Sporting a mesmerizing robust build and an exquisite look, the Siberian cat is the paragon of a native and rare bleed. However, it is more than what just meets the eye as this cat complements its magnificent appearance with a playful, engaging, affectionate, fearless personality. Hailing from Russia’s subarctic taiga, it has only been bred since the 1980s, but is now rising in popularity and catching the interest of many cat enthusiasts worldwide.
Origin of the Siberian Cat
While the exact year when Siberian cats first appeared is unknown, these magnificent felines are believed to have existed in Russia for about 1,000 years and have a part of many Russian tales.
They thrived in the Siberia taiga, characterized by forested areas under a subarctic climate – no wonder they possess a long, thick coat that serves as their protection from the regions’ harsh winters.
Having an incredible ability in hunting rodents, they were prized by farmers, housekeepers, and shop owners to ward off rats and mice. Not only that, as these cats served as great companions, given their friendly demeanor.
Siberian cats were soon imported to the United States in 1990 and were first recognized by The International Cat Association in 1992. Now, it is accepted by other cat registries and continually gaining popularity around the world.
Physical Characteristics of the Siberian Cat
Length: 17 to 25 inches
Weight: 8 to 17 pounds
Life Expectancy: 11 to 18 years
Coat Color: White, red, blue, black, silver, plus different shadings and patterns
Type of Coat: Coarse or soft; mid-long to longhaired
Eye Color: All colors
Siberian cats are fairish-sized to large felines, with strong, muscular athletic bodies. Their head is wedge-shaped, with fuzzy, largish ears sitting atop. The eyes are large, nearly roundish. Meanwhile, legs are mid-length, while big round paws are accentuated by fur tufts. Their distinct long, triple coat comes in a variety of colors, shadings, and patterns. These cats mature pretty slowly, reaching their full maturity at five years old.
Siberian Cat Personality
Siberian cats may trace their from the chilly and harsh Russian region, but their personality is never cold. These felines are warm-hearted, affectionate felines that love to be with their human companions all the time. They will follow their owners from room to room and jive in whatever activity they do, whether from watching the television, cooking meals in the kitchen, or even “helping” in the children’s homework.
At the end of the day, these furballs will be glad to welcome the family members who come from work, eager to tell whatever happened in their cat world using quiet chirps and trills, but also open to listening about the day of the owners. As a culmination, they will be happiest to sit on their master’s lap for some good petting and combing.
When visitors come, they will regard Siberian cats as pleasant family members as these felines won’t hide under the bed or be timid in front of them.
Aside from being people-oriented, Siberian are highly energetic and frisky. However, anything can be a part of their toy list. Pieces of jewelry, school supplies, or anything that catches their interest can be an instant plaything. These cats will initiate a game of fetch by carrying items to their owners’ to throw.
But, being former forest dwellers, nothing much fazes the Siberian cats. They are fearless, and make good companions and watch cats to kids. No creepy creatures may pass their guard. They are also amenable to live with other pets as long as they are appropriately introduced at a young age.
Given their athleticism and innate hunting skills, it shouldn’t be surprising to see them reaching high points in the house. They also have a fascination with water, as they catch fish way back for their dinner. Bathtubs, fountains, faucets, and the sink easily attracts them. Soon, they can be seen making puddles, splashing, or batting their paws in the water.
Despite that little mischief, they are generally docile and will have fun cuddling with their families. While they thrive in human attention, they are not demanding and will be patient enough to have their time with their beloved owners.
Caring for the Siberian Cat
Siberian cats possess a thick triple coat, which requires a few times of brushing and combing a week to keep it from matting and tangling. Their fur may shed heavier during spring and fall, needing more frequent grooming during the given seasons.
Occasional baths can help remove dirt, debris, and loose hair from their coat. However, their fur is water-resistant and may be difficult to thoroughly wet. With that, it may need extra effort from the owners should bathing become necessary.
Other grooming needs include regular nail trimming, occasional teeth brushing to prevent periodontal diseases, and weekly ear and eye cleaning. It is best to acquaint these cats to such grooming activities at a young age for them to be more accepting of these requirements, making such sessions less hassling and more fun for both these furballs and the owners.
As incredibly playful and vigorous cats, having enough space for them to have fun around can keep these Siberian cats happy. They love to climb, survey, and play. Cat trees, perches, and ledges are perfect investments to fulfill their need for action. With their brilliant minds, interactive are also great tools to challenge them both physically and mentally.
In terms of health, Siberian cats are generally sturdy, with no renowned specific health condition affecting the breed. Few conditions to look at are common with other cats, such as polycystic kidney disease and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. Getting the proper immunizations and regular consultations with the vet are excellent ways to keep them healthy.
Siberian cats are ideal for an exquisite-looking family cat. However, they are more than their regal appearance, as these felines are fearless yet affectionate, playful, and engaging cats that would reward their loving family with lots of attention. Their personality radiates warmth – far from the harsh and chilly region where they came from.