A cat that combines ancient history, stunning beauty, and a charming personality? Ever heard of the Chartreux Cat? This rare and old French cat breed has a distinctive blue coat, a muscular body, and a sweet smile that will melt your heart. But don’t let its serene appearance fool you; the Chartreux is also a skilled hunter, a loyal companion, and a playful entertainer.
The Chartreux has a fascinating and mysterious origin story that involves monks, crusaders, and traders. It has been praised by naturalists, poets, and artists for centuries and has survived wars, famines, and near extinction. Today, it is one of the most cherished cat breeds in France and around the world.
|Coat Colors||Blue (silver-grey)|
|Eye Colors||Gold, copper, orange|
|Personality||Loyal, loving, playful, quiet, intelligent, independent|
|Good with Kids||Yes|
|Good with Pets||Yes|
|Origin||France (possibly Syria)|
History of the Chartreux Cat
The Chartreux is one of the oldest cat breeds in the world. Its exact origin is unknown, but there are several legends and theories about how it came to be.
One legend says that the Chartreux was brought to France by Carthusian monks from Syria in the 13th century. The monks kept the cats in their monastery near Paris, where they helped them control the rodent population. The cats were also said to be quiet and contemplative, like the monks themselves.
Another legend says that the Chartreux was named after a type of Spanish wool called “pile de Chartreux,” which was similar to its thick and wooly coat. The cats were imported by traders from Spain or Turkey, who sold them as valuable commodities in France.
The first documented mention of the Chartreux dates back to 1558 when a French poet named Joachim du Bellay wrote about his blue cat named Belaud. In the 18th century, two famous naturalists, Linnaeus and Buffon, identified the Chartreux as one of the four known cat breeds at that time.
The Chartreux became very popular in France for its hunting prowess and its gentle temperament. It was often depicted in paintings and literature as a symbol of elegance and grace. However, its popularity also made it a target for fur traders, who valued its blue coat.
The Chartreux suffered greatly during the first and second world wars when many cats were killed or lost. Some breeders tried to save the breed by crossing it with other blue cats, such as British Shorthairs or Russian Blues. This caused some confusion and controversy among different registries and associations.
In 1970, the first Chartreux cats were imported to North America by John and Helen Gamon. They brought cats from the French countryside that represented the original type of the breed. Since then, North American breeders have worked hard to preserve and improve the natural characteristics of the Chartreux.
Today, the Chartreux is recognized by all major cat organizations around the world. It is still considered rare outside of France, but it has gained many admirers for its unique appearance and personality.
The Chartreux is a medium-sized cat with a sturdy and muscular body. It has a broad chest, a deep abdomen, a short back, and strong legs. It weighs between 11 to 18 pounds, with males being larger than females.
The head of the Chartreux is round and wide, with a softly contoured forehead that tapers to a narrow muzzle. The ears are small and set high on the head. The eyes are large and round, with outer corners that curve slightly upward. The eye color ranges from gold to copper to orange, with brilliant orange being preferred.
The tail of the Chartreux is medium in length and tapered at the end. It is covered with thick fur that matches the color of the body.
The coat of the Chartreux is one of its most distinctive features. It is short but thick and dense, with a wooly texture that repels water. The coat color is always blue (silver-grey), with no markings or shadings. The blue color can vary from light to dark shades.
The Chartreux has a unique appearance that sets it apart from other blue cat breeds. It looks like a smiling teddy bear with a blue coat and orange eyes.
The Chartreux has a personality that matches its appearance. It is a sweet, loyal, and friendly cat that loves to be around its human family. It is also intelligent, playful, and quiet, making it a great companion for any cat lover.
The Chartreux is very attached to its favorite person and will often follow them from room to room. They like to be near their owner, but not necessarily in their laps. They are usually content to sit next to them or at their feet, purring softly and smiling.
The Chartreux is not a very vocal cat and will rarely meow. Some Chartreux are even mute and will only open their mouths without making any sound. When they do vocalize, they usually make small chirps or trills that sound adorable coming from their large bodies.
The Chartreux is a playful cat that enjoys toys that move or make noise. It has a strong hunting instinct and will chase anything that catches its eye. It can also learn to play fetch or other games with its owner. The Chartreux likes to have some mental stimulation and challenge and will appreciate puzzle toys or interactive toys.
Kids and Other Pets
The Chartreux is a friendly cat that gets along well with other pets and children. It is not aggressive or territorial and will tolerate other animals as long as they respect its space. It is gentle and patient with children and will enjoy playing with them.
The Chartreux is a good cat for any type of owner or household as long as it gets enough attention and affection. It can adapt to different environments and lifestyles and does not need a lot of space or activity. It is a calm and easy-going cat that will fit in with any family.
Care and Grooming
The Chartreux is a low-maintenance cat that does not require a lot of care or grooming. However, it still needs some basic care to keep it healthy and happy.
The Chartreux has a thick and dense coat that sheds moderately throughout the year and more heavily during seasonal changes. It needs regular brushing with a brush or comb to remove loose hair and prevent mats or tangles. Brushing also helps distribute the natural oils in the coat and keeps it shiny and healthy.
The Chartreux has ears that need to be cleaned regularly with a cotton ball or soft cloth moistened with a gentle cleanser. This helps prevent ear infections or mites. The ears should be checked for signs of redness, odor, or discharge.
The Chartreux has nails that need to be trimmed regularly with a cat nail clipper or file. This helps prevent overgrowth or injury. The nails should be checked for signs of splitting, cracking, or infection.
The Chartreux does not need frequent bathing, as this can strip the natural oils from its coat. Bathing should only be done when necessary with a mild shampoo designed for cats. The coat should be dried thoroughly with a towel or blow dryer on low heat.
Diet and Nutrition
The Chartreux needs high-quality cat food that contains omega-3 fatty acids to support its skin and coat health. It also needs fresh water available at all times. The Chartreux can be prone to obesity, so it is important to monitor its weight and portion size. It should not be overfed or given too many treats.
The Chartreux needs some exercise and playtime to keep it in good shape and prevent boredom or stress. It should have access to toys that stimulate its hunting instinct, such as feathered toys or laser pointers. It should also have some scratching posts or pads to keep its nails healthy and prevent damage to furniture.
Common Health Issues
The Chartreux does not have many health problems, but it can be affected by some genetic conditions, such as urinary tract infections, polycystic kidney disease (PKD), hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), patellar luxation (PL), or dental issues. It is advisable to have regular vet check-ups and screenings for these conditions, especially if the cat comes from a breeder.
Where to Buy a Chartreux Cat
You can find a list of Chartreux breeders and rescue organizations on the websites of cat associations, such as the Cat Fanciers Association (CFA), The International Cat Association (TICA), or the American Cat Fanciers Association (ACFA). You can also search online for local or regional Chartreux clubs or groups that can provide you with more information and referrals. Expect to pay between $500 and $2500 for a Chartreux Kitten from a breeder.
To get you started, we compiled a short list of breeders and resources to find a Chartreux Breeder:
- Chanson Bleu Chartreux: A CFA-registered boutique cattery that breeds, shows, and sells Chartreux kittens in New Hampshire.
- Chartreux Cat Breeders: A website that lists Chartreux cat breeders in the United States, Canada, Europe, and Australia.
- Cat Fanciers Association (CFA): The world’s largest registry of pedigreed cats. You can find information about the Chartreux breed, its standards, and its breeders on their website. You can also contact their Chartreux Breed Council for referrals and advice.
The Chartreux is a wonderful cat breed that has a lot to offer to anyone who appreciates its history, beauty, and personality. It is a loyal, loving, and playful cat that will make you smile with its sweet expression and gentle demeanor. It is also a low-maintenance cat that does not need a lot of care or grooming. It is a healthy and hardy cat that can live for many years.
We hope you enjoyed this article and learned something new about the Chartreux cat breed. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to share them below or on our social media pages. We would love to hear from you!
If you have a Chartreux cat or are planning to get one, please share your photos and stories with us. We would love to see your beautiful blue cats and hear about your experiences with them!
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Q: How much does a Chartreux cat cost?
A: The price of a Chartreux cat may vary depending on the location, quality, and demand of the breed. A reputable breeder may charge between $500 to $2,500 for a kitten, while a rescue organization may charge between $50 to $200 for an adoption fee.
Q: How do I know if a Chartreux cat is purebred?
A: A purebred Chartreux cat should have a pedigree certificate that shows its ancestry and registration with a cat association. It should also have a blue coat with no markings or shadings, a round head with a narrow muzzle, and orange eyes.
Q: Is the Chartreux cat hypoallergenic?
A: No, the Chartreux cat is not hypoallergenic. It has a thick and dense coat that sheds moderately throughout the year and may trigger allergies in some people. However, some people may have fewer allergic reactions to the Chartreux than to other breeds, depending on their individual sensitivity.
Q: What are some common health problems in the Chartreux cat?
A: The Chartreux cat is generally healthy and hardy, but it can be affected by some genetic conditions, such as urinary tract infections, polycystic kidney disease (PKD), hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), patellar luxation (PL), or dental issues. It is advisable to have regular vet check-ups and screenings for these conditions, especially if the cat comes from a breeder.
Q: How do I care for the Chartreux cat’s coat?
A: The Chartreux cat’s coat is easy to care for, as it does not need frequent bathing or trimming. It only needs regular brushing with a brush or comb to remove loose hair and prevent mats or tangles. Brushing also helps distribute the natural oils in the coat and keeps it shiny and healthy. Bathing should only be done when necessary with a mild shampoo designed for cats. The coat should be dried thoroughly with a towel or blow dryer on low heat.