Choosing the right cat breed that suits your lifestyle and preferences may be daunting. There are a plethora of breeds to select from which is why it is rather challenging. If you prefer a calm and affectionate cat, a Russian blue may suit you best. This breed is renowned for its thick, dense fur, gentle nature and regal bearing but the downside is that it can be quite pricey to acquire.
Are Russian Blue cats rare?
No, Russian Blue cats are not rare in the US and can be commonly found from reputable breeders. However, this breed is quite costly. Russian Blue kittens cost around $400 to $600 in the US. If you are getting your Russian blue cat from a breeder, the cost may be higher, around $800 to $2,500 based on pedigree, breeder pricing and the medical care it has received.
Why do people think that Russian Blue cats are rare?
There is a misconception that Russian Blue is a rare breed. It is not included in the list of rare cat breeds.
Russian Blue cats were not common in the US before the 1960 but from there onwards it became more popular in the US and although it is less common than many others it is not rare.
Pet-quality Russian Blue cats are sold spayed or neutered to curb reproduction and to prevent non-breeders from flooding the market which will make the breed less exclusive.
Russian Blue cat: History, physical characteristics and behavior
The Russian Blue breed is said to have originated from Archangel Isles in Northern Russia and according to the Cat Fanciers Association or CFA, is descended from cats cared for by Russian czars or emperors. It is believed to have been shipped to England and Northern Europe around the mid-1860s. This breed is said to have made its first public appearance in 1875 when it was exhibited as the “Archangel Cat” at the London Crystal Palace.
The breed was introduced in the US around the early 1900s and according to the CFA, it started to become popular among pet lovers after World War II and became more popular since the 1960s. These cats are considered lucky cats by the Russians and they are believed to ward off bad spirits from harming newborn royal babies.
This breed has a triangular-shaped head, long and slender body and a broad forehead. These cats have large ears, a straight nose and have brilliant green eyes. This breed has a lifespan of 15 to 20 years and males weigh around 10 to 12 pounds while females weigh around seven to 10 pounds and they can grow up to 10 inches tall. They have a regal appearance and a slightly upturned mouth giving the illusion that they are smiling and their smiles have been compared to the Mona Lisa smile.
Russian Blue cats have dark gray-colored fur tipped with silver which is thick and dense and they have soft double coats. They are blue-gray colored due to a diluted gene which is a form of the black-hair gene. Their thick fur gives the impression of a large and robust frame and they have long legs that allow them to run at a fast speed. Despite their dense coat, these cats produce lower levels of the glycoprotein Fel d1 allergen and are thus considered to be hypoallergenic.
This breed is also called Archangel Blues, Maltese cat and Foreign Blues and belongs to the same classification as the Chartreux of France, the Korat cat of Thailand and the British Blue cat. However, it is a distinct breed along with its unique characteristics.
Russian Blues are sweet-tempered, loyal, calm, have a quiet voice and are not usually vocal. These cats love to greet you at the front door, are affectionate and sociable although they also enjoy some alone time. They tend to be reserved and shy but once they become comfortable with you they become very playful and affectionate. They also get along well with children and they tend to attach to one pet parent in particular.
This breed loves to play fetch and likes jumping and climbing. They are easily trained and they are also smart and enjoy puzzle toys. They are great observers and they love to chase after toys and can learn to open closet doors. These cats can entertain themselves and will not mind if you leave them at home for a couple of hours.
Rarest cat breeds
These cat breeds are considered as among the rarest cat breeds in the world:
- American Wirehair – origin: USA, cost: $800 to $1,200
- Turkish Van – origin: Eastern Anatolia,Turkey, cost: $400 to $600
- LaPerm – origin: USA, cost:$400 to $600
- Burmilla – origin: United Kingdom, cost: $500 to $700
- Havana Brown – origin: England, cost: $600 to $1,200
- Korat – origin: Thailand, cost: $500 to $700
- Chartreux – origin: France, cost: $1000 to $1,500
- European Burmese – origin: Thailand and Myanmar, cost: $200 to $300
- American Bobtail – origin: USA, cost: $600 to $1000
- Turkish Angora – origin: Turkey, cost:$600 to $800
If you are the kind of pet owner who is quite introverted and values quiet time, a Russian Blue cat may be the right cat for you. This breed is calm, gentle, has a quiet voice and is affectionate. Contrary to misconceptions, this breed is not rare and you can easily get it from reputable breeders in the US. However, they tend to be pricey depending on pedigree, medical care it has received and breeder pricing.
Image: istockphoto.com / nailiaschwarz