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So, you’re thinking about adopting a Russian Blue cat, but you’re worried about their shedding habits? Fret not! We’ll answer all of your frequently asked questions about this breed. Plus, we’ll let you in on some need-to-know facts about Russian Blue cats.
If you’re looking for more information on this rare breed, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve compiled all the details you should know before you bring your Russian Blue to their forever home, where we know you’ll take great care of them.
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It’s time to breathe a sigh of relief: your Russian Blue won’t leave too much of a mess for you to clean up - at least when it comes to fur! These cats make great pets because they don’t shed much and require minimal grooming - just enough to keep their skin in peak health.
Longhaired Russian Blues actually go by an entirely different name: Nebelung. It can actually take almost two years for these kittens to fully develop their fluffy coats that you know and love.
Luckily, Nebelungs don’t shed excessively, but they will need one good brushing per week to save their luscious fur from becoming tangled or matted.
True Russian Blues are all short haired and pretty low maintenance in the shedding department. However, it’s best to keep giving your cat a good grooming every now and then to catch any loose hairs and distribute healthy oils around their skin.
Plus, this breed has an attention-loving personality, so your cat will happily soak up some quality cuddling time. If you find that your pet is shedding more than usual, bathe them. This can help rid your cat of excess hair quickly and in a central location.
If you have a Russian Blue in your family, you already know that your cat’s fur feels similar to a plush blanket - and you probably hear it from guests a lot too!
You can thank their double coat for crafting this distinctly soft, luxurious fur. A double coat is made up of a lengthy, coarse, protective outer layer with a fine, silky undercoat beneath. As you can probably guess, history experts believe that these blue gray cats first originated in Northern Russia.
A lack of information on this breed makes it hard to confirm this, but their warm, thick coats are definitely a sign that they came from a colder climate. They can survive without these now that they inhabit the United States, but they once needed that dense fur to insulate them!
A Russian Blue cat has thick fur that is wonderfully velvety and often compared to a seal or beaver. In fact, history suggests that these fluffy friends were sadly once hunted for pelts.
Uniquely, their hairs sit at a 45° angle. Because of this, you can use your finger to draw patterns along your cat’s back that will actually stay visible until you wipe them away.
Don’t worry if you have allergies; Russian Blue cats are hypoallergenic. This means you won’t have to keep popping the antihistamines to prevent allergic reactions. Rejoice!
Essentially, hypoallergenic just means that these cats produce fewer allergens than most breeds. Do note that, despite this, Russian Blues still produce some degree of pet dander, a common allergen from their skin. Don’t blame these felines for it, though!
Unfortunately, it’s unavoidable. Dander is universal among all cat breeds. If you find that even your Russian Blue gives you red, itchy eyes and a runny nose, don’t panic yet. There are some ways you can combat your allergies. Address the problem right at the source!
Giving your cat a good wash down can help rinse allergens such as dander, hair, and saliva down the drain. Try to bathe your cat monthly - if they’ll let you. If not, regular brushings can catch some of that hair before it sheds.
Keeping your house as clean as possible, especially floors and carpets where dander loves to hide may also provide you some relief. An air purifier can filter some of these allergens out of the air too.
Remember, Russian Blue cats don’t shed much and are considered hypoallergenic, so there’s definite hope that your allergic response will get along with your cat as well as you do.
Your typical Russian Blue will have a shiny, gray topcoat that darkens down the shaft until you hit their blueish-lavender roots. Their fur is densely packed and plush in both appearance and texture. These aren’t the only animals with fur similar to this, though - there are other breeds with blue coats too!
Russian Blue foxes are more commonly known as the Arctic fox. You might be surprised to hear this, but no, Arctic foxes don’t always have that iconic snow-white fur.
When the weather gets warmer in places such as Northern Russia, these foxes shed their fur, and some even develop blue-gray coats in the summertime, hence their name. These silver foxes have a thick, beautiful coat, but it usually isn’t solid blue in color. Instead, it can feature brown tones as well.
Nebelungs bear that classic Russian Blue shiny blue gray coat, but their silver-tipped guard hairs only stand out much more on their heads and shoulders. This longer-haired breed has medium-length fur throughout their body that gradually grows longer between their shoulders and tails. Some people might even think their hair’ style resembles a lion’s mane.
According to the Cat Fanciers Association, the British Blue was one of England’s first cat breeds, with its history dating back to Rome. Despite their name, these short haired British Blues actually come in an array of colors. Many people adore this breed at cat shows, and one reason for this is because of their awe-inspiring plush coat.
While this breed may have a shy side, Russian Blue cats are loyal, loving pets with a friendly personality. They love to play and could spend hours chasing toys or climbing up furniture.
They’re also intuitive, empathetic animals that care deeply about their family members. They’re known to hang around a loved one if they can sense someone is sad or upset.
These cats are tolerant and patient by nature. Most of them will take a liking to young family members and other pets, so long as they feel respected. Still, it might take a bit of time before your furry one will grow comfortable around guests. These cats can startle easily! Some think this may be because the breed used to be hunted in Northern Russia, but others dispute this.
Russian Blues thrive on schedules and predictability, so change can be difficult for them. You might find your cat withdraws around people at first or need to watch from the sidelines before they get adjusted. Either way, let your pet take its time opening up to new people.
It may take a bit to develop a relationship, but once one of these cats comes grows fond of you, they’ll love having your attention. This breed has a sensitive personality, so cuddling your Russian Blue cat can help prove to them that you care about them.
This is important to do as they’ve been known to appear hurt if they feel ignored. There’s no better way to show your love for your pet cat than curling up with them, and one of our cat hoodies or sweatshirts is perfect for the occasion.
Russian Blue cats are typically in great health, leading an average life span between 10 and 15 years. If your pet cat spends more of its time indoors and has less unsupervised time outside, its expected lifespan will be on the higher end of this range, sometimes even up to 20 years.
If you care for them well, your cat can live a lengthy, happy life. Generally speaking, this is a healthy breed. You can enjoy some peace of mind knowing that there are no particular health problems that plague these cats.
However, Russian Blues have an affinity for food and will eat as much as you give them. It can be hard to resist their relentless pleas for more, but if you’re not careful, your cat can easily become overweight, making them susceptible to many weight-related health concerns.
It’s best to measure their food and keep an eye out for anyone passing them any table scraps.
Russian Blues are rare cats, making them very highly sought after companions, but more on that soon. First, let’s dive deeper into how you can identify your Russian Blue. No matter what, remember that your cat is special regardless of its breed.
Grey cats are quite common, so there is a good chance your kitty is actually a different breed. Take a look at these characteristics that set a Russian Blue apart from other grey cat breeds like the British Blue.
Russian Blues are fine-boned and have a lengthy, muscular body. Their heads are quite flat, and some even describe their flat skulls as being cobra-like. These cats have quite a thin neck, but their thick double coat makes them appear small and wide.
Their pointed ears also sit to the sides of their head, as opposed to others’ that are more straight on. One way to tell if your pet is a member of the Russian Blue breed is by tracing a pattern into your cat’s blue fur and see if it stays put. The angle of a Russian Blue’s hair will hold these shapes until they’ve been brushed away.
Occasionally, a Russian Blue may have what is known as a “ghost stripe.” This is a faint marking that tabby cats are famous for. Typically, kittens grow out of these, but it can make it all the more difficult to distinguish the two.
Unfortunately, there isn’t an easy way to determine if your cat is a tabby or a Russian Blue. The most accurate way would be to check out their DNA, but this is still difficult.
Unless your cat mates with another Russian Blue and produces similarly colored kittens or you have papers to prove it, it’s hard to say with certainty whether it’s a Russian Blue or a tabby cat.
Otherwise, you can use the process of elimination. If your cat doesn’t have a dense, short coat that is uniformly gray with silver tips and bright green eyes, it’s definitely not a Russian Blue.
You can expect your cat to grow between 15-18 inches (38-46 centimeters) long (tail not included) and weigh between 7-15 pounds (3-7 kilograms).
Feel free to rave about your kitty (even more than usual) when you bring a Russian Blue into your family. Though they are growing in popularity in the United States, specifically in cat shows, these felines are rare!
If you find yourself constantly gushing facts about this hard-to-come-by breed, you might be the type to call yourself “cat-obsessed.” Don’t worry, though. We’re into it. In fact, we made these crazy cat coffee mugs so you can announce that title proudly.
Russian Blues have intense green eyes that sharply contrast with the rest of their gray coats. However, their eyes aren’t always like that - they change.
Fun fact: Russian Blues’ eyes shift colors starting at a mere four months of age, adding all the more magic to these already beautiful beings. These kittens are born with yellow eyes but begin to develop an emerald green ring around the pupil. As they grow, the color evolves and becomes even more of a vivid green tone.
Russian Blue cats are relatively allergy-friendly cats who shed infrequently. Their thick, silvery double coat is incredibly soft and well-insulating. These loyal cats can make fantastic lifelong companions for many people.
Though Russian Blues have heavy enough coats to keep warm without layering up, their two-legged counterparts don’t. Check out these cat shirts for humans to show your love for your feline friends.