New Cat Breeds In The Past 60 Years: How & Why

CAt photoCats have always been a favorite pet choice for both families and single people.

They are natural born experts in both rodent and smaller pest control, which is helpful, especially for anyone living in a rural area.

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Many people prefer having a cat as a pet because, unlike a dog, which has to be taken out for a walk several times a day, once a cat is trained to use an indoor litter box, they are much easier to care for.

While there are certain cat breeds that have been around for centuries, Alleycat details how it has only been during the past sixty years that indoor-only cats have become popular.

Prior to the discovery of refrigeration, cats had to live outdoors so they could supplement their daily need for fresh meat in their diet by simply hunting for it.

There was also the issue of finding a way to “potty train” a cat that was to be kept indoors; once the litter box was invented, this was no longer an issue.

These last century’s inventions are the main reasons we have seen an influx of new cat breeds, tailor-made for the newer and still growing multitudes of cat aficionados around the world.

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The following is a list of the 1990 official Cat Fanciers Association accepted cat breeds:

  • Abyssinian
  • American Shorthair
  • American Wirehair
  • Balinese
  • Birman
  • Bombay
  • British Short and Longhair
  • Burmese (Sable and Dilute Divisions)
  • Chartraux
  • Colorpoint Shorthair
  • Cornish Rex
  • Cymric
  • Devon Rex
  • Egyptian Mau
  • Exotic Shorthair
  • Havana Brown
  • Japanese Bobtail
  • Javanese
  • Korat
  • Maine Coon
  • Manx
  • Ocicat
  • Oriental Shorthair
  • Persian (Solid, Shaded, Smoke, Tabby, Parti-Color, Bi-Color and Himalayan Divisions)
  • Russian Blue
  • Scottish Fold
  • Siamese
  • Singapura
  • Somali
  • Tonkinese
  • Turkish Angora

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The past sixty years has seen the introduction of an incredible number of new cat breeds:

  • Aegean
  • Norwegian Forest Cat
  • The Asian/Oriental Longhair
  • Ragdoll
  • American Bobtail
  • American Curls
  • American Short and Wirehair
  • Asian Semi-longhair
  • Australian Mist
  • Bengal
  • Brazilian Shorthair
  • Burmilla
  • The Burmese
  • Calico
  • California Spangled
  • Chantilly-Tiffany
  • Chausie
  • Cheetoh
  • Cyprus
  • Dragon Li
  • Donskoy
  • Dwarf Cat
  • Highlander
  • Siberian
  • Munchkin (the cat world’s answer to the adorably short-legged canine, the Dachshund)
  • Snowshoe
  • Scottish Fold
  • Turkish Van

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Most of us are familiar with the older, more-established purebred cats like the Persians, Siamese, Himalayans and Maine Coon cats, but what about the newer breeds?

According to www.hngn.com, cats like the SphynxieBob (a crossbreed of a Sphynx and a Bobtail) and the Bambob (a cross between the short-legged Bambino and a Bobtail) are the latest additions to the hairless line of non-shedding, hypoallergenic cat breeds.

There is also the American Curl (which has both short and longhaired versions), the result of a natural mutation that occurred in 1981 that resulted in a cat with a flatter, curled-back ear.

How many of you are familiar with a Lykoi (a natural mutation within the domestic shorthair cats), also known as the Werewolf Cat because, as noted on www.hngn.com, it behaves affectionately like a dog?

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Photo by Paul Francis Harrison

Each of these cat lines has been bred to enhance specific characteristics, whether they are physical or behavioral.

Some of these characteristics are a result of selective crossbreeding while others are a natural mutation, as stated on Google Books; certain recessive genes suddenly pair with another “copy” of itself and the dormant effect finally shows up, usually in the physical appearance of the offspring.

The end result is sometimes a new breed of cat.

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Photo by hasor

The bottom line is that whatever traits you are looking for in deciding which cat breed is right for you, there is certainly quite a list to choose from and there is sure to be one that is just right for you.

References

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