Russian Blue cat
- Breed Name: Russian Blue Cat
- Country of Origin: Russia
- Weight: 3 – 5.5 kg
- Life expectancy: 14 – 20 years
- A distinctive feature of the breed is a reckless love of high jumping, so it is better not to keep vases and other fragile objects in the room where the animal lives.
- Russian blue cats are extremely clean, so an untimely or poorly washed tray is perceived as a personal insult.
- Adult animals are cautious and extremely shy. When a stranger appears in the house, they try to move away or hide.
- Cats are quite independent. In the absence of proper attention from the owner, they are able to entertain themselves.
- Both kittens and adults love affection, but do not suffer from excessive obsession.
- Are erudite, have a stable psyche, easily learn everything new.
- Thanks to the dense, thick coat, glycoproteins from the cat's skin almost do not enter the environment, which makes the breed practically safe for allergy sufferers.
- Russian blue muroks have a very quiet voice, so they meow indistinctly.
- Are distinguished by good health. With proper care, they can live up to 20 years or more. There have been recorded cases in history when individuals managed to meet their own 25th anniversary.
- Animals do not tolerate intra-family conflicts well. Frequent quarrels of household members can turn a Russian blue cat into a nervous, intimidated and inadequate creature.
- From 2 to 4 kittens are born in one litter, so in reputable nurseries the offspring are distributed among potential buyers long before birth.
Russian Blue Cats - plush intellectuals who feel equally at ease in a modest city apartment and in the royal chambers. Everything is beautiful in these graceful, majestic creatures, from the ballet posture to the hypnotic, almost infernal look. Unobtrusive and delicate, they will not bother you with nocturnal "oratorios" and demands for minute-by-minute caresses. However, these fluffy nobles also do not intend to completely dissolve in the interests of the owner, because their purpose is to decorate, not brighten up life.
History of the Russian blue cat breed
Plush murkies began their triumphal march across countries and continents from the Foggy Albion, where they gained fame as unsurpassed rat catchers. The "grandmother of all Europe", Queen Victoria, especially favored the blue-haired cats, at whose court many representatives of this wonderful family lived. History is silent about the ways in which cats reached Shakespeare's homeland. The British breeders themselves are firmly convinced that their pets sailed to them from the Russian north, or rather, from the snow-covered Arkhangelsk. It was rumored that the first mustachioed "pomors" were presented to the British by Catherine II, who had a habit of gifting foreign ambassadors with all sorts of living curiosities. Apparently, since then, an alternative name has been fixed for the breed – Archangel Blue (Arkhangelsk blue).
In 1893, the British breeder Karen Cox decided to "pump up" the breed qualities of Arkhangelsk cats a little and went to their supposed historical homeland – in Pomerania. There, breeder managed to get hold of several kittens, which became the successors of the kind of green-eyed "archangels". As for official recognition, it came to the Russian blue cats only in 1912. 19 years after Mrs. Cox's voyage, feline associations finally approved a separate standard of appearance for animals, thereby equalizing their rights with representatives of other feline breeds.
After the Second World War, the clan of Russian blue cats withered and was on the verge of extinction, which greatly alarmed European breeders. Enthusiastic breeders from Britain, Finland, Sweden and Denmark rushed to restore the number of "archangels". And since it turned out to be an impossible task to find a sufficient number of purebred individuals for mating, the Russian blue began to be crossed with representatives of other breeds having a similar color. So the Archangel mousers intermarried first with the Siamese, and then with the British.
Knitting Russian cats with oriental individuals in England stopped pretty soon. The reason for the termination of the experiments was the inheritance of external defects and behavioral deviations by the offspring. The kittens lost their temper, they became too nervous, meowed loudly, and when they grew up, they loved marking corners. But the breeders from the USA were not confused by such transformations and they continued their breeding research. As a result, the American branch of the Russian blue breed was born, whose representatives had a pronounced oriental appearance, typical for representatives of the Siamese group.
The Russian blue cat breed came to Russia in perestroika times. Domestic breeders did not hesitate for a long time where to get purebred "material" for mating, and began to cross foreign individuals with aboriginal cats having the same color and complexion. The experiment, oddly enough, turned out to be successful, and already in the early 90s Russian nurseries began to put up for sale the first kittens of the Arkhangelsk blue.
Video: Russian Blue Cat
Appearance of the Russian blue cat
The Russian blue cat is the epitome of grace and sophistication. Representatives of this clan are easily identified by their graceful posture and stately "ballet" gait. The second identifying feature of the breed is dense velvet fur coats of bluish–ash color. It is thanks to the soft fur, separated from the body, that the silhouette of the animal acquires additional expressiveness and exquisite charm.
Depending on the breeding site, there are three main types of appearance of Arkhangelsk blue:
- American (TICA standard) is an oriental type characterized by a wedge–shaped skull, large unfolded ears and a double coat of bright blue color;
- European (WCF standard) – with a flat skull and thick hair of a uniform blue tone with a silver tint;
- English (GCCF standard) – with a shortened wedge-shaped head and dense light blue fur covered with a silvery "coating" (silvering).
According to the standard approved by the World Cat Federation (WCF), representatives of the Russian blue breed should have a flat, moderately elongated skull and a straight nose, smoothly turning into the same smooth forehead and forming a small bulge at the level of the eyebrows. The chin should be strong, rounded. The pads of the vibrissae are clear, moderately convex. The tone of the lobe is gray-blue.
Large, oval, rich green shade. Set wide.
Large enough, tilted forward. The tip of the ear looks slightly pointed in "Americans" and more rounded in "Europeans". The ear cloth is thin, elastic. The inner part of the ear funnel is slightly pubescent.
The neck of the Russian blue cat is elongated and graceful.
The cat's body is muscular, slightly elongated, of medium size. For American cats, a lightweight (oriental) physique is considered the standard.
Legs are long, straight. The paws of the Russian blue are oval, with soft elastic pads of purple-pink color. The "Americans" have pinkish-beige pads.
The cat's tail is long, well pubescent, with a rounded tip.
The coat of the "Europeans" is short, stands like a beaver and gives the impression of being very thick because of the equal length of the undercoat and the cover hair. American murok fur coats have a plush structure.
The ideal Russian blue, from the point of view of the WCF commission, should have a uniform blue color of medium tone with a light silver tipping. The TICA standard prescribes its pets a bright blue color type with a barely perceptible silver tint.
One of the most common defects is the inconsistency of the coat color with the generally accepted standard. So, for example, even a purebred cat is able to bring offspring, among which there will be a baby with a spotted fur coat. The reason for such a marriage is a game of genes, so it is almost impossible to predict the probability of the birth of "wrong" kittens.
Serious disadvantages of the breed include a knobby, broken tail, an incorrect bite, bulging or too deeply set eyes. The championship also does not shine for individuals with a sagging spine, strabismus, as well as hair tightly fitting to the body. Polydacts, cats that have undergone onychectomy (surgery to remove claws), animals with color defects (spots on the coat with an area of more than 1 cm) and aggressive individuals are subject to unconditional disqualification.
Photo of a Russian blue cat
Character of the Russian blue cat
Russian blue-haired cats can be classified as trouble-free pets. Whims, self–will, deliberate sabotage - all this is beyond the understanding of plush aristocrats. Due to their innate intelligence and exceptional sensitivity, Arkhangelsk Kotofei give the impression of several dependent persons, but it is impossible to accuse them of excessive softness. Russian blue cats are cute and spontaneous only with their own households. This rule does not apply to strangers and unfamiliar people, so do not be surprised if, seeing guests on the threshold, your pet will immediately make his feet.
It is believed that representatives of this breed are condescending to children's pranks and do not lose their composure in situations in which any other cat would have released its claws and issued a battle cry for a long time. However, leaving a small child and an animal alone is always an unjustified risk. In relation to other pets, the "archangels" are quite loyal. Moreover, cats are ready for a peaceful dialogue with any representative of the fauna, unless he makes attempts to provoke.
The favorite place of the Russian blue cat is not the owner's knees or even a comfortable MDF house, but any piece of furniture at least one and a half meters high, which, like Everest, is subject to immediate (and often multiple) conquest. As for the caress, the mustachioed intellectuals accept it quite favorably, but they will not allow themselves to be squeezed into a semi-fainting state. In addition, in the soul of even the laziest Arkhangelsk kotofey, a primitive hunter is dozing sensitively. This means that getting a mouse or another gawking rodent for a pet is a matter of honor.
In the absence of conditions for full-fledged hunting (refers to individuals living in urban apartments), Russian blue cats begin to make do with catching flies and other insects. For this reason, it is not recommended to leave animals in rooms with open windows and a balcony. In pursuit of winged prey, pets lose their vigilance and often "fly out" of the apartment, injuring themselves.
Training and education
If you don't see in your pet the future star of a circus show, then the only thing you will have to work on with the Russian blue cat is the ability to use the tray correctly. By the way, Arkhangelsk purrs learn this wisdom very quickly, an innate passion for cleanliness affects. It is better to use wood filler for the tray. If the animal was taken from the nursery recently, buy him the same kind of filler that the breeder used.
It is necessary to teach a kitten to the toilet from the first days of staying in a new house. The baby brought from the nursery is immediately placed in a tray and, stroking, gently held in it for several minutes. In the first weeks, it is better to limit the pet's habitat to one room (the kitchen is more suitable). So it will be easier for the kitten to get used to a new place, and the search for a toilet will not take much time.
If desired, the Russian blue can be taught elementary commands ("To me!", "Give me a paw!"). In this case, act as gently as possible, alternating short lessons with long rest and delicious encouragement.
What not to do:
- tease the animal with finger movements and jokingly fight it with your hands. The Russian blue cat perceives this behavior as an unspoken urge to action, and begins to practice hunting skills on your hands. There are special items for games – "teasers";
- swinging at a pet caught in the "crime scene", as well as spanking him. You can express your dissatisfaction with a loud clap of your hands or a newspaper, as well as the command "Fu!", pronounced in a strict tone;
- punish the animal retroactively. Russian blue cats are able to draw the right conclusions only in a situation when they are scolded for mistakes made here and now.
Care and maintenance
It cannot be said that Russian blue cats require some kind of exceptional care. On the other hand, not paying attention to the pet at all will also not work, otherwise the animal will lose its external gloss, turning into an untidy, neglected creature.
With the conditions of detention, everything is quite simple: plush cats easily take root both in penthouses and in small-sized apartments. If your pet lives in a standard concrete "box", make him happy with the purchase of a gaming complex. Having such "real estate" in personal use, Russian blue cats are less likely to encroach on the surfaces of furniture modules. In addition, "archangels" are not forbidden to walk: cats get used to the harness relatively easily and behave calmly during walking.
The kids of the Russian blue are extremely curious and love to explore all the nooks and crannies of new housing. Accordingly, before turning on the washing machine, do not be lazy to make sure that there is no fluffy researcher sitting in its drum. Wires, household chemicals and medicines pose a serious danger, so it's better to hide all these things from the kitten.
Russian blue cats have an inexplicable craving for water and can hypnotize the stream flowing from the tap for hours, although frequent bathing is contraindicated for them. A full-fledged "wash" is arranged only for those who are very dirty, as well as individuals preparing for the exhibition. In all other cases, experts recommend doing alternative washing using dry shampoo or bran. It is better not to use tinted detergents at all, since after them the cat risks losing its aristocratic silvering.
Examination of the animal's eyes is carried out daily. If contamination is found on the mucous membrane of the eyelid, they should be removed with a napkin or a clean handkerchief. Once a week it is worth checking the condition of the pet's ears. With the same frequency, the oral cavity is examined and the condition of the teeth is assessed.
Cats have their claws trimmed once a month. It is necessary to cut off only the upper, sharp edge of the plate, without touching living tissues. If there are still injuries, treat the injured area with hydrogen peroxide. In cases where the pet resists the procedure too much, it can be stretched for several days.
Comb the Russian blue cat once a week. At the end of the process, walk over the pet's fur with a suede napkin, which will give the "fur coat" a soft shine. Despite the fact that the Russian blue ones are not shedding too intensively, buying a furminator will not be superfluous. Choose models with short teeth that will help to remove dead hairs effectively and painlessly.
The natural diet of the Russian blue cat is not much different from the menu of the same Brits. The main products that plush murkas can absorb without harming their own digestion are poultry fillets, beef, vegetables and dairy products. Buckwheat, rice and oatmeal porridge are also useful. It is better to completely exclude fish from the cat's diet, but if you still decide to pamper your pet with a forbidden delicacy, do it no more than twice a month.
List of prohibited products:
- onion and garlic;
- pork and any other fatty meat;
- spicy, spicy and smoked dishes;
Premium and super premium class varieties like "Happy Cat", "Royal Canin", "Hills", "Eukanuba" and others will be the optimal options from industrial feeds. Be sure to study the composition of the "drying". The shade of the coat of Russian blue is very capricious and can lose its exclusive silvery "coating" if the feed contains processed products of marine mollusks and algae. And although such metamorphoses are a temporary phenomenon, it is not recommended to treat a cat with such a "drying" before exhibition events. As for the transition from one type of dry food to another, it should be carried out smoothly, daily adding a small amount of a new product to the usual diet.
Important: experienced breeders advise alternating dry food with wet canned food in a ratio of 3:1. This approach to feeding will provide the animal's body with a complex of necessary vitamins and trace elements and will help save on the purchase of mineral supplements.
It is allowed to introduce dry food into the kittens' diet from the age of 2 months, but at first the pet is offered "drying" in a soaked form. Complementary foods with natural products can be started at the end of the 1st month of life. As an additional source of protein, the baby is given mashed cottage cheese, low-fat pasteurized milk, cheese and cereal porridge with milk.
During the pet's "meal" there should be two bowls in front of him: one with food, the second with water, and the latter should remain in the animal's field of view around the clock. Even if your mustachioed gourmet prefers a natural diet, he still needs clean cool water.
How to feed
3-month-old babies are fed 5 times a day. For half-year-old individuals, the number of feedings is reduced to 4. At 9 months old, the kitten of the Russian blue is considered an adult, so it receives food twice a day.
As true perfectionists, Russian blue cats are very sensitive to the cleanliness of their own tray. If kotofey finds the toilet insufficiently "sterile", blame yourself – the fluffy aristocrat will do his "business" in another, more decent, in his opinion, place. Sometimes demonstrative neglect of the tray can signal the pet's readiness for marriage. Most often, this is the sin of male individuals. In exceptional cases, puddles on the floor are an expression of the animal's hidden protest.
Why does the Russian blue cat change color
The silvery shade of the fur of the Russian blue cat is extremely unstable and dependent on external factors. Direct sunlight, excess heat (if the cat sleeps on heating devices), as well as improper nutrition can provoke color changes. If the pet's diet is oversaturated with iron and copper, this will also not slow down to affect the color: the cat's fur coat will darken dramatically.
Health and diseases of the Russian blue cat
The average cat's lifespan is 15-20 years. In general, representatives of this breed have a good heredity and do not suffer from genetic ailments, but they have a predisposition to diseases of the respiratory organs, as well as the digestive system. Most often, "archangels" suffer from gastritis and food allergies. In addition, with age, the cat begins to accumulate excess fat, so it is very important not to overfeed the animal.
Timely vaccination will help to prolong the life of a pet. In particular, Russian blues should be vaccinated against calicivirus and herpesvirus infections, rhinotracheitis, chlamydia, rabies, panleukopenia and lichen.
Important: the sick animal must be taken to the vet clinic immediately. Do not try to treat the Russian blue with pharmacy drugs yourself, as it is recommended to do on Internet forums. At best, such "therapy" will not give results, at worst, it will aggravate the course of the disease.
How to choose a kitten
When choosing a kitten, focus on the conditions of its residence: the cleanliness of the cage and litter, the presence of toys and water in the animal. You can make a discount on a light "cat" smell in the room. Eliminating the characteristic "ambergris" in a place where several fertile males live is an almost impossible task.
- Carefully examine the kitten itself. The ideal Russian blue baby should have green eyes. Do not buy yellow-eyed animals and do not believe the sworn assurances of the breeder that with age the iris of the cat will change its shade to green.
- The fur of 3-month-old kittens should have traces of silvering, be sure to take this fact into account when buying. Inclusions of white hairs and spots on the baby's fur coat are a reason to doubt the honesty of the seller. But you should not be afraid of light "striping" (residual tabby). As the animal matures, this visual effect disappears.
- A healthy kitten should have clean ears and eyes. It is better not to consider individuals fleeing from you on all sails. This behavior signals the instability of the animal's psyche.
Serious establishments that value their own reputation start selling kittens from the age of 3 months. Breeders offering too young individuals simply save on expenses, since they do not want to feed an extra "mouth". If you are buying a kitten in another city or country, ask the owner if he can help you with the chipping procedure and the registration of an exit certificate. Some nurseries provide such support with a substantial discount, as a reward for a perfect purchase.
By the way, about nurseries. Despite the popularity of the Russian blue breed, there are not so many reliable places where you could buy a show or breed-class animal in Russia. It is better and safer to buy a kitten from breeders who, in addition to mating and selling, are actively engaged in breeding activities. Another important point: the nursery must be registered in one of the felinological systems.
Photo of a Russian blue cat
How much does a Russian blue cat cost
The Russian blue is a fairly well–replicated breed, which could not but affect its price tag. In addition, it is necessary to take into account the costs of the nursery engaged in breeding blue-haired muroks. Participation in exhibitions, mandatory vaccinations, mating trips and participation in feline seminars are not the cheapest pleasures, the cost of which the breeder is trying to "beat off" by selling kittens.
In most domestic nurseries, they ask from $230 to $280 for a kitten of a Russian blue cat. A future champion with an impeccable pedigree will cost around $400. Lovers of risk and unhealthy savings can go through virtual bulletin boards, where the price tags for kittens are more pleasant: from $35 to $50. For this amount, the buyer has the opportunity to purchase a half-breed, an animal without documents, or a baby born as a result of an unplanned mating.