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Cat Sizes

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
This is going to sound bizarre, originating from left field and most likely insane. And I could be completely off topic.

I have read about smaller breeds of cats and I have wondered why there aren't any other varying sizes of domestic cats as there are domestic dogs. My fiancee at times has said that I can only bring another cat home only if it stays the size of a kitten. Is that even possible? Or is that just idiocy?
post #2 of 8
I never know what to expect with a forum like this!
I think part of the answer gets us back to the history of domestication. We never selected cats for a variety of purposes, like we did dogs, plus cats have been domesticated for a much shorter time anyway. Cats were around to do one job (kill those rodents in the corn stores!), they did it superbly, we were happy!
Dogs were selected to be long and thin to chase vermin down their runs, huge to tackle bears and boars, streamlined to run down gazelles, etc., etc.
If we look at the cat species in general, they can certainly run to large (tigers, etc.) as well as small, so I think a range of sizes is possible. And you know a Maine Coon outweighs a Sphynx, so there is a range: it's just not as obvious as it is for dogs!
post #3 of 8
When you make a cat that stays kitten size, I will pay you one million dollars for it! Well, if I have the money I will... That would be just great!
post #4 of 8
We never selected cats for a variety of purposes, like we did dogs,
thank you, I have always wondered the same thing (about dogs coming in a WIDE variety of sizes but not the house cat) and this never occurred to me. It maked perfect sense.
post #5 of 8
Careful........never tell a teacher that she makes perfect sense, it might go to her head!
And much as I would like that million, I don't think I'm in the running for it as I'm not a cat breeder.
We're all constantly learning new things.....I saw a report last week about a tiny German Shepherd dog. Turns out that it had a mutation for a kind of dwarfism. Such animals often have reduced lifespans, but it's those rare mutations that provide raw material for rapid genetic change. The usual alternative for body size change would be many generations of selection, using only the smallest individuals for breeding in each generation. And you'd have to be sure that all animals had the same diet, health care, etc. as those factors influence body size but are non-genetic so not passed on.
It's a very challenging science!!
post #6 of 8

Mags - Cat Fancy had an article about Singapura cats a while back - they're supposed to be pretty small.
post #7 of 8
Wow 1 mil huh, have to keep you away from my Lady D then, she's a mini. At 6 years she's about 1/2 or smaller the size of our new 1 and 1/2 year old.
post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 
Tess - I know about the Singapura and even seen one. And they are small but my fiancee was meaning the size of say a 12-16 week old kitten.

A million dollars? I better keep Esper safe too. She's on the small side of things too. About the size of the Singapura that I saw.

Hmm...mutation for raw material....several generations...hmmm.... healthy cats.....awfully challenging....I think I'll just stay satisfied with cat sizes as they are...but don't rule me out if a mini cat ever appears.
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