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Turkish Angora – Cat Breed Guide
Adopt a Turkish Angora, Cat Breed Guide
The Turkish Angora is a domesticated cat breed that is believed to be several thousands of years old. This particular breed is among the original long-haired cats that first arrived in the European continent, together with the Russian Angoras and Russian Longhairs. The Turkish Angoras are famous for being medium-sized cats with intermediate conformation that has a very soft and silky coat. These cats are originally semi-long haired felines but can change to being short-haired cats due to hot weather, a feat that only the Turkish Angora is known to be capable of.
Today, the pure white coated Turkish Angora cat is one of Turkey’s official national treasures.
In Turkey, they are known as the Ankara Kedisi in the local Turkish vernacular, which means Ankara Cat in English. In some of the world, these cats of Turkish origin are called simply as Ankara.
Widely recognized as one of the most ancient domestic cat breeds still in existence, the Turkish Angora is named after its area of origin. These cats have been known to have existed, bred and kept as pets in Ankara, a region located in central Turkey.
Size: Turkish Angoras are typically medium-sized cats.
Coat Type: A Turkish Angora cat has medium-length coats and does not have an undercoat.
Body Type: Turkish Angora cats have well-balanced bodies, slender and fine-boned inbuilt and structure.
Grooming Requirement: A Turkish Angora cat will only require very little grooming attention. These cats can live with a once every week grooming session.
Vocal Tendency: These cats are average talkers and will be as vocal as the average feline breed.
Energy Levels: Angora cats are known to be energetic due to their high level of activity.
Time Alone: The Turkish Angora will require about 4 to 8 hours of alone time per day.
Care: These cats will need plenty of attention and will be moderately docile in handling.
The International Cat Association – Full recognition and acceptance as a Championship Breed under the name Turkish Angora with breed code TA.
Livre Officiel des Origines Félines – Full recognition and acceptance as a Championship Breed under the name Turkish Angora with breed code TUA. LOOF classifies this breed under the Semi-Longhair Breed Group.
Fédération Internationale Féline – Full recognition and acceptance as a Championship Breed under the name Turkish Angora with breed code TUA. FIFe classifies this breed under the Category II cat breed group.
Cat Fancier’s Association – Full recognition and acceptance as a Championship Breed under the name Turkish Angora.
American Cat Fancier’s Association – Full recognition and accepted the breed as a Championship Breed under the name Turkish Angora.
World Cat Federation – Full recognition and acceptance as a Championship Breed under the name Turkish Angora. WCF classifies the breed under the Semi-longhair breed group.
New Zealand Cat Fancy – Full recognition and acceptance as a Championship Breed under the name Turkish Angora with breed code TUA.
Although believed to be very ancient, the earliest historical documentation of the breed can be traced sometime during the 1600s. Most feline historians believed that they are so old that the genetic mutation that resulted in the white coloration of the fur and the long-haired coats can trace their origin to the Turkish Angora.
This breed is one of the few domestic cat breeds still existing today that can trace their history directly to the first-ever domesticated cat breed that first appeared in the Fertile Crescent, which is the region that covers the modern-day Middle East. From the Middle East, the ancestors of the modern Turkish Angora breed reached the highlands of Anatolia, a region within Asia Minor. Through years and years of inbreeding and natural selective breeding, these first-ever domesticated cats developed long-haired coats. It is said that the modern Turkish Angora as well as the Turkish Van cat breed are the direct descendants of these Anatolian cats.
From Asia Minor, how the now long-haired cats from Anatolia first made their European appearance is quite unclear. There are two commonly accepted theories; the first is that these cats reached Europe sometime during the 14th century, where Crusaders coming home from the bloody Crusades in the Middle East brought long-haired cats from Asia Minor to France and Britain. Others believed that these cats first arrived in the French and British shores by way of Persia, Russia and Asia Minor which were brought by merchant traders during the late 16th century. Before their official recognition as a purebred, the Turkish Angoras are just breeding stocks of the Persian cat breed. They were specifically used to develop and improve the Persian cat’s coat. Some cat historians even believe that the Persian cat was developed and bred from the Turkish Angora mutations. While some cat fanciers believe that Turkish Angoras and Persians are simply different names to call the same or single cat breed.
Regardless of which historical version is true, the Turkish Angora has been a recognized distinct domestic cat breed since the 17th century. By the 19th century, the Turkish Angora cats were believed to have been lost due to the popularity of the Persian cats. The cat breed resurfaced in the 20th century, used to improve the coat quality of the Persian breed.
To avoid the eventual extinction of this Turkish cat from being heavily used and diluted to the improvement of the Persian bloodlines, the Ankara Zoo began a serious breeding program. The aim was to protect, revive and preserve the ancient cats of Turkey. It first reached North America during the year 1963 by way of Canada. After a decade of breeding in Canada and the United States, the Cat Fanciers Association or CFA recognized and accepted the Turkish Angora as a Championship Class Breed in 1973. Currently, all North American registries recognize it as a pedigree. It is also recognized by various European cat registries.
Turkish Angora cats are known for their lively natural, athleticism and will often get involved with the daily lives of their human masters. These cats are domestic felines known to bond with their chosen family member, dutifully serving this lucky individual as a constant cat companion.
The Turkish Angora is very intelligent, known to be easily trained and even capable of solving basic problems. These cats are also famous for their energetic disposition, leaping to higher ground and jumping atop home furniture to another. They are really suited as household pets and will be quite good, well-behaved and tolerant of children and other animals as well.
The Turkish Angora is a cat that has a silky tail and covered in a medium-long coat with no undercoat. This is a medium-sized cat that has a balanced body type. Although famous for having a shimmering white colored coat, a Turkish Angora can have other coat colors from blue, black and even reddish in hue.
Most cat registries describe the Turkish Angora as a perfectly well-balanced cat with a graceful appearance from its fine and silky coat. These cats have very soft flowing coats but underneath, the long body is firm and muscular inbuilt.
The Turkish Angoras have bodies that are balanced in type, with fine boning and muscularly built. These cats have long bodies that are slender, graceful and lithe in structure.
Head, Ears and Eyes
Turkish Angora cats have small to medium-sized bodies that are wedged in shape. The head is wide at the top that is tapering slightly towards the chin. These cats have large and pointed ears that are wide at the base and well furnished as well tufted. The ears are set high on the head and close to each other, displaying a vertical stance that depicts alertness.
Coat and Tail
These are cats known to have sexy long tails that are tapering and wide at the base, narrowing towards the tip. A Turkish Angora has a single body coat that is medium in length. The coat length becomes longer in the frill and tail area. These cats have very fine and silky-textured hair. The coat is sleek as it is silky with a slight waviness when it comes to that belly area.
Although famous for being pure white-coated, Turkish Angora cats can come in all color variants and patterns.
Turkish Angora cats with blue eyes and mostly white-coated may have hearing problems. The presence of a blue eye on odd-eyed cats may indicate deafness to one ear, while cats having two blue eyes are most often totally deaf. This eye and ear health issue is brought by the W gene. Some lines of Turkish Angoras may be affected with hereditary ataxia. Kittens that are affected by this genetic anomaly will develop involuntary shaking movements and will die before reaching adulthood. Although rare, the cardiac condition that is known as hypertrophic cardiomyopathy does occur to this cat breed.