Showing posts with label Himalayan cat. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Himalayan cat. Show all posts

Saturday 1 May 2021

Jacqueline Fernandez meditates on the balcony of her apartment in Mumbai with Bengal cat in background

Jacqueline Fernandez and her white Persian showing tear staining due to tear duct overflow. Photo: Instagram.

Jacqueline Fernandez is a Bollywood star born in Sri Lanka and a former model. She likes animals. Thank God for that because the more celebrity animal lovers we have on the planet the greater likelihood that humankind can gradually start to live in harmony with animals. We are very far from that at present. Jacqueline Fernandez lives with four cats we are told. I know that one of them is almost certainly a Bengal cat (see below) - the one you see in the photograph on her Instagram page - another is a pointed Persian A.K.A. a Himalayan cat and a third is an all-white Persian. Both flat-faced with associated health issues such as tear duct overflow.

Fernandez mediating on her flat balcony with her Bengal cat. Photo: Instagram.

The Persian is a contemporary bred cat with a flat-face. They are called "punch-faced Persians" in India because it is as if they have been punched. Not a great description I would hasten to add. Perhaps the description might, just might, encourage cat abuse. But a strong counter to that is Jacqueline Fernandez and her love of animals and cats.

Yoda, I believe, a pointed Persian with a flat-face (Himalayan). Photo: Instagram.

Of the four cats that she lives with, one is also a Ragdoll in my opinion. The cat appears to be a seal-pointed Ragdoll. I don't know the breed of the fourth cat. But please read more about that if you want to by clicking on this link which takes you to the main website.

Note: embedded videos or photos on this site are typically made by people other than me and held on YouTube servers or the servers of other businesses (not the server storing this website). Sometimes they are deleted at source which stops them working on this site. If that has happened I apologise but I have no control over it.

Sunday 1 April 2012

Criticising The Cat Fanciers' Association

The Cat Fanciers' Association needs to be criticised. I don't want to do it. In the interests of Persian cats in the USA and elsewhere I will do it on this page. I am speaking on behalf of the contemporary Persian purebred cat with the brachycephalic short head.

Other cat breeds that follow the CFA breed standard that requires a cat that suffers from flat head syndrome, brachycephaly, are the shorthaired Persian known as the Exotic Shorthair and the pointed Persian, called the Himalayan. The Burmese in American also has head shape problems that can affect health in a serious manner.

The breed characteristics or phenotype of the contemporary Persian, Exotic SH and Himalayan demand a brachycephalia short head that is big and round with a short, broad nose. The elements of the face should be in vertical alignment. I'll quote the CFA breed standard just so you know exactly what I mean:

"HEAD: round and massive, with great breadth of skull. Round face with round underlying bone structure.....When viewed in profile, the prominence of the eyes is apparent and the forehead, nose, and chin appear to be in vertical alignment."

In the most extreme cases the "upper part of the nasal plate is higher than the level of the lower eye-lids" (The Welfare of Cats, edited by Irene Rochlitz ISBN  978-1-4020-6143-1).

I discuss the health and subsequent welfare problems associated with this breed standard on this page: Persian Cat Health Problems.

The CFA breed standard for these cats is almost an act of criminal conspiracy to cause animal cruelty. I am a bit surprised that no none has considered prosecuting the esteemed Cat Fanciers' Association under animal welfare laws.

Also, as I understand it, the overall, underlying CFA breed standard insists that breeding should not produce unhealthy cats. This is in conflict with the breed standards of these three cats. In defence the CFA say that "it is possible to breed a beautiful Persian with a very short nose that breathes and tears normally".

I like the phrase, "it is possible". It is possible to fly to the moon but very few people have achieved it. The same applies to the creation of a totally healthy ultra type Persian cat.

Recommendations: (a) change the breed standard but do it over time so that there is a gradual shift back to normal characteristics without the CFA losing face (b) show cats that are over bred should be excluded from cat shows (c) cat show judges should be advised to make subtle changes to their judging criteria to start a shift away from the success of extreme bred cats (d) unhealthy cats should be penalized or excluded from cat shows (e) medical examinations should take place at cat shows and breeders given due notice. The notice period should be generous to allow change.

See: 19 Years of Persian Cat Experience - this neither supports of goes against what I have said.

Tuesday 31 March 2009

Cat Midnight Crazies

I never was a victim of cat midnight crazies until now. For some reason my darling girl cat is waking me up every night like an alarm clock at about 15 minutes past 1 in the morning. It is always the same time.

It is clear to me that she wants me to get involved, to wake up. "Come on you've had enough sleep, now get up you lazy sod!" That is what she is saying if you would like a translation. Her voice becomes ever more insistent. In the end she looks p*ssed off and is almost screaming at me while I mumble back, "I'm coming, I'm coming...". But is the right thing to respond?

Well, the experts say that we shouldn't as that only encourages more of the same. Or they say keep a spray gun by your bed to give her a squirt when she wakes you. Or, lock your cat in a spare room during the night. In the old days people used to put their cats out (outside) and lock the door to keep 'em out. Another technique is to try and calm her down before you go to bed. Yet another method is to tire out your cat about a hour before you go to bed etc.

Personally, I don't believe in these, if I am honest. I see the point and the purpose but we are never going to eliminate what is hard wired into a cat, namely that she or he is a night hunter. Plus our cat is not going to sleep like us, for several hours in one go between certain hours and as a routine. Cats nap in the day and then tend to go in the opposite direction to us at night. We go inside and to bed and the cat does the reverse, gets up, goes out and wanders about.

Despite what we do and all our best efforts we are going to struggle to overcome that lifestyle or train it out of her or him. It took about 5 million years to train into the cat after all. Like all "How to Train Your Cat" ideas and programs it is one more example of trying to get a cat to fit in with out way of life and lifestyle. As a cat is very often a member of the family, we are obliged to treat her that way, I think. And the only way we can do that is to accept it and work around it a bit.

Personally, I just put up with cat midnight crazies. I help her up onto the bed (she is old and can no longer jump up) and she lies next to me for a while and then goes to a different part of the bed and finally off the bed. At which point she has got my interaction and is satisfied until the morning. I don't mind her waking me at about 4:30 am.

I know, though, that I am a cat mad crazy cad. But the principle is the same for all people who live with a cat, which is to find a way to live with her, allowing her, as best we can, to do what is natural. A bit of compromise is called for. We chose to live with a cat not a hybrid person/cat. The cat midnight crazies are crazy to us but normal for our cat.

Cat Midnight Crazies to Home Page

Friday 2 May 2008

Old cat health

Old Himalayan Cat
Old cat health - Mocha an 18 year old female Himalayan who lives with Marilyn Papp. Photo copyright Marilyn Papp. This is where she spends most of her time nowadays.

Old cat health is a worry to people who keep cats. My cat is about 15+ years old. She is still healthy touch wood. She can't groom her back because she is a little overweight but is still in robust good health. For that I am eternally grateful and long may it last. As the years roll by we become closer and as I am retired I spend more time with her, which I sense she appreciates. We are very close companions, the relationship burnished and polished by time.

catMarilyn emailed me about her cat.

"I just wanted to let you know that my Himilayan Cat is now 18 years old, Mocha, her top weight during her life was 5lbs 2 oz, she now weights 4lbs 2oz, her eyesight is very limited and the mobility in hind legs is deteriorating. But she is a trooper and still holding on. I have noticed lately...that.... her teeth are not looking good, but she does still eat dry food. Just thought you would like to know about my Mocha."

I do want to know about your Mocha. Mocha has a habit of burning her tail on wood stoves and has never learned to avoid the stove. She obviously doesn't care. She also used to love to travel (unusual for a cat). Mocha is well traveled. She has been to Wawa, Ontario, Ottawa, North Bay, and Sault St. Marie in Canada (all those places are in Canada aren't they, Marilyn?).

catHere's a picture of her perched on top of the scratching post. She prefers to be there rather then scratch it. Sounds like mine. You can't get 'em to do anything they don't want to do (unless you trick 'em).

In human terms Mocha is 85 years old. My cat is a sprightly 73 in comparison. You can work out cat age from this posting, entitled, "How Old is My Cat".

I also made an earlier posting about "Senior Cat Care". From a common sense point of view, old cat health has the same problems as for old humans. The senses and mobility deteriorates etc. but they can live happy and full lives still. I try and exercise mine in the garden to keep her active. In fact she asks me out. She actually needs me out to supervise the area and protect her (and comb her). She feels safer then. Old cat health can be improved if activity levels are maintained.

Marilyn mentions that Mocha eats dry food. I used to give my cat dry food (on a vet's advice) but I now believe that it contains too much carbohydrate which can lead to less activity. I would recommend that Marilyn gradually transfers Mocha to wet food (canned or in a sachet) as this is better. I think this is now recognized as a fact rather than supposition. It can improve old cat health. (Update: Marilyn says this: - I do feed her moist food, I have to buy it at the vet, she goes through 1 little can every 5 days! - thanks Marilyn :)

Himalayans are pointed Persian cats. I have never lived with a Himmie. They have characters like Persians but perhaps not quite so docile as they are a cross between a Persian and Siamese. Siamese are quite active and vocal so this combination shouldn't be to docile. Marilyn will tell me in the comments section.

Marilyn, thanks for sending me your pictures of Mocha. I am sure like me you are occasionally concerned about your cat's age and her passing on. I am with mine. This is a tough part of living with a cat. But for me it has been a lovely journey full of reward.

Old cat health to Traditional Persian Cat

Monday 21 April 2008

Himalayan Cat Facts

Here are some pertinent and succinct Himalayan Cat Facts as I see them anyway. I've tried to stick to the major points and keep it as concise as possible:


The Himalayan is just like a Persian cat with the pointed coat and pattern of a Siamese Cat. This is because this purebred cat breed is a hybridization of the Persian and the Siamese. I am going to make a presumption here and say this must mean the Traditional Siamese, which has a more rounded face.

Because the Himalayan is so close to the Persian in appearance, conformation and character it is debatable whether she should have been a different breed. After all, the cat associations allow some cat breeds to have any type of color and pattern coat (e.g. the American Bobtail to name but one). It must have been a political decision to keep it separate from the Persian.

In order to achieve the colorpoint Persian (the UK name for this cat breed) there had to be a lot of selective breeding including interbreeding (this I think is inbreeding). Inbreeding is good and bad. It fixes a trait, the good ones and it throws up the bad traits more frequently. What happens to the cats with the bad traits? Apparently one of the difficulties in the breeding program was ensuring that the Himalayan had the right face and was not a long faced long haired cat.

Being a cross with the Siamese, the Himmie or Himmy is going to be a little more lively than the Persian who is known for her quiet demeanor. She is very much a people orientated cat.

She is as sweet natured as the Persian. It may be that this cat breed is sometimes too gentle as I have read that the Persian (and I presume therefore the Himalayan) can have litter box problems due to stress.


The Himmie is a very handsome or pretty cat. However, it depends on your viewpoint as to whether you are talking about the Traditional face or the Modern faced cat. The Himmie like the Persian can be seen with the same face as the "Ultra Persian", the Persian cat that has been developed over many years from the traditional. The Ultra has a squashed face. She has to have a squashed face these days (she didn't before but judges liked it) because the breed standard says so. The same rules apply to the Himalayan.

You'll see this cat bred with both types of face and the range of faces in between. On the Himalayan cat page of the main website you can see mainly Traditional Himalayan cats because they live with Dani Rozeboom and she breeds traditional cats and photographs them beautifully. And because I prefer the look of the traditional cat as in fact do the substantial majority of visitors to this website - see the poll results on this page (just scroll down a bit).


Himalayan Cat Facts cannot ignore the nitty gritty bits about this breed. The health issues surrounding the Persian apply equally to the Himalayan, which means, PKD (kidney disease that is fatal) and tear duct overflow (tears than don't drain away from the eye through ducts but instead drain over and down the face causing staining and requiring constant daily washing).

PKD is present in all cat breeds but more so in Persian cats and breeds that have used Persians in their development. It is inherited through a single sex related dominant gene (autosomal dominant). All cats of this breed should be scanned using ultrasound at aged 9-10 months to see if the kitten is affected or not. If the test proves positive the cat should be removed from the breeding program (this is called culling - it does not mean killing in cat fancy language).

That's the uncomfortable stuff. I wonder if breeders will now gradually drift back to the more traditional appearance over time to remove this unfortunate deficiency that simply need not be in existence. Tear duct overflow is a man made condition. Read about the development of the Persian and the flat face by clicking on this link.

It must be said to be fair that most breeders will do their best to avoid these problems and the author of the CFA article on this breed says it is possible to breed an Ultra Himalayan whose tears drain normally. One last health issue; apparently this cat can also suffer from a disorder called PRA (Progressive Retinal Atrophy).

Apparently, cataracts have been observed in this breed due to an inherited gene(s). Both eyes are affected. A single gene is believed to be the cause.

As is the case for the Persian cat, the fur can be inordinately long. She is high maintenance. If you can't give some time to grooming and cat care I wouldn't take on a Himalayan cat.


The range of point colors for this breed is as follows:

  • chocolate
  • seal
  • lilac
  • blue
  • red
  • cream tortie
  • blue-cream
  • lilac-cream
  • chocolate-tortie

  • seal lynx
  • blue lynx
  • red lynx
  • cream lynx
  • tortie lynx
  • blue-cream lynx
  • chocolate lynx
  • lilac lynx
  • chocolate-tortie & lilac-cream lynx

This comes from Wikipedia - Martha Stewart the well known American television personality lives with seven Himalayan cats..........more Himalayan Cat Facts......

Himalayans are a popular cat but less popular than the Persian. In the popularity poll (scroll down the page when you arrive). She is outside the top 10 but about mid-range in popularity. The Persian is in the top 5 most popular cat breeds. Himalayan Cat Facts - Update at 18-6-08: This breed is ranked about 10th in popularity based on the website's poll. Further update: at 1-8-08 the Himmie is ranked 8th in popularity.

The Himalayan cat is a well established cat having been registered with the CFA since 1957. The Bengal cat was created in the mid 1970s so wasn't even a twinkle in the eye Jean Mill the Bengal founder at the time.

Himalayan Cat Facts to Himalayan cats

Sunday 13 April 2008

Persian Himalyan Cat

The Persian Himalyan Cat is affectionately called a Himmie and some of the best pictures of Himmies come from Dani Rozeboom first and foremost and then the best Flickr photographers. A Himmie as you might know is a Persian with a pointed coat. The term Himalayan is used in America. The history of a lot of the purebred domestic cats is often a little hazy but not in this case.

Himalayan Cat
Persian Himalyan Cat photo copyright Lithoglyphic under Creative Commons

The breed began and then abruptly stopped in the 1930's (which is early in history of the cat fancy, bearing in mind that things generally only started in the 1890s) in America when a cat breeder and a Harvard scientist (I believe) produced a color pointed long haired cat as an experimental and learning exercise. Once completed this short lived program stopped. The history thereafter of the Persian Himalayan Cat, in outline, is as follows:

In the 1950s there was a simultaneous awakening in three countries to the long haired pointed cat. In England a color point stray called "Bubastis Georgina" interested a cat breeder, Brian Stirling-Webb, and he joined with another breeder and developed the breed.

Himalayan Cat
Himalyan cat, a Red point. Her full name is Afina Pallada's Aphrodite del Mar. Her nicknames are: Ayla, Poppenkop, Grobbetrol. She lives with Dani and Rick at Cattery Yeri Shaes, which is located in Almere in the Netherlands.

In America a cat breeder and rancher, Ben Borrett, started a similar breeding program and made contact with Brian in England and imported some color point longhairs for the program.

Finally in another cat breeder in the US, Marguerita Goforth, also started a program of development of a long haired color point. This seems to have started accidentally as she agreed to take care someone's cat, a long haired color point. It wuold seem that there was news that this cat was in the development which prompted one to follow the other.

Himalayan Cat
Himalyan Kitten demonstrating his/her athletic prowess in mountaineering skills. Photograph is copyright Nico. The photographs illustrating this post are reproduced under creative commons if they aren't by Dani Rozeboom. Dani has given her permission.

The development of the Persian Himalayan cat continued uneventfully it seems and the associations recognized this breed in 1955 (GCCF) and 1957 (CFA). At the outset the CFA recognized these color points: Seal (the classic dark point), chocolate, blue and lilac. Thereafter other colors were gradually recognized until 1987 when the Chocolate Tortie Point and Lilac Cream Point were recognized. The development went well then. Or did it?

Himmie cat
Flame Point Persian Himalayan cat - photograph copyright Gini~. The flame point was recognized by the CFA in 1964.

The history is uneventful, the appearance is stunning. The health? Not so good. I don't know if it is me being grumpy or something but having always lived with mixed breed cats I never thought about genetic disorders. But the breeding of purebred cats in liable to result in defects due to recessive genes coming to the surface due to line breeding or inbreeding. Line breeding is the way to fix and maximize the good characteristics of a cat but the bad characteristics are liable to become apparent more frequently. That requires culling of cats with bad characteristics and I don't like the thought of that. This is something we don't hear much about from breeders of the Persian Himalyan Cat.

The Himmie is a Persian cat and Persian cats can have genetic disorders such as the heart disease HCM and PKD (a kidney disease). You can read more about these on this page. The Ultra faced Persians and therefore Himmies can also suffer from tear duct overflow. These are all breeding related issues and I am surprised that they seem to be accepted as part of the process of breeding. Perhaps these sorts of disorders are in fact a necessary spin off from the process of breeding for the desired type (the breed standard). Note: the Himmies illustrating this post are traditional cats i.e. not extreme faced cats.

Ayla again as she is so fantastic. Photo copyright Dani Rozeboom

You can read and see more on this cat breed and some more photos of Ayla on the main site.

Persian Himalyan Cat to Home Page

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