Persian cat type – Response to your article
by Carol Trevelyan-Knox
GRC Risingmoon Eye Candy
A lot of nonsense is talked about ultra type persians. There is a difference here in the UK between ultra type and extreme type; extreme type that you may have in the USA is not allowed for here in the GCCF SOP.
ALL breed types change over 100 years! I have bred pugs and they look nothing like what they used to do 100 years ago. The breeds that change less are HORSES for example. This is because they only have one baby at a time, so change is much slower. As cats have many kittens and litters, change is fast forwarded, especially if you have a dedicated band of followers. Look at the siamese! If they did not change we would all be showing the same cat.
As for health issues I entirely agree with you, but one of the main health issues NEVER comes up!
The higher nose placement and flatter face has made the persian look more baby like, and less piggy and ugly with face gutters which soil and stain.(the traditional cat is quite ugly to me). The trick is to breed the ultra type with a very open face. I have attached a pic of one of mine. The only persian I have with breathing and snuffling problems is a traditional type long nosed persian.
I think the more frightening health issue that never comes up IS driven by the show fraternity, judges and exhibitors. What is it? It's the increase in the volume and length of coat. My vet is sick of the numbers of persians that come in and have to be sedated to be dematted.
The persian has now got to a point where it cannot live naturally because of its coat, many persian owners cannot manage it. Whilst we breeder/exhibitors are dedicated to keeping our cats pristine and beautiful, it is far too much for many owners to cope with, or the cat to cope with. I have tried showing cats with less coats, but they are overlooked no matter how good the cat, for a cat with a huge coat.
In my mind any persian with a huge coat, expertly groomed can go to the highest awards, but I think it is time to step back and choose for the less dense and shorter coats for the sake of the persian cat. Only a few are in the hands of show/breeders, the rest are suffering out there, being shaved etc. I have attached a picture of one of my cats with a shorter but beautiful quality coat, who also managed to be a TICA cat of the year 2007.
What do other persian breeders think, will there be an outcry, do you love the huge coats? I definitely feel guilty about it.