Russian blue cats are domestic cats

history

Russian blue is not just Russian blue. Today, three main branches of breeding are known in Europe, due to their respective histories they differ from each other immensely.

The Siberian / Scandinavian type is a bit smaller, particularly elegant and has ears set wide apart. The rather dark-colored type is rather shy of people and is therefore not bred very often.

The American type is the most elegant of them all. Medium-sized with a rather lighter color and very wide set ears, he is particularly sociable and also fond of strangers.

The english type is rather stronger. Particularly outstanding is a rather narrow, vertical ear position of Russian blue from the English breeding branch. In terms of character, cats of this type are between the Siberian and American breeding branches.

In Germany there are mainly mixtures of these breeding branches - this is definitely desirable in order to preserve genetic diversity!

But why do the respective breeding branches differ so greatly from one another? The reason can be found in the breeding history of the Russian blue cat. As the name suggests, the Russian Blue comes from Russia. It is believed that it occurred as a natural breed in the northern Russian port city of Arkhangelsk and was introduced to England by British sailors from there around 1860. It was introduced as "Archangel Cat" in 1875 at the Crystal Palace in England. In the 19th century, the breed was popular in both England and the Russian Empire. The Russian blue cat has been recognized as an independent breed since 1937. With the onset of World War II, the population of Russian Blue was extremely decimated, but the breed could be saved by crossbreeding with Siamese cats, British Shorthair and European Shorthair. This made the Russian blue cat's fur shorter and thicker, and its eyes deep emerald green.

But the breeding story has not come to an end! There are still efforts to have white and black Russian blue recognized. The "Russian White and Black Program" was founded in England in the 1960s: Frances McLeod of Arctic began to breed "Russian White" and "Russian Black". The Australian Mavis Jones mated a white house cat with a Russian blue in the 1970s. Their goal was a new color variant of the breed, the "Russian White". In the late 1970s, these Russian-blue hybrids were recognized as a color variant of Russian blue by the Royal Agricultural Society (RAS) Cat Club of New South Wales. Meanwhile, the black and white variants of the Russian Blue have also been recognized in breeding associations in Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. The American Cat Fanciers Association now grants the “Russian Black” and “Russian White” champion chip status, where they are listed as the “Russian Shorthair”. Its breeding standard corresponds to that of the Russian Blue, but it can also be monochrome black or monochrome white. The eye color must correspond to a bright green as with the Russian Blue. The majority of the breeding associations still only recognize the blue-gray variant of the Russian Blue.