Cats of Chartreux are also known as Cartesian cats or as medieval cats. And the own version of the origin of the breed lies behind each of these names. Today we’ll tell you about this cat. OK, let’s begin!
The origin history of the breed
The medieval version. The first mention of these handsome cats dates back to the 16th century. Probably, at that time Syrian shortcuts were brought to Europe – stunted cats with ashy hair and a copper look, which sprouted uncontrollably.
The Cartesian version. It is alleged that the blue cats were bred in monastery territory by monks, members of the Cartesian order , occupying the territory of Grand Chartreux. As one of the proofs to this is the mountain of “Gray cats” located near Chartres.
Well, according to the third version (which does not disprove the above), the yellow-eyed giants were called chartreux for the special fluffiness of their wool, reminiscent of the Spanish woolen “Chartreux” fabric.
In any case, cats in France were known for a long time, although their colonies were not numerous. Chartreuxes ware considered “cats of commoners”, for the reason that ordinary French people of that time valued them not for character, but for skin and meat.
Breeders showed an interest to chartreuxes only after the First World War. For the start, a description of the medieval cats naturalists were taken a of the 18th century and kittens from a large colony from the island of Belle Le. The first participation of Chartreux in exhibitions dates back to 1928.
It is curious that after the Second World the native land of Chartreux almost forgot its heroes – now they are rare in France. They are also rare in England and in Europe. But , surprisingly, today there is the cleanest lines of this breed in America. This breed of cats is very similar to the British.
Description of the breed Chartreux
Who can you compare the famous French with Chartreux? He is brave, like D’Artagnan, silent as the famous Max star of silent movies, as handsome as Alain Delon from the picture, but according to what Chartreux looks like and what his character is, it is cute like Depardieu.
Someone, for the first time seeing Depardieu Chartreux, can mistakenly take him for a British. But the characteristics of the Frenchman perfectly describes the standard of the breed.
1. The head of Chartreux is wide, in the form of an inverted trapezium. The extended shape of the head refers to disqualification defects:
- The nose is wide and straight. IMPORTANT! Nose is only gray! Black or pink lobe indicates the presence of unwanted impurities in the genus;
- Ears are medium, set high, but not vertically, slightly inclined forward. The tips of the ears are rounded;
- The tint of the iris of the eyes may be of a gray-blue color in the first month of in kittens life, but do not worry, your pet’s eyes will become what the breed standard suggests – dark orange or yellow by growing up. By the standard – eyes are large and round, planted close to each other;
- Neck is strong and short, flowing into massive shoulders and deep chest.
2. A strong skeleton and powerful muscles gave the Chartreux a strong body. The sizes are medium (height at the withers up to 30 cm). Hind legs are more massive than the forelegs, but the hind legs and forelegs are straight, rounded. IMPORTANT! Blue cats are so blue that even the pads on the fingers of the paws must necessarily be in the color of the coat. These Frenchmen are such dandy!
The tail is of medium length, proportional to the size of the trunk, not fluffy, rounded at the tip.
The weight of the male is 6-7 kg, the female Chartreux is somewhat lighter – 4-5 kg. It must be borne in mind that female cats eventually grow to 3 years, but male cats can grow up to 5 years.
3. Wool and color – these signs allow the breed to be classified as “Provence”. Indeed, shades of wool from Chartreux vary from gently-gray-blue to “lavender”. Preferably, of course, light gray-blue, but all tones and semitones – this is the category of “maltese” color.
I noticed, that Chartreux cats look like to Russian blue cats.
Again a warning for overly impressionable owners of Chartreux kittens – babies can have tabby marks. Do not worry, they will disappear in the period from half a year to a year.
The wool of the adult is short, but with a fluffy undercoat. Undercoat is slightly darker than the main coat. Wool, by the way, is one of the differences from the already mentioned British – Chartreux is longer and darker.
According to the standard it distinguishes short-haired Chartreux and semi-long-haired.
Reviews of the owners are very diverse, but all converge in one – the Cartesian cats do not frolic shy and VERY jealous. Balanced and calm Chartreux does not tolerate competitors – other animals in the family.
According to their adaptive abilities, you can be calm – a yellow-eyed Frenchman will easily get used to any situation and will not rally, defending his rights.
Moreover, he is deprived of the voice by nature. Yes, the medieval cat nearly does not meow, not that the Siamese. And if he gives a voice, it’s barely audible, thin. But they purr well, and you always understand how your friend is in the mood.
However, it is not necessary to guess, if there is no one to be jealous of, then the Chartreux is in a good mood. It can be safely left alone – Chartreux will not be bored in its own society and with a couple of other toys, but Chartreux is always glad to the owner. Especially if he does not occupy a favorite place in the house. For a place under the sun, the blue cat will fight and do not doubt – it will win!
Their voice is weak, but the character is strong! And the character plus physiological features allow Chartreux to feel great on the street, and even in cold weather or in cold climates.
Moreover, it is very good for the pet’s fur (draw conclusions!).
Like all thoroughbred cats, Chartreux have a number of inherent diseases. Because of the tangible weight of a medieval cat, there is a predisposition to a number of articular diseases: hip dysplasia, dislocation of the knee cap and something of a kind with them sometimes happen.
How to determine that something is wrong with the backbone? In case of dislocation, the animal “cries”, hides in a secluded place. But dysplasia is more difficult to be detected, if you suspect it is better to do an x-ray.
Your family doctor should become a cat dentist. Some Cartesians have incisors that are too small and close. Such cutters should be removed in time to ensure that their permanent teeth are not ejected.
The same common disease is gingivitis (a disease that can lead to tooth loss). It provokes plaque, so watch the oral cavity of your pet and remove the dental calculi in time. Approximately once a year you need to visit the dentist and then your cat will sparkle with a Hollywood smile and brag about strong health.
And one more problem must be mentioned – this is the tendency to obesity of some lines of Chartreux. In addition to harm to the figure, obesity can cause heart disease, blood vessels, etc. Therefore, feed the Chartreux correctly (we’ll discuss this later).
The life expectancy of the Cartesians is 13-16 years.
Care and maintenance
The biggest problem faced by those who have a small Chartreux home is bathing. The wool of the representatives of this breed is so thick and water-repellent that it does not get wet at once in the bathroom. Even if it gets wet, then it does not dry for a long time. So water treatments are not something that deliver a blue wonder to pleasure.
The dense undercoat lifts the wool and, in order to maintain a good appearance, the Chartreux must often be combed (twice a week at a minimum) and more strength is applied to care for the coat.
Chartreux fades twice a year. At this time, it is better to comb them daily. In general, it is not necessary to acquire the French cats who are prone to allergies. Because they will perfectly get along together without any jealousy: Chartreux and your allergy.
Being withered, which is a sin to conceal, by nature, Cartesian cats like to walk outside the house. Be sure to walk with them – this will help to avoid obesity and at the same time will satisfy the passion of the “cat of the commoner” to hunt and search for adventure “for the last ninety.” But avoid the open sun. From a too long stay in direct sunlight, the famous wool of the Cartesians browns and fades.
You had better not lock the interior doors. Do you remember about the strong character? Before such a character, there is no point to close the door – he does not like it. It is also pointless to equip your pet with a bed. We assure, the kitten Chartreux will choose it by himself and will be carefully guarded.
In the rest, the usual care – a weekly cleaning of the ears, regular preventive trips to the vet.
Anything that is not forbidden is allowed. And banned, partially or completely, pork (poorly digestible and too fatty), salted fish and foods (feed) with a high carbohydrate content. That is, everything that can cause obesity.
But the frozen beef, the bird, the boiled egg, sour-milk products or suitable for the breed of food are the daily diet of Chartreux.
Features of wool affect the diet. The cleanly discreet Chartreux constantly lick their thick wool and as a result of it a is lot in the stomach. To the aid, sprouted grass or special food for a mild cleansing of the body will come.
Chartreux cat price
Average $500 – $700 USD