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Pets

Things You Need to Know About the American Shorthair

American Shorthair is a breed of cat that is often described as sturdy and firm that has an inquisitive nature. This cat, on the other hand, is popularly known for its great hunting skills. American Shorthair cats also have loving and thoughtful expressions that actually make them a very popular option for cat lovers. 

Whether you are one of the many American Shorthair breeders or owners or planning to get, here are the things that you need to about this cat breed. 

History

Originally, American Shorthair cats were descended from Europe and traveled over in the Mayflower to be utilized as pest control for the ships.

American shorthair were descents of the British Shorthair, it is a breed that has a good standing history of getting rid of rodents from the populaces during crucial periods in history like the Black Plagues. 

Cats are highly valued not only in the land but at the sea as well. Homeowners, farmers, and shopkeepers need cats in order to protect their foods and shops from rats, mice, and other pests. The American Shorthair cats were hardly working creatures making them ideal for tough conditions that succeeded in the wild content. 

In 1906, this cat breed was officially included in the registry of Cat Fanciers Association. After a couple of years, specifically in 1965 American Shorthair cats obtained their highest award after one member a silver-coated male American Shorthair tabby named Shawnee Trademark was hailed by the CFA as the Best Cat of the Year.

Personality

An American shorthair cat is friendly and affectionate making it highly adaptable to the needs of his owner. With that in mind, whether it’s an American Shorthair kitten or adult, this cat breed can be a great companion. 

Moreover, this cat does not demand affection constantly, as a matter of it is happy to spend quality time with you and your loved ones. However, you need to support his rear feet so that your cat will become more comfortable. 

On the other hand, American Shorthair cats are great at entertaining themselves, however, they also like an interactive game that involves hunting. 

One more thing, they are trainable, intelligent, and most importantly, willing to learn new things such as using scratching posts. 

How Long Do American Shorthair Cats Live

American shorthairs keep on growing until they’re three or four years. Typically, a male is bigger than a female averaging 11lbs. to 15lbs, whereas the female weighs 6lbs.  to 12lbs. 

If you’re wondering how long these cats live, their lifespan ranges between 12 years and two decades. 

Health

Generally, American Shorthairs are healthy, but one common health problem that can affect such a cat breed is HCM or hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. 

HCM is a common form of heart problem in cats and this causes the thickening of the heart muscle. With the help of an echocardiogram, you will be able to confirm whether your American Shorthair is suffering from an HCM. 

Also, avoid American Shorthair breeders who claim to possess HCM-free lines. Keep in mind that no one can assure that their cats won’t develop HCM. All American Shorthair cats that’ll be bred must be tested for HCM. And those who have this disease must be eliminated from the breeding programs. 

As a piece of advice, do not buy an American Shorthair kitten whose parents haven’t been tested for HCM.

Care

When it comes to taking care of American Shorthair well it is pretty easy. Brush their teeth to avoid periodontal diseases. Regular dental hygiene is a good idea but brushing your cat weekly is better than nothing. You will also need to trim the nails of your American Shorthair every couple of weeks. To get rid of any discharge, you need to wipe the corners of its eyes using a damp and soft cloth. Make sure to use a separate portion of the cloth so that you do not run the risk of spreading the infection if there is any. 

One more thing, you need to clean its ears weekly. You can use soft damp cloth or cotton ball with a 50-50 mixture of warm water and cider vinegar.

Keep in mind that cats are particular about bathroom hygiene, thus dirty litter boxes will cause them to begin utilizing other areas in your home. So always keep is litter box clean. 

Feeding 

An American Shorthair is the happiest it is not obese or overweight. You can help your cat stay in a healthy range by giving the recommended amount found on the food labels. Usually, this will depend on the weight, so make sure to read the back of the bag. 

If you want to make sure that your cat will not feel hungry, feed him two or three times a day. However, you need to divide the recommended amount for his weight. One more thing, do not leave dry food all the time, as this will cause your cat to overeat.

Your cat will also need fresh water to stay healthy. Then clean and change the bowls to prevent algae or bacteria development on the bowls.

Coat Color and Grooming

The coat of American Shorthairs comes in a large variety of patterns and colors such as particolor, bicolor, tortoiseshell, calico, solid, tabby, and among others. But the most popular of them all is the classic tabby pattern. 

When it comes to grooming the coat, all you need to do is brush or comb it several times a week to get rid of dead hair as well as distribute skin oils. 

Personality with Children and Other Pets

American Shorthairs can be a great option if you have cat-friendly pets and kids at home. This breed can easily learn tricks as well as love the attention it receives from kids who treat him with respect and politely. Further, American Shorthairs get along with dogs as long as they do not give them any trouble. As mentioned, these cats are skilled hunters, however, they may learn to leave pet birds and other small animals if they’re introduced at an early period.