Turkish Angora Cat Facts For Kids

The Turkish Angora is an important breed of cat. It is a natural breed. “Natural breed” means that it was not created by people until cat breeders started to breed the cat around 1900. It is one of the first cat breeds and the first longhair cat breed in Europe.

It is a cat breed that may have resulted in the creation of not only today’s Turkish Angora but the Persian cat as well. The Turkish Angoras in Turkey today look like the Persian cats of 100 years ago.

It may also be linked to the creation of the Turkish Van, another cat breed. An important point to make is that people are not sure about the history of the cat breeds. Sometimes the names and histories get a bit mixed up. In old books and in titles to paintings you will see people writing about “Angora cats” that came from Angora. Are these Turkish Angora cats? They look like them. In Turkey today, people who know this cat breed well call them “Angoras”. And Angora is an old name for the capital of Turkey, Ankara.

Kids should always be cautious when writing about the history of the cat breeds.

Turkish Angora Facts For Kids

Turkish Angora Facts For Kids. Photos of American Turkish Angoras copyright Helmi Flick. Turkish Angoras in Turkey copyright Angora Cat Association, Ankara, Turkey.

History of Turkish Angora

We are told that this beautiful cat comes from Ankara in Turkey but please read the comments which are written for grown ups. If you have a question please leave a comment yourself and it will be answered.

This cat was certainly living in Turkey about 600 years ago. In fact its history in Turkey is probably much longer than that. It was brought to France and Britain about 400 – 500 years ago. There are European paintings of Angora cats from about 300 years ago.

The cats that were brought to France and Britain were real Turkish Angoras but they were “street cats”. People call them moggies because they are not purebred by European and American standards. However they are still pure Turkish Angoras. You will see the same cats in Turkey today at Ankara Zoo which are looked after by the Angora Cat Association.

Around 1900, people who were interested in breeding cats mated Turkish Angoras with other longhaired cats. This resulted in the Turkish Angora almost disappearing in Europe. This is because when a genuine Turkish Angora mates with a cat that is not a Turkish Angora the kittens are not Turkish Angoras. When the parent dies you are left with no Turkish Angoras. More real Turkish Angoras had to be brought over from Turkey.

In the United States the Persian cat became very popular and the Turkish Angora almost disappeared around 1960. Once again Turkish Angora cats were brought in from Turkey to get the breed back on its feet.

Today the Turkish Angora is accepted by cat clubs in America but there are only a few breeders. In the UK this cat breed is not accepted by the most important cat club, the GCCF. Despite being fairly rare this is a popular cat breed. It should be more popular because of its beauty and long history.

How The Turkish Angora Looks

This is an interesting topic. This is a semi-longhaired cat. It is medium in size. It weighs from 6-11 pounds (2.5-5kg).

The cat clubs in America say that the cat should be slender. They describe this as “foreign”. The ears should be large and wide at the base of the ear. They should be positioned high on the head.

The Turkish Angora comes in a huge range of coat colors and patterns. You will see all white Turkish Angoras. They look stunning but unfortunately about 30% of white cats are deaf. Also you will see one eye being yellow and the other being blue in all white cats. This odd-eye colour is the best kind for people who keep Turkish Angoras in Turkey.

In Turkey this cat looks more like a white traditional Persian cat. The look is quite different to the cats in America.

Character

People who know this cat breed say the cats are friendly, easygoing and intelligent cats. They have also been described as quick and energetic.

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Comments

Turkish Angora Cat Facts For Kids — 12 Comments

  1. Hello, Micheal!

    We have no idea when you wrote this article, but we would like to add some points that you have probably missed.

    First of all, we have no evidence that Angora cats came from Ankara. All we know that today they are found pretty much everywhere in Turkey from Istanbul to Van etc. etc. even in Cyprus!

    Angora cats are Anatolian moggies, they don’t need a pedigree to prove they are Angoras – they are natural breed!

    Ankara Zoo was popularized by foreigners but never got much importance in Turkey. Ankara Zoo has nice white Angora cats, but we don’t think those cats are ”purer” than those living in the streets…

    The Turkish Angoras in American and USA are man created NOT NATURAL cat breed; They are distinct from the Angoras found in Turkey not only in look but also in its genetics. This breed deals with recessive colors (pointed) that were introduced by outcrossing in it’s early development.

    It would be more accurate to acknowledge that seasonal changes effect the length of the fur of the Angoras cats very drastically. In winter Angora cats are longhair while in summer they are semi-long haired.

    2.5-5kg could a an average weight for females, BUT some Angoras in Turkey (especially if they live in good conditions with adequate nutrition) tend to be really big cats. Moreover the adult Angoras never thin boned cats, although females tend to be more elegant but still they body is sturdy similar to ”Turkish Van” (”Turkish Van” and Angora in Turkey is the same cat!).

    Foreign body type can be seen in kittens and really ill, malnutritioned cats. But even they hardly look like orientals. This body type is unnatural for any healthy adult Angora from Turkey.
    (an article will be updated soon)

    Angora as a breed that undergo thousand of years of natural selection is very well adapted cat. Yes, it’s very energetic and active, but not all of them will be friendly as it largely depends on socialization – relation to humans… Angora cats display wide range of personalities. Everyone of them is different and unique.

    Kind Regards

    The Angora Cat Association (ACA), TURKEY

    • Thanks for the comment. I have to write for a wide range of people. In this article I have to keep the subject simple as it is written for children. So the page is simplified. I cannot go into a long and complicated story about the history of the TA as it will be confusing. I have though made it clear that there are two kinds of Turkish Angora. The real kind in Turkey and the created kind in the West.

      None of the authors who write about the Turkish Angora do this except for me (and you). This article tries to integrate and include both versions. The version that is the popular one and your version which is the true one.

      I appreciate very much your comment. Thanks for taking the time to make it.

  2. Correction: ”The Turkish Angoras in America and Europe are man created NOT NATURAL cat breed”

    We are sorry for some typing mistakes.

    Kind Regards

    The Angora Cat Association (ACA), TURKEY

    • I think I actually say that don’t I? I say it was natural until about 100 years ago in the West when people started to breed the cat. From that point on it is not natural but created. Thanks for the comment though.

  3. Yes, we can see this article is very simplified this is why it’s very easy to understand for everyone. We did not want to sound harsh, we think an article is well written and thank you for combining two differences views: real Angora and man made.
    We just thought that some clarifications would be an interesting addition to the article.

    We enjoy ”…Cat Facts For Kids” don’t stop writing these simple but informative articles!

    Warm Regards from Turkey.

  4. I have cat that looks very much like these photos except solid black. He is long and on the slimmer side, but now sports quite a heavy, long winter coat. He was a rescue so no one knows his breed. He also has two unusual features that might help in determining what breed(s he could be: He has a bald spot on the lower part of his belly, and the biggest, longest tufts of hair in between each of his claws. I would post a photo but I do not see a link for uploading one. Are these 2 features typical of this or any other breed? Thanks!

    • Hi Tricia. You can email me a picture at

      mjbmeister [a] gmail.com (changing [at] for @

      The bald spot on the belly might be due to grooming (over grooming). The tufts of fur in between toes is reminiscent of the Maine Coon and Persian. I would guess that your cat is possibly a purebred-mix type cat. But that is a big guess. A picture would help. Sometimes rescue cats are purebred pedigree cats but most often they are random bred casts (moggies) of no particular cat breed.

      Thanks for visiting and commenting.

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  7. Hi Michael & Paerla. Thank you for these explanations which go a long way to clearing up and countering the deliberate misinformation put out by American cat societies and breeders. The Turkish Angora is even stated as a natural breed of cat still found it it’s native habitat but have been fooled by breeders who did not write the true ancestral information in the application for registration forms. Being a natural breed any out-crossing automatically disqualifies the affected cat from being recognised as a genuine TA. The ornormous difference in type from the original should have alerted the cat associations that something dishonest was going on, but they obviously chose to ignore that and actually encouraged that situation by basing the breed standard on the new concoction. This of course discriminates against the true Turkish Angora at shows, etc. a shameful and unacceptable situation.

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