British Longhair Breed Summary
Friendly, Affectionate, Independent, Laid-back
The British Longhair is known to be a fairly quiet, loving and affectionate cat that also has an independent side to their nature – meaning they’re not overly demanding. This breed combines the characteristics of British Shorthairs and Persian cats; they’re even-tempered and are ideal to be kept as house cats in most cases. Essentially, the British Longhair is pretty much a copy-cat of the British Shorthair – just with a longer coat! With their plush coats and wonderful temperament, these cats make great family pets. Once a hunter, this cat now embraces a quieter life – preferring to relax indoors by the comfort of the fire than stalking prey outside. As with most cats, they enjoy plenty of attention from their humans, especially regular playing and stroking sessions.
|Lifespan||15 – 17 years|
|Height (at the withers)||Males and Females: 30cm – 36cm|
|Weight||Males and Females: 4kg – 8kg|
|Coat||Medium long hair that’s very dense and soft, even fluffy|
|Colour||A variety of patterns and colours, including blue, black, white, cream, tabby, calico, bi-colour, tortoiseshell|
|Eye colour||Range from gold to copper. Silvery-coloured Longhairs will have green or blue eyes|
|Common health issues||Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, polycystic kidney disease (PKD)|
|Other Names||Highlander, Lowlander, Britannica|
These cats are known to be very affectionate and loving. Their laid-back natures mean they can sometimes be a bit… how do we put this politely? A bit sloth-like! Due to their idle nature, this kitty is prone to putting on a few extra pounds, which can have a negative impact on their overall health, therefore it’s a good idea for their humans to take part in extensive play sessions with them. The British Longhair enjoys living in a family environment and they're utterly devoted to their humans. Not an overly active cat, they do have ‘mad moments’ of acting the clown which keeps their owners entertained! This kitty is a loving companion and they're likely to follow their humans around the house and snuggle up to them, rather being a general lap-cat. They get along well with other pets in the family as well as children. There's no need to worry about leaving your British Longhair home alone while you nip out, this cat tends to enjoy their own company and are quite happy to entertain themselves in the absence of their humans. Did we mention they weren’t demanding?
In the early 1900s, the British Longhair emerged after the British Shorthair cat was crossbred with long-haired cats from abroad. Later, the kittens with longer hair were entered into the Persian breeding programmes. Around the time of World War II, this breed started to decline. So, to help the breed from dying out, breeders paired British Shorthair with Persians, which resulted in kittens looking very similar to the long-haired parent breed. However, these kittens were distinctly different from Persians, whether long or short-haired. Today, although British Longhairs originate from the British Isles (as the name suggests!), this breed is not a very well-known breed. They’re also not acknowledged by the Governing Council of the Cat Fancy, although it’s well-known in other parts of the world. However, there’s been a renewed interest in developing this feline breed. As well as this, the International Cat Association has granted it full championship status in 2009, and as such its popularity is growing.