The Angora makes a charming, dainty companion and is very attractive in appearance, with its long lithe body and a plumed tail. It is not a talkative cat but is loyal, affectionate and adaptable, it would be happy living in either town or country, but would prefer to be given the run of the home. Alert, lively and intelligent, it loves to play games and to show off to an audience. Angoras are bred in most colours and patterns, although white is probably the most popular. Some of the blue-eyed and odd-eyed whites may be deaf, and it is advisable to make sure before purchase that your chosen kitten is not deaf unless you feel competent to take full care of such an animal and protect it against the inevitable dangers. At present, the Angora is still a rather rare breed and may be expensive to buy.
Although the Angora is easier to groom than a Persian, it never the less needs and will enjoy a daily grooming session. Use a medium toothed comb with a handle to remove dead hairs. Grooming is particularly important in spring and early summer when much of the coat is shed.
Origin and history
The Angora is thought to be the oldest long-haired breed in Europe and came originally from Ankara in Turkey, where it is known to exist today, both as a free-roaming domestic cat and in the local zoo. Angoras arrived in the United Kingdom via France at the end of the sixteenth century, and so were known for a time as French cats. In the early days, they were unfortunately mated indiscriminately with other longhaired cats the original Persians, and in the process the Persian type was dominant and the Angora type was lost until quite recently, except of course in Turkey. Apparently the early Persians had long, thick coats, lacking the silkiness of the Angora coat, and it is thought that Angoras may have been used to improve the Persian coat. Recently the breed has been revived in the Eastern United States, where cats have been imported directly from the Ankara Zoo. These cats are white, but other colours have been bred and many studs will be kept for many are now recognized for showing on both sides of the Atlantic, although numbers in the United Kingdom are still small.
Angora litters usually contain four to five kittens, though six or seven is not uncommon. Although many colours occur naturally within the breed, white is so dominant that it nearly always appears in the coat, and it is difficult to produce show quality Angoras in other colours. Deafness is particularly common among blue-eyed and odd-eyed white Angoras.
Angora kittens are charming, fluffy and playful. White kittens born with a smudge of black hairs on the top of their heads are likely to have good hearing in at least one ear. The kittens mature slowly, and the long, silky coat is not fully developed until two years of age.