As the name suggests, the Siberian cat is an animal from the cold Siberian region of eastern Russia. Possibly this is the cause of its abundant fur of hair, so necessary to protect it from the inclement weather.
The theory of its origin states that it could have appeared as a result of the natural crossing between European cats arriving in this region and the wild cats that inhabited the forests of Siberia, although there is no way to prove the veracity of that theory.
These cats have more than a thousand years of history, and it is said that at the beginning of their history, these animals guarded the ancient Russian monasteries, which they did on their own, without being pets properly at that time.
One of the reasons why there is hardly any documentation relating to this breed has to do with the regime of the former Soviet Union having a ban on owning pets. Back then, probably the Siberian cat lived as part of the farmer families to help them maintain their farms free of mice and other vermin.
In 1889 the first reference to the Siberian cat, in a book entitled ‘Our Cats’, named a strange Siberian cat that they offered the author as a gift. Even then, and although evidence shows that the breed had already entered some homes, it would still take several decades to make it a recognized companion animal.
The official recognition of the breed in Russia would arrive in 1987, at which time its standard was also drafted and would begin to be presented in the feline beauty contests. In the following decade, the Siberian cat was first introduced in Europe, and later to the United States, where it soon became famous due to its beauty, size, and temperament.
Today, the Siberian cat is one of the most beloved and sought-after breeds in the world. It has even won the affection of people who claim to prefer dogs because it has a character that could remind dogs and a size that certainly surpasses some of the small breeds.
Features of the Siberian cat
The main feature of Siberian cats is their size, much larger than other breeds.
In addition, it is also very bulky and burly, with very developed muscles and an imposing appearance.
However, this feline has very slow growth and does not reach its final size until its total maturity, which occurs around 4 or 5 years of life. At that time, it is normal that the weight of the adult cat is between the minimum 9 lbs (4 kg) that a female can weigh, up to the maximum 22 lbs (10 kg) that a male can weigh.
Also, among its physical features are muscular and long legs and a very hairy tail. He is a large-headed cat, but well proportioned in relation to the rest of the body. Also, large eyes, which can be in various colors, and a short, rounded nose. The ears are medium-sized and have a slight forward tilt.
Another key to recognizing this cat is its fur. It is not comparable to any other feline breed. It is so dense and strong that it can become difficult to find its body under the three layers of hair. You can even find locks of hair between the pads, another form of protection against the cold.
The fur of the Siberian cat can appear in any shade, even of a single color; maybe the most common being the Siberian orange cat and the white Siberian cat.
Siberian cat behavior
The Siberian cat has a unique character. It stands out for being quiet and affectionate but it can also have an overwhelming personality. It is not a cat for everyone, but for those who know how to understand a cat that it is not submissive or that it will obey any order.
Siberians are temperamental animals that require constant education, although this doesn’t mean that they are not sociable or that they don’t get along with people.
In fact, they are excellent playmates. They prefer activity and play further than being relaxed. It is also recommended that this breed has an outdoor space where he can climb, hunt, etc.
Although they may seem independent because of their strong character, the truth is that Siberian cats do not carry loneliness well. They have a lot of affection for their family and require a lot of attention on their part.
Main diseases of the Siberian cat
The breed of Siberian cat has been developed through natural selection, not by breeders. Therefore, it is a very strong animal, which hardly has health problems and that is much more resistant than other breeds to diseases that generally affect cats.
This is an important detail to keep in mind for those who prefer to keep away visits to the veterinarian, although it will always be necessary to keep those necessary to review their general health and to keep up with their schedule of vaccinations and deworming.
Basic care of the Siberian cat
The Siberian cat usually requires more care at the aesthetic level than health. Its long fur, which appears in three layers, needs constant brushing to not form knots or hairballs that could also be swallowed.
Then, he needs a quality diet, and a combination of dry and wet food so that the cat has all the nutrients. As for the amount, being a large cat will require more food than other breeds, but always in line with the exercise you do.
Things to know of the Siberian cat
Its fur in three very dense layers it’s its main protection against the low temperatures of its place of origin.
Long before this animal was domesticated it had to survive in the open, and thanks to its physical features was able to withstand temperatures of up to 30 degrees below zero.
It is one of the so-called hypoallergenic breeds. This is not to say that allergic people can live with them in all cases, but they will be more likely since this breed generates to a much lesser extent the protein responsible for most animal allergies in humans.
The Siberian cat is considered as the national breed of Russia for its imposing appearance and size, in spite of other feline breeds that also originated in this area.