The British Blue Shorthair Cat, with its light blue, plush coat, is the most popular of all the British shorthaired varieties in the United Kingdom. Blues are said to prefer a quiet life and are renowned for their quiet, well-balanced temperaments. Although shown in reasonable numbers at the first cat shows, during the Second World War there were very few studs available. After the War outcrosses to other breeds were made, which unfortunately resulted in the loss of type. Further outcrosses were made to longhaired Blues that did improve type, however, although they produced coats that were too long. Selective breeding during the 1950s saw the re-establishment of the shorthaired Blues, and now kittens are much in demand.
For Blue Shorthairs, this will entail a daily combing to remove dead hairs and lots of hand stroking, which all cats enjoy. It should not be necessary to shampoo a Blue, but a little bay rum rubbed into the coat the day before the show will remove any greasiness, which otherwise might mar the colour.
It is advisable to outcross to longhaired Blues or shorthaired Blacks occasionally to maintain good type and colour. Some of the resulting kittens will have undesirable features such as over long fur; these are not suitable for the show bench, but, of course, make excellent and charming pets. Litters usually contain three or four kittens. Blues are particularly useful for producing Blue-creams when mated to Creams.
Blue kittens are especially pretty. They are usually born with faint tabby markings, but these disappear within the first few months as the coat grows.