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You hear all sorts of things about Persian cats when you own one.
"Awww it's so cute."
"Those cats are really weird."
"Why has your cat been hit with a spade."
I'll admit that in the 12 months of pestering from my girlfriend leading up to me caving in and getting her one, I too had reservations about these strange creatures. I wondered why we couldn't just get a normal cat with a normal cat face for a normal cat price.
So, 18 months on from welcoming Misty Moon into our home I thought I should recount my experiences and attempt to confirm or dispel some of the myths about Persian cats.
The Myth: Persian cats require loads of upkeep and will end up choking on their own massive furballs if you don't brush them everyday and put a ribbon in their hair.
The Reality: They can actually look after themselves for the most part, our cat gets brushed a couple of times a week and has a lovely coat of long fur (except in the summer months where we have taken to shaving her fur short for her own comfort). So long as you check for knots and matted fur and sort them out when you find them, which you will if you are giving your cat attention, you shouldn't have a problem. You certainly do not need a wide array of brushes and combs, one standard wire brush will do the job. The only real laborious upkeep is with the eyes. They water constantly and Persians don't seem to be able to do much about it which means they need cleaning pretty much every day unless you want a cat that winks at you all the time.
The Warning: Persian cats shed a lot of hair and it gets EVERYWHERE. Be prepared to be picking it off your clothes and hoovering your carpets forever more.
The Myth: Persian cats are stuck-up little creatures who will only eat posh food.
The Reality: They seem to eat whatever you give them, like most cats. We've tried a variety of different branded cat foods, wet and dry, and there seems to be absolutely no preference. In fact, she only eats half a pouch of the stuff a day along with some biscuits. So really they can be cheaper than your average cat.
The Warning: Buy a shallow bowl, those flat faces are not engineered for burrowing into a deep one.
The Myth: Persian cats are unfriendly and unloving to their owners.
The Reality: Obviously this will differ from cat to cat but I've yet to meet a Persian that lives up to the cartoon evil villian portrayal of the movies. In fact as most of them are house-bound they are far more trusting of people than most cats and will give you more attention than you could possibly need, so long as you are willing to give it back.
The Warning: Persians and children do not seem to get along particularly well, they prefer calm people and the hyperactivity of children tends to send them running for cover.
If you are thinking of getting a Persian I would heartily recommend it, they are constantly entertaining, forever loving and the upkeep required is smaller than you think (and definitely worth the effort).
I had this cat when i was much younger. I had a Ginger and White girl called Charlotte which apparently is rare. She was very friendly, you could do anything to this cat and she wouldn't be a bit faised.
I used to dress her up in my baby clothes and push her around in my pushchair. Like most cats she spent alot of time sleeping and lying in the sun. I would play with my guinea pigs in the house and she would walk by and completely ignore them, of course i didnt leave them in the room alone so who knows how friendly she really was. We also had dogs and they all got along fine. She was a very spoilt cat and spent most of her time asleep on the sofa with my mum.
She passed away at the age of 15 which is roughly 70 cat years. But her age didnt stop her, she still loved to play and was very active and happy. She adapted well to our house move and made it home safely.
Persian cats are a heavy bread and on average should range from 8-12lbs. As im sure you can guess, this cat did mult alot, but thats expected of such a fluffy cat and is common in most animals. These cats are ment to be groomed and bathed regularly. We didnt do it as often as we should however her coat was fine. The average life span of a Persian is 15-20 years however some can live longer. Persian cats have 7 colour groups. Solid Colour, Silver and Golden, Shaded and Smoke, Tabby Group, Parti-Colour, Calico/Bi-Colour and Himalayan. I believe the owner has alot to do with the cats personality. These cats are usually very laid back and dont play but mine was very different. There not the cheapest of breeds and can reach prices of £500 but are worth it.
This cat is the perfect companion, weather it be for a family cat or someone living on their own.
Having been an animal lover all my life and owning all kind of animals naturally I am only happy to have the house full of furry friends. Since meeting my partner who is not a fan of animals we had to make a compromise. If we were going to get a cat - it had to be a persian. Deal!
So we set about trying to find the new addition to our family. There were literally hundreds to choose from but we steering more towards the adult cats that were being rehomed. We found a beautiful 4 year old girl whose owners were downsizing their family - they already owned 9 British shorthair cats and 2 Beagles!
From the minute we met her we knew she was the one. She was just perfect - with her gorgeous flat doll face, huge green eyes, chubby short legs and a tail like a feather duster! She was so tiny for her age - it was hard to believe she was that old but the owner told us she was the runt of the litter! She is golden in colour but has a cream tummy and grey feet which looks like she has been made up from all the left overs!
Since then we have had four great years with lots lots of ups and downs - clawing up at our curtains and the brand new leather sofa, sleeping on our heads and padding us on our faces to make us wait up and play but we wouldn't change her for the world even though we threaten to kill her sometimes! They are so different to your normal domestic cat - she is very vocal and can hold a good conversation :) She enjoys a good brush everyday but does not like to have a bath! We have tried that once but never again. She looked like a drowned rat and shreaded up to pieces.
If you are thinking of getting one and are not worried about your carpet being covered in clumps of cashmere fur and putting in the time then this cat is for you. A soul mate for life.
Or should I say 'My Persian Cat'
I knew nothing about cats until I got two as pets. As an introduction to the Persian I do know they originate from Egypt, which surprised me, as they must be jolly warm with all that hair. They are a pedigree breed and these days they breed them to have almost no protrusion on their noses. They have a beautiful coat of long fur, which needs constant attention; otherwise they get knotted and need to be clippered or groomed at the vets, which can be expensive. They come in all sorts of colours and you can buy them from breeders, which are advertised on the Internet. The cost can vary from £100 - £300 each. They have a tendancy to sticky eyes, which need to be wiped (best cold water on a cotton bud, one for each eye). This is caused by their restricted sinuses.
My Persian is called 'Freddy' and he is very naughty!
We originally got two stray cats from the local animal sanctuary, which seem to settle in rather well, until one of them decided to bite, and my children were small at the time so I decided she had to go back, which upset me intensely as I thought after time we would be able to handle her.
I then read in the local paper
'Persian cats available - free to a good home'.
I had no idea what a Persian cat looked like but decided to go and have a look. The lady only had one young cat of 9 months; the other cats were much older. When I asked what is his name she replied 'Little s.t'. I asked her why, and she said because he tried to trip you over by running past your legs whilst walking.
I took him home and gradually introduced him to my other cat 'Saturn'. Saturn did not take to him for quite sometime and they still have spats sometimes.
Freddy is just so funny, although he never smiles! He talks non-stop and to this day I have no idea what he is talking about. He loves attention and if you don't give it he will simply do something to attract your attention. He will jump on the laptop keys (this is a favourite) to ask me to stop and pay attention. He will jump through the velux window, which is on our roof (good job it's a bungalow). He will claw the carpet or furniture, and when I shout 'Stop it' my other cat will beat him up. He will bang the door to come in and out and he easily opens them, although he doesn't shut them after him. If you give him 'wet food' he licks the gravy and tosses the meaty bits on the floor. I know some have trouble eating, so he is now on dried food, which he loves.
Freddy is incredible. He is so beautiful with his blue hair and amber eyes. I am always asking him to smile; he walks around with the end of his tongue out and just loves attention from us. Unlike most, he is not keen on any interruption to routine; he does not like strangers and will hide away. If they stay with us, he will usually vomits outside their bedroom door. A couple of years ago we had students stay from our local language school, but Freddy constantly cried and protested about them. I also go for jog around the block in the evening, and who is running with me 'Freddy'. I have to be careful, so I come back and feed him, then I sneak out again to finish my run. He asks me to open up the shed in the morning and he likes to sleep as high up as he can get on top of some of our rubbish. He has been known to sneak into other peoples shed, and we have search high and low for him. One neighbour described him as my 'dustbin lid', most of my friends can't figure out which end is which when he is asleep.
I would conclude that my Persian has the personality and intelligence of a dog but the independence of a cat. The only down side is his coat; he hates being groomed and I usually have to take him at least once to the vet to get him sorted out.
My Persian is an outdoor cat, but most are indoor. he doesn't hunt though.
Firstly excuse the long introduction but I feel it is important to set the scene ... just under four years ago, my husband and I decided to expand our family by getting a cat. We would have liked a cat from a rescue centre, but as we lived in a flat and were in full time employment at the time, we were deemed undesirables by most rescue centres. So we decided to get a pedigree instead and after a little bit of research we decided upon the British Shorthair breed. Six weeks after bringing home our first kitten, Lewis, we went back to the same breeder and brought home his slightly younger half brother, Billy. Billy and Lewis were our family. They moved to Bermuda with us the following year and two years later we all moved back to England, but not before the boys were impounded at Gatwick for carrying the wrong documents. Tsk, tsk Billy and Lewis.
Tragically, three months after we returned to the UK, Lewis was killed in a road accident. The cats had been predominately house cats, but it was clear they were longing to go outside and we thought as we moved to a very rural area that they would be relatively safe. We were devastated and particularly my husband as Lewis was the first pet he ever had. A few weeks later, we decided that it would be a good idea to get Billy another companion, but we did not want to get another British Shorthair as it made us feel like we were replacing Lewis. So we decided to get a Persian.
About the breed~~
Persians can be found in many different colours, in fact almost a hundred are recognised and each colour is considered a different breed in the UK. The most common solid colours are black, white, blue (dark grey with a definite bluish hue), chocolate, lilac (pale grey with a pinkish hue), red or cream. The self colours should all have copper coloured eyes apart from the white cat which may have copper eyes, blue eyes or perhaps one of each!
Then there are bi-colours which do not have any particular marking but are a mixture of something and white. Tri-colours or tabbys are a mixture of three or more colours; it is rare to find a male Persian tri-colour or tabby and if you do then they will be sterile. Another common pattern is the colour point, which is a mainly white cat but the nose, ears, tail and possibly paws are a contrasting colour, perhaps chocolate a bit like Siamese, but the contrast can be other colours too.
The Persian's coat should be long and thick, the texture of it should be soft and silky and the tail should be bushy. The body should be short and cobby, a very well-rounded cat. Persians are considered a medium to large sized cat. My own cat certainly has the long coat and his tail is huge, like a cartoon squirrel's tail, but I don't think he is very big at all. Admittedly, this could be because I am comparing him to his giant British Shorthair brother. An adult male Persian would be about 8 to 12 lbs, which is about the same as an average moggy, whereas the British Shorthair will be about 10 - 16lbs at maturity. My boys are 8.5lbs (the Persian) and 12.5lbs (the British Shorthair).
The most distinct feature of the Persian is arguably the face and most people would associate the Persian with that scrunched up face and snub nose. There are guidelines as to how snubbed up that nose can be, introduced relatively recently as an exaggerated snub can create breathing difficulties for the cat. Not all Persians have the snub nose, those without it are referred to as being "open" faced or sometimes "doll faced". The cat in dooyoo's picture looks doll faced to me. My cat has a snub nose, he does tend to snort at times but he does not appear to have any trouble breathing.
To the uninitiated, a Persian may seem like a haughty, indifferent cat, but this is almost certainly a judgement based on appearance not experience. In fact Persians are widely considered to be gentle and loving cats. They are laid back, affectionate and typically love being in the company of their human being. This could not be more true of my Persian, he simply oozes cat charisma. He is all of funny, adorable, loving and affectionate. He is a little prone to jealousy however, if I show the other cat any attention he will certainly be over to demand his fair share and has even been known to glare at my husband. If looks could kill...
An interesting trait I noticed with my Persian quite early on, is that he appears to have little sense of balance or timing. He will not realise he is on the edge of the sofa arm and will simply topple off. As somebody who has had cats my whole life more or less, I can assure this lack of agility and awareness is most unusual. Not so with the Perisan apparently, I know other Persian owners who have reported the same. Odd in a cat.
Getting a kitten, my experience~~
Where else to start but the internet these days? It did not take us long to find a breeder with kittens available. My preference was to go with a breeder registered with the GCCF (Governing Council of the Cat Fancy) and indeed when I wrote my British Shorthair review I think I insisted this was the only way to go. Since then, the point was made to me that an unregistered breeder does not necessarily mean a bad breeder, more important is the health and conditions the kittens are raised in and this should in any case be verified by anyone thinking of getting a kitten. A kitten from a registered breeder is likely to be very expensive and cost prohibitive for some, an unregistered breeder provides opportunity for somebody who would like a Persian or other pedigree cat to obtain one in a more affordable manner. My kitten cost £450 from a registered breeder, this is around average in the South East, the most expensive I saw was a staggering £850!
After identifying a breeder with kittens available, we arranged a visit. We were invited to look at both parents and to have a look around the cat and kitten quarters. The breeder then went to get the two kittens that were available, a male and a female. She brought them out in one hand and we were presented with a bundle of fur that for a fleeting moment looked like a cat with two heads. The decision for us was agonising, I was quite taken with the red, grey and white tri-colour but this was a girl and we were not sure if Billy would like a little sister. Her brother was a red and white bi-colour, both kittens seemed a little bit overwhelmed and shy to be meeting us.
Breeders will often say that the sex is irrelevant if the older cat is neutered, but this is not my personal experience. So we decided to take the male and we named him Edward.
When we got Edward home, Billy was out hunting and fishing so we had a little bit of time to help Edward get used to his new surroundings. He was fairly reticent (hard to believe now), so we decided to keep him to one room and put out some small bowls and a small litter tray for him, away from Billy's belongings.
We were not sure what to expect from that first meeting. But of the many scenarios we had considered, Billy running away and hiding under a bed for three days had not featured highly. It took a great deal of persistence and coaxing to get Billy to come out and eat and do the other things cats need to do. We showered Billy with affection and tried to make a point of ignoring Edward in front of him. We were soon able to put their feeding bowls beside each other and a mutual tolerance developed.
I saw a new side to Billy and his behaviour is a testament to the nature of the British Shorthair, which is deemed to get on exceptionally well with other animals, children and people. Billy is a very large cat, quite adventurous and brave in the outdoors and new surroundings. But I had no idea how big a softie he really is. Not once, did he ever raise a paw to the new kitten, in fact it was far more common to see him my 12.5lb bruiser being chased around the house by this 2lb ball of red and white fluff.
Grooming and health issues~~~
I think this is probably the most important section of my review for anyone considering taking on a Perisan. It is Hard Work. Of course I had read all about the grooming needs of Persians and it is pretty obvious on inspection that they are going to need it. But it is much easier said than done. Ideally, the cat needs to be combed and brushed every day, but of course there are always going to be those days when you don't get to it. Skipping once, is probably OK, but it cannot be skipped very often. More than a couple of days missed grooming can result in knots and matting. It is infinitely better to stay on top of grooming.
The breeder we got Edward from showed us to use a wide tooth comb first of all and to then take a soft bristled brush to sort of back-comb / brush through the fur. The back brushing does seem very effective in preventing matting of the undercoat. We also keep a tooth brush to brush out his face and we use cotton buds to keep the eyes clear and cotton one balls to wash his face. A snub nose Persian cat is prone to blocked tear ducts which results in black gunk coming out of the eyes.
An essential to my Persian grooming arsenal is tush wipes. The long fur around the rear end can occasionally mean ... err ... things getting messy those private areas. Thankfully, I have not found this to be a common occurrence, only a very unpleasant one. Keeping the fur trimmed around this area is not a bad idea.
I have found grooming to be quite a struggle, particularly when I have for whatever reason neglected it for a day or two. Those knots and clumps of matted fur develop in no time. If you are going away on holiday and taking the cats to a cattery, I recommend speaking to the cattery owners at length about grooming and their willingness to do it thoroughly. If need be, offer to pay a little more for the extra attention.
Baths are required. I first bathed Edward a couple of weeks after we brought him home and I used an old washing up bowl for his bath. I was amazed at how tiny he was once his fur was wet! Persians really are all fluff! I remember it was quite hard to find a cat shampoo, my local pet stores had loads of shampoos for dogs but nothing for cats until I eventually found a puppy and kitten shampoo. I have since used a baby shampoo on him to no ill effect. My breeder recommended using baby talc in between baths as the fur can get a little greasy, especially on the chest.
Now Edward is larger, a bath is a two person job and we normally undertake it in the kitchen butler sink although we are contemplating moving on to the bath tub. It is important to wear protective clothing during this procedure and be prepared to get very wet. You should make sure the cat is free of any tangles before bathing as these are even harder to get rid of once wet. When the cat has been rinsed off he should be towel dried and I recommend using a pet dryer to dry off properly. Do not use your own hairdryer, whilst a pet dryer looks very similar to a hair dryer, it does not get as hot. I have found Edward quite amenable to being blow dried.
So a quick recap on my grooming accessories for my cats: British Shorthair - well nothing, he does it all himself. Persian - cotton buds, cotton wool balls, tush wipes, wide tooth comb, soft bristle brush, baby shampoo, baby talc, washing up bowl, protective clothing, towels, pet hair dryer.
Onto health issues. Well as with all cats, they should be vaccinated against the main feline illnesses, like feline flu on an annual basis and they will not be allowed into any reputable cattery without proof of such. Regular flea and worming treatments are also essential.
But the particular health concern of a Persian is PKD, polycystic kidney syndrome. Many Persians carry the gene for this disease which will shorten their life span considerably, to about 7 or 8 years. When you get a Persian, it is very important to ensure that the cat and its parents have been tested negative for the disease to avoid future heartache.
We got Edward from a breeder who claims that all her cats are free of PKD, however we once innocently commented to our vet on a regular visit that Edward drinks an extraordinary amount of water. We were told that this could be a symptom of PKD, this can be checked via a straightforward blood test and fortunately for us, we found Edward is indeed free of this horrible disease. He just likes water.
Billy is four tomorrow and Edward will be one the day after. Billy is a gentle giant, it is hard to tell whether he tolerates Edward or whether he is actually quite fond of him. They do not seem to have the closeness that Billy and Lewis had, but they grew up together from kittens and so perhaps that is an unrealistic expectation or hope.
When Lewis died we locked the cat flap and decided to keep Billy indoors, but we couldn't keep this up. He pined to be outside and we realised we had to put his happiness before ours. When we got Edward, we decided that we would keep him indoors as he would know no better, but he saw his brother going outside and is not stupid. We have a cat litter box quite near the back door, which Billy tends to sit on when he wants to go out. Edward started to copy that and to stare out of the one way cat flap (Billy can get in through it but not go out).
We have started to let Edward out when we are out in the garden or in the annexe, the office is in the annexe so he is happy about this. We are touched to note that when Edward is out, Billy keeps a close eye on him. Normally Billy likes to wander off and do his own thing, but he seems to know that Edward does not have the same freedom as he does and so if Edward is outside he generally stays in the garden with him. I do tend to panic if I don't see Edward for an hour or two and indeed I just did, but Billy is right with me as I tramp through the fields behind the house and sure enough Edward soon pops up.
Billy and Edward rub by happily enough. Edward often starts play fights which most of the time Billy has ignored. Now Edward is larger, Billy will sometimes raise a threatening paw, although he never did when Edward was a kitten. Edward is not stupid and knows when he is outsized and when not to push his luck. Billy exerts his authority at eating time too and when we went to pick them up after a recent short break, we noted that Billy had the comfier spot in their chalet at the cattery. We think they are both quite content.
Like me, my husband was devastated by the death of Lewis, but he never imagined that he could possibly get attached to a cat in the way he did and also that he didn't realize that cats have unique personalities, something that was no surprise to me.
We were both very wary of getting a new cat and mainly did so because we thought it was the best thing to do for Billy, although we never expected him to take to a new cat immediately. I think all three of us are as happy as we could ever be about the new addition to the family. Personally, I adore him, I love him to bits and the incredible hard work that he undoubtedly involves is well worth the pleasure I get back from having him in the family.
As a cat and all round animal lover I have five cats ( I know five!!) two of which are Persian. Persians are well known for their flat faces, good temprements and for being very high maintainence cats. I first thought about getting Persians after stumbling across a Persian Breeders website, I had always liked the idea of a pretty Persian cat and looking at the lovely pictures on the Breeders website had me convinced of getting a Persian (soon followed by another one).
There is a lot of good points and bad points to consider before purchasing a Persian.
Good Points: Persians have very good temprements and will happily curl up next to you or sleep in your lap as you watch tv. They are a very affectionate breed and love being pampered and stroked and purr very loudly. They are a very beautiful breed to look at providing you maintain them well, with their lovely long coats and pretty faces.
Bad Points: The main issue with Persians is they are very high maintainence cats, they need thorough daily brushing to avoid matting, eyes cleaned and their bums cleaned if anything gets stuck to them when they go to the toilet :-). Persians like most pedigree cats these days are very costly and if brought from a breeder can set you back around £400 which is another thing to consider.
Overall I think Persians are a lovely breed of cat and my favourite breed, my two Persians Ribbons (Lilac tabby colour) and Riley (Red colour) have wonderful temperaments and all Persians providing you maintain them are the perfect pets.
If you are thinking about getting a Persian Cat I would like to help by giving you an insight into what it is like to own them, how they are to care for, and to highlight the difficulties and of course the joys.
I will start by explaining that I have kept them for the last decade following on from 15 years of owning moggies. I had always wanted them but knew that when I was younger and my children were little I would have struggled to give them the time and the dedication they need. So just over 10 years ago I started my Persian ownership with the purchase of a blue colourpoint called Teddy, shortly added to by a red self called Marigold.
There is nothing in my mind which competes for the wonderful sight of a fluffy Persian Cat curled up on the sofa, it's cosy and gorgeous, but it spells work and dedication
First of all I must explain that the feel and texture of the coats are very different and this is really important to consider if you are thinking about getting them. They are not really just one breed because they have differences which can really impact how much time they need. The photo Dooyoo has provided is excellent-I hope the owner of this impressive cat is not wearing black or she or he will be in trouble!
Teddy was a blue colourpoint -this does not mean he was blue it is the name for the type of Persian which is a grey/white and has little grey tips on the ears. Now they have silky fur which can border on greasy and they are prone to matting and shedding like no other. This means that if you love to wear black think again, you will be covered in hairs all day long however much you groom them! When my mum visits or my hairdresser they both love to wear black, and I have to put towels down on the chairs even after hoovering as they stick to black and show up. When you stroke them the fur is released into the air and so they are really bad for anyone with a cat allergy. Having said that if you adore them it is quite a special feature in that you often find the hairs in all kinds of places-some good like on dried flowers-some bad like on your contact lenses. If you love hoovering then it won't worry you, if you hate it then be prepared and I would replace carpets with wooden or laminate floors because it is back breaking keeping up with the hair loss of any white Persian however much you groom them!
Marigold however is a red Persian and she is a different story. Her fur is thick and slightly courser and drier and does not moult or shed as much- in fact she also knots up less and is easy maintenance. She is a deep ginger with a tail like Basil Brush!
So if you would like a Persian think about how much time you want to devote to grooming and cleaning as sadly so many end up in the rescue because the work involved is much more than the owner expects.
They are all high maintenance but some more than others.
The next thing is to find a breeder who can show you a certificate to say that her breeding line has been checked for a disease called PKD or Polycystic Kidney Disease. This is a subject very dear to my heart as sadly Teddy is no longer with us having died from this terrible genetic disease which causes multiple cysts to grow on the kidney and causes renal failure at a young age mostly about 7. He lived to age 8. Since the days when I purchased Teddy this new test has become available giving peace of mind to you when you buy your new kitten.
If you are at work all day it is wise to buy 2 as they need company. The toms are much more characterful then the females and can be quite demanding of attention and time! If you buy two girls do so at the same time since introducing them later can cause jealousy. The boys are usually tolerant of new comers and will often show them the ropes!
If you have Persians it is much better to keep them as indoors cats. If you let them out you will find management of their coats a daunting task and also many are stolen or die on the roads.
The cat litter tray will need frequent changing and if you are very busy have a look at the new Catsan Litter system called The Catsan Smart Pack which is a cat litter which is backed by a waterproof base and can be left for a few days just removing sold waste.
They are very fond of running water and will appreciate a drinking fountain which you can purchase from any Petstore.
If you do get a Persian my advice is to plan a routine. We set aside an hour every Saturday for cat care. We now have three Persians so each Saturday we brush them and we also blunt their nails. This is very important if you want to keep your furniture, and especially important if you have young children or other small dogs, as they can suffer serious eye problems if on the receiving end of an accidental or malicious swipe.
Talking of this most Persians have soft and gentle natures if you bring them up properly. As kittens please don't play rough mice chasing games with them because it brings out this side of their characters which you want to temper. Get them used to being handled and groomed from a very early age, and if you can't cope with the grooming most dog parlours will help you.
Take them to the vets for a check up as soon as you get them home, and book them in for their vaccinations and subsequent neutering. Toms make impossible pets if you don't neuter them they are dirty and will wander, females must be neutered to prevent tumours and infections of the ovaries and uterus.
Neutering them greatly decreases the chance that they will develop mammary cancer.
Finally please consider insurance. We chose Petplan and have been delighted with them. Remember though when you choose pet insurance cheaper policies may not be what they seem. Try to go for a policy which covers the animal for conditions which may be lifelong and go on from year to year- these include many and are often excluded by cheaper polices.
Persians tend to have loving natures and make adorable pets but I wouldn't recommend them if you have very young children. Health wise they are often long lived and they do suffer some breed specific conditions such as tear problems and tear duct overflow because of the very flat squashed nature of the face ,
They will need their eyes cleaning daily. I find a good flannel works wonders and I also clean their teeth as well.
Feeding them is interesting as they have different preferences. Some of mine prefer dry food and an excellent one is made by Royal Canine-it is specifically designed for Persians and it comes in either kitten or adult formulas. Some of my cats especially Marigold would go on a hunger strike eating this option as she is a wet food lover! I feed her whatever is on offer, she likes them all!
In conclusion I adore these cats but have come to realize they are not quite as easy maintence as I first thought. Whatever you do keep up with the grooming as a matted coat may have to be shaved, which is actually very cruel to these cats who are very clean and proud of their beautiful fur.
I thought it may be useful finally to give you an idea of the cost of the first year.
Typical Cost Of Purchase of Pedigree Persian £350
Neutering circa £100 males cheaper, females more
Wormer and flea treatments £100-200 per year
Food if using Royal Canine about £15 per month per cat
Petplan £12-15 a month rising with age
Cat litter ranging from £3 a week if you use value to £6 if you buy a litter system per cat.
So as a rough guide each cat is likely to cost you in the first year over £1000 and in subsequent years £650.
At lot to take in but worth budgeting for as they are not cheap. If you can't manage to groom them you will also have to add on the cost of a grooming parlour. One consolation though is that if you live in the north of the country your vet bills will be cheaper and being indoors cats they often escape the flea horrors and so you can sometimes get away with being vigilant rather than treating prophylactically which saves some costs.
Adorable cats and well worth the outlay in my opinion but not recommended if you think the grooming may be too much to keep on top of.
Also posted on Ciao by me under the user name Violet1278.
We wre planning on buying an apartment dog but then we decided it would be unfair so we (me my mum and my sister) looked in Loot (the newspaper) for adverts for cats. We weren't planning on getting a persian but the desciption seemed adorable. 'Mischievious little boy; like knocking things over. White with brown nose, pasa, tail and ears.' (this is called a chocolate colourpoint!) We went to buy him for about £300 and he was too cute for words. We called him Louis, We wanted to buy his sister but she was very ill and died shortly after :( Louis has NEVER hissed or scratched (we don't thiunk he knows how to hiss) and he always uses his letter tray when he does his business hehe. The only drawback is that you HAVE to comb/brush persians atleast twice a day or they will get matted. Louis doesn't like being combed (which is surprising for a persian as they are very vain). Wheh we went on holiday we left him in a cattery with about 40 cats and the woman in charge didn't comb him! Then she charged US £30 to get rid of his matts. He was totally shaved and he looked like a little rat but now he has all of his soft white fur back. Louis doesn't have fleas because he has never been outside or associated with any other cats. I love Louis and I wouldn't give him away for Millions of pounds - he is my baby!
Persian cats are said to be a mutation of Egyptian cats that grew longer hair in the cold climates of Turkish(Persian) mountains.These cats have had associations with the area from before the 16th century. The breed typically has long,thick fur, a stocky body shape,flat face and round head,big eyes,short tail and legs and good temperment. I own a grey persian cross,Pansy, which I got from cat rescue home.She has a slightly pointier face than a pure persian but all her other characteristics make her look very persian.Her fur forms a "mane" at her neck which sometimes makes her look like a tiny grey lion!Although persian's are said to be good with children,Pansy despises them(much like I do).She is very playful and enjoys games with feathers and cat toys.Pansy is very gentle and hardly every bites or scratches. There are seven different types of persian colouring;Himalayan,Calico(Bicolour),Parti-colour,Tabby,Shaded and Smoke,Silver and Golden and Solid Colour. Ideally cats weigh between 7 and 12lbs,bt persians are sometimes heavier due to their bone structure.A vet should be able to tell if your pet is over weight and advise you on control of weight. The lifespan of a healthy persian is 15 years,my cat is just four,so I hope for many more happy years with her!She is very like a kitten still as she is so playful. In general the most difficult thing with persians is grooming them.Most will need to be groomed daily to avoid matted fur and trips to vets.Use a small metal comb brushing thouroughly will ensure the fur remains shiny and smooth.If you get your cat used to this from an early age it will be easy to make a routine out of it.Older cats may need to be gradually trained into sitting still while being groomed.If the fur besomes knotted and the vet shaves it ,they may give the cat a "lion cut". http://www.persian-cats.com/grooming.shtml has pictures of what this looks like. In
addition to preventing knotting,grooming cat help to stop the cat shedding as much fur around the house. I feed my persian cat just the same as I'd feed any other cat,though she can be fussy and if I buy low price cat food(supermarket own label) she won't eat it. Persian's are very intelligent and friendly and I think anyone who chooses to have one will be very satified as they will be a great friend for you for many years.
I acquired my beautiful persian cat 3 years ago(right now she is perched on my knee helping me write my opinion!).She was an unwanted kitten and surprisingly I got her for free!She is a pure bred persian showing all the characteristics of this breed;long fluffy hair,flattened face and "mane". The main difficulty with persian cats is that they really need to be brushed at least twice a day because not only do they shed hair everywhere but their fur becomes knotted very easily!If you think the hair shedding wouldn't bother you then imagine how you would feel if the only colour you wear is black but everytime you cuddle your cat you become covered in long white hair!My cat sheds more fur in spring time as during the winter its coat becomes thicker.It is of great importance that you do brush your cat regularily as if the fur becomes too matted it will need to be shaved by a vet.Also regular grooming builds a close bond between owner and pet and if started at an early age will not be difficult to make routine. I found that with its high class apperance my cat also developed high class taste in pet food and annoyingly refuses to eat nice cheap Safeway Savers Cat Food and insists on having Felix or Arthurs.The funny thing is when i tried covering a Safeway savers can with a felix wrapper she ate it without fussing for around a week before realising she'd been tricked. Like all cats it is important to ensure persians receive worming treatment regularly and have vaccinations yearly at the vets.If your cat has problems with fleas or ticks(more of a country problem!) i suggest using "Bob martin Spot On" which lasts for about six weeks,and is applied simply with a drop behind the neck. Although persian cats are great pets i would urge anyone considering getting one to remember they require a lot of grooming(and that in most cases they are very expensive).
Until recently, we had only owned the usual sort of cats - tabbies, rescued ones, that kind of thing. We did have a half-Persian cat in my childhood though, which was beautiful and briefly owned an Abyssinian, which moved out of a neighbour's house and into ours - but our new cat, Shady, is our first proper Persian cat. She belonged to my fiance's Aunt's neighbour. When she was widowed, she didn't feel up to looking after the cat - then named Floss - but wanted her to go to a good home - which is where we stepped in. Now renamed Shady (after her beautiful colouring - oh, yes, I admit it, after a certain gorgeous rapper too!), she is the latest addition to our household which already comprised a dog and three rats, as well as the human occupants. She is a lovely looking animal, with a very impressive coat. She is long-haired and her fur is a stunning mix of blacks, browns and light auburns. She does need to be regularly brushed though, but as she obviously has been in the past, this is not too much work at the moment and it can be very relaxing sitting brushing a cat. I'm not looking forward to her going out and rolling round in the mud though! She is very tolerant of children, which is important in my house! Cats have to get the balance right really, so they do not snap at the kids without good reason, but that they are not beyond dishing out the odd swipe if a child gets too boisterous or handles them roughly. So far, Shady is doing brilliantly! She has Hill's Science Plan dry pet food, which is expensive at £2.99 for a 500g bag, but is good for your cat, easy to dish up and most importantly of all, she loves it! She doesn't like being fed at certain times, but prefers to have a dish of food she can return to as and when. I'm not sure if that is peculiar to my cat or common to this breed though. Shady is house trained and uses her litter tray for essential bodily functio
ns. I use a straw-based cat litter, which I have already reviewed elsewhere in the Cat section here, along with an opinion on Hill's dry cat food too. We were lucky in being able to acquire a Persian cat for free, as I'm sure they would be very expensive if you bought one from a breeder. I personally have always had rescued cats (the Cats' Protection League is excellent, we bought a cat from them in 1998 for £20) or ones that I have taken in for various reasons, we have never bought one from a breeder. Shady came with her own bed and blanket (which she hasn't used yet!), her two food and water bowls, her litter tray and a container of food, so we only had to buy the cat litter initially. If you are buying everything from scratch, I would say you'd need around £20 for all of that. Cats in general are great pets and pretty cheap to look after, apart from any Vet bills incurred, but getting pet insurance will help with that. Cats are not dependent on hours of human company like dogs are, they are often happy to spend hours exploring the big wide world outside your home and they usually only want attention and affection on their terms. My Persian cat is beautiful, affectionate, good with the kids, tolerant of the dog - but not submissive, and in general, we are completely satisfied with her and she seems happy with us too. A perfect combination. UPDATE - July 1st We have now had Shady for almost five months and she has settled in very well. She even gets on well enough with the dog to share our bed with her sometimes. We still haven't had any messes from her (hooray!), but have changed her cat litter to Bob Martin recycled paper litter and she now eats Whiskas dry food, which she loves. She isn't too keen on treats, except for Whiskas Milk Plus. The only disadvantage is her long coat. After initial attempts to brush her with a pet comb, we gave up on that, as h
er coat was becoming matted and she was choking on fur balls. So we now use an old nit comb (!) which does the trick, although she hates it!
I have four persians, a big black boy called Al, a red self, a blue and a blue white bi colour girls. They take up alot of my time, grooming seems to be my middle name! I am hoping to breed them this summertime, but if nothing comes of it i dont mind, they are first and foremost members of the family. To give my opinion on persian cats as a family pet, I think they are wonderful, excellent temperament and loving, but they take alot of looking after. I dont just mean a quick glance with the brush every couple of days, I mean grooming every day, bathing when required, not to mention the vets bills. Persians are also prone to a condition called PKD which effects their kidneys, and might not show itself until they are older, but they are born with the condition. On average 50% of persians are born with this ocnditiob at present, but with the aid of scanning this can be drastically reduced. the Feline Advisory Beaureu ( FAB) is runninga scheme counrty wide with vets to get persains scanned for this disease when they are 12 months old. it doesnt cost the earth and you get a certificate of negative screening for pkd if the cat hasnt got it, which is most encouraging for future owners. If cats are screened positive ofr PKd, they shouldnt be used for breeding, as they will pass the condition on. The possibilities when breeding a positive cat to positive are 100% positive kittens. If breeding a positive to negative it is 50% pos 50% neg. if breeding 2 negative persians it is 100% negative. So we could wipe this condition out. ( stats from Cat Monthly)
I have a Chinchilla Persian who is now 5 years old called "Oscar" Although I admit it takes a alot of time to keep his coat in good condition, grooming him sometimes two or three a day. The rewards you get from this affectionate breed are certainly worth it. I love persians and I chose this breed of Persian due to the fact that their face are not as flat as for example the blue. Persians are reknown for having problems with their breathing and eyes, Chinchilla's do not usually share these. Oscar is the ultimate lapcat who loves a cuddle. This however is not always welcomed due to fact that he is constantly molting. I would not recommend a Persian for someone with small children, due to the fact that they are a reserved cat and hate being fussed over.
I have three. A huge red self. A seal point princess and a white chinchilla. I love them to bits especially the seal point. If you want a cat that is playful but not very destructive then i don't think you can go past a persian. They are usually very gentle and love to be petted. They are proper pets in the real sense of the word. they can be very playful once you wake them up! They tend to be rather lazy but they don't seem to mind being home alone as long as they have a litter tray and food and water. They make excellent mousers-just they are gentle. You must groom them though-they cannot cope with their long fur without some help from their owners and it can get very tangled.
I am going to echo Catawall's opinion. Please think very carefully before taking on a Persian cat - they take a lot of care and hard work. Ideally they should be groomed at least twice a day. My persian was two when I adopted him, quite frankly the owners made a very lame excuse why they couldn't keep him - it was obvious they cope with his needs. Because of this he didn't like being groomed which meant he often had knots or I was left bleeding!! They are very loving animals and beautiful but their care is very specialist. Persians often have sensitive stomachs - I don't need to make the obvious connection between stomach upsets and long hair do I!! If you do take up the challenge it's a good idea to make sure the hair around their bums is kept trimmed! I am a member of the cats protection league and it's very sad to see the number of Persians who are brought in as owners can't cope. If you do feel you have the time and dedication for a Persian asking the Cats Protection League if they have any who need new homes would be a nice idea.