Russian Cat Breeds

There are twelve Russian cat breeds on my calculation — one is, in fact, an alternative coat type (pointed) of the Siberian cat (a sort of sub-breed, the Neva Masquerade), and one is a miniature cat, the Toy Bob (open the miniature cat link for a brief reference to it – it looks like the Mekong Bobtail. They are all listed on this page.

Below are excepts and links to information about these Russian cat breeds. There is no point me reciting all the information on this page. Russia has a vibrant cat fancy which, in the West, we don’t really appreciate. We tend to think of the USA first and then the UK but Russia is right there at the top of the cat fancy with the West.

The Kurilian Bobtail is a farm cat in the Far East of Russian (this video is unique).

Below are photos of Russian bred Kurilian Bobtails, one of the Russian cat breeds. They are the real thing! They are different to the American version.

Kurilian Bobtails from Russia and bred in Russia

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Karelian Bobtail

Karelian Bobtail cat Other names for the Karelian Bobtail are, Karel Bobtail, Karelian or Karellian. This is a natural cat in that the mutation that gives this cat breed the bob tail occurred naturally. The same applies for the Kurilian Bobtail cat, whose place of origin is, in fact, on the other side of Russia near Japan (the Kuril Islands)..please read more.

Neva Masquerade

What better cat than the Neva Masquerade for the president of Russia (2014)? The Siberian cat hails from Russia, of course, and is a very popular triple coated purebred cat of distinction that may have the same origins as the Maine Coon and Norwegian Forest Cat. It is one of the great Russian exports (first exported June 28th 1990)!….read more please.


The Ussuri cat is described as “experimental” (2014). I have taken an almost desperate measure in reproducing the adjacent photograph without the author’s permission. I have provided a link, however. It came from this web page: NUTRO.RU There is no substitute for a photograph. Although I do not know how representative of the breed this cat is. If the author wants me to remove the photo, I will, of course..please read more

6 thoughts on “Russian Cat Breeds”

  1. Michael, given their geographical origin, I wondered if the Japanese know the Kurilian by another name?

    I mention this because I know that on a neighbouring island one dog breed is known as the Sakhalin Husky (Russian) or Karafuto-Ken (Japanese) depending upon which of side of the territorial dispute you were.

    • Good point. I don’t know. It is quite possible. If we went back 1000 years I wonder if the Japanese Bobtail and the Kurilian Bobtail were the same random bred cat. It probably was. It is unusual for a cat to evolve in pure isolation. Just a thought.

    • I remember my sister kept a couple of British SHs and she gave them away (my sister is not great with animals, I regret to say) because they were inbred and had lost their intelligence.

  2. Interesting article Michael. I like the robust and natural look of the Kurilian Bobtail. It may be the way they’re standing, but are their back legs longer than the front ones? (The Cypriots claim that’s a trait of their Aphrodite cat, evolved from living in mountainous areas.)

    I’m sure there are probably a lot more breeds yet to emerge from Russia and there may even be variations on breeds already known to us. I’m especially curious to see what their version of the Russian Blue looks like. The British version is said to be closest in looks to the original Archangel Blue. The American version (as seen in Helmi’s photos) are much lighter in colour and have a more foreign body shape.

    • I agree that the Russian, Russian Blue is less slender. More normal. It is a random bred cat turned into a purebred. Yes, the Kurilian is a bit rabbit-like. You have made me think about investigating the Russian, Russian Blue. I don’t have a photo. The Russian British Blue is completely different to the American version. They have big cheeks like hamsters. Very odd. A Russian version of extreme breeding:

      I have always thought that the Helmi Russian Blue photos are of a cat that looks a bit inbred. The cat looks a bit stupid to me. I hate to say that.


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