How To Take Care Of Persian Cats?

For the Love of Persians

By Tamara Sevigny

“Only those who have had a cat can truly appreciate the contentment and the shared affection such a companion can bring,” says Doreann Nasin of Gillies Cattery in Franklin. Doreann has been showing Persians for 19 years and specializing in Silver Persians for 15 years.

With their long, flowing coats and open pansy-like faces, Persians are one of the number one cat breeds in popularity. We see them in television and magazine advertisements because of their extraordinarily elegant looks. Who wouldn’t want to have one of these prize kittens? But what do we know about them?

According to the Traditional Cat Association (TCA) “the Persian breed has been under attack by all of the other cat associations worldwide for long years now. This has resulted in two separate and distinct types with the breed as a whole.” They explain that the Extreme Persian (or peeked Faced Persian) is the “show” cat. The Traditional Persian (doll face) has a normal nose in length and placement in proportion to its facial structure. The TCA does not support Extreme Persian.

But Persians are not just shown cats, they will enjoy residential life and lounge around the house in their favorite spots, often looking as though they are posing. They are creatures of habit and enjoy an atmosphere of security and serenity, but their adaptability allows them to blend into even the most boisterous of households with a little love and reassurance.

They have sweet, gentle personalities and even their quiet voices are pleasant and non-abrasive. Persians have short, heavy-boned legs that support their broad, short bodies. Unlike some cats, they like to be grounded and tend not to climb and jump high. They do, however, enjoy a playful romp, but are never demanding attention.

They have large watchful eyes and thick, luxurious coats. The coats require daily grooming with a metal comb to prevent tangles and hairballs. An occasional bath will keep it clean, healthy, and beautiful. If kept indoors nail clippings are also recommended.

Persians have been seen in many photographs and advertisements through the years and generally appear in the preferred white coat despite the variety of colors available. The colors are divided into seven divisions for the purpose of competition. These are solid color, silver and gold, shaded and smoke, tabby, particolor, bicolor and Himalayan. But, according to TCA, any color imaginable is available.

Many breeders recommend keeping your Persian indoors. According to Doreann, a cat, which has never been outdoors, will have no desire to go out. Such a safety precaution not only protects the long coat but also keeps your cat safe from disease, parasites and the typical dangers of urban life.

Pricing on Persians varies and can depend on a number of factors, including champion bloodlines, type and applicable markings. Kittens are generally available after 12 weeks of age once they have developed the physical and social stability needed for a new environment.

A well-bred Persian cat is not more or less prone to illness than other breeds. Breeders dedicate themselves to breeding healthy cats, testing for and screening out heritable diseases and conditions.

As with any pet, diet is very important. Good quality food is usually not purchased in a supermarket and should not contain by-products. Read the labels.

Keeping your Persian indoors, spaying or neutering and providing necessary scratching posts are essential for long happy life. With regular veterinarian visits, a good diet and lots of love, Persians live anywhere from 15 to 20 or more years.

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