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The Korat is a native Thai cat cherished for its silver-blue fur and emerald-green eyes. This ancient breed has been around since the 14th century, and its appearance remains unchanged throughout history. These exotic felines arrived in Britain in the 19s and were known as the "Blue Siamese". However, they did not become anywhere near as popular as the traditional Siamese. Even today, they are still rare outside of their homeland.
In Thailand, the Korat is called "Si Sawat" and is believed to be a lucky charm. What's more, they were traditionally given as gifts to newlyweds to bring prosperity to their new lives together. Today, they make excellent pet cats as they are affectionate, loyal, and extremely street smart.
Meet the Korat cat
Korat cats are medium-sized with a slim yet muscular structure. They typically have low body fat and weigh six to ten pounds when fully grown, so they are reasonably compact. However, they are slow to mature, and many Korats don't reach full physical and emotional development until they are around five years old.
Some people refer to the Korat as "the cat with five hearts". This is because they have a distinctive heart-shaped heart and nose and a recognisable heart shape in their chests and between their front shoulders. Moreover, they have large ears, slightly tilted forwards, and round green eyes that stand out from a mile away. However, as kittens, their eyes are blue and slowly transition into a vibrant green, reaching full colour at around two years.
Unlike some other breeds, Korats can only be one colour, silver-blue. Their fur has a blue hue towards the skin and silver tips, giving a shimmering appearance. You'll see this gorgeous tone from an early age, although some Korat kittens may initially have some "ghost tabby" markings.
The Korat's coat is short and single-layered to keep them cool in the tropical heat, plus it rarely sheds. Therefore, brushing is unnecessary as they tend to maintain their coats well enough.
The temperament of a Korat
The Korat is exceptionally affectionate and loyal. They build deep bonds with their owners and stay by their side often. Once they establish who their family is, they are entirely devoted and won't favour your friends or neighbours over you. However, this doesn't mean they are unfriendly to strangers or will hide from your guests as they are typically happy to receive attention and pets.
They are playful and energetic and spend most of their day on the move rather than lazing around. They are incredibly smart and display impressive memories. If they have access to the outdoors, they are not likely to get lost, as many Korats prove to find their way home from somewhere they have never been before. Their street smartness most probably relates to their heritage where they lived on the streets or in colonies at temples.
Their excellent memory means they will remember their owners and come running to you even if you've been apart for a long time. So when you go on holiday, you don't have to worry that they will act aloof when you return as this is not the case with these loyal and loving felines.
Like most Thai breeds, the Korat is a chatty cat but not on the level as the Siamese. Even so, they will use their voice to let you know they are around. For example, if you allow them to go outside when they return, they will call out to you to let you know they are back. They also use their body language to tell you if they like or dislike something.
10 reasons to add a Korat to your family
- Their loyalty is unmatched - The affection a Korat gives their owner is not fleeting by any means. The family unit is fundamental to a Korat, and they will never desert you.
- They bring prosperity - In Thailand, Korats are lucky charms and were given as gifts in the past because of this. Their Thai name " Sawat" literally translates to prosperity, and those with crimped tails are even luckier.
- They have shimmery fur - Their silver-tipped hairs give Korats a sleek and shiny look, and in the sunlight, they appear glittery.
- Their striking eyes are to die for - What's more distinct than their fur is their emerald green eyes that stand out in both daylight and the darkness of the night.
- They have adorable heart-shaped faces - Their small heads represent the shape of a heart, which gives them a very endearing expression.
- They make an array of sounds - As well as the standard meow, Korats have a full range of sounds and chirps that they regularly use to communicate with you.
- They are calm around children - Korat cats are good-natured and like to receive attention from children. Once they know and trust them, they will happily play with them.
- They are cuddly - As well as following you around, Korat cats love to curl up beside or on top of their owner's lap.
- They adapt well to new environments - Korat cats don't mind changes to their environment as long as their humans are with them. They are entirely owner oriented, so they typically won't get stressed if you move house as your presence is enough to keep them calm.
- They are all-natural - Like most Thai breeds, the Korat cat developed naturally and have never been used to create a crossbreed.
Best homes for a Korat cat
Korats highly value companionship. If they are in a home where they are left alone for a long time, they will develop separation anxiety. Thus, they will do best with someone looking for a furry best friend to hang out with regularly. Of course, this means you'll need to have plenty of time for them and be ok with them following you around and "helping" you with whatever you need to do.
If you want to ease the load, you should consider getting two Korats instead of one or another feline to keep them company. Korats are one cat breed that undoubtedly does better in pairs, especially if they grow up together from a young age.