Types of Domestic Cats

Above: this is darling Faolan a Traditional Persian Cat of awesome appearance. He lives with Dani Rozeboom who runs the cattery Yeri Shaes in The Netherlands. Dani's partner is Rick. The photograph in copyright Dani Rozeboom. Dani is a fine cat photographer.

Types of Domestic Cats is another search term sometimes used and it does make me think. On the face of it there is only one type of domestic cat - the domestic cat. But the domestic cat can be categorized in various ways. The method of categorization dictates the type of domestic cat.

For example there are mixed breed and pure bred cats. There is only one mixed breed cat but he or she has an infinitely variable appearance. The number of purebred cats varies. It depends on which association you're talking about. The Cat Fanciers Association say that there are 41 (I think it still is). TICA say there are more. There are more North American cat associations with slightly different views. The Europeans (GCCF and FIFe) categorize differently anyway and have less de-marked cat breeds. It's all very complicated.

If you categorized by origin of a purebred cat, you could subdivide between wildcat/domestic cat hybrid, natural cats and domestic cat hybrids. An example of the first would be the Chausie (Jungle cat/Abyssinian) or the Savannah (Serval/Domestic), an example of the second would be the Norwegian Forest Cat (mankind didn't intervene until about 1930) and the third would be the Exotic Shorthair (Persian/American Shorthair). There many more examples under this categorization. In this form of categorization you are dividing up Types of Domestic Cats into their respective origins.

Another way to find different Types of Domestic Cats is to divide by size and weight. The vast middle area of domestic cats are of average weight, about 9 lbs. But some are larger and heavier such as the Maine Coon, the largest domestic cat registered with the CFA. The wildcat/domestic cat hybrids mentioned above are heavier than the Maine Coon especially at the first generation level. The smallest domestic cat (as a cat breed) is the Singapura. You can see a breakdown of domestic cat by size by clicking on this link.

A third way of categorizing cats is by coat type. Coat types cut across cat breed boundaries. The associations dictate which cat breed can have which type of coat. Sometimes they say that the coat can only be of only one color and texture. In that case it is to preserve the original appearance of a naturally occurring cat such, for example, the Chartreux a grey cat breed.

Sometimes the cat associations are generous in allowing a cat to have an almost infinite number of coat types such as the Maine Coon or Persian. But in both these cases the pointed coat is disallowed in the States. The pointed Persian is called a Himalayan.

So, you've got tabby cats and calico cats and hairless cats etc. These are various Types of Domestic Cats that can be found in a wide range of cat breeds. Of course you can find all these coat types without restriction in mixed breed cats. If you click on this link you'll see a list of postings on the cat coat types.

These probably are the main methods of categorization that come to mind.

Update 11th Jan 2010: Another way to categorise domestic cats into "type" is by reference to say: I discuss this kind of categorisation on this page: Different Cat Breeds.

Yet another way is to categorise by cat body types or head shape.

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