Showing posts with label Scottish Straight. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Scottish Straight. Show all posts

Thursday 29 April 2021

The straight answer about the Scottish Straight cat

I am going to be quite blunt. I think, however, I am being fair. The Scottish Straight is a normal-eared Scottish Fold. And because the Scottish Fold is a normal-looking cat except for the ears which are folded to the skull, the Scottish Straight looks like any other cat including random bred cats. 

The Scottish Straight has lost the only thing which distinguishes the Scottish Fold from all other cats and because of that I don't see the point of trying to sell them to customers. The Scottish Straight is an accident or perhaps they are better described as an inconvenience because they have to be bred in order for the Scottish Fold to be healthy.

Scottish Straight kitten
Scottish Straight kitten. Photo and breeder: Елена Тюкачева.

This is because breeders have to outcross to a non-folded eared cat when creating litters of Scottish fold cats. They cannot create homozygous cats because when you do that the genetic mutation creates abnormalities in other parts of the body such as the vertebrae and the feet. 

The cat has abnormalities which seriously affects their health and well-being. The only way to avoid this is to create heterozygous cats and when you do that half the litter have folded ears (they actually develop later as kittens are not born with these folded ears) and the other half have normal ears. It is these normal-eared cats which are called Scottish Straight cats.

I don't want to be nasty or critical of people who genuinely are trying to do their best. I'm referring to cat breeders of the Scottish Fold which is currently quite a popular cat thanks to celebrities such as Taylor Swift who likes to carry her Scottish Fold around like a handbag. That is another thing which I disagree with by the way but once again I don't want to be critical because it seems to be fashionable.

The trouble is that there is a big questionmark about the morality or ethics of breeding Scottish Fold cats. This is probably a tiresome topic to many people. As soon as you bring up morality and ethics people tend to yawn and turn off. I understand that but cat breeders have a duty of care towards their cats and if their cats have an inherent health issue they will struggle to discharge that responsibility. The breeding process becomes flawed. It becomes impossible to behave entirely morally which begs the question whether the Scottish Fold breed should exist in the first place.

Silver classic tabby Scottish Fold kitten with a WOW appearance. Photo and breeder: Oksana Mazai.

In Germany, as you may know by now, they ban this sort of cat breed because they describe the breeding process as "torture breeding". They categorise other cat breeds in the same way such as the Persian because that cat is born with inherited health issues such as difficulty breathing and tear duct overflow and a high percentage of Persian cats have polycystic kidney disease.

So the moral of this story is: the Scottish Fold shouldn't exist (and neither would the straight variant either)! The cat fancy is ambivalent about this breed of cat and other cats with similar inherited diseases. Some associations accept them and some don't. The World Cat Federation is the cat Association to which Russian breeders are normally affiliated including The International Cat Association. The World Cat Federation accepts the inherent problems of the Scottish Fold which is why on Facebook Russian breeders of this cat advertise for sale Scottish Straight cats.

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