If you are looking for an independent and intelligent cat, the Snowshoe could be a good match. Snowshoes are sociable and adorable, but they also have a mischievous side.
Snowshoe cats: What sets them apart from other breeds?
Snowshoe cats are affectionate and sociable. They are not too demanding of attention and they can manage on their own if they like to nap or lounge around. Cat experts believe that they got this temperament from their American Shorthair cousins that are not overly needy for attention either.
Snowshoes like to be cuddled and petted. They tend to develop a strong attachment to their humans, but most of them have one favorite family member. They do not prefer to be left alone for a long time. These cats also tend to be talkative since they are closely related to the Siamese cat breed.
This breed is intelligent with a playful side. Provide them with plenty of stimulating toys like puzzle toys and other challenges to satisfy their curiosity. These gentle cats are easily trained and can be taught to play fetch and give high-five’s. They will also willingly walk on a leash given the right training.
Snowshoes adore water and like to play with their water dish. These frisky cats will even jump in the tub or the shower and do not mind getting wet. They are famous for being good-natured, which makes them great companions for families with small children and other cats.
Physical Features of Snowshoe cats
Origin: Philadelphia, U.S.A.
Weight: 9-12 lbs. for males; 7-10 lbs. for females
Physical build and looks: medium-sized; has the build of an American Shorthair and the looks of a Siamese
Life span: 15 to 20 years
Coat length: short
Coat color: black, white, brown, tan
Pattern/markings: white with dark spots on the tail, legs, ears, and sometimes the head; eye mask or inverted “V” facial marking; white paws
The Snowshoe cat breed’s distinctive features are its coat and color markings which it gets from its Siamese roots. These cats are seal point or blue point like the Siamese. The kittens are born all-white but begin to develop dark features in their first few years of life.
According to The International Cat Association (TICA), this breed has a coat that resembles a “tuxedo” with different colored feet, owing to its American Shorthair roots. This breed’s coat darkens as it matures. No two kittens have the same markings.
Snowshoe cats were first bred by an American breeder named Dorothy Hinds-Daugherty in the 1960s. By crossing a Siamese with a bi-color American Shorthair, she was able to produce a litter of three pointed kittens with pure white mittens and boot feet. She named the new breed “snowshoes” based on the kittens’ snowy-white “shoes.” The breed was not recognized by the American Cat Association until 1974.
Snowshoes have no specific health issues but vaccinations and parasite treatments should always be up-to-date. After they turn seven years old, they should be checked every six months so that age-related health issues can be detected and treated promptly.
What is the difference between a Snowshoe and Ragdoll cat?
The main difference between a Snowshoe and Ragdoll cat is that the former is always a shorthair while the latter is always a longhair.
Are Snowshoe cats expensive?
No, Snowshoe cats are not expensive compared to other cat breeds. These cats only range from $200 to $500 per kitten. Even the top-notch ones are $600 each. Expensive cat breeds like the Sphynx cost $3,000, while the Ashera cat breed can cost up to $125,000.
Some interesting facts about Snowshoe cats
- According to the American Cat Fanciers Association (ACFA), there is evidence of Snowshoes in an old Japanese silkscreen and in a Victorian photograph. This indicates that the cat breed may have been around longer than just the 1960s.
- Dusty the Klepto Kitty is considered the most famous Snowshoe cat. He stole more than 600 items from his neighbors, ranging from bathing suits to dish towels. He was so popular that he was even featured on “The Late Show with David Letterman” in 2011.
Snowshoe cats are ideal pets because they are affectionate, sociable and intelligent. They crave attention from their humans but are not overly needy. They got their build from their American Shorthair roots, but they owe their looks and their talkativeness to their Siamese cousins. This good-natured cat breed gets along well with kids and other cats and would make a good addition to your pet-loving family.
Image: istockphoto.com / nevodka