If you have decided that it is time to add a cat to your family you may have looked into the many different breeds that are available. One of the most beautiful breeds is the Persian breed. Our Wake Forest vets discuss the features of Persian cats and what you need to know before bringing one home.

Persians are known for being beautiful and luxurious cats. This breed is relaxed and has one of the most stunning coats of fur out of all the cats.

Unfortunately, Persians also require a bit more upkeep than some other cat breeds which is important to know if you are considering bringing one home.

The Personality of Persian Cats

One of the main personality traits of Persian cats is that they are laid-back as well as being calm and gentle.

Persian cats are not the most active breed and quite enjoy spending their time quietly relaxing which makes them perfect for people who prefer a quieter lifestyle.

The Persian Body and Face

Persian cats are generally known as being attractive because of their short, round bodies and adorable smooshed-in faces with short noses, big eyes and small ears. While this particular look for a cat is highly sought after, it does come with some concerns related to the health of the cat.

Their flat face, while cute, can cause difficulties breathing for this cat and could very well be a cause of the lack of activity that is found with this breed. The prominence and wide placement of Persians’ eyes can also lead to some challenges. Persian eyes aren’t well-protected by their facial conformation and can be injured or develop ulcers quite easily.

These cats struggle with tear drainage and therefore their face may always appear dirty, you can keep their face clean by using a warm damp cloth to wipe away the tears. If you find excessive drainage along with pain and redness though you should contact your vet right away for a pet checkup.

It is recommended to use a flat dish for mealtimes with a Persian cat as their flat faces can make eating difficult.

Health Concerns of a Persian Cat

Health problems with most breeds of cats are genetic and therefore it is always a good idea to do your research and ask your vet about possible concerns that may arise with any breed that you are considering. Persians are one of the most beautiful breeds of cat but unfortunately are one of the breeds that are prone to health issues, especially relating to their flat faces, some of the concerns that you may need to schedule a vet checkup for are:

  • Breathing difficulty or noisy breathing caused by constricted nostrils
  • Dental malocclusions, meaning the teeth don’t mesh well together
  • Excessive tearing and improper tear drainage
  • Eye conditions such as cherry eye and entropion
  • Heat sensitivity
  • Polycystic kidney disease, for which a genetic test is available
  • Predisposition to ringworm, a fungal infection
  • Seborrhea oleosa, is a skin condition that causes itchiness, redness and hair loss

Persian Coat Care

One of the most defining features of Persian cats is their beautiful, thick and luxurious coat. This coat, however, requires a commitment as it needs to be thoroughly brushed at least once a day.

Persian cats are unable to adequately grom their own fur so it's all the more important that you are able to thoroughly brush them daily.

How to Care for Perisan Fur

It is common to spend at least an hour a day brushing the fur of a Persian cat. The undercoats of a Persian cat knot incredibly easily and if these tangles aren't properly brushed out they could turn into mats which can be almost impossible to remove while also causing your cat a large amount of pain.

It is important that whatever brush you decide to use on your Persian cat, you choose one that is able to get through their very long and thick fur. One of the most common choices of brush for cats with this type of fur is a double-sided brush.

You will always need to help keep your Persian cat's fur clean by watching for any soiling and cleaning it as soon as possible. This soiling could come from outdoor sources such as dirt or even soiling from the litterbox due to their long fur.

One of the easiest ways to make life easier for both you and your Persian cat is to have their fur professionally trimmed and groomed in a way that will keep the fur out of the litter box.

If you are thinking about bringing home a Persian cat as a new addition to your family but would like more information, contact your Wake Forest vets. Our vets can provide more information on this breed and others that may be a good fit for you.