Name a stylish cat? That’s right, it’s the Chartreux!
However, many people may think, ‘Chartreux? I’ve never heard of it.
It’s a cat that isn’t very familiar in Japan, but in France, it’s described as an interesting and cute cat that looks like a potato with toothpicks stuck in it.
It is also called the “Blue Three” along with the Russian Blue and Korat.
Would you like to take a look at the mysterious secrets and slightly sad history of Chartreux together?
～ Basic information. ～
Country of origin France.
Weight male : 4-6.5kg female : 3-5kg.
The origin of the Chartreux cat is not very clear.
There is a possibility that it is related to the Carthusian monastery called the Chartreux Monastery, which is a facility for Christians to live together, located near the border between France and England.
Some possible theories include “the theory that indigenous cats from Syria were brought to France by merchants,” “the theory that cats brought back from Africa by Chartreux monks living in the Chartreux Monastery are the origin,” and “the theory that they are descendants of cats brought along with the Crusaders sent to regain Jerusalem, which was once a Christian holy land.”
It is said that Chartreux cats were already in existence in the 16th century, as they appeared in paintings from this era.
Furthermore, it became famous for being loved by French President Charles de Gaulle, and its popularity increased.
However, due to World War II, the number of Chartreux cats changed dramatically.
The main reasons were that people became too busy with their own lives to keep cats, and because Chartreux’s beautiful fur was excellent in terms of warmth and functionality, they were hunted down one after another and killed for their fur.
Despite such a sad episode, after the war, the Léger sisters protected and began breeding surviving Chartreux cats to restore their numbers from near extinction.
It is said that “Persian” and “British Blue” were chosen as breeding partners.
Thanks to the efforts of the sisters, Chartreux cats crossed over to America in the 1960s and were officially registered as a breed by “CFA” in 1987.
What is the origin of the name Chartreux?
As I mentioned in the basic information, it is said that it was named after the Chartreux Monastery because it is highly likely to be related to it.
What are the color variations of Chartreux?
■Types of body colors.
Chartreux cats are only blue in color.
■Types of patterns and color schemes.
The entire body, including the face, body, legs and tail, is only a single color.
■Types of eye color.
The colors available are gold, copper, and orange.
Chartreux cats are only short-haired.
What does Chartreux look like?
The Chartreux cat has a wide and round head, and its body type is called semi-cobby. It has large, round eyes and medium-sized ears with rounded tips.
Despite its sturdy build, it has a well-balanced physique due to its moderate muscle mass. Its fur is short but has a good texture, similar to that of sheep’s wool. The fur grows densely, making it easy to repel water .
Chartreux cats have a round face and cheeks that are developed, giving them an appearance of smiling with their mouth closed. For this reason, they are also called “the smiling cat of France” .
Interestingly, Chartreux cats continue to grow even after they turn one year old.
While other cats generally become adults between 8 months and 1 year of age and stop growing at that point, Chartreux cats take about two years to mature slowly .
Even after one year of age, the growth of Chartreux cats does not stop .
By the way, there are other cats that grow at a slow pace like the Chartreux cat such as the Siberian and Maine Coon .
What is the difference between Chartreux and British Shorthair?
As you can see from the photos, these two cats look very similar, so it may be difficult to tell them apart without careful observation.
However, there are ways to distinguish them.
First, the eye color: Chartreux cats only have gold-colored eyes. On the other hand, British Shorthairs come in various colors such as blue and copper in addition to gold.
Both breeds have a sturdy build, but British Shorthairs tend to have a more rounded physique. In particular, their facial contours and cheeks are plumper than those of Chartreux cats.
Regarding fur color, Chartreux cats are a solid blue color, while British Shorthairs have a variety of patterns, color combinations, and variations.
Finally, regarding personality differences, both Chartreux and British Shorthair cats are generally mild-mannered.
However, Chartreux cats tend to have higher environmental adaptability and can live comfortably in somewhat noisy places.
On the other hand, British Shorthairs are said to be uncomfortable in noisy places and are not good at environments where small children run around. They tend to be more laid-back because they don’t want their territory to be disturbed.
Why does Chartreux grow at such a slow pace?
While other cats stop growing at almost one year, Chartreux cats take a little more time to grow.
The reason for the difference in growth rate is that Chartreux cats are naturally occurring cats, so not much is known about them.
How much does it take to buy a chartreux?
If you want to keep an animal, you need to follow the laws established by each country. This time, I will talk about keeping Chartreux cats at home in Japan.
If you buy from a breeder or cattery, it will cost between 200,000 and 300,000 yen. The advantage of this is that you can check what kind of environment the cat grew up in and what kind of cats the parents are.
Also, depending on the personality of the breeder, the level of trust can vary, so it is desirable to make a reservation and visit them.
Since Chartreux cats are rarely seen in pet shops, it is common to buy them from breeders or catteries.
Since the circulation volume of Chartreux cats is still small, it costs at least several hundred thousand yen. Here are some conditions that further widen the price range:
・Being a kitten.
・Having excellent lineage.
・Having superior appearance such as fur quality.
There are other conditions as well, but mainly if they meet the above conditions, the price tends to be higher.
I want to know more about Chartreux’s personality and traits!
①Calm, intelligent and patient personality.
They are quiet, gentle, and patient. They are also intelligent and have a good memory, making them easy to train.
They are also fond of their owners and love to play with toys. Their personality is sometimes called “a cat like a dog.”
They have a good memory, so they remember things vividly, even if they were scolded loudly. Therefore, when training them, it is desirable to teach them slowly instead of getting emotional.
②He is a sweetheart but also OK with multiple dogs!
They have a sweet side, but they are not very lonely, so they can live with other animals, including small children.
③Less loud squealing.
Chartreux cats have a relatively small voice, so they can be kept in apartments or condominiums. They are a breed that is perfect for beginners who are new to keeping cats.
Basically, males tend to be more affectionate, while females tend to be more independent. If you want to play with Chartreux cats a lot, it might be better to get a male. If you want to live with them at a moderate distance, it might be better to get a female.
However, since there are individual differences in personality, it is best to remember that these are just tendencies for reference purposes.
※If you want to keep an animal, you need to follow the laws established by each country.
What are the diseases that Chartreux is susceptible to?
Chartreux cats are prone to “polycystic kidney disease” and “lower urinary tract disease.”
①Polycystic kidney disease.
Polycystic kidney disease is a disease in which many cysts are formed, and in the worst case, it can cause “renal failure.”
Unfortunately, the specific prevention method for this disease has not been found. Especially since the incidence rate is high in older cats, caution is required. However, early detection can lead to early treatment by symptomatic therapy, which can slow down the progression of the disease.
②Lower urinary tract disease.
This is a general term for diseases that all cats are prone to, not just Chartreux cats. Specific diseases include “urinary tract stones” and “cystitis.”
Cats do not have a habit of drinking a lot of water due to their ancient heritage. Therefore, they are more likely to develop urinary tract diseases because their kidneys are easily burdened.
As a daily measure, you can use a circulating water dispenser, give wet food that contains a lot of water, and avoid giving too many treats. By keeping these habits in mind, you can prevent these diseases.
What is the lifespan of Chartreux?
Chartreux cats are said to have a lifespan of 12 to 15 years. The average lifespan of a cat is 12 to 16 years, so there is not much difference compared to the average lifespan.
まるごとわかる猫種大図鑑 監修：CFA公認審査員 早田由貴子
世界中で愛される美しすぎる猫図鑑 監修 今泉忠明
The Cat Fancier’s Association, Inc.
Pet Smile news forネコちゃん