About the British
All about the British Shorthair Cat.
The British Shorthair has come to be known as the teddy bear of the cat world. With a cobby body and wide Cheshire grin they are hard to resist and popular the world over.
Despite the rolly, polly look of these gorgeous cats, British Shorthairs are not a super cuddly breed. They don’t like too much handling and are known as a “four paws on the floor” cat. This being said, that make exceptionally good companions and will sit with you, rather than on you. They are affectionate and loving cats but not in a demanding way. They will let you know when they are in the mood for smooching.
British Shorthairs are heavily boned, thick limbed and well muscled. This makes them surprisingly heavy for a reasonably compact cat. They have beautiful, wide, round eyes that together with full cheeks give them an irresistible face. Their coat is thick and dense with a bouncy, crisp feel. Most have deep orange eyes. Tabbies can have green eyes and Colourpoints have blue eyes but with all colours the deeper and richer the eye colour the better.
British Shorthairs originated from farm and street cats in the 1800’s in Britain. Harrison Weir, the inventor of the Cat Fancy, bred British Shorthairs and they were one of the most shown breeds at the very first cat shows in Britain. Unfortunately, during the World Wars the British Shorthairs, like many other breeds, suffered greatly in lost numbers, perhaps more than any other breed. With few stud males available breeders had to resort to out crossing to keep the breed alive.
This started to see the decline of the cobby body until, in the 1950’s breeders began to use big boned Persian cats to bring back the solid frame. This caused problems in itself as the Persian has a snub face and a soft, long coat. Selective breeding plans have managed to reduce and remove these traits and we have the British Shorthair of today.