Scottish Folds are known to be a very calm, kind, highly adaptable and intelligent cat breed. They are endeared by many not only because of their appearance but also their very affectionate and warm nature.
Recognized for their unique trait, Scottish Folds boast folded ears that resemble an owl. Their folded ears result from a natural genetic mutation. Aside from this unique trait, this cat breed is mellow and charming.
These inquisitive cats are also clever and very devoted to their family. While many of them enjoy being held, some of these cats prefer just following their human companion around the house or staying nearby and never leaving their side.
Scottish Folds can get every attached to their family – not just one family member. But they are not too clingy. Furthermore, like many other breeds, Scottish Folds love playing, interacting with their families, and are incredibly responsive to training.
Scottish Folds are an adaptable breed. Because of their relaxed and calm demeanour, they can be comfortable in various environments. Whether in a room full of noisy, active children or pets or in a quiet, single-person apartment, they can thrive and live comfortably. However, because they prefer being in the company of humans or animals, it would be best to provide them with a companion if you leave them for long periods of time.
These lovable cats have a great appetite; however, they are not as active as other cat breeds. Because of this, they tend to gain extra weight. So, to keep them healthy, you may need to stimulate them to move. Take advantage of their love for human attention and interaction by keeping them busy with games and interactive play.
Often compared to a soft stuffed toy, Scottish Folds have two coat varieties: shorthair and longhair. The longhair variety has a more ruffled look, giving the Scottish Folds’ coat a woolly sheep appearance.
The affectionate Scottish Folds are often called dogs in disguise. Their dedication to their family is remarkable; that’s why they are an excellent feline companion to families with children and other pets in the household. They are also preferred by those who want their cats to walk on a leash because they can be trained easily.
- Grooming: Twice a Week 6/10
- Shedding: Medium 6/10
- Hypoallergenic: Low 2/10
- Activity Level: Medium 6/10
- Playfulness: Medium 6/10
- Friendliness to other pets: High 10/10
- Friendliness to children: High 10/10
- Affection towards it’s owners: High 10/10
- Vocality: Low 2/10
- Intelligence: Medium 6/10
- Independence: Low 2/10
In 1961, William Ross, a Scottish farmer, found a Scottish Fold unintentionally in a cat named Suzie. She was a white cat with unique folded ears in his neighbour’s farm in the Tayside region of Scotland. Suzie’s ancestry was not determined, but her mother was identified as a straight, white-haired cat.
Because William Ross was so enthralled with Suzie, he bought from her subsequent litter. What’s impressive is that Suzie passed on the folded ear gene to her litter. So, William Ross started a breeding program with his cat, Snooks, and began attending various cat shows.
William Ross named this cat breed “lop-eared” after rabbits. He registered this new cat breed in 1966 with the Governing Council of the Cat Fancy, where it was later renamed Scottish Fold. But in the early 1970s, the GCCF stopped recognizing this breed due to concerns over ear disorders such as infections, hearing problems and mites.
In 1973, the Scottish Fold was recognized by the Cat Fanciers Association (CFA) and was given the championship status in 1978. The United Feline Organisation, American Association of Cat Enthusiasts, and American Cat Fanciers Association named the cat breed the Highland Fold. Until the mid-1980s, the long-haired Scottish Fold cat was not recognized, but both types are now gaining popularity.
The International Cat Association, National Cat Fanciers Association, American Cat Association, Canadian Cat Association and Cat Fanciers Association call this breed the Scottish Fold Longhair. The Cat Fanciers Federation calls it the Longhair Fold. Canadian breeders sometimes call it the Coupari.
In 1990, The International Cat Association accepted the Scottish Fold into the New Breed program and recognized the breed for championship competition in February 1994.
Over the last two decades, Scottish Folds have developed a look of their own. They do not necessarily resemble the American Shorthair’s strong, solid “working cat” body and squared-off muzzle or the British Shorthair’s huge, compact body, flat planed top-head, and short legs.
Scottish Folds are medium-sized cats with a well-padded, rounded body. Their large eyes are round and broadly spaced. Their short nose has a gentle curve and well-rounded whisker pads. The long haired variety have medium to long fur with britches, a plumed tail, and tufts on their toe and ears. They may also have a ruff around their neck.
Long Haired Scottish Folds come in various colours and patterns. This includes solid, tabby, bicolour, tabby and white, and parti-colour. Their eye colour depends on the colour of their coat.
Scottish Fold kittens are born with straight ears. Their ears will start to fold when they are about three to four weeks, but not all kittens will have folded ears. For the breeders to check the cat’s quality, they need to wait around eleven to twelve weeks.
Right now, only cats with folded ears are allowed in the show ring. Thus, every breeder wants to breed and produce show cats with the quality they are looking for. Still, the straight ear offsprings of Scottish Folds are priceless to the breeding program.
Because Scottish Folds adapt quickly, they can practically live comfortably and relaxed in any home situation and environment. They are a perfect feline companion to families with children and other pets in the household. They can be as relaxed and comfortable in a house full of noisy children and dogs as in a peaceful, one-person household.
Moreover, Scottish Folds can be a great companion when you travel as they do not panic in different places such as hotel rooms or at shows. You can expect to travel with ease and won’t experience any problem bringing these amazing cats along for your weekend trip.
Scottish Folds have a small, soft voice but they are not very vocal. They enjoy human companionship, and they will show it in their own unique way. They are very charming with a sweet and delightful expression on their faces.
These sweet-natured cats are very simple and undemanding. All you need to do to keep them happy and content is provide a high-quality diet appropriate for their needs and lots of love and attention.
These cats are known to be excellent problem solvers. That’s why they enjoy food-oriented puzzles and interactive games. Because of their intelligence, they can quickly learn commands and tricks. Thus, challenge their bright minds with puzzle toys that reward them with treats to encourage them to stay alert and active.
These clever cats are also skilled in using their paws. They can open cabinets and cupboards to check out if their food is there. You might also see them playing with water from a running tap using their paw. Many Scottish Folds will sit and watch the faucet drip water for hours as a sort of entertainment.
There are many things that you can teach to your Scottish Fold. These loyal and bright cats are very friendly and loving cats and they love human attention and interaction. So, take advantage of this as you train your Scottish Folds. They will treat your training time as a quality time of love and attention.
Lastly, when a Scottish Fold is appropriately socialised and trained at an early age, they will thrive on being a sweet-natured, well-rounded and well-mannered feline companion.
Coat & Care
It is best to brush or comb your Long Haired Scottish Fold a couple of times a week to eliminate dead hair and distribute their skin oils evenly throughout their body. This is to ensure that no mats or tangles develop in their delicate fur.
Train your Long Haired Scottish Fold to get used to combs and brushes at an early stage. Start by using a very soft brush that doesn’t pull their long fur or cause damage to their skin. Every time you finish brushing or combing, give your Scottish Fold a small treat for behaving well. If their regular coat care doesn’t lead to any issues for you and your cat, you can upgrade to more effective brushes or combs for their age.
Weekly toothbrushing is sufficient at keeping your cat’s dental health in good condition, but brushing more regularly is even better. This will prevent periodontal disease and other gum problems. Trim their nails when needed or twice a month. As for their beautiful eyes, wipe their corners with a clean, soft, damp cloth to remove any discharge.
It is essential that you check their ears regularly. If the ears are dirty, have excessive debris or wax, wipe them out with a cotton ball or a clean, soft, damp cloth moistened with vet-approved ear cleaner. If they have a foul odour, contact your vet for proper treatment.
Their litter boxes should always be clean as they are particular about their toilet hygiene. If it is left unclean, considering they have a long, thick coat, litter can get stuck to their fur and cause tangling and matting. Also, they may tend to use other places in the house.
Every prospective Scottish Fold cat owner should know that the same gene that causes this cat’s ears to fold also causes a form of progressive joint disease, which can be very painful. This shows up mainly in their ankles, tail, and feet.
The condition can worsen over time, so it is best to always be mindful when playing. Many develop arthritis in their tail, causing it to stiffen, which can be very painful. If you observe any stiffness or they seem to be in pain take them to the vet immediately.
Because of this genetic mutation, there is a lot of controversy around how ethical breeding Scottish Fold cats is. If you do decide to get one, be sure to buy from a reputable, registered breeder who has previous experience with this unique breed. In addition, ensure the breeder follows ethical practices such as running DNA health checks on all their cats before breeding or selling them.
You should also be aware that these cats tend to have increased risk of ear mites and infections. This is because their folded ear shape makes it more challenging to see into their ears and clean them, compared to cats with normal ears.
Children & Other Pets
The friendly and outgoing Scottish Fold loves playing. And with their calm and relaxed personality, they are an excellent choice for families with children. Even if they are rowdy and noisy, your Scottish Fold will just curl up and watch the activities going on in the household.
However, always supervise younger kids to prevent accidents and make sure that they do not cause harm to the cat, especially their vulnerable tail that can lead to stiffness if mishandled.
Because of their adaptability and friendliness towards other animals, Scottish Folds are happy to live with other cats and cat-friendly dogs. It is always recommended to introduce pets gradually and in controlled environments to guarantee that they learn to get along well together.