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Cat Breeds: The Persian

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They're adorable, fluffy, and personable. And did you know that these sweet kitties rank #1 for most popular breed registered with the Cat Fanciers Association? With their longhaired beauty, they are also top contenders in many cat shows

Here are 5 fun facts about Persian cats.

1) They have a mysterious past.

According to PetSource, the Persian cat is "one of the oldest domestic cat breeds in the world." The earliest mention of these cats was found in hieroglyphics dating from 1684 B. C. While little is known about their exact origins, Persian cats were introduced to Western culture when they travelled in trade caravans from Persia and Iran. In the 1600s, they gained great popularity among Europe's nobility. What else could a duke possibly want if he had a luxurious longhaired cat to grace his footstool?

2) Their gorgeous coats require a little extra maintenance.

Because Persians have longhaired coats, they will need a daily brushing with a metal comb to prevent tangles. And an occasional bath will keep their hair shiny, clean, and beautiful. Owners of white Persian show cats even bleach their cats' hair with liquid boric acid for the purest color. If you want to try this, research it carefully first, and proceed at your own risk!

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3) They are divided into seven color categories for competition.

While we usually think of Persians as pure white beauties, they actually come in a wide range of shades. Solid Persians have a solid coat of black, silver-blue, white, chocolate, or lilac. Silver and Golden Persians have chinchilla coloring or shaded silver and golden patterns, with green or blue-green eyes. Smoke and Shaded Persians include kitties with tortoiseshell and smoke pattern mantles, with white undercoats. One of the most striking Persian colorations is the Smoke pattern. While standing still, the cat appears to have a solid-colored coat. But, when she moves, you will catch a glimpse of a stunning white undercoat. The perfect color balance between overcoat and undercoat "can usually only be seen six to eight weeks annually," according to the Cat Fanciers' Association.

4) They have a sweet, gentle personality.

Persians are soft-spoken cats with melodious voices. They are generally serene and love to pose attractively on windowsills and furniture for maximum effect. Once they become attached to a person, they are warm, affectionate, and loyal. Persian cats are a wonderful choice for retirees or others who are looking for a quiet, well-behaved cat. 

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