It’s hard to find an amazing cat breed that has a more distinctive feature than this particular cat with floppy ears.
Let’s take a closer look at some of the most interesting facts about the Scottish Fold, a fascinating pet to have around.
1. The first cat of the breed was discovered in Scotland in 1961
As the name of this particular cat breed implies, the first Scottish Fold was discovered in Perthshire, Scotland. This cat was named Susie and was found in a barn near the town of Coupar Angus in the central part of the country.
What’s remarkable about this breed is that every single Scottish Fold can be traced back to this particular cat, a mouser who worked on this barn in Scotland.
Some locals started a breeding program and the breed was eventually registered with the Governing Council of the Cat Fancy (GCCF), an official cat registry in the United Kingdom, in 1966.
2. Why do Scottish folds have floppy ears?
One of the most distinctive characteristics of any cat breed is the floppy ears of the Scottish Fold. This is not the work of some sort of genetic manipulation or cosmetic surgery, but rather a natural dominant-gene mutation.
This dominant gene is incomplete which affects the cartilage of the ears of this cat breed, a rubber-like tissue at the end of bones. This results in the ears of the cat folding forward.
Because of extensive breeding programs, the one fold of the ears in the original cats has increased to a double or even triple fold. The result is that the ears of some cats simply lie flat on their heads.
3. Not all cats of this breed have folded ears
Equally remarkable is that not all cats of this breed actually have folded ears. Some kittens never develop folds which result in their ears standing up straight just like in any other cat breed.
The cats that don’t develop this fold are simply referred to as “Straights.” Apart from lacking the distinctive feature they are named for, they share the same loving characteristics as the ones with floppy ears.
4. This breed is considered to be a medium-sized cat
Apart from their remarkable ears, the overall shape of this cat breed is round. This is most noticeable in the head and face of these fascinating animals.
They also have distinctively large and round eyes which further emphasizes the round structure of their body.
These are medium-sized cats and this is their average weight:
- Males: 4 to 6 kilos (9 to 13 lb)
- Females: 2.7 to 4 kilos (6 to 9 lb)
5. Are Scottish Folds great pets?
The temperament of this cat breed doesn’t differ whether or not they have folded or straight ears. These are generally good-natured and extremely loving animals which means they are perfect pets to have around.
These are also considered to be intelligent pets who love to play, making them great playmates for children as well, especially when it comes to outdoor activities.
The downside of their extremely affectionate nature is that they can also become too attached to their owners which can result in loneliness if they are not around.
They also tend to be hard-headed at times, but these few negative characteristics are completely outweighed by their positive traits and make them an amazingly enjoyable pet to have.
More interesting facts about the Scottish Fold cat
6. The original name of the Scottish Fold cat was “lop-eared cats” or simply “lops.” They go by a couple of different names as well depending on the location.
The names they go by are either Scot Fold, Highland Fold, Scottish Fold Longhair, Longhair Fold and, Coupari.
7. The original breeding program started quite slow because, in the first 3 years, only 76 kittens were produced in the area that the cat was first discovered.
The main reason is that all cats are ancestors of the first Scottish Fold named Susie, who only had 2 kittens herself. Only one of those kittens named “Snooks” had folded ears. Unfortunately, Susie was killed by a car three months later.
8. Even though the ears of this breed are their most distinctive characteristic, this was the very reason why the breed wasn’t accepted by the GCCF and various registries in Europe in 1971.
Until today, the breed isn’t recognized by the FIF (Fédération Internationale Féline) and the GCCF in the UK, mainly because of concerns with the ears.
9. The breed was exported to The United States in the 1970s and became extremely popular among breeders in the country. They were mostly paired with British Shorthairs and American Shorthairs.
10. The coat of the breed can either be short or long and is generally thick and soft. They can come in just about any color combination possible as well.
The coat of long-haired individuals is extremely dense as well, especially near their limbs, toes, ears, and tail.
11. One of the most remarkable characteristics of this particular cat breed is the fact that they can sit in the so-called “Buddha Position.“
They stretch out their legs and rest their paws on their bellies, a remarkable sight to say the least that looks quite funny as well. They are also known to sleep on their backs.
12. Even though they are prone to a couple of health problems, Scottish Folds have a relatively long lifespan of about 15 years on average.
The lifestyle makes a big difference as these are active little creatures that love to play around and don’t love to spend too much time alone. In other words, an amazing pet to have if you spend a lot of time at home!