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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Interesting Facts About Persian Cats

Ten interesting facts about Persian cats

Ref: Persian Kitten Empire - GLOBAL Breeder Directory
#1) Persians were named Persians after what some consider to be their "country of origin" (Persia). When and where they first appeared can even be dated back to the hieroglyphics age of 1684 B.C. Ah- the
mysterious Persian! Persians were smuggled along with spices and jewels out of Persia and considered contraband. Is it any wonder why these felines love to be pampered? Surrounded by exotic spices, food, and jewels?

#2)  In North America, Persians are considered the most popular breed. They are indeed my second favorite, second only to the Exotic Short hair breed--, which is basically a short haired Persian! People think they are in ownership of a beautiful cat, but in reality, they are in fact the one(s) being owned. Remember it is reported that Persians are descended from royalty.

#3) Persians have sweet personalities, although every once in a while, a true alpha prima donna will emerge who thinks all other beings on this earth are there to please her (and on the even more rare occasion -him.) Persians are not, in general lap cats. They are more sit -beside -their- person- on- the -couch cats.

#4) Persians have petite but solid boned legs to support their wide diminutive bodies. Liking their feet firmly planted on the ground makes for Persians to be more on the ground cats than that of the Siamese breed-- climbers and jumpers. Unless jumping or climbing is required to reach you, a friend, seek out trouble, or their favorite resting place, Persians will not typically seek higher ground. They do not have survival instincts therefore; these purr angels are not meant to be outside cats.

#5) Persians come in an amazing array of colors, divided into seven color divisions for purposes of competition in the American Cat Fanciers Association. These colors are solid colors, silver and golden colors, shaded and smoke colors, tabby colors, parti- colors, bi-color, and Himalayan. 

#6) A Persian, under the care of a trusted personal vet married with good nutrition and care, can live with their family for an average of fifteen to twenty years!

#7) Persians that are show quality have long (sometimes overly so- high maintenance grooming is necessary for these babies!) thick coats, stout legs, a broad head with the ears set far apart. They are petite in size, with large round eyes, and a flat face. In other words, they have little to no nose! The more round-headed and flat face a Persian is, the more at risk they are to sinus and upper respiratory problems.

#8) A little known fact about these angelic purr babies is that due to having such flat faces, their teeth deteriorates at a much faster rate than teeth of other breeds. Dental examinations are more of a yearly exam as opposed to when a cat reaches senior status (any time after age 7).

#9) Persians need grooming on a regular basis. A high percentage of Persian cats brought into rescue have matting problems stemmed by as direct result from poor grooming habits. These felines are long haired!!! If they have the cottony coat (like bunny fur) then the grooming will be necessary on a two to three times a week basis to avoid matting. If not daily! If they have the silky coat, matting can still occur, but not quite as often, so grooming once a week is sufficient. Moreover, there are even some Persians with a greasy coat; hence, the maintenance on these coats are the most difficult. These Persians would do best in a lion cut. (Shave the body but not the legs, tails or head and neck area.)

#10)  There are three faces of a Persian cat. The show quality face has the extreme face with little to no break in the nose. (The very flat faced Persians.) The breeder quality face, also known as a doll face, has a bit more of a nose and still has a rounded head. Their ears are typically a smidgen bigger than that of a show quality face. The pet quality can have a more typical cat nose, with a slightly angular face. The eyes can even be somewhat angular as well.

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Ref: Published by Lori Piper

Monday, February 21, 2011

Cats Can Do Tricks!

---------- Who Says Cats Can't Do Tricks? ----------
Try THIS One!

Posted Fri, Jun 08, 2007, 10:00 am PDT
Have you had friends tell you that cats aren't smart, or can't do tricks? Ha! It's time to put them in their place and show just how talented little Fluffy really is. Here's a simple-to-learn trick that should help show the doubters what's what.

Get a simple embroidery hoop and something to use for motivation, such as treats, some canned food, or a few morsels of dry food. In order for this to work, your cat has to be hungry (not starving), so don't attempt a training session after a big meal.
Hold the embroidery hoop on the ground in front of your cat with one hand. With the other, hold a food-reward just on the other side of the hoop. When I was training my cats, I used a food-reward they found completely irresistible -- canned food. I put a tiny bit on the edge of a spoon. The benefit of the canned food is its delicious aroma. If your cat is on a special diet, use a portion of his prescription food as the reward.
Give your cat a verbal cue. It can be anything, as long as you're consistent. For my cats, I used the word "hoop." Use the cat's name as well when giving a verbal cue.
When your cat walks through the hoop, reward him with a little food.
Once your cat gets the knack of the trick, you can raise the hoop a tiny bit in subsequent sessions so that it eventually becomes a jumping trick.
Always remember to reward your cat afterward. It's also important to keep the training session fun -- so never command him to perform, or reprimand if he doesn't do well.
If you clicker-train your dog, you can use the clicker with your cat as well. When the cat goes through the hoop, click and reward.
Have fun!
~
From Yahoo Pets (July 10, 2007)

For Cats - It's a Vertical World

--------- For Cats, It's a Vertical World ---------

Posted Fri, May 25, 2007, 10:00 am PDT
You’ve done your best to create a warm and comfortable environment for your cat, but there may be one element that could use some tweaking.
We live in a horizontal world -- but our cats live in a vertical one. They use high, mid, and low levels of the environment for many purposes. In a multi-cat environment, being the cat who can claim the highest perch may help show other felines just who has the higher status. This can help keep peace.

A cat can jump approximately five times her height, so she was born to take advantage of vertical opportunities. Your cat loves to climb and has incredible balance, so why not create cat-friendly vertical areas to keep her away from those off-limits locations such as your kitchen counter or living room bookcase?
Elevated areas are also important in the cat’s environment because it provides her with a visual advantage. She has more warning time to see if an opponent is approaching.
Mid and low levels are important as well for cats who don’t feel as confident taking the highest elevations. The more cats you have, the more levels you need.
By increasing the vertical space in your home, you actually double or triple the size of your cat’s territory without literally increasing the size of your home.
Here are some ways to increase vertical space:
- Cat trees
- Window perches
- Cat beds or pads on furniture
- Tunnels placed behind furniture
(either bought or homemade)
- Elevated walkways
- Hiding places
(on various levels)

As you look around your cat’s environment, I’m sure you’ll find some ways to increase vertical space in a way that will create added comfort and security for your cat and still fit in with your decor. You don’t have to spend lots of money to increase vertical space. What matters most to your cat will be location, stability, and comfort.

5 Tips for New Cat Owners

--------- 5 Tips for New Cat Owners ---------

Posted Fri, May 18, 2007, 10:00 am PDT Reference (Yahoo / Pets)

1. Do your homework. The decision to get a cat may have been unplanned and emotional, but the care of that cat can’t be impulsive. Talk to your veterinarian, read books by qualified experts, and learn about this new family member. Start off by being properly informed about what cats need, and you’ll see your relationship blossom as your kitty grows into a well-socialized, well-behaved feline.

2. Start out with the right equipment. There are so many litter boxes, litters, scratching posts, toys, and beds -- and the list goes on. How do you know what your cat needs? Resist the urge to buy a product based on its human appeal. Think Like a Cat and look at a product from your cat’s point of view. For example, a covered litter box is designed to hide the sight and odor of its contents from us. Unfortunately, the cover also traps the odor in the box, making it unpleasant for the cat. An uncovered box that’s the right size for your cat would be in line with what Fluffy would choose if she had control of your wallet. Use that same Think Like a Cat eye-view when deciding on other products. Is that scratching post appealing to you because it’s small and easily hidden in a corner? If so, that decision may cost you some damage to your furniture, because Fluffy would prefer something tall and sturdy.

3. Make your home cat-safe. This is crucial when a cat comes into the home. Dangling electrical cords are enticing to a playful cat, so you should firmly secure all wires. Plants pose another danger, and almost all houseplants are toxic to cats. Remove plants that are harmful, or use a bitter anti-chew spray made especially for plants (found in pet supply stores.) A dangling window-blind cord is another potential hazard. Cats also love to crawl into tight hiding places, and that could mean trouble if you close a closet door or dresser drawer and kitty is stuck in there. You’ll find lots of helpful products in the baby safety section of your local home improvement store. Many of these products will help the new cat owner as well. Cats can get into things you’d never suspect they were capable of, so safety is of the utmost importance.

4. Make your home cat-friendly. It may be hard for a cat to resist scaling the curtains or prancing across the top of the bookcase. Cats love to climb, leap, pounce, and balance. This is normal cat behavior, so don’t reprimand your cat for doing what comes naturally. Instead, provide acceptable outlets for that behavior by having cat trees, perches, and scratching posts in order to make your environment cat-friendly. Provide areas for safe exploration, cozy naps, climbing, jumping, playing, and just plain fun!

5. Remember -- your cat is not a dog. I know it may seem obvious, but you’d be surprised how many times I see cats eating dog food or being bathed in dog shampoo. Use food and other products that are specifically designed for cats. Many products that are safe for dogs are not safe for a cat’s sensitive skin. When it comes to food, cats require more fat and protein, so if Fluffy eats Fido’s food, she won’t be getting enough of the nutrients she needs.

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FAQ About Cats

--------- 5 Tips for New Cat Owners ---------

Posted Fri, May 18, 2007, 10:00 am PDT Reference (Yahoo / Pets)

1. Do your homework. The decision to get a cat may have been unplanned and emotional, but the care of that cat can’t be impulsive. Talk to your veterinarian, read books by qualified experts, and learn about this new family member. Start off by being properly informed about what cats need, and you’ll see your relationship blossom as your kitty grows into a well-socialized, well-behaved feline.

2. Start out with the right equipment. There are so many litter boxes, litters, scratching posts, toys, and beds -- and the list goes on. How do you know what your cat needs? Resist the urge to buy a product based on its human appeal. Think Like a Cat and look at a product from your cat’s point of view. For example, a covered litter box is designed to hide the sight and odor of its contents from us. Unfortunately, the cover also traps the odor in the box, making it unpleasant for the cat. An uncovered box that’s the right size for your cat would be in line with what Fluffy would choose if she had control of your wallet. Use that same Think Like a Cat eye-view when deciding on other products. Is that scratching post appealing to you because it’s small and easily hidden in a corner? If so, that decision may cost you some damage to your furniture, because Fluffy would prefer something tall and sturdy.

3. Make your home cat-safe. This is crucial when a cat comes into the home. Dangling electrical cords are enticing to a playful cat, so you should firmly secure all wires. Plants pose another danger, and almost all houseplants are toxic to cats. Remove plants that are harmful, or use a bitter anti-chew spray made especially for plants (found in pet supply stores.) A dangling window-blind cord is another potential hazard. Cats also love to crawl into tight hiding places, and that could mean trouble if you close a closet door or dresser drawer and kitty is stuck in there. You’ll find lots of helpful products in the baby safety section of your local home improvement store. Many of these products will help the new cat owner as well. Cats can get into things you’d never suspect they were capable of, so safety is of the utmost importance.

4. Make your home cat-friendly. It may be hard for a cat to resist scaling the curtains or prancing across the top of the bookcase. Cats love to climb, leap, pounce, and balance. This is normal cat behavior, so don’t reprimand your cat for doing what comes naturally. Instead, provide acceptable outlets for that behavior by having cat trees, perches, and scratching posts in order to make your environment cat-friendly. Provide areas for safe exploration, cozy naps, climbing, jumping, playing, and just plain fun!

5. Remember -- your cat is not a dog. I know it may seem obvious, but you’d be surprised how many times I see cats eating dog food or being bathed in dog shampoo. Use food and other products that are specifically designed for cats. Many products that are safe for dogs are not safe for a cat’s sensitive skin. When it comes to food, cats require more fat and protein, so if Fluffy eats Fido’s food, she won’t be getting enough of the nutrients she needs.

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Cat Memory - Feline Memories

~~---- Feline Memories Found to be Fleeting ----~~
Andrea Thompson
LiveScience Staff Writer
LiveScience.com Mon Aug 20, 12:45 PM ET
A new study has measured just low long cats can remember certain kinds of information - 10 minutes.
The research was designed primarily to compare cats' working memory of their recent movements with their visual memories, and found that cats remember better with their bodies than their eyes when they have encountered an object placed in their path by say, an annoying owner or experimenter.
When a cat steps over a stray toy or shoe left on the floor on the way to its food dish, it has to coordinate the stepping action of its front legs with its hind legs.
"Animals, including humans, unconsciously keep track of the location of objects relative to the body as they move, and this tracking is largely dependent on signals associated with movement of the body," said researcher Keir Pearson of the University of Alberta in Canada.
Though researchers were aware of this association, they wondered exactly how kitty remembers to bring her hind legs up after her front legs have cleared an obstacle.
To test cats' coordination, the researchers looked at how well they could remember having just stepped over a hurdle. The researchers stopped cats after their front legs had cleared an obstacle, but before their hind legs went over.
They then distracted the animals with food and lowered the obstacle to see how the tabbies would respond. The cats remembered having stepped over the hurdle for at least 10 minutes, bringing their hind legs up to clear the object, even though it wasn't there.
To compare this working memory to the cats' visual memory of the obstacle, the researchers repeated the experiment, this time stopping the cats just before they made their first step over the hurdle.
Turns out the cats weren't so good at remembering what they had seen but not yet done: when the obstacle was removed this time, the cats forgot it had even been there in the first place and continued on their way.
"There's not high-stepping at all," Pearson told LiveScience.
"We've found that the long-lasting memory for guiding hind legs over an obstacle requires stepping of the forelegs over the obstacle," Pearson said. "The main surprise was how short lasting the visual memory on its own was—just a few seconds when animals were stopped before their forelegs stepped over the obstacle."
Research with horses and dogs has shown similar results, Pearson said.
Similar memories may play a role in humans' ability to navigate objects in the dark or remember where they parked their car in the morning.
By actually walking from your car into your office, you solidify the memory of what space your car is in and don't spend half an hour looking for it—well, not usually. 

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Cat Tales: Fact vs. Fiction

---------- Cat Tales: Separating Fact From Fiction ----------
(Feline fact vs. fiction)
Despite their popularity, myths about cats persist. Separating fact from fiction provides a greater understanding of how to meet their special needs.
A falling cat always lands on its feet
When a cat falls a short distance, it often twists itself around to right itself and land on its feet. However, falls from heights can cause severe injury or death.

A window without a screen or with an insecurely fastened screen is a life-threatening hazard. Other accidents happen when an air conditioner is removed from the window for cleaning or repair. Balconies are also a danger. A cat may fall from a balcony rail as it chases an insect.
Securely fastened screens and being alert to other high-rise dangers help prevent serious injuries resulting from falls.
Cats have nine lives
This myth probably started as the result of a cat’s flexible skeleton that allows squeezing and twisting to negotiate narrow and awkward places.

The factors that influence a cat’s longevity are proper diet and care, including regular visits to the veterinarian, and the cat’s genetic makeup.
The average life span for a neutered cat who is housed inside is estimated to be from 12 to 14 years. The maximum life span is said to be 35 years. The roaming cat’s life expectancy is usually less than that of a cat housed indoors. This may relate to a more stressful lifestyle as the results of accidents, fighting and exposure to weather extremes.
Cats can see in the dark
Cats cannot see in total darkness, but they can see much better at night with minimum light than humans can. Their vision in dim light is very sensitive.

Protecting a cat’s vision is one of the reasons a cat should never be fed dog food. Unlike dogs, cats cannot manufacture the amino acid taurine. Lack of taurine in the cat’s diet can cause vision problems. Cats require a higher level of protein in their diet than dogs.
All cats like fish
There is no particular food that all cats like. This is why cat foods are available in a variety of flavors and textures. Once you find nutritionally complete and balanced cat food your cat enjoys, stay with it. Frequent diet changes may create a finicky eater and cause digestive upsets. Be certain the package label states that the product has undergone feeding trials in accordance with the Association of American Feed Control officials (AAFCO) protocol.

Neutered cats become fat and lazy
Although neutered cats may become obese, this condition can be prevented. If the cat begins to gain weight, eliminate food from the table and, if necessary, reduce the amount of cat food offered. Cats can be encouraged to exercise through play. If there are questions about a cat’s body condition, a veterinarian should be consulted.

Spaying and neutering have many benefits. Spaying a female cat before her first heat cycle can help prevent mammary tumors and uterine infections.
From Yahoo Pets (July 10, 2007)

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Interesting Cat Facts

As it spread eastward, the cat basked in the reflected glory of the tiger, which held symbolic importance in Asia
In the 14th century, the cats' nocturnal habits condemned it as evil in the eyes of the church.
The first members of the modern cat family appeared 20 million years ago. They were light, agile, and varied in sizes between the modern puma at 220 lb and the lynx at 64 lb.
Like mating between the horse and the donkey that produce the sterile mule, the lion and tiger hybrid cannot breed
A cat's tooth from 9000 BC has been found in a settlement site in Jericho, Israel.
Without socialization in kittenhood, even the most selectively bred pedigreed cat given the chance and a little practice, will hunt and defend its territory just like a wildcat.
A kitten's brain is almost fully developed at birth. By seven weeks of age, most areas have matured. Skills are acquired fastest during this development stage.

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Sunday, February 20, 2011

Cat History



The Wild One

Of all the domestic species, the cat is the most independent and least understood. Descendent of the North African wildcat the domestic cat evolved to be a solitary hunter. When cats moved into new human communities, those that were cared for discovered a source of abundant food. Natural selection favored more sociable individuals, slowly transforming the wildcat into the domestic cat that we know and love today.





From Wildcat to Domestic Cat

Unlike other domestic animals, the cat is self-domesticated. It chose to live in close proximity to people because it was in its interests to do so, a natural selfishness that remains at the core of domestic cat behavior to this day. The development of settlements along the fertile floodplains of the Nile provided the wildcat with the potential of a new environmental niche. From this time onward, burials and paintings provide evidence for a growing relationship between felines and humans. The absorption of the domesticated cat into Egyptian society seems to have been complete by about 2000 BC, and was followed by its recognition as the symbolic embodiment of a deity.

Cats are Purrrr-fect

The cat is one of nature's most successful products. All aspects of its anatomy result from evolutionary logic. Its eyes dilate fully for night vision but shut down to slits in bright sunshine. Touch-sensitive whiskers help the cat to "feel" its way when it hunts in low light, while its delicate hearing lets it hear the tiny, high-pitched sounds of a mouse squeaking. An accurate sense of balance permits it to climb away from danger and regain balance if it accidentally falls. All of these characteristics create an animal that is appealing to our eyes and minds.

One of a kind

During the 20th century, the cat moved from a minor role in human society to a more commanding position as one of the most popular of all animal companions. Quiet, self-cleaning, content to snooze whenever the opportunity arises but capable of astounding episodes of activity when its brain is engaged, it is also aesthetically pleasing. Perhaps the cat's most important characteristic is its independence. By living with us it gives us an opportunity to view the natural world in our own homes.




Persians

This breed, usually an indoor dweller, is a relaxed observer. It is cited as the quietest and friendliest of cat breeds, and the one most likely to accept other cats into its home.
The first documented ancestors of the Persian were imported from Persia into Italy in 1620. For the next two centuries their descendents were status symbol pets.



Himalayan Persian

Possibly the first deliberate hybridization of two breeds, this version of the Persian was also the first recognized "export" to another breed of the Siamese pointed pattern. The resulting cat has the luxurious, thick, long coat of the Persian, and the exotic color pattern of the Siamese. Eye color is blue but less intense than in the Siamese. While the average Persian is content to watch the world go by, and the Siamese is a lways at the heart of the action, the Himalayan Persian is an outgoing but relaxed companion.

Exotic Persian

The Exotic Shorthair is a breed of cat developed to be a shorthaired version of the Persian. They appeal to people who like the personality of a Persian but do not want the hassle of grooming a long-haired cat. The easier to manage coat has made some label the Exotic Shorthair the lazy person’s Persian. The Exotic Shorthair is similar to the Persian in many ways, including temperament and conformation, with the exception of the short dense coat. It has even inherited much of the Persian's health problems. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exotic_cat)




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