Scottish fold cats are known for their gentle personality and friendly nature. They are named after their folded ears. They were originally called ‘lop-eared’ but it was changed to Scottish fold as it appeals more to Americans.
Due to their personality, Scottish fold cats are ideal for families with children. They are quite tolerant of children’s hyperactive nature and can also get on well with other pets.
As a breed, the Scottish fold munchkin cat is very popular. However, even those who have owned one their entire life doesn’t know all the fact about its breed.
So, we have compiled a list of 5 facts about Scottish fold cats that are fun and will appeal to any cat lover’s interests.
They All Come From 1 Cat
Every Scottish fold comes from 1 cat born in Perthshire, Scotland in 1961. While cats with folded ears have been around since the 1700s, it wasn’t until the birth of this cat that they began to be bred.
This cat was a white barn cat who was born with folded ears and was named Susie. She was the only kitten in her litter to be born with folded ears and she is the common ancestor of all Scottish fold cats.
In the first 3 years of breeding Scottish folds, 42 out of the 76 kittens had folded ears.
They Are Born With Straight Ears
Their folded ears are a genetic mutation and they don’t show until about 3 weeks after the kitten is born. When they are born the ears are straight and then gradually bend.
However, in a litter only about half of them will hold the gene that gives them the folded ears. If the ear doesn’t fold then the cat is known as a Scottish shorthair or a Scottish straight.
This mutation is caused by an incompletely dominant gene that affects the cartilage. This gene not only affects the ears but also the tail and other joints in the cat’s body.
Scottish Folds Are Never Bred Together
This is mainly due to ethical reasons. Since Scottish folds have a genetic mutation, if both parents of a litter have the mutation then the kittens can end up with degenerative issues.
Scottish folds are bred with either an American shorthair or a British shorthair. Only about 50% of a litter will end up with folded ears so Scottish folds are a relatively rare cat breed.
There Are Different Levels Of Fold to Their Ears
There are 3 different levels of the fold to Scottish fold ears. The first is only a small fold at the tip of the ears.
The second level is where the ear is folded in 2 parts so that it looks almost curved over.
The third and final level is the most desirable. This is where the ear is folded in 3 parts so that it looks almost flat to the head. This gives the Scottish fold a rounder-looking head which is why this trait is more selectively bred.
They Are Not Accepted As A Breed in Scotland
Ironically, the Scottish fold cat is not accepted as an official breed in Scotland, England, or Europe.
Both the European Cat Fanciers’ Association (ECFA) and Governing Council of the Cat Fancy (GCCF) say that due to the mutation in the cat will lead to further health problems. The health problems stated are ear infections, deafness, and limb deformity.
Since they aren’t accepted as a breed in Europe, it means they cannot show. This has been the case since they withdrew registrations for the Scottish fold in 1971.
However, when the Scottish fold was brought over to America in 1970 it began rapidly gaining in popularity and in 1978 the breed was granted champion status by the Cat Fanciers Association (CFA).
The Scottish fold breed has become a favorite amongst celebrities, a notable example is Taylor Swift owning 2 Scottish folds.
It makes sense why this is one of the more popular cat breeds. They are gentle, friendly, and very cute. Their round face is only enhanced by their folded ears which makes them very visually appealing. They are often described as looking like owls due to these features.
Scottish folds can come in a variety of colors and patterns due to them being bred with different cat breeds.
If you plan on getting a Scottish fold then you now have a plethora of facts about them to impress all your friends.