According to 1999 CFA registration statistics, the top 10
1. Persian (all colors, including Himalayan)
2. Maine Coon
6. Oriental (longhair and shorthair)
8. Scottish Fold
9. American Shorthair
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THOSE POPULAR PERSIANS
The most popular cat breed in the US is none other than
the beloved Persian. According to the Cat Fanciers' Association,
there are about 45,000 registered Persians in the country and
growing! Who can resist the charm and beauty of this beautiful
THE PERSIAN - AMERICA'S TOP CAT
As the dusty desert camel caravans made their way westward
from Persia and Iran, supposedly hidden in the baskets
among the rare spices and jewels was perhaps an even more
precious cargo, a longhair cat, known as the Persian.
It was believed that the breed got the name from their
"country of origin", but hieroglyphic references as early
as 1684 B.C. keep their exact beginnings a mystery.
Persians, with their long flowing coats and open pansy-like
faces are the number one breed in popularity. Their sweet,
gentle, personalities blend into most households once they
feel secure in their new environment. Creatures of habit,
they are most at home in an atmosphere of security and
serenity, but with love and reassurance, can easily adapt
to the most boisterous of households.
The Persian's long coat was most likely a mutation which came
about naturally to deal with colder weather. This breed was
at one time called simply a "Longhair" and became noticed in
Europe in the 1600's. It is believed to be the first
registered and shown cat breed. They were continued to be
called Longhairs until the 1960's in the US, but in Britain,
they are still referred to as Longhairs with each color
variety being treated as a separate breed.
Persians are divided into seven color divisions for the
purposes of competition. These divisions are established
on the basis of the color pattern. The divisions are:
Solid, Silver and Golden, Shaded and Smoke, Tabby,
Particolor, Bicolor, and Himalayan.
The Persian of today is the result of crossing the Angora
and the Maine Coon. The breed is medium to large in size
with a stocky wide body that sits low on its heavily boned
legs. The coat is very thick and can be as much as 6 inches
long and requires a great deal of grooming. This cat sheds
year round and dead hair must be combed or brushed out DAILY
to avoid hairballs and matting.
The Persian cat is intelligent, playful, gentle, calm and very
affectionate and devoted. It loves to be petted and shown
a lot of attention. Persians, can also take care of themselves
without too much attention, and are even skilled mousers, but
they are really best suited to an indoor life.
Persians have quiet, melodious, pleasant voices. They
communicate delightfully with their large expressive eyes
and make charming pets for all ages. They like to have their
feet firmly planted and are not likely to do much high jumping
and climbing. They are playful but never too demanding, and
love to pose and will "drape" themselves in a favorite window
or chair, to enhance the surroundings like a fine piece of art
or a treasured painting.
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