It is a common misconception that all long haired cats are Persians, they are not. Another misconception is that all Persian cats have pushed in faces, they do not. Undoubtedly Persians are one of the most exotic cats there are, either people love them, or dislike them. So let us learn more about this popular, and beautiful breed of cat; the Persian.
Persian cats originated in Iran, which was known as Persia, but was really created and bred to be the Persian breed in England in the 1800's.
Appearance of the Persian Cat
Persian cats should have long, thick, coats.
They tend to have shorter legs in proportion to their body than most cats.
Their heads should be large and round.
Originally Persian cats did not have the squished in faces many associate with the breed, in fact this is not the traditional look of the cat, and is not healthy. Although all Persian cats have shorter noses, the cats with the extremely squished in, or flat faces, have more health problems as related to this style of breeding. Traditional breeders try to stay away from this style of face which seems to be more popular in the United States than in the UK.
Persian cats come in all colors.
photo source Picture of a Chocolate Persian Cat
Other Information about Persian Cats
Persian cats are generally pretty laid back, mellow cats, content to lay around looking pretty. Some are more moody and dislike children. Due to their easy going nature, they are often considered the classic apartment cat.
Because they seem to be content “just laying around” Persian cats are often used on television shows where cats are needed. Because they are so cute, Persian kittens are often used in commercials.
Their long hair is prone to tangles and requires regular grooming. Many Persian cat owners do not let their cats outside because it makes their coat less manageable. Some people have their cats shaved in the summer to keep them cool.
Persian cats have been used to create other breeds. They were crossed with Siamese cats to create the Himalayan, and with American Shorthair cats to create the Exotic Shorthair, a short haired cat with a peke-face.
Persian cats are pregnant for 57 - 65 days, with 63 being average, they usually have 4 to 6 kittens.
The average lifespan of an indoor only Persian cat is just 13 to 14 years.
Health Problems in Persian Cats
The biggest concern for these cats is related to their face. The cats with the pushed in noses often suffer from eye problems, heat stress, breathing problems, URTI, and dental concerns (remember they have the same number of teeth, but in a smaller mouth). They often have skin problems around their nose and eyes, some of these problems are caused by other problems related to their tear ducts.
Persians are prone to having birthing problems due to their large round heads.
Persians are more sensitive to some medications, such as griseofulvin for ringworm.
Persian cats require more grooming than most cats, and will get painful hair mats, tangles, and hairballs, if this is overlooked.
Read more on common health problems of Persian cats.