat, American Shorthair, remained useful.

Now they had to protect the crops from hungry and curious animals. In fact, there are records dating back to 1634 that credit this breed for saving a colony’s crop from chipmunks and squirrels!

In 1895, the American Shorthair cat was shown at the first cat show ever. In 1906, the Cat Fanciers Association recognized these adorable kittens as their own breed and in 1966 they became known as American Shorthairs, and no longer domestic shorthair.

Appearance and Personality of the American Shorthair

A Shorthair kitten has a large and powerfully-built body, but they aren’t athletic cats. Their building is one of the reasons why this breed of cat is considered a working cat.

They look graceful and elegant as most cats do. They have paw pads which allow them to walk quietly and surprise their prey.

Their eyes are wide-set and large. The eye color differs from cat to cat and can be blue, copper, green, brilliant gold, hazel, and odd-eyed (their eyes have two different colors).

There are around eighty different coat colors and patterns. They range from:

  • white
  • blue
  • black
  • cream
  • red
  • tabby
  • brown
  • ground color
  • cameo

Many more exist and usually result from crossbreeding and selective breeding.

The Personality of the American Shorthair

American Shorthairs are calm and love to relax indoors. They really do have a cat’s life: they eat, sleep, play a little, and sleep some more.

They’re actually a playful breed and really like playing with family members and other cats. But this doesn’t make them needy. American Shorthairs are relatively independent and do well alone.

These domestic cats aren’t shy when it comes to strangers and like meeting new people, if well socialized. But they’re not always a lap cat.

However, they’ll enjoy lounging on the couch next to their owners. They’re not the most cuddly breeds of cat, but they enjoy their owner’s company.

Domestic Shorthair vs. the American Shorthair Cat: Is There a Difference?

Prior to 1966, the breed was known as Domestic Shorthair. This might be why there’s still a lot of confusion between the two names. However, a domestic shorthair and an American Shorthair are not the same things.

Domestic shorthair is the name given to any domestic cat that has short hair. They are not pedigree and are the most famous cats out there.

On the other hand, American Shorthair cats are pedigreed and have an established breed standard. This means that to be considered an American Shorthair, they have to have a well-defined and tracked family history that proves it.

The two look very similar, but the American Shorthair is one of the most sought-after and popular breeds of cats.

domestic shorthair cat looking up

This Breed of Cats Makes the Purr-fect Family Pet

The American Shorthair is very versatile and can easily adapt itself to different living arrangements. They are happy both in apartments and in houses that have a yard.

They’re active and like playing with children and other cats. If you have a dog, don’t fret. These kittens do great with cat-friendly dogs as long as they’re introduced properly!

5 Facts You Need to Know About This Domestic Cat Breed!

These cats are full of surprises. Did you know these five curious facts about the American Shorthair?

  1. These cats grow to be between 10 and 14 inches tall and weigh between 6 and 15 pounds.
  2. If treated well and fed a well-balanced diet, they can live for longer than 15 years!
  3. They descend from several domestic cats, among them the British Shorthair.
  4. American Shorthairs are friendly, laid-back, and easy-going.
  5. They tend to be obese, so active playing with them every day is essential to keep them healthy.

American Shorthair Cat: These Cats Are the Healthiest Domestic Cat Breed!

American Shorthairs are generally very healthy. But like all breeds, they’re more at risk of developing some illnesses than others.

The only way to make sure you’re getting a healthy cat is by doing business with reputable cat breeders. They should give you a detailed account of health issues in the family.

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is a heart disease that affects American Shorthairs. It’s not yet known if this is a genetic disease, but there have been numerous cases of Shorthairs getting it.

It happens when a wall of the heart gets thicker for no apparent reason and can’t pump blood as effectively as a result.

Simple and Sweet: American Shorthair Cat Breeds

The American Shorthairs are as diverse as they are kind and playful! There’s an American Shorthair kitten for all tastes out there. Here are some of the coat colors and patterns they come in.

The Silver Tabby: This is probably the most famous coat pattern of American Shorthairs. The silver classic tabby is friendly and stunning, with black stripes on a silver background. This is known as the tabby pattern and you can find it in other breeds as well.

Brown Tabby: Brown Tabby cats look elegant and adorable. Their white noses and chest contrast with the dark stripes and background that cover the rest of their body.

Patched Tabby: The Patched Tabby is a domestic cat that has a tortoiseshell or calico coat. It’s usually a mix of brown, black, white, and orange. You won’t find a male Patched Tabby because they simply don’t exist. If you see a tortoiseshell kitten, then you’ll know they’re a female.

Ready to Get an American Shorthair Cat?

These easy-going cats are a perfect fit for any cat-loving family. They do well with children when they’re being supervised, with other kitties, and with cat-friendly dogs.

Do you think that this is the breed for you? If so, now it’s time to take the next step.


You always want to do business with a reputable breeder. They may run a cattery or may breed cats on their property, but what’s most important is that they care about the kitten’s health and not just about making a profit.

Getting your cat from a trusted breeder is the only way of avoiding getting a sick cat. No one wants to spend thousands of dollars at the vet or see their feline friend suffer.

Trustworthy cat breeders are a much better choice than ones running kitty-mills.

Save a Life!

If you don’t want to buy a cat and spend hundreds of dollars, you can always adopt. Getting a cat from a shelter cattery is a great way of ensuring you’ll be giving a good life to an abandoned cat. You could even be saving a life!

5 Tips for Cat Lovers Who Own an American Shorthair Cat

If you’re getting ready to welcome an American Shorthair into your home, congratulations! You won’t regret choosing this loving and playful breed. They truly are the best cat breed for all kinds of families. Here are five tips we have for you so that welcoming them home isn’t as much of a shock to your kitty.

  1. Don’t try to force them to be a lap cat. This is a relatively independent breed who isn’t fond of being handled too vigorously.
  2. If you have children, don’t let them play with your American Shorthair without adult supervision. Kids like to rough handle animals but cats don’t like anyone pulling their tails or whiskers.
  3. Feed your American Shorthair a well-balanced, nutritious diet.
  4. Play with them regularly so they don’t become obese. Overeating is a real problem.
  5. Don’t forget to socialize your kitten so they don’t become shy and aggressive when they grow up.

American Shorthairs are the country’s sweetheart. They’re perfect family cats who get along well in a variety of environments. If you’re looking for a friendly and low-maintenance breed, you’ve found it.

They’ll quickly become your family’s best friend!

american shorthair kittens eating

Common Questions

Are Shorthairs friendly?

What colors can their coat be?

Are American Shorthairs domestic shorthairs?

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