10 Facts About Russian Blue Cat Breed
Russian Blues are one of the most aesthetically stunning cat breeds, with a gorgeous plush silvery coat and vibrant green eyes. However, it’s not only their appearance that is beautiful; their nature is too. Russian Blue cats are calm, gentle, and charming, and they shower their owners with love and affection.
Therefore, it’s no surprise that Russian Blues are a popular choice amongst families choosing a cat breed. They are easy-going, low maintenance, and in short, an absolute joy to live with. So, if you’re interested in these elegant felines, we’re sure you’ll love these 10 facts about Russian Blues.
1. They have glittery fur.
The Russian Blue’s iconic plush silver-blue coat gives a magnificent shimmering effect under the light. This is because the strands of their outer hairs have silver tips due to a diluted version of the gene responsible for black hairs. This unique gene is what makes them look like they are covered in glitter.
2. They are born with yellow eyes.
Almost all kittens are born with blue eyes, which will then often transition into another colour. However, what’s unique about Russian Blue kittens is that they are born with yellow eyes instead of blue. As they grow, their eyes will slowly transition into the bright emerald green eyes that Russian Blue cats are known and loved for. Most Russian Blue kittens will have these gorgeous green eyes by the time they reach four months old.
3. They are considered to be a lucky charm.
While a large part of the Russian Blues history remains unknown, various old Russian folktales consider these kitties to symbolise good luck, healing, and protection. The most famous tale is about how a Russian Blue cat healed a sick Russian prince. This led to these kitties becoming a favoured feline amongst royals. Because of this, many wealthy Russians would use these cats to protect the nurseries of their newborn children, believing they ward off evil spirits.
4. They are big introverts.
Just like people, cats can be extroverted or introverted, and Russian Blues are definitely the latter. Although they will be totally comfortable around their owners (and super affectionate) they get shy around strangers and dislike crowds. This is not the cat to have if you like to regularly entertain guests and throw weekly dinner parties, as these loud, social environments may have this kitty hiding under the sofa. In fact, they make the best companions to people who are also introverted and enjoy a peaceful lifestyle.
5. They can have a favourite human.
ussian Blues are one cat breed known for their tendency to pick a favourite human. They may attach themself to one member of the household, who they will then follow around. They will also choose to lay on this person’s lap and sleep on their side of the bed at night.
While this favouritism may offend the rest of the family, a Russian Blue will continue to show love and affection to everyone in the home. They do not simply choose one person and ignore the rest of the family, but they may attach more to someone who shares the same type of calm, peaceful nature as them.
6. They like to stick to schedules.
A Russian Blue cat likes structure and will not appreciate it if you feed them at different times each day. Having a set schedule makes this breed feel safe and comfortable, so if you decide to get a Russian Blue, this is something you should respect.
Once a schedule is established, they will be by their food bowl at each mealtime like clockwork. And should you forget a feeding, your Russian Blue will promptly remind you. Therefore, you should consider that if you feed them at 6 am during the week, there’s no chance they will let you have a lie-in on the weekends.
7. They are an all-natural breed.
Russian Blues were not created by being selectively bred by two different cats. Instead, they are a naturally occurring breed that freely roamed around the Archangel Isle ports in Northern Russia before becoming domesticated.
Their history remains largely unknown, and no one knows how this breed came to be, which is one reason why they are relatively rare. Moreover, as Russian Blues developed naturally, they are generally very healthy cats that are not prone to any genetic illness or diseases.
8. They are relatively hypoallergenic.
While no cat breed is fully hypoallergenic, Russian Blues are less likely to trigger reactions in allergy sufferers than other cats. There are two reasons for this. First, they do not shed much, and secondly, they have low Fel D1 levels, the protein responsible for triggering allergies. Therefore, they may be a good choice for cat lovers who are allergic; however, it will depend on the severity of the allergy.
9. The breed almost became extinct.
Around the late 1800s, Russian Blues started to become popular domestic cats in Europe, thanks to their appearance in the early cat shows. Then, in 1912, the Governing Council of the Cat Fancy (GCCF) in Britain recognised the Russian Blue as a distinct breed. However, during World War II, these gorgeous felines almost became extinct as breeders no longer had the means to continue breeding them.
As a result, their number drastically declined. However, once the war ended, breeders in the UK and Europe thankfully saved the Russian Blue by crossbreeding it with other blue cats, such as the Siamese and British Shorthair. They then reversed the process by eliminating the Siamese and Shorthair points to return them to their natural state.
10. They can live for up to 20 years
The average life expectancy for domestic cats is 10-15 years, but Russian Blues have a longer lifespan than this. These felines can live for two decades if well cared for, with some living up to 25 years. Their long lifespan is because they don’t have genetic predispositions and thus, do not experience many health issues throughout their lives.
We’re sure some of these Russian Blue facts surprised you, as they did us. Russian Blues are not only beautiful, loving felines, but this ancient breed has a mystical and fascinating history, too.