The British Shorthair Cat is formidable, in particular, because it combines the robustness of the alley cat and the beauty of the purebred cat. It is an animal with iron health, sometimes calm, sometimes playful, but always kind and easy to live with. With her expressive look and adorable rounded jowls, it's hard not to fall in love!
Size: Medium to large. Its silhouette is of the semi-cobby type, that is to say, that its body is rounded but robust and powerful and its shoulders and chest are broad.
Weight: 9 to 18 pounds; this cat is considered heavy. Note that the males are significantly larger and more massive than the females.
Average life expectancy: 13 to 20 years old
Eye color: Blue, copper, gold, or odd. The eye color matches the dress.
Hair type: Short, dense, and compact, with a thick undercoat.
Physical characteristics of the British Shorthair Cat
The British Shorthair Cat is a massive cat with powerful muscles and bones. Thus, his shoulders and back are broad, which makes him rather imposing. Its legs, just as massive, end in the round and firm feet. Although it is a plump and quite heavy cat, it does not have to be large.
In the show, the lack of muscle tone or a too fine bone structure is considered a fault. The British Shorthair's head is apple-shaped; the contours are rounded and the cheeks are rounded. The muzzle is short, well curved, and particularly wide. The eyes are very large, set apart, and round, giving the British Shorthair an expressive look.
The eye color is intense and matches the coat of the cat. The ears, medium to small in size, are set well apart on the head.
The British Shorthair's fur is short, very dense, and very compact, so much so that the coat separates at the neckline when the cat turns its head. This fur covers a thick undercoat.
As for the dress, all colors are allowed, in all possible shades and patterns.
Origins of the British Shorthair Cat
In 1871, English breeders decided to exhibit the most beautiful alley cats they had found at Crystal Palace in London. These cats were named British Shorthair, on the one hand, to differentiate them from foreign and oriental cats, and on the other to distinguish them from long-haired cats.
Around the beginning of the 1900s, the British Shorthair was imported into the United States and was called the Domestic Shorthair until the mid-1950s
The First World War greatly affected British Shorthair breeding, so much so that the breed nearly became extinct. To revive the breed crosses with cats without pedigree were practiced, resulting in the loss of the typical physique of the breed.
To restore their lost roundness, Persians were used. This made it possible to renew the initial robustness, weigh down the frame a little, and obtain an even thicker and thicker coat.
The same scenario repeated itself during the Second World War and it was once again necessary to appeal to the Persians, in addition to American Shorthairs, to reestablish the breed of the British Shorthair.
Due to the many obstacles that arose in the breeding of the breed, the British Shorthair was not recognized until 1979 by the TICA and in 1980 by the CFA.
Behavior and character traits of the British Shorthair Cat
The British Shorthair is a kind, dignified and peaceful cat. This placidity, however, does not prevent him from being a good hunter and defending his territory as it should.
His ancestors being great hunters of wandering rats, the British Shorthair inherited from them a marked predatory instinct and a certain need for freedom.
Thus, the British Shorthair Cat has an independent character, which will be all the more evident if the cat is allowed to go outside. That said, the British Shorthair adapts to indoor life with no problem.
He is attached to his family, he loves the company of children and he gets along wonderfully with his congeners as well as dogs. He is also a very playful cat, who will greatly appreciate having a playmate. If he has no one to play with, he will still find a way to entertain himself with a toy or any object. found.
The British Shorthair Cat is a loyal and endearing cat, which is an integral part of the family. Curious, he will not hesitate to come and explore the surroundings when an event takes place and to meet the guests.
However, he remains a discreet cat, who prefers to spend most of his time in quiet places. If he has an attachment to all members of the family, the British Shorthair still tolerates loneliness well.
British Shorthair Grooming
Although the British Shorthair Cat is short-haired, its double coat is very dense and requires careful grooming. A few times a week, the cat should be combed with a fine-toothed comb to remove dead hair retained in its coat.
Naturally, this operation must be carried out more frequently during the molting period, which usually occurs in the spring, when there is a considerable loss of coat and undercoat.
It is imperative to carry out this maintenance, otherwise, the cat will ingest a large amount of hair during its daily grooming, which could lead to health problems. If the British Shorthair goes outside, its coat should be inspected as soon as it returns home to ensure that no parasites have lodged in its fur.
Health issues of the British Shorthair
The British Shorthair has very good health. However, certain genetic diseases are present in the breed such as polycystic kidney disease dominant type - in particular, because the British Shorthair Cat descends from the Persian, like hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. To ward off these affections in the British Shorthair, the breeders are tested.
Is the British Shorthair right for you?
The British Shorthair Cat adapts to all environments. Thus, he will like living in the city as well as in the countryside.
He can also live very well inside provided he never goes outside.
If he tastes the outdoor life, he could be inclined to want to escape from the house to explore new territories.
Remember that he is a born hunter; he will not hesitate to run away if he sees prey outside, so be careful when you open the front door.
The British Shorthair is a calm cat, but also very playful at times. Thus, it is advisable to provide him with a cat tree as well as some toys.
The ideal master
The British Shorthair is everyone's cat. Given its origins, it is a robust and independent cat, which requires little care and human presence. But like all animals, he likes to be pampered by his masters and can be very affectionate when the heart tells him to.
The British Shorthair Cat will be happy in a family with children and other animals because they will allow him to satisfy his need to play.
Note that this cat tolerates loneliness well and does not constantly need attention.
Despite the strong muscles of the British Shorthair, it is necessary to watch his diet carefully so that he maintains a reasonable weight and does not lose his good shape.
Interactive exercises are necessary to avoid weight gain.
The ideal is to provide the British Shorthair with a cat tree and toys, such as small balls or mice stuffed with catnip, to make it move a little.
Tends to be overweight if he does not move enough and/or if the diet is not controlled
Independent cat, less "sticky" than most other purebred cats
Runaway due to his need for freedom and his hunting instinct.