November 13

Cat Breeds – The Maine Coon

Maine Coon Cat

Are you looking to get a new cat soon? Great! You may want to consider a purebred cat. There are many breeds that can be found in this country, each with its own characteristic appearance and temperament and history. Think carefully about what you would characteristics you would like to see in your new companion. Perhaps you would care to consider: Maine Coon Cat

The ancestry of these big, hearty cats from New England is unknown. Most likely they came across from Europe with the early settlers as working cats on the ships. Some of these long haired ship cats apparently decided to disembark in the new world and made their home there along with the new colonists. Winter in New England can be extremely tough. Continue reading

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October 29

Egyptian Mau Cat

What Is A Egyptian Mau Cat

History

The Egyptian Mau cat is the only naturally spotted breed. Its spots are believed to have come from natural interbreeding with wild cats many centuries ago. Spotted cats are shown in many ancient Egyptian wall paintings and may have had special privileges. Cats were highly valued in ancient Egypt, sometimes even worshipped as deities, and were often mummified like people upon their death.

The first Egyptian Mau is believed to have come to the West with the Egyptian Ambassador to Italy in the 1950s. The Russian Princess Natalie Troubetskoy, living in exile in Italy, was charmed by the Ambassador’s distinctive spotted pet and persuaded him to get several similar cats for her, which she began to breed. Continue reading

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October 29

Burmese Cat

What Is A Burmese Cat

History

The first Burmese cat to be brought to the USA was Wong Mau, who was brought from Burma by Dr Joseph Cressman Thompson of San Francisco in 1930. While the authorities at first considered Wong Mau be a brown variant of the Siamese breed, Dr Thompson viewed her distinct build as an indication that she was a different breed. Since there were no other cats like her in the USA she was bred with a sealpoint Siamese and then with one of her sons to produce dark brown kittens. Burmese was accepted as a breed by the Cat Fanciers’ Association in 1936. Continue reading

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October 29

Bombay Cat

What Is A Bombay Cat

History

The Bombay cat was developed as a breed in Louisville, Kentucky in the 1950s by Nikki Horner of Shawnee Cattery. She began by crossing a black American Shorthair with a sable Burmese. She continued selective breeding to create an identifiable and consistent breed with the black color of the American Shorthair and body type of the Burmese. The new breed was accepted for championship status by the Cat Fanciers’ Association in 1976.

Nikki Horner’s aim was to create a ‘baby panther’ breed of cat that would resemble a miniature version of the black leopard, popularly known as the black panther, which is a native species of India. This accounts for the breed being named after the Indian city of Bombay (modern Mumbai). Continue reading

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October 29

Bengal Cat

What Is A Bengal Cat

History

The Bengal cat is a very distinctive spotted cat. The breed was developed in the USA in the 1960s and 1970s by Mrs Jean Mill, who crossed an Asian Leopard cat with an American Shorthair and continued producing offspring. They are now also produced from crossing an Asian Leopard cat with an Abyssinian, Egyptian Mau or Burmese.

Males in the first three generations are almost always infertile and a cat must be at least four generations from the Asian Leopard cat to be accepted as a Bengal cat. The name comes from the Latin name for the Asian Leopard cat, Prionailurus Bengalensis. It is not related to the Bengal Tiger. Continue reading

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October 29

American Shorthair Cat

What is an American Shorthair Cat?

History

The American Shorthair cat is believed to be descended from British cats who began emigrating to the New World with the early pioneers. They were carried on board ship to kill the rats that were a constant menace, eating the precious food supplies and spreading disease. History records that cats even came along on the Mayflower.

They were kept and allowed to breed by the early settlers for the same reason, to protect food supplies. Originally they lived mostly as working farm cats, highly valued for their hunting abilities. Continue reading

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October 29

Abyssinian Cats

What is an Abyssinian Cat?

History

The first Abyssinian cat known to have been brought out of its natural environment to be a domestic pet in the West was Zula, a female kitten taken from Alexandria to the UK in the 1860s by the British soldier Captain Barrett Leonard. He crossed Zula with a tabby, then bred her with the most Abyssinian looking of her own young to create the breed. By 1871 the breed was recognized and exhibited at the Crystal Palace in London. Continue reading

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October 19

A Short History Of Cats

Cats And Their History

It seems strange that there was ever a time when cats were not a part of our lives. It’s been less that 10,000 years since cats swaggered into our lives. Hardly an eye blink in the grand sweep of life on this planet. Why were cats so late to join our team? The simple answer is they didn’t need us to survive. Cats were surviving just fine on their own. Then, people invented agriculture. Agriculture resulted in large scale storage of grains which attracted the usual and well know group of freeloaders, mice and rats. Grain attracted rodents. Rodents attracted cats who consider them tasty meals. The result was that cats set up housekeeping close to human settlements. Eventually, cats being cats, moved right on in. Continue reading

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