Welp, the cord on my laptop has been chewed through! I have spliced it as much as I can and now it is hopeless and the batteries on it are now deadâ€¦ Go figure. So here I sit at my home computer in the dining room, forcing my poor son to play and watch cartoons instead <gasp>.
So donâ€™t know if theyâ€™ll let me write a book today. Letâ€™s see what we can do.
|1. Can you say for sure what breeds or mixtures of breeds all of your cats are?
No, my cats are all moggies or domestic longhairs (DLH). Actually they are mediumhair. Although my foster is a domestic shorthair (DSH). On a side note â€“ tell me if this makes any senseâ€¦ longhair and shorthair are considered one word and not misspellings, but mediumhair is not a word. Ha! Medium hair. Is that better? All the same, I actually think they should be hyphenated.
Anyway, back to the task at handâ€¦
Once upon a time, Mufasa, my RB baby, was from a litter of strays that a little boy was pulling around in a wagon somewhere through the neighborhood. When he stopped in front of my house, my husband seen this little mutt kitten with huge feet (the only one of all his littermates in the bunch); he made a count of his toes and snagged him up. Later that evening, the owners who owned the mom cat came looking for the kitten. I guess the little boy wasnâ€™t supposed to give away the many-toed cat, but it was too late. Something I didnâ€™t know back then, but his 6-toed condition had a name â€“ called a Polydactyl. Sometime after he died I went casually browsing for cats online. It just so happens I seen a cat listed as a â€œpolydactylâ€ (many toed) cat in a shelter and from there the search was on!
First came Willow, a pretty little Heinz-57, we adopted her from the Humane Society for my daughterâ€™s birthday. I remember my kids wanted a kitty, but I put up a fit until I got my way.
I argued that nobody ever wants the oldest cats, everyone always wants the extremely cute and cuddly kitties (but they forget they eventually grow up to be big cats). Itâ€™s not fair, few people want the adults if there are younger cats. The kids agreed and it was settled. We didnâ€™t know it then, but she was pregnant. Certainly I consider that as the biggest, most ultimate BOGO fuzz-fest! That is the thing that brought me to TCS, to learn about what to do and what to expect with this mother and her impending tiny kitties. See what she started? I guess everybody knows thereâ€™s a reason for everything. I still recall all the members were so helpful and welcoming, while I went on and on with her saga. I recently read the posts I made about her back then in the Pregnant Cat forum. Itâ€™s funny to compare things from the clueless threads I started back then and to see all that I have learned to now. From being somewhat clueless to giving out my own advice on a topic.
Shortly after we got Willow friends of mine, who knew we had been looking for a polydactly, told me she knew someone who had poly kittens. My response was simple. We opened our heart to another lovely small pretty kitty.
Iâ€™ve often thought about getting a purebred cat, but so far have not been able to justify the cost when I know there are so many shelter cats out there on death row. Especially since I have started working in fostering and rescue. That still doesnâ€™t stop me from looking. I probably could be tempted in a minute if I didnâ€™t have kids and had money to spare. Myself, I love the long hair breeds. Iâ€™ve researched the Persian purebreds, the Siberian, Norwegian Forest Cats, the Maine Coon, the Ragamuffin/Ragdoll, Turkish Van and the Himalayan; Iâ€™ve also had a fondness for the Selkirk Rex, I love their curly fur. Iâ€™ve seen other breeds online and on TheCatSite message board that I thought were interesting, like the Abyssinian, Egyptian Mau and the Sphynx. I enjoy to visit the Cattery sites just to get a feel of the various breeds out there. Thereâ€™s such a variety, I suppose that must be why I am so fascinated!
My hubby says I am going to turn into the crazy cat lady if Iâ€™m not careful. I asked him what that makes himâ€¦
If it wasnâ€™t for the vet bills and vaccinations Iâ€™d otherwise probably have a half dozen cats. Actually I am getting pretty close, but mostly thatâ€™s actually one of the nice things about being a foster mom. The organizations pay for the care of the cats. Itâ€™s a win-win situation.
|2. Do you know the name of the leading registrar of cats in the world (the one with the most registered purebred cats)?
If I were to guess (without looking it up) my first thought would be the Cat Fancierâ€™s Association (CFA), but I canâ€™t be certain, and you know me, I will be looking it up and researching it.
Well, it turns out I was right. Directly from CFAâ€™s website they quote, â€œWelcome to the Cat Fanciers' Association, the world's largest registry of pedigreed cats!â€. I also seen that TICA is the worldâ€™s largest genetic registry of purebred cats when I clicked on their website. TICA (The International Cat Association) also registers household cats and kittens, and allows them to compete for the same titles and regional and international awards as the pedigreed cats. So I guess it depends on the what you are looking for.
Before I looked it up today, I knew there are several different registries out there depending on what you are looking for. Particularly, I have seen polydactyls located with The Rare and Exotic Feline Registry (REFR). If you have an idea to create a new breed this is the registry to go to. There is also the FÃ©dÃ©ration Internationale FÃ©line (FIFe) and American Cat Fanciers Association (ACFA). Then, according to wikipedia there are smaller national registries: Felis Britannica - UK member of FIFe and Governing Council of the Cat Fancy (GCCF) â€“ UK. Sounds like there are enough registries out there to confuse anyone!
|3. Do you know where the Himalayan cat originated? If not, would you care to hazard a guess?
Well despite their name, I donâ€™t think they came from the mountains in Asia. This is just a bit of guesswork, but perhaps the name came from the snow in the Himalayas and the color-points whiteish coat color. Who knows?
I donâ€™t know where the name itself originated, but I do know some people refers to them as â€œHimmyâ€ cats sometimes. The Americans call them Himalayans whereas the Europeans call them colorpoint/color point Persians. They were originally crossbred from the Siamese for their markings and blue eye color and the Persian for their coat-length and temperament. This cross shares the characteristics of both breeds. The CFA only recognizes this breed as a Persian, but TICA owns their own category for the Himalayan.
Which remind me. One of my most recent fosters had a color point kitten. I think I made a thread where I wrote about it somewhere. I posted about this white kitten, which I always wanted an all white cat, but then I noticed it changing when it was a few days old. Iâ€™ve been begging hubby to keep him as heâ€™s the cutest little thing, but Iâ€™m worried about having two males in the house. Even if they are both neutered. Well the kitten isnt altered yet, but his day will come. I did notice that this kitten was bigger that the rest of the litter. I think I read about this in another post somewhere and I wondered if body size was relative to the colorpointsâ€¦ I know the Persians and Himmies are known for their big head, but this is his whole body, he just generally is bigger than the rest and has been from the very beginning since the day he was born. Iâ€™ve been fostering for awhile and rarely see a color point cat, so Iâ€™ve used this as a valid selling point for DH
Unless he wants to go out and buy me a real Himmy J
|4. When you see Calico cats, do you think of them as a breed? Why or why not?
Coming from a genetics freak, I know that the calico cat is not itâ€™s own breed and is in fact a combination of three colors: red (orange), black and white (or the diluted version: cream/buff, gray and white. Because the red gene is a sex-linked gene, most all calicos are female. The one X-chromosome gets the red coloring and the other X-chromosome carries the black. The white coloring is actually a totally separate gene, known as the white spotting gene or the piebald gene. This gene is progressive, meaning if a cat is a carrier of more than one W-gene they will have more white. And if a cat with a lot of white is bred, to another cat with a lot of white, the offspring kittens will have even more white.
Sometimes a bicolor cat with only two colors, the red and black â€“ minus the white, are mistakenly called calicoes when in fact they are Tortoiseshell or also known as Tortie. Tortieâ€™s coats are speckled with orange and black. Usually cats without any white are more likely to have the fur intermingled more and the colors are in patches less. The white spotting gene is actually responsible for forming the distinguished patchwork of the calico or tri-color cat. The amount of white is relative to the definition of their patches. Torties that have tabby stripes running through itâ€™s black fur are known as Tobies, a clever contraction of sorts of Tabby and Tortie. In order to classify as a torbie itâ€™s the black color that must carry the tabby pattern.
If the white on a cat is only on itâ€™s feet it is said to be mitted. If the white is under itâ€™s throat or on itâ€™s chest it is said to have a â€œlocketâ€.
|5. What are your honest feelings about buying expensive purebred cats as opposed to getting a moggy down at the animal shelter?
Honestly? To each itâ€™s own. I foster cats from our local no-kill shelter, so I know there are a lot of unwanted stray moggy cats out there just waiting for anybody to come rescue them, and more are made everyday! But, I also can see the benefits of buying a purebred cat from breeders. Good breeders breed to develop and better their specific breed. Same advantages you get when you buy a pedigree dog. Often when you purchase an animal from a breeder, you can be sure of what you are getting. They are breeding for particular characteristics. Not just their appearance regarding size or coat length and color, but also their temperament and disposition. Do you want a high-energy, active cat or a low-energy, peaceful, sedentary cat? How vocal do you want your cat to be? How much time will you spend with your cat? Some cats are more independent and others demand more time. Do you have children or a lot of visitors? Some cats are naturally more outgoing and tolerant than others. So when you adopt a cat from the shelter, it is often a guessing game on what type of cat your are getting, but in general, kittens that are raised by a breeder were bred for certain personalities and characteristics.
|6. Some people just call cats longhaired or shorthaired without further classification. When it comes to having longhaired or shorthaired cats, what are your preferences, and why?
Alright, Iâ€™m guilty of calling my cats longhair when in fact they are actually medium hair. Itâ€™s all relative actually. My cats fur is longer than a shorthaired cat, but shorter than say a Himalayan. I prefer a longhaired cat because they are beautiful and so soft and fluffy, but they shed a lot more, so that is definitely a downfall and a reason a lot of people like shorthair cats better. I donâ€™t mind the shedding, I have 5 kids and a 100-pound long-haired Newf dog, so I vacuum piles of fur daily as it is. But sometimes when I am petting the cats and their fur is flying in my faceâ€¦ oh yeah, thatâ€™s not exactly desirable, and I imagine if you are allergic to cats, someone might rather have the shortest fur length or they may want a hairless breed. However, I have been reading an article about Siberians being â€œhypo-allergenicâ€. Seems like a great idea and concept if itâ€™s true. I can see the possibilities â€“ like the hybrid poodle breeds.
The maintenance of brushing your longer-haired cat is required more than that of a short-hair breed, but it depends on what you think itâ€™s worth. Having fur stuck to your clothes is another down fallâ€¦ but I find with my cats, if I brush them when their shedding is the highest, most of the time weâ€™re ok. Iâ€™ve read the stuff youâ€™ve posted about Persi, Lee, I agree with your preferences, but what about your whyâ€™s? I guess describing it isnt as easy as I first thought, it isnt easy telling someone or as easy to talk about, but really, Iâ€™ve been attempting to explain it. I â€˜m not bothered by the hair, and Iâ€™ve had a couple shorthairs and they are pretty too. Iâ€™m definitely familiar with both. Iâ€™m slightly biased towards the longer haired breeds but most all cats are equal in purrrsonality, therefore Iâ€™m happy with both I guess. Having said that, there are extremes and each are unique in their own ways so it dependsâ€¦ I think I posted in one of the forums about a shorthaired foster that had the silkiest most smooth fur.
|7. If you look at cat breed descriptions, you will find some listed as very vocal and others as being quiet and reserved. Which of these do you prefer, or do you like a mixture?
Like I mentioned earlier, my cats are all mixed-breeds, so I drew straws when it came to the vocalization of my cats. It never occurred to me before that cats came with volume buttons
I think I donâ€™t really have a preference. I suppose a mixture of both is best. Obviously, I donâ€™t want ones that are constantly crying for attention, but then again a cat that never meowedâ€¦ I donâ€™t know about that one. I think I like the singing of a cat. And of course I want to hear their purrs. Willow has a special twill that she makes. I have read that this is sometimes a characteristic of a Siberian cat. She is a long-haired cat, so she quite possibly could be one or a mix of one, but none the same, I love the sing-song sound she sings when sheâ€™s in the mood. There is nothing like the purrs of a cat. And really, no matter how quiet they make the cat, I donâ€™t think itâ€™s normal to not have a purr at all.
|8. Of course with a topic like todayâ€™s I have to ask if you have visited the TCS descriptions of Cat Breeds (found by selecting the Cat Breeds tab above) and how many of the articles you have read?
I should have known this question was coming. Of course I have visited the TCS breed descriptions. I almost went there earlier when I was contemplating the breed questions. You know I am there now though
I believe I have visited each and every one of those pages at one time or another, but more specifically, because I have a love for certain breeds, I have checked out the Maine Coon site, the Siberian Cat link, the Scottish Fold website, Ragdolls and the gorgeous short little Munchkin Cats. In addition, because I know people with Persians, Himmies and the Bengal, I have also read up on those breeds. I have to tell you though, I have a very curious personality, so I have read them all. Of course I have wondered what the Pixie Bob and Ocicat was about. You almost have to read the articles, besides how did I know if that breed would interest me if I didnâ€™t at least check out the website briefly?
|9. Whether you have read the Cat Breeds descriptions on TCS or elsewhere, have you also read descriptions about cats that are other than breeds which you own?
Oops, I think I accidentally answered this one already. Yes, I have read about other breeds. Of course I own all mixed breeds, so anything is â€œotherâ€ to me. But I have read links about cats that I didnâ€™t necessarily have an interest in. Like I said, if I know someone that has that breed, than I want to learn about what kind of cat it is.
|10. About how many recognized separate breeds of cats (purebloods) do you think there are?
Well, when I looked up the information about registries earlier, I didnâ€™t have to look far, I found the answer to this one too, in fact itâ€™s only a click away on FireFoxâ€™s other tab
. The CFA currently recognizes 39 pedigreed breeds for showing in the Champion Class and 1 breed (the Ragamuffin) in the miscellaneous class.
Wikipedia lists 79 different breeds, which doesnâ€™t include the American Polydactyl, which isnt an official breed yet, but because I realize this breed is trying to get recognized, I can assume there are other breeds out there that are also trying to get recognition that might not be included on this site. So maybe the number nears the 100 mark. Which surprises me, because I first would have estimated only around 50!.
TICA lists 54 different cat breeds in their registry, and they also let ordinary household pets compete and show in their ring. They judge housecats on beauty, personality, coat condition and their features (eyes, ears, nose, mouth, claws, etc) and also on balance and proportion. Personally I think judging someoneâ€™s pet would be pure torture. J How does one decide whether one is better than another? Iâ€™d be doing - Eeny, Meeny, Miny, Moeâ€¦ that would be me
Theyâ€™re all top notch!
The Rare and Exotic Feline Registry was founded just over 20 years ago, and they are responsible for the development of new breeds of domestic and hybrid cats. They have over 270 catteries register with over 5900 cats. They recognize 119 breeds, which listed on their site for registration, including the cats from CFA and TICA and the Polydactyl cat is listed on this list, so I am assuming this list to be the most accurate.
PS â€“ BelongsToEvie, I also typed mine up in Word to avoid crashes and losing my work. I have over 3000 wordsâ€¦ Iâ€™m also sorry to whoever actually reads it!