This week in our series on Getting to Know Your Cat Breed we are featuring the Scottish Fold Cat. These cute cats get their name from the way their ears ‘fold’ over.
Life expectancy: 11 - 14 years
Size: The Scottish Fold is a medium sized cat, weighing 6-9 lbs for a female and 9-13 lbs for a male.
Color: The Scottish Fold may be found in variety of colors from silver to gold and have either long or short hair.
Origins: The Scottish Fold came about because of their distinctive folded ear. The fold is the result of a genetic mutation that causes the cartilage in the ear to not develop fully and thus, the ear folds over. A cat bearing this trait was found in Scotland in 1961 and registered there in 1966. The cats made their way to America and bred with the American Shorthair and British Shorthair to help resolve issues with deafness, ear mites and deformed limbs and tails. The breed was recognized by the Cat Fanciers Association in 1974.
Personality: Scottish Folds are known for their laid-back nature and easy going personalities. They are very loyal and love to be near their families. They do not like being left alone, so they are not good cats for folks who work all day.
They are fun-loving and playful. They are also known for the odd positions they tend to get into – upside down with their feet in the air, standing like a human or sitting upright like a Buddha. They can also be mischievous and have been found opening the cupboard where the treats are kept in order to help themselves to a snack.
They are good cats for children and usually get along well with dogs.
Health Issues: The genetic mutation that causes the ear fold can also cause other deformities in the Scottish Fold. The condition is called Osteochondrodystrophy and is a degenerative joint disease that can cause painful skeletal issues. Scottish Folds should NOT be bred to another Scottish Fold since the mutation is a dominant gene and instead bred to American or British Shorthairs to avoid this painful condition.
Fitness/energy level: Scottish Folds are moderately active and will play with cat toys. They can be taught to play fetch and will even splash around in water if given the opportunity. They make good indoor cats, but do need exercise or they have a tendency towards obesity.
Native foods for the Scottish Fold:
Fun facts about the Scottish Folds:
They are born with straight ears. They only begin to flop at 2-4 weeks of age.
A Scottish Fold named Maru is an internet sensation with videos appearing on multiple social media sites.
Even though Scottish Folds originated in Scotland, they are no longer allowed registry in any European country due to their genetic mutations and associated health issues.