Norwegian Forest Cat


Lookslarge cat; muscular
Weight5 – 9.5 kg female cat 3.5 – 7 kg male cat
Coatmedium hair length, very dense, sometimes rough, water-repellent overcoat; long, bushy tail
Patternclassic tabby, blotched tabby, mackerel tabby, spotted tabby, ticked tabby
Colourall possible varieties except for chocolate, lilac, cinnamon, fawn
Eyesall colours
Characteraffectionate, social, playful
Special traitMoisture-repelling hair, the undercoat remains nice and dry

What is the special trait of this breed?

Norsk Skogkatt – is it a small lynx or a fox?  
Whoever sees the Norwegian for the first time might think that they are being approached by a wild cat, recently eloped from the Scandinavian wilderness; the strong build, a triangular-shaped head, a short nose, relatively short paws, the long, bushy tail. Hair tufts in their ears, shining eyes and an elegant stride. 
It may look wild but it is neither unsocial nor afraid of humans!

While wild cats do not like to be tamed and by nature prefer to keep their distance, the beautiful Norwegian is very affectionate and fond of humans. As a matter of fact, it actively seeks contact! And not only contact with its own species, but also with humans and other pets. 

A perfect, very tolerant family cat: Both children and dogs are welcome. 

Due to its social trait, the Norwegian Forest Cat causes no problems if living together with the most unlikely family members. Always given that the chemistry works and the integration is carried out in a sensitive way.

Here you can read more on the best way to do this.

What traits are unique to the Norwegian Forest Cat?

With a dense, water-repellent coat, they are perfectly fitted for the cold, northern climate: The thick under-wool, covered by a special overcoat (guard hair) protects the cats efficiently from wet and cold. 

A most recognisable trait is the thick ruff – a denser part between chin and shoulder – which in winter time grows into a dominant mane. Similarly characteristic are the “ankle warmers” and “snow shoes” – a special type of hair which in winter grows between the toes and around single joints – perfect for getting around in the snow-laden forests of Norway.

The hind legs are a little longer and the paws are larger than those of other breeds – that way the Norwegian can spread its weight perfectly on the snowfields without sinking in too much. 

This makes for a talented climber: Just like a squirrel, the Norwegian Forest Cat can climb down a tree head-first! 

Interesting facts on keeping and care

Norwegian Forest Cats may have a serene, friendly nature, but they are in no way a lazy breed. On the contrary! They are very lively, playful cats that need much exercise!

If outdoor play is not an option, the flat needs to provide them with ample space. Robust scratching posts and intelligent toys that challenge the curious animal. 

Grooming is especially important during change of coat times, when the cats loose plenty of top hair and undercoat. During those periods, get the brush out at least once a day. Frequent grooming makes sense with a Norwegian Forest Cat. 

Without intensive grooming during coat changing season, a matted appearance and digestive problems may be the result, as too much loose hair is being swallowed during their own grooming ritual.

Always use the brush gently though, as to avoid thinning out the undercoat. The best choice are brushes with natural bristles that don’t cause the hair to become charged as much as the synthetic ones. 

Dispense with the baths entirely: the coat may be a little softer but the natural shine and protection from cold and damp will be lost for a long while. 

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