30 August, 2018

The Persian Cat Breed: Rulers of the Fluffy Cats

long haired cat breeds, black Persian cats serious faceThe Persian cat breed is one of the most recognizable and stunning cats of the feline world. This popular breed is sought after by even amongst the elite world of purebred cats, Persian cats are in a league all of their own!

But what else is there to these gorgeous cats, behind their picture-perfect faces? We have the down low on everything you need to know about this aristocratic fluffy breed!

The History of the Persian Cat Breed 

The Persian cat breed boasts an ancient and illustrious history. Originating in Iran, the cradle of civilization, (then called Persia, hence the name of the breed, Persians) this is a breed that has been around for thousands of years.

Persians were originally thought to have developed their distinctive long fluffy coats through a gene mutation, that allowed them to grow their abnormally long fur. They made their way from Persia to the laps of wealthy aristocratic European ladies sometime during the 17th century, by way of traders who were also bringing spices, fabrics, and exotic fruits from the Arabian Gulf to Europe.

Persians were especially fancied by Queen Victoria herself, which in turn made them extremely coveted worldwide. With their doll-like faces, large expressive eyes and exotic origin, they were the perfect accessory of status, and are often seen portrayed in famous paintings from the period.

The Appearance of these Fluffy Cats

One of the keys to the enduring popularity of these unique creatures is their undeniably gorgeous looks. Persians are the kings and queens of the flat-faced cats!

The unusual construction of the Persian’s face, with a smooshed in nose and downturned mouth, makes for an adorable ‘grumpy’ look that is just too cute to handle. The Persian’s round, flat face also makes a huge feature of their wide, expressive eyes, which come in a dazzling array of colors including aqua, sapphire, and copper.

Smaller than average ears complete the Persian breed’s exotic look. Another feature that has proved to make the Persian breed extremely popular is its luscious, fluffy long coat.

This fur requires a high level of grooming to keep your posh pet looking as fancy as possible. Their beautiful, full coat comes in a range of colors and patterns, such as tabby, cream, smoke, tortoiseshell, lilac, chocolate, and blue.

doll face persian cat mom with persian kittens for sale

Persian vs Chinchilla Cat: What’s the Difference? 

Another variation of the Persian breed is the Persian Chinchilla cat, which shares the same doll-like face and wide eyes of the Persian breed. However, there are a few key physical differences which set them apart.

Chinchilla cats generally have a more projected face, rather than the common flatter face of regular Persians. Persian Chinchilla cats also have coats with tips in darker colors, which make for an ethereal, shimmering quality. They can sport coats in silver, blue-silver, golden and blue-golden.

While Chinchilla cats are recognized as a separate breed to Persians in the US, in some other countries, according to the American Cat Fancier’s Association, they are currently a sub-breed of the Persian.

Perhaps one day, with dedication from breeders, the Chinchilla cat will become a separate breed!

From Teacup Kittens to Fully Grown: Average Size and Weight! 

Despite their start as tiny kittens, the Persian breed is a medium-sized cat. You can expect your Persian to grow to somewhere between 7 to 12 pounds.

Are They Really Teacup Cats? 

While there has been a recent uptick in interest in ‘teacup’ breeds, true Persian cats are not teacup sized. Cats that are bred to this smaller size often suffer from many other debilitating health problems, which is truly sad. Persians are beautiful at their natural medium size!

Fluffy Coats and Colors Explained!

This breed’s most prized attribute is its gorgeous silky, fluffy coat of hair. Persians boast coats that come in a veritable kaleidoscope of colors, thanks to years of selective breeding, to arrive at the variations we know today.

White Persian Cat 

When you think of the classic Persian cat, a gorgeous feline with a white coat and blue eyes is normally what springs to mind. These classic cats have striking fur coats that contrast nicely with their eyes, whatever color they may be. White Persian cats are the quintessential example of the beauty of this breed.

flat faced cat white persian cat posing

Black Persian Cat

The black Persian cat sports a dark, mysterious fluffy mane of hair, giving them a unique and sophisticated air. Despite their bad reputations from old superstitions, black cats are stunning to behold, especially black Persians with copper eyes. The contrast between their shining peepers and luxurious black fur is breathtakingly beautiful!

The Grooming Requirements of this Long Hair Cat! 

As with all long-haired cats, Persians require a heavy amount of grooming. They require daily brushing and combing to keep their coats in top condition. In particular, attention needs to be paid under the legs and behind the ears, as these areas can be especially prone to matting. Your furry friend will also require a thorough bath at least once a month to keep them sparkling clean.

Do You Love Fluffy Cat Breeds? Best Buy a Good Brush!

Fur grooming duties will be expected by your feline friend daily, so it’s imperative to have the right equipment! The best style of brush for detangling the long hair of the Persian cat breed is a wide-toothed metal comb.

Temperament and Personality: What to Expect from This Flat Face Cat! 

We know that the Persians are coveted for their beautiful faces and luscious locks, but what about their personalities? Well, yet another key to the breed’s popularity is their gorgeous temperaments. Persian cats are renowned for their placid and gentle natures. They are also super affectionate with their owners, which is a win if you love kitty cuddles.

They are also known to be excellent at adapting to new environments, so for those who are renters, they are certainly a good choice. Persian cats are intelligent creatures, so teaching them basic manners like using a litter box is rather easy.

One consideration when looking at owning a Persian is that they can be somewhat intolerant of teasing from boisterous children (tail pulling, being scared by loud noises) so they are best suited to an adult household.

persian teacup cats fluffy cats teacup kittens sleeping

What is the Lifespan of this Fluffy Cat? 

Persian cats have a large lifespan discrepancy, living anywhere from 12-17 years, but generally, the median lifespan for the Persian breed is around 14 years.

List of the Breed’s Potential Health Issues!

As with many other pure breeds, Persians can fall victim to some unpleasant health problems and even life-threatening diseases. But as an owner, it’s a good idea to inform yourself about these issues to ensure your fluffy feline stays happy and healthy!

Some of the most common diseases or health problems that these cats can fall victim to are:

Brachycephalic syndrome

Brachycephalic syndrome occurs in the majority brachycephalic breeds. The word ‘brachycephalic’ means ‘short-headed’, a trait which is prized and required in many breed standards, but which can cause breathing issues. Because of the shape of the brachycephalic skull and the brachycephalic head, the throat and breathing tubes of breeds of animals with this trait are often flattened and undersized, leading to respiratory problems.

Brachycephalic syndrome occurs when cats or dogs have all of these issues together: elongated soft palate, stenotic nares, and everted laryngeal saccules, all of which affect the quality of breathing in the animal.

Brachycephalic cats such as Persians, Himalayans, and Burmese are the cat breeds most prone to brachycephalic airway syndrome. This syndrome can range from mild to severe, with cats mildly affected showing signs of noisy breathing and snoring.

Cats severely affected struggle to breathe, especially after exercise. This debilitating condition gets worse with obesity, so it is important to keep your kitty kat at a healthy weight.

Treatment of this condition is often through surgery, where it is possible for your vet to shorten stenotic nares of the nose, and correct an elongated soft palate to improve the quality of breathing in your pet.

Polycystic Kidney Disease

Unfortunately, up to 1 in 3 Persian cats suffer from this inherited kidney disease, due to a genetic fault in kidney cell development. This disease leads to multiple cysts growing in the kidneys leading to eventual kidney failure for which there is no cure.

Luckily there is testing available for polycystic kidney disease, so the incidence is decreasing. However, it is important to seek out a reputable breeder that tests to ensure your kitty does not suffer from this unpleasant and painful disease.

Neonatal Isoerythrolysis 

This is a life-threatening disease that affects newborn kittens of Persians when incompatible antibodies are transferred from the mother through milk.

Hepatic Lipidosis or Fatty Liver Disease

This occurs when a cat refuses food (for a variety of reasons). The liver is forced to use the fat of the body as a source of energy. This leads to a build-up of fat cells in the liver, which if left untreated can cause death.

Dermatophytosis

Persians are more prone to fungal skin conditions, strangely enough, due to their long coats. Their ability to grow abnormally long coats is down to having two mutant genes that may also allow the prevalence of dermatophytosis. The disease may also involve a genetic defect in cell-mediated immunity.

fluffy cat breeds persian kittens under cat tree

Persian Cat for Sale! 

Persian kittens are no doubt some of the prettiest little darlings around. If you’re trying to find your new fluffy feline friend, ensure that you take the time to find an extremely reputable breeder that you feel comfortable and confident buying from. Pets should never be an impulse buy, so it’s important to do your research!

Persian Kittens for Sale Near Me! 

If you’re looking for a Persian kitten (or kittens!) there is very likely a breeder nearby, due to their enduring popularity. Try using the handy tool from the Cat Fancier’s Association to locate Persian kittens for sale near you.

Persian Kitten Price 

Persian kitten prices will vary from breeder to breeder. But in general, kittens can cost anything between $700 -1500.

Adult Persian Cat Price

Persian cat breeders will occasionally sell adult cats, which can be an excellent way to have a full idea of what you are getting in your pet. Expect to pay less than the average price for a kitten.

Of course, there is also the option with adult Persian cats to adopt from a shelter, which we highly recommend. Not only is it a wonderful thing to do for a worthy cause, but generally shelter prices are extremely reasonable too!

What to Look for in Reputable Cat Breeders! 

If this is your first foray into cat purchasing, it can be a daunting experience.

  • A reputable breeder should be able to answer any questions you have clearly and confidently.
  • Reputable breeders should be fully aware and knowledgeable about their breed’s genetic defects. They should also have a plan in place to ensure their cats do not develop these.
  • They should breed only a small and manageable amount of cats.

Common Questions on Persian Cats

Where do Persian cats come from?

What are some of the medical problems Persian cats have?

How often should I groom my Persian cat?

Are Persian cats good with children?