The Turkish Angora cat is a beautiful and elegant feline that is believed to have originated in Turkey. Purebred varieties of this cat can be found in Europe and America, but rarely in Britain. Cat breeds born as a result of interbreeding with this one are not accepted by any cat breed association as an Angora.
Origin and Background
The origin of this breed is not very clear. It was first found in Ankara, a city in Western Turkey, and is named after it. It is said that the local cats of that area were interbred with the long-haired cats brought by traders from Egypt. Some also say that it has descended from the African wildcat. It was believed to have been introduced in Europe in the 16th century and in the US in the 18th century. However, by the 1900s, this feline breed was almost extinct due to interbreeding with the Persian cats. In 1917, the Turkish Government recognized it as a national pride and asset, and started breeding programs to preserve it from becoming extinct. In recent times, its popularity has grown widely, and it is recognized by the International Cat Association, Cat Fanciers Association, and the American Cat Fanciers Association as a separate breed.
The main characteristics of this breed are its rich and silky overcoat and thick and furry tail. It is a long, slender, and finely-boned animal. It is bestowed with large eyes which are shaped like almonds and big ears that are alert and pointed. It is usually white in color. However, constant breeding has produced cats in a variety of colors like red, cream, black, and blue. It is also available in a variety of patterns like bi-color, tortoiseshell, mackerel, and smoky, as well as shaded colors. Colors like lilac, chocolate, cinnamon, etc. are not accepted in this breed as they are a result of inter-breeding. The color of the eyes is usually blue or amber, however, other eye colors are also accepted.
Nature and Personality
Unlike normal cats that tend to be selfish, this breed is friendly, mischievous, and affectionate. It is active, likes to play, and loves to be with children rather than sitting idle. It is a great companion and likes to be with the owner while they do their household work. It is quite outgoing and socializes well with strangers and other pets in the house. It is also not a fussy animal and eats whatever it is given, although it loves meat. It is a well behaved and caring cat.
Health and Fitness
This cat is said to be strong and healthy by nature and lives for almost 15 years. The one main drawback found in this cat breed is that white cats with blue eyes tend to be deaf. Also, cats who have one blue eye and the other amber tend to be deaf on the side of the blue eye. This breed is affected by hereditary problems like ataxia that involves lack of muscle movements due to which the cat is not able to move, and also dies at a very young age.
This cat is believed to be a low-maintenance pet. As it does not have an undercoat, frequent brushing and combing are not required.
Bringing home a Turkish Angora cat will definitely fill your household with joy. It will make a unique pet, and you will thoroughly enjoy its company.