Breed review: Exotic Shorthair kittens and cats

Posted by Trixie. June 19th 2015.

The Exotic Shorthair, with its modest 50 years of history, is commonly known as the Shorthaired Persian cat and has proven to be an extremely popular breed for cat lovers who like to walk on the calmer side of life.

With its playful and relaxed nature, the Exotic Shorthair is the ideal pet for both urban and country living. No-nonsense maintenance and minimal shedding make it the ideal feline friend.

The Exotic Shorthair cat is proving popular with families

The history of the Exotic Shorthair

The birth of the Shorthair took place in the late 1950s when the American cat breeder, Carolyn Bussey decided to cross a brown Burmese cat with a Persian in the desire to create a brown Persian. However, a number of cute black kittens were born instead, which she later found were preferred to a traditional Persian because they had shorter hair and were easier to groom.

Bussey campaigned to make the Exotic Shorthair – as she named them – a pedigree cat. The breed was awarded Championship Status in 1967 by the Cat Fanciers Association (CFA) and in 1971 the very first Exotic Shorthair achieved the status of Grand Champion, leading to the breed being awarded CFA’s Cat of the Year in 1991.


The very early Exotic Shorthairs were a little more active than their Persian relatives due to the cross breeding which took place. However, over the last four decades the breed has begun to act more like the Persian in their behaviour as well as their looks. While they are still more playful than their relatives, it is their easy going nature and calm attitude which differs, making them ideal for families with young children.

This breed also gets along well with other animals, but will always prefer the company of humans more than other pets. Shorthairs are also the perfect pet for people living alone because they will softly greet you when you arrive home to make you feel welcome, before curling up on your lap.

You will also find this feline will be pleasured by the very simple things in life, so a piece of paper or string will be more than suitable as a toy. You’ll also notice the Exotic Shorthair is not a cat which likes to jump, meaning they won’t rush around the house causing trouble. They prefer to lounge, relax and be cuddled instead.


An Exotic Shorthair kitten


The Exotic Shorthair has often been described as a short-haired Persian cat and to all intents and purposes it meets every other standard of this breed. However, unlike its Persian relative, the Exotic won’t require daily grooming or combing as they don’t shed heavily, if at all. The fur on this breed is also thick, which actually makes the cat look a great deal bigger than it actually is.

An Exotic Shorthair will grow to be around 15lbs in weight, but remains quite short and close to the ground because of its short, stout legs and rather muscular physique. Their neck is also short but thick, carrying an impressively large head.

The face of this breed is identical to the Persian; short and broad with a flattened nose.


This breed is not particularly prone to any disease or genetic abnormalities, but because of the shape of the skull their eyes and nose are quite close together so the tear ducts have a tendency to overflow. This can be easily remedied with the use of a damp cloth, but means they are prone to sinus problems and teeth alignment issues so owners need to be aware of this.

It may be a good idea to purchase an insurance policy when first taking on this sort of cat to ensure you are protected against any unwanted issues or illnesses.

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