by Alexander Thompson
Jun 06, 2022
4 minute read
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- Origin Of Domestic Cats
- What is the Human-Cat Relationship?
- How to Identify Your Cat’s Breed?
- What Are The Most Common American Cat Breeds?
- Genetic Breed Tests For Cats
One of the most common pets in the World is the cat. Cats have always been companions to humans since the beginning of time. At first, the cat-human relationship was a partnership of convenience linked to agricultural origins. However, over time, this relationship evolved into a mutual connection and appreciation which has been ongoing for the last 10,000 years.
A cat gives its owners unconditional love and companionship. And having a feline friend is excellent for improving heart health and relieving stress. Generally, the cat-human relationship can be extremely rewarding.
Some cat owners have no idea what breed their cats are. However, you will most likely know your cat’s breed if you got yours as a kitten from a breeder.
Origin Of Domestic Cats
Dogs were domesticated long before cats. The canines were especially useful to humans during hunting. On the other hand, as humans settled down, cats became useful. The unique relationship between cats and humans has been as far back as 10,000 to 12,000 years.
During this period, nomads settled down as farmers, and before long, their stored grains attracted rodents. The Middle Eastern wildcats then took advantage of the situation and scavenged human-produced garbage to feast on rats.
Over the years, the wildcats naturally evolved until they formed a species - the “Felis Catus,” which felt at home with humans. Today, pets, feral, and stray cats, also known as domestic cats, are all species of this cat.
What is the Human-Cat Relationship?
Almost all cats, including domestic cats, lions, and tigers, are descendants of the same prehistoric creature. The oldest known relative of this creature is the African Wildcat which was first discovered over 12 million years ago. Although this specie still exists, it is mostly found in the Middle Eastern and African Savannah.
In 4000BC, cats started living with humans in Ancient Egypt. Cats were beneficial to Ancient Egyptians in keeping snakes away. Consequently, the people worshipped cats as sacred animals, banning others from taking the cats to other countries.
Because of how sweet felines can be, cats are becoming increasingly popular as pets in modern society. Cats are lovable, and they provide companionship, bringing joy and happiness to their pet parents’ lives.
How to Identify Your Cat’s Breed?
Figuring out the number of cat breeds in the World is quite difficult. Some resources list as low as fifteen official cat breeds, while some list as many as seventy-one breeds. For other resources, their listed cat breeds fall between these two extremes. Nevertheless, it is a fact that there are fewer cat breeds compared to dog breeds. This is because cats have not evolved as much as their canine counterparts.
You can identify your cat’s specific traits by searching a specific query on the internet. An example of a query is “cat breed + large + calm + tan + short fur + colored points”.
Your search results may not be definitive at the end of the day. However, the specificity of the query narrows down your options to breeds that most likely fit the description. But if your cat is a mixed breed, a search query is the closest answer you can get for finding its breed since the cat is a combination of several breeds.
What Are The Most Common American Cat Breeds?
The United States has a limited number of commonly found cat breeds, making it easier to determine your cat’s breed. The most common cat breeds in America include;
The American Shorthair
This cat breed comes in various colors, and they have a long life, living for more than fifteen years. They have a large head and full face, medium-sized ears and large, wide eyes and muscular legs.
The Devon Rex
This cat breed is energetic. They have larger-than-average, predominant ears and their frames are svelte. The Devon Rex will delight their parents by giving enchanting playful performances.
This is a breed of domestic short-haired cat with a distinctive “ticked” tabby coat, in which individual hairs are banded with different colors. Abyssinians are usually very bright and they are known not to like cuddles.
The Sphynx, also known as the Canadian Sphynx, is usually hairless, Nevertheless, they make up for their lack of fur with a great personality. Hairlessness in cats is a naturally occurring genetic mutation, and the Sphynx was developed through selective breeding of these animals.
The Scottish Fold
The unique thing about this cat breed is that their ears are folded forward and downward on the head. The Scottish Fold is a breed of domestic cat with a natural dominant gene mutation that affects cartilage throughout the body, causing the ears to “fold”.
The Maine Coon
This cat breed is a large domesticated cat breed, which is larger than most American cat breeds. It is one of the oldest natural breeds in North America. The breed originated in the U.S. state of Maine, where it is the official state cat.
This cat breed is a long-haired breed of cat characterized by its round face and short muzzle. It has long, luscious hair. Consequently, to maintain their coats, you need to groom them regularly.
The British Shorthair
The British Shorthair is easily identified with the sticky frame and large eyes. It is the pedigreed version of the traditional British domestic cat, with a distinctively stocky body and broad face. The most common colour variant is the “British Blue”, with a solid grey-blue coat and a medium-sized tail.
Ragdolls have large frames and bright, blue eyes. In addition, they have long hair and are really lovable. Its morphology is large and muscular, and it has a semi-long and silky soft coat.
For the past few years, the Exotic has been one of America’s most popular cat breeds. This cat breed is otherwise referred to as cat’s “teddy bear.”
Genetic Breed Tests For Cats
In recent years, dog owners carry out genetic breed tests on their dogs to break down the different breeds contributing to their dog’s heritage. Mutts especially are a mixture of other dog breeds.
It is possible that your cat doesn’t have a purebred ancestor unless you have papers to prove your cat’s pedigree. Nevertheless, even if your cat is not a descendant of purebred parents, he shares ancestry with some cat breeds more than others. This is because most cats are not a mix of different breeds.
You can tell the breeds that make up your cat’s pedigree. Several companies provide these mail-out DNA testing. When carrying out the test, follow the DNA test kit’s instructions by swabbing inside your cat’s cheek or cutting a small piece of their fur. Afterward, mail the test to the company and await your results.
Finding out the breeds making up your cat’s unique personality is excellent. You can visit a vet for a DNA test. The test results include information about your cat’s ancestry and potential health issues to watch out for.
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