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The brachycephalic (flattened) shape of the snout is an artificially bred feature in some cat breeds. Cats with flat faces are liked by people for their innocent expression and unusual appearance, but they also have disadvantages. Read more about all of main flat-faced cat breeds in this article.
Main cat breeds with flat face
There are 5 breeds of flat-faced cats definitively bred and expanded worldwide:
- Persian Cat;
- Exotic Cat;
- Scottish Fold;
- British Shorthair;
Characteristics of flat-faced cat breeds
The particular shape of the head is called brachycephalic, as mentioned above. In fact, such a phenomenon is a pathology.
According to scientists, the pathology is inherited from wild Pallas’ cats. Their similar head shape is found in nature. All representatives of cat breeds with a flattened nose have a wide head (the width is more than 80% of the height).
- Such cats look really unusual, even in today’s age, when people are used to seeing pedigree animals with brachycephaly;
- The jaws of cats with a flattened skull structure are much stronger than those of regular breeds;
- All cats of such breeds show an affectionate, friendly character and calm behavior in everyday life.
- The unusual shape of the skull leads to noisy sleeping, eating food, snorting and snoring;
- Shortened tear ducts and the particular shape of the nose lead to increased secretions during stress or exposure to the cold;
- Some breeds cannot eat their own food, and their owners feed them with a spoon.
How interesting! The peculiar shape of a cat’s head is called a doll’s head. The naive, childlike expression on the faces of such cat breeds seems to some to be an expression of snide or aggression.
In the early 2000s, Persian Cats were the most popular cats in the world. Now the popularity of the breed has decreased, but Persian Cats are still the brightest representatives of flat-faced cats.
Persians have an average size torso, long paws, fluffy fur. Some individuals has the nose almost in the same plane as the eyes. Despite the apparent kindness and harmlessness, Persian Cats are very strong.
The price of a purebred Persian kitten will vary from $1,200 to $1,800.
Important: Persian Cats shouldn’t be allowed outdoors for independent walks. Brachycephals need constant supervision and are helpless to the outside world.
There is a subspecies of the Persian breed – the Himalayan cat. Not all associations recognize the breed. Himalayans are registered as a Persian breed. The Himalayan is descended from Persians crossed with Siamese. The breed has the color of a Siamese cat and a characteristic flat face.
The Exotic Shorthair is a breed that was bred by chance. In an attempt to lengthen the coat of the American short-haired breed, the individual was crossed with a Persian. The result was an Exotic Shorthaired cat. Now this breed is independent, with a flattened face and a fluffy, short hair length.
The breed has a convex forehead, a stocky torso and strong short paws. The shape of the head belongs to the extreme, meaning the eyes and nose are at the same level.
If you buy an Exotic Shorthair from a reputable breeder, you’re looking at a price tag of roughly $1,200 to $2,200.
The Scottish Fold breed has gained popularity due to its triangular, bent ears. Scottish Fold cats reach a weight of 6 kg and have a strong rounded torso. These cats have a flat face, although the convexity of the nasal part is much larger than that of the previous breeds.
Some representatives of the breed have straightened ears with age. They are referred to another breed, the Scottish Straight-Eared. According to the canons, only straight-eared pets can be crossed with fold pets. Crossing two fold individuals leads to genetic mutations and diseases in the offspring.
A Scottish Fold typically costs $250–$800.
Important: At exhibitions Scottish Fold can be disqualified for too large tail and hind legs. Since recently, this structure began to be considered as a disadvantage of the animal.
Looking at pictures of a Brit, you can’ t help but fall in love. They are amazingly beautiful brachycephals with short hair of a smoky shade. British Shorthair cats are very intelligent and have the mentality of real English aristocrats.
The muzzles of British cats are elongated enough so that the cat can eat on its own and avoid the problems found in Persians. Nevertheless, they have some form of brachycephaly.
Most breeders sell British Shorthair kittens for somewhere between $800 and $2,500.
In the wild, a flat face is common to only one member of the feline family, the Manul.
This is a rare species, listed in the Red Book. The flattened shape of the skull is caused by the need to hunt and carry specific prey.
Domestic cats with flat faced hardly resemble the Pallas’ cat ancestor in appearance.