Scottish Fold & Scottish StraightOrigins
The history of the amazing Scottish Fold breed started in 1961. William Ross, a Scottish farmer, came upon a white cat with unique ears – Suzie. The farmer was so excited with the cute appearance of Suzie that he later bought a kitten with folded ears from Suzie’s litter. Mr. Ross named the kitten Snooks and began the breeding program and establishment of the “lop eared” cat breed as he named it. The breed was registered in GCCF (UK) in 1966 and in CFA (USA) in 1973.
Even though the Scottish Fold breed is world-wide famed and one of the most popular cat breed now, they didn’t have a smooth start due to their genetic peculiarities. It was sought that they had hearing disorders and various breed-related infections and health conditions. The latter one, though, proved to be true.
As this breed was just on its early stages of development but quite popular already, there were no strict rules for breeding. Frequently, two fold-eared cats were paired. Kittens from such pairs developed osteochondrodysplasia, a health condition which affects joints, hips and leads to various deformities, causes pain and affects quality of life. It was later discovered that if a healthy Scottish fold cat was paired with a straight-eared cat, the kittens were born healthy and rarely had osteochondrodysplasia. Due to this, breeders cultivated the best match for the Scottish Fold naming the breed the Scottish Straight.
Before the Scottish Straight cats were cultivated, the Scottish folds were bred with different cat breeds: the Persian, the Exotic, the British Shorthair and the American Shorthair. This, unfortunately, led to confusion and occurrence of fictional breed names like the British Fold. Moreover, quite large audience still believes that the British Shorthair are straight-eared kittens of the Scottish Fold.
The Scottish Fold also have a long-haired variation named the Highland Fold (the Highland Straight respectively), other names include the Scottish Fold Longhair, the Longhair Fold and the Coupari. The latter one is related to the area where the Scottish Folds were discovered — Coupar Angus.
The Scottish Fold and Straight cats are moderately playful and highly affectionate. Their day consists of meditation, thinking about the world origins with occasional plays and stalking their humans to get attention and affection.
They prefer staying close to their humans and might even get attached to one person. Nevertheless, this attachment hardly prevents them from spending time with those humans who are ready to give them belly rubbings, cuddle and snuggle with them. They are not shy to ask for attention, however, they are not over-talkative and you will often find them rubbing against your leg. They might be wary in presence of strangers but they warm to them quickly and show interest to the new humans at their home.
The Scottish Fold and Straight cats are a perfect companion for those who need an affection-dependent cat.
The Scottish Fold and Straight cats are medium in size with medium-length legs, moderately long body and long flexible tail.
Their head is round with full cheeks and whisker pads. The face is flattened a bit with a short muzzle, large round eyes and small ears. The Scottish folds have ears look forward and downward, rounded on tips. Sometimes their expression is compared to the owl’s. The Scottish Straight cats have the same features apart fro the ears. Their ears are straight, small and rounded.
The coat of Scottish Fold and Straight cats is extremely soft with dense undercoat which makes them appear much bigger than they are. They can be both longhair and shorthair. The coat comes in a variety of colors and patterns from solid blue to red marble tabby to silver chinchillas. They eye color matches different variations of color. Blue eyes for pointed colors, green eyes for chinchillas and ticked tabbys and amber for the rest.
The Scottish Fold and Straight cat have a life span of 15 years in average. They are generally healthy cats, however, prone to health conditions as cardiomyopathy, polycistic kidney disease and osteochondrodysplasia. Due to incorrect breeding (both in the pair are fold-eared), the Scottish folds might have short and stiff tail, spine issues, bone deformities. Bone tissue-related conditions might considerably affect the quality of life and cause pain is left untreated. The treatment, though, is mostly consists of chondroprotection supplements and balanced diet.
As for the care, it highly depends on the coat length. The longhair cats should be brushed daily, especially during seasonal shedding, or twice a week at least. The shorthair cats can be brushed once a week or two weeks. Their ears also worth checking for excessive ear wax once a month at least and clean them with a damp cotton pad.