Color – With over 300 different colors and patterns to choose from, you’re guaranteed to find an Oriental that will tickle your fancy. Imagine a Siamese wearing a head to toe coat in white, red, cream, ebony, blue, chestnut, lavender, cinnamon or fawn. These are the solids. For a sparkling undercoat, stir in the silver gene (to all but the white), and you have a smoke Oriental. Perhaps, instead, you’d like the color restricted to the tips of the hair. For this, we have the shadeds to whet your appetite. Paint splashes of red and/or cream on any of these coats and you have a parti-color. If you like stripes on the legs, tail and face, try a tabby in any of four different patterns: classic, mackerel, spotted, or ticked. Cross the patterns and colors together for a bit of variety, and 32 different combinations emerge… but we’re not through. Once again add a patch of red and/or cream and voila another 24 combinations, referred to as patched tabbies. Layer in the sparkle of that silver gene, and you’ve added yet again 56 more! (That’s 112 tabby combinations if you’ve been counting!)
Coat Length – The Oriental breed comes in both a Shorthair and a Longhair. The Oriental Shorthair has a short, fine textured coat, glossy or satin-like, that lies close to body. The Oriental Longhair has a coat that is medium length, fine, silky, without downy undercoat, lying close to the body. The coat may actually appear shorter than it is. Hair is longest on the tail.
Eyes – Green. White Orientals and bi-color Orientals may have blue, green or odd-eyed eye color.
Appearance – From the tip of its nose to the end of its long, whippy tail, the Oriental is a study in sleek design. This elegant cat gracefully glides across the room on its tall, slender legs. The lines of its angular head flow into its large flaring ears, and are complimented by its almond shaped eyes. Don’t be fooled by the svelte, tubular body; these cats have surprising weight and muscle tone and are neither frail nor fragile.
Personality – Curiosity and intelligence combine, providing them a means of finding anything and everything. They have been known to open a drawer, or empty your purse to discover their favorite toy. Give them the attention and affection they so desperately need, and they will do anything to please you. Ignore them, and they will droop with despair. These elegant, svelte cats remain playful, spirited and loyal well beyond their youth.
Interesting Breed Fact – Orientals represent a diverse group of cats that have their foundation in the Siamese breed. When the Oriental Shorthair was accepted for championship status in 1977 it rapidly became one of CFA’s most popular breeds. With the 1995 addition of the Oriental Longhair into this family of sleek, muscular felines the Oriental breed can provide a cat for just about anyone.
Breed information supplied by the
Cat Fanciers’ Association