Oriental shorthair Cat Breed

Oriental shorthair Cat Breed

Do you know that this race enjoys the privilege of being the base, along with the Siamese and Persians, of the creation of many other races? In fact, it is one of the oldest cat breeds out there. Its origin dates back to Thailand, where the texts place it in the Middle Ages, being a deeply rooted animal popular in the East.

Also known as foreign shorthair or oriental shorthair , it is considered the one-color relative of the Siamese. Not surprisingly, it is the Siamese variant without its characteristic point pattern . They are extremely elegant, agile and communicative kittens with whom it is not difficult to coexist. Do you want to know more about them?

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Characteristics of the oriental shorthair cat

His body is slim, muscular and strong. Its long legs and slender feet, its neck is stretched out, and its overall appearance shows a cat that appears to weigh less than it actually does. The shoulders and hips are tubular, without the latter ever being wider than the shoulders.

  • Origin Europe (Great Britain)
  • Medium size
  • Weight from 4 to 6.5 kg males and 3 to 5 kg females
  • Fine hair, without undercoat, very dense, shiny, soft and short. All possible colors and patterns are accepted
  • Triangular and wedge-shaped head, that is, it widens when it reaches the ears
  • Ears large, broad-based, prominent and always erect
  • Almond-shaped eyes, oblique to the muzzle and deep blue or green. There are also specimens with heterochromia (one blue eye and the other green)
  • Long and thin tail, especially towards the tip
  • Estimated longevity of 12 to 15 years
  • Difficulty caring for it low

Character and behavior of the oriental shorthair

These felines are very jealous of their human guardian, to whom they feel very attached. They do not tolerate loneliness and get along perfectly with both children and other pets. Although they adapt to any type of home, they show a predilection for outdoors where they can climb, jump and hunt.

If you do not have a garden, you will have to provide it with space to play, enough stimuli, trees, scratching posts or gyms of different heights and shared play time . They are active cats that need daily attention, so they are not the most suitable pets for those who must be absent for long periods of time.

They tend to do their thing if they feel bored or neglected. Keep that in mind. They are very intelligent, they learn quickly as long as they are not reprimanded, as they can become very stubborn and touchy. They share their communication skills with Siamese twins. They have a meow to express each emotion.

Care required by the oriental shorthair cat

Just because your hair is short doesn’t mean it doesn’t need to be brushed. You should do it once a week to avoid knots and eating dead hairballs. If you prefer, you can wipe it with a moistened chamois to keep its mantle shiny and lustrous. The grooming routine is well received by these kitties. It will make it easy for you.

Daily physical activity and a varied diet, and in just the right measure, will help to maintain your weight. Its slender legs are not designed to support an obese body , its joints would soon begin to sag. Therefore, protein prevails over carbohydrates and vary your diet by introducing, sometimes, homemade or wet food.

Their large ears tend to accumulate a lot of earwax. Therefore, once a week you should clean them using a tissue soaked in saline or water. Make sure that you don’t leave any traces of moisture inside their ears, as they would be more susceptible to developing infections.

Health of the oriental shorthair

There are no notable pathologies in this breed except for strabismus. It is an inherited condition that alters the optic nerve, but does not interfere with the quality of vision. However, it calls for veterinary monitoring to rule out complications that could reduce the animal’s visual acuity.

History of the breed and fun facts

Representations of these cats were found in the Ayudhia mines along with a manuscript, The Cat’s Poem, which makes us understand their roots in Thailand, where they are a national animal. From 1950 British breeders brought them to Europe to create Siamese kittens of other colors and patterns, apart from the typical Siamese point .

Several British breeders and geneticists were dedicated to crossing Siamese with other breeds such as American shorthair , British shorthair and Abyssinians. The result was unbeatable. In 1977 the breed obtained official recognition.

According to a recent study, half of Thai cats are single or bicolor. A small percentage, around 15-20%, present the  Siamese point pattern , which is so highly valued in the West. The marriage of Peter and Vicky Markstein was responsible for the introduction of the oriental shorthair in the US in 1972.


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