Oriental Shorthair Origins
The Oriental Shorthair comes from the family of the Siamese cat breed. The Orientals are of two varieties one with shorthair and the other with longhair. The Orientals are a type of Siamese cat breed, but with different coat color and greenish eyes. Physical appearance wise and temperament wise the Oriental shorthairs are exactly similar to the Siamese. The Orientals are created by crossbreeding the Siamese with other cat breeds to produce coat colors that are not available in the Siamese. Black colored Siamese were already present, but it was after the 1950s that efforts were made to create a new cat breed with different colors.
This cat is considered the hybrid version of the Siamese and was first created in England in the twentieth century. The main purpose of developing this cat breed was to explore all the different color possibilities and patterns. And you, will be surprised to know that Orientals can come in 600 different colors and patterns and different varieties of coat length. These elegant and stylish body cats are lively and intelligent as well.
Oriental Shorthair History
Originally from England the Orientals are a cat breed created by humans. During the world war ll a lot of breeding programs came to a standstill, but some breeders took this opportunity to develop breeds using some crossbreeding techniques. Some of the breeds that were developed during these times were the Oriental shorthair, Russian blue, British Shorthair, Abyssinians to name a few cat breeds using the Siamese as the base breed. After few years of successful breeding programs, there were different cat breeds that looked very much like the Siamese except for the colors.
Since the pointed colors of the Siamese were a result of recessive gene, kittens with points were also produced. Cross breeding led to some best Siamese colored cats, but these were considered Siamese breed, which resulted in a strong Siamese gene pool. The ones with no points were the forefathers of the present day Orientals.
Every color cat in the Oriental breed was given a different name initially like the Havana, Foreign White, and the other being the Oriental Spotted Tabby. Later on it was felt that there were too many colors and it was difficult to put a breed name. The cat that were non-pointed were put into one group of cat breed the Oriental shorthair and the Oriental shorthair. The first Orientals arrived in the United States in the year 1970 and crosses between the American Shorthair and the show quality Siamese resulted in cats with more variety colors.
After the initial resistance from the Siamese breeders, who were not happy with the idea of new hybrid cat breed entering the market that was flooded with many hybrid cats and with so many of these in the market the Orientals made a steady progress in gaining a good foothold in the market. The CFA granted the championship status to the shorthair oriental in the year 1977 and there on the International Cat Association gave the championship status to the longhaired version of the oriental. The CFA also granted and accepted the long haired oriental shorthair in the year 1988.
Oriental Shorthair Traits
The Oriental shorthair is a slim, long and flexible cat breed with almond shaped eyes and large ears. Though it belongs to the Siamese group and looks like one the Orientals come in more than 300 different colors and coat patterns. Some of the popular colors for this cat breed are pure white, chestnut, ebony, and blue, and patterns include tabby and solid bi-color. The coat is short and thick lying very close to their body. The texture of the coat is fine and silky. Orientals are medium sized cats, but look heavier. The head is long and tapering from the ears. The head is also wedge shaped with a strong chin and straight nose.
The neck that holds the wedge shaped head is slender and long. Orientals have large sized ears that are pricked, legs are slim and long. The hind legs of these cats are longer than the front legs with paws that are oval and small. These cats have a long and tapering tail. Like all the Siamese group cat breeds these cats have long tube type body with fine bones. Though they look long and tall, these cats are not built for running or for dancing.
The Orientals can live up to 12 years if they are taken care well. These energetic and talking cats weigh between 6 to 12 pounds. The price of this cat from a good breeder will vary from $175 to $600.
Oriental Shorthair Personality
Like the Siamese breed the Orientals are intelligent, smart, active, energetic, and very sociable cats. They can even play a game of fetch with you without getting tired. They have the ability to play with one particular toy for an hour without doing anything and this kittenish behavior lasts until adulthood. Due to their long hind legs these cats can jump over cupboards and kitchen cabinets very easily. They may look very thin, but are great athletes and display a lot of confidence in front of other cats and dogs.
They love company of their owner and will not easily get along well with strangers. Orientals can get along well with kids, dogs, and other pets in the house. Their energetic life is not suitable for anyone who prefers a quiet life. These truly devoted cat breeds are a great pet companion.
Oriental Shorthair Health and Care
These cats are known to find out and open cabinet doors to take their favorite toy for playing, so do not consider them to be docile. Since this is an active cat breed you need to feed them sufficient diet for them to stay healthy. There is no need of any special diet for these cats and care should be taken to ensure these cats don’t grow obese. It is a low maintenance cat and requires weekly once combing. This breed is usually very healthy, but one problem that can surface for these cats is the protrusion of the cranial sternum, asthma, bronchitis, and heart disease.
Oriental Shorthair Behavior
They are social cats and need a lot of attention. They get along well with children, cats and dogs. They thrive a lot on love, attention, playing and interaction. They are not at all moody cats and will talk to people when they get friendly.
Oriental Shorthair with Children and Pets
Orientals can get along well with children young and old due to their social nature. These energetic cats enjoy the company of other cats, and even dogs, so if you have other pets at home you can get home an Oriental without any worries.
Get home an Oriental Shorthair if you love active, energetic, and elegant looking cats. Oriental Shorthair cats are a domesticated breed of cats known for their intelligence and energy. They have a wide variety of coat colors, patterns, and personalities, making them an exciting choice for any type of pet parent who wants a unique feline companion in their home.
Oriental Shorthairs also require plenty of mental stimulation to keep them active and healthy – they respond well to interactive play and positive reinforcement training methods. For those looking for an active, loyal, and friendly cat with an array of beautiful options when it comes to coat colors and patterns, the Oriental Shorthair could be the perfect match.