Its millenary origin, descended from the cats of the Roman legions and indigenous cats, has given it a special aura. The British Shorthair is a strong and large cat, but charming in appearance. His tight short hair, round eyes and the sweetness of his character make him a favorite cat of many people.
A cat with so much history has lived moments of splendor and also of almost disappearance. It is arguably the British national race, although it conquers hearts all over the world. Not for less: he adores his owners, but he also knows how to be alone and play freely.
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British Shorthair Cat Characteristics
It has a muscular body and robust bones. It is wide in the thorax. Stuffed cheeks frame her upturned nose. The legs are rather short and the feet are round, with the toes close together. It is recognized by the TICA, CFA and ACFA associations.
- Origin Europe / Great Britain
- Medium size with a tendency to large
- Weight of 7 kg in males and 6 kg in females
- Short hair with an abundant, thick and shiny undercoat.
Blue is the most popular color , but white, red, cream, and gray are also supported. Color patterns: tabby , spotted and colourprint
- Round / wide / solid head
- Small to medium ears / wide base / rounded apex
- Rounded and copper-orange eyes in general. In some cases gray or green in combination with the mantle and pattern
- Tail wide at the base / Tapers to the tip that is rounded
- Estimated longevity of 15 years
- Difficulty caring for it low
Character and behavior of the British Shorthair
Although there is a belief that the character of the British Shorthair is determined by the color of its coat, the reality is that, in general terms, it is a very affectionate and calm cat . He is loyal to his humans and will most likely follow them around the house.
These felines like to play and, in fact, they need to do so to stay fit. Their hunting instinct makes them prefer stalking and capturing games. They also love to climb, so scratching posts are perfect for them.
On the other hand it is considered to be a sociable cat. Since it is not territorial or aggressive, it gets along well with children and other cats. Even with dogs! However, having an independent point, you can play alone without problems; The British Shorthair does not usually like to be caught face up.
Care required by this breed
The main attention that this breed needs is frequent brushing, to maintain the shine of the coat and avoid the formation of balls that it can swallow. It is also important to maintain a good cleaning of the tear ducts and ears, to prevent dirt from accumulating and the possible presence of mites. This care should be intensified in older specimens.
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The British Shorthair has a certain tendency to be overweight , especially as an adult. For this reason, you have to watch their diet. It is preferable that food is not freely available, but that we are the ones who control the amounts you eat throughout the day.
British Shorthair cat health
Some diseases that this breed usually suffers from are related to joint problems. They can also present hypertrophic cardiomyopathies, a genetic disease.
On the other hand, the British Shorthair can develop cysts in the kidney and some viral diseases, such as feline coronavirus and panleukopenia. Regular check-ups at the vet and following the recommended vaccination schedule are key to keeping the British Shorthair healthy.
History of the breed and fun facts
The British Shorthair is one of the oldest breeds in Europe. The result of the crossing of Roman domestic cats and native British specimens, their ability to hunt was remarkable. Little by little they approached the farms, where they were also appreciated for their loyalty.
These abilities made him an ally of public health in cities for centuries. Its fame spread and in 1800 its characteristics as a purebred cat began to be refined . The exhibition held at the Crystal Palace in 1871 was his greatest moment of glory.
His popularity reached such an extent that the Cheshire cat that appears in “Alice in Wonderland” is inspired by the British Shorthair. One of the most famous cats of his time was a blue male named Brynbuboo Little Monarch, from which the vast majority of current specimens seem to be descended.
The First and Second World Wars were very difficult times for these kittens, since they were on the verge of extinction . Crossing with Persian and Russian Blue cats brought new vigor, more height, and the breed’s characteristic rounded shapes.
Official recognition of the British Shorthair came in 1980. Since then, its popularity has risen again and it is once again the king of cat shows.