The Turkish Angora is a sylphlike medium-sized feline variety, which originated in Turkey as early as in XV century. This breed stands out for its royal bearing although it usually gives a hearty welcome to any guest came to worship it. In its homeland it enjoys the status of National treasure not only for its stunning beauty but also for its lovable disposition.
Photo: © cattery Tangerine's (facebook.com)
It’s hard to believe that this elegant feline with gorgeous and fine coat came to existence in the hostile hilly areas of Turkey. It’s worth to mention though that such a dense fur served it as an effective protection against severe winters in Ankara, which was formerly called Angora. The most probable descendant of the Turkish Angora is the Manul cat, which was tamed by the Tatars.
Written sources of the XVI century provides a proof that the breed was well-known in France in this period and was considered as a common object of trade. In the late XIX century, at the dawn of everybody’s fad for Cat Shows the specimen of the Turkish Angora was one of the first breeds, which were introduced to the public. Afterwards it was heavily used in the development of the Persian and gradually it lost its authenticity as a unique breed (at least, in England).
Nonetheless these cats still thrive in its native land where the breed is revered as a national treasure. The Ankara Zoo even launched special breeding program for the purpose of supporting and promoting the native Turkish Angora.
In the 50s of XX century American servicemen that worked in Turkey came across these graceful cats and told about them to its fellow countrymen. The zoo was fairly unwilling to give up some of its cats to foreigners although in 1962 it granted a couple to Colonel and Mrs. Walter Grant: a gold-eyed white female and an odd-eyed white male. They served as a basis of a breeding program in the USA. Large numbers of cats were also brought to this country in the following years, which allowed ensuring the sufficient variety of its gene pool.
The Cat Fancier Association granted its full recognition to the white Turkish Angora in 1968 although the coloured breed members were rejected from registration until 1978. Currently it is formally accepted by the International Cat Association and other feline registries.
The Turkish Angora can impress an ill-informed owner with its stylish beauty but he will be quite amazed to find behind a pretty face an athletic and smart cat. This cat will become a tireless explorer of your dwelling and will often oversee your doings from the top of your bookshelf. It’s always ready to play and will use to every chance to deserve your attention and caress. This breed is well-suited for families with children as it loves spending time with them in rambunctious games.
The Turkish Angora usually sticks to its kitten-like mischievousness well into adulthood. It behaves itself mannerly in the presence of unknown people although it certainly prefers the company of its masters. It’s highly recommended to have other felines in the house so the cat won’t feel itself abandoned in your absence. This communicable breed is also quite alright with other non-feline pets (including an even-tempered dog) especially if they have been raised together.
This good-natured and frisky cat will regularly amuse and sometimes annoy you with its clever pranks. That’s why it’s safe to say that only a patient, fun-loving and energetic person should choose the Turkish Angora for a pet. Anyway it would be a good idea to train this cat some tricks or at least to provide it with significant number of interactive toys.
The most common problems for the breed include:
· hypertrophic cardiomyopathy;
The Turkish Angora possesses a delicate and long coat, which requires relatively little grooming. It will stay shiny and free of mats and tangles only with a weekly combing. The specimen with white or light-coloured fur may also need more frequent bathing, usually every other month.
The rest maintenance includes such standard routines as regular teeth brushing and nail clipping (preferably on a weekly basis). Check the ears of your Turkish Angora from time to time and wipe them with soft damp tissue if necessary. It’s essential to start training the kitten to above-mentioned procedures as early as possible so it won’t shy away from them in the future.