“In the late 19th
century, the Cheshire Cat of Lewis Carroll’s (1865) Alice in
Wonderland was depicted as a British Shorthair tabby. Around the
same period, English breeders, including Harrison Weir, had
begun selectively breeding the most beautiful mixed breed cats,
which were shown for the first time at London’s Crystal Palace
in 1871. These cats were called British Shorthairs to
distinguish them from foreign and oriental breeds and from
longhaired breeds such as the Angora. The British Shorthair is
the counterpart of the European Shorthair and the American
In 1901, the British Cat
Club was formed. The first British Shorthairs (mostly blues)
resembled the Chartreux. As a result, the two breeds were
crossed, to such an extent that the F.I.Fe decided to combine
the two and recognize just one breed. But, in 1977, the F.I.Fe
once again separated the two breeds and prohibited crossing of
the two breeds.
Following World War II,
British Shorthairs were crossed with Persians to add mass and to
fill out the British Shorthairs silhouette, as well as to
increase the range of coat colors. New patterns, such as
colorpoint, were recognized. In the US, where the breed was
crossed with American Shorthairs, the British Shorthair was
recognized by the C.F.A. in 1980. The most recent standard
established by T.I.C.A. was published in 1993. The French F.F.F.
recognized the breed in 1979. British Shorthairs are extremely
“GENERAL: Medium to
large. Weight: 4 to 8 kg. Semi-cobby to cobby body type
(compact). Powerful, muscular, well-knit.
NECK: Short, thick and
well-knit. Broad chest, shoulders and rump. Muscular.
LEGS and PAWS: Short and
strong. Well boned and muscled. Round paws.
TAIL: Length is equal to
2/3 the length of the body. Thick at the base and tapering
slightly to a rounded tip.
COAT: Short, dense and
well bodied. Firm to the touch. Plus, giving the impression of
natural protection. Abundant undercoat. British Longhairs also
exist, the result of the introduction of too much Persian blood.
All colors permissible. The British Blue is the most popular
HEAD: Round, broad and
massive. Full cheeks. Distinctive muzzle. Short, broad, straight
nose with a gentle dip (but no nose break). Firm chin forming a
perpendicular line with the nose.
EARS: Medium in size,
wide at the base with rounded tips. Moderately wide set.
EYES: Large, round and
set wide apart. Color appropriate to coat color (copper, gold,
blue, green, blue-green, odd eyed).”
good-tempered, easygoing cat looks like a teddy bear. British
Shorthairs are excellent, well-balanced companions that adapt
easily to life in the city or in the country /where they can act
on their strong hunting instinct).
The British Shorthair
gets along well with other cats and dogs. He is lively, playful
and very affectionate, but not to the point of being bothersome.
This hard breed does not
reach full maturity until two or three years of age. Onset of
puberty is relatively late. Weekly brushing and combing is
During shedding season
(this cat sheds a lot), daily brushing is required.”
The Royal Canin Cat