With wiry hair
American Wirehair Cat's
make Great Family Pets
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What is the American Wirehair Cat?
By: Alfred and Baby
The American Wirehair is a relatively new breed that began
in 1966 in the United States, in Verona, New York. Kittens
with a different kind of coat showed up in a litter of
common barn cats and a breeder who saw them successfully
began to try to breed for the distinctive change.
This cat breed is unique and by looking for a few traits you
can readily identify them.
The American Wirehair was given the name because the coat
has an unusually coarse, firm texture and a wiry spring to
it. The coat can vary from spiky to curly. The hairs around
the face are often crimped. One of the breed's originators
was the American Shorthair and American Shorthairs have been
used to stabilize the line, so the hair is almost always
The eyes of the American Wirehair cat are large and round
and spaced far apart. The ears are wide apart and slightly
rounded at the tips, and the head is usually round with
prominent cheekbones. The whiskers of the American Wirehair
usually grow at non-uniform angles and are almost always
crimped or curl.
The American Wirehair is a medium to large cat, with the
male cat typically being larger than the female. They are
built similar to the American Shorthair, being muscular and
strong. They can be found in the normal variety of coat
colors and patterns and eye colors seen in the domestic cat.
The personality of the American Wirehair is independent but
affectionate, agile, active and playful. They are attached
to their owners and family, and even friendly with
strangers. These are curious, people oriented cats, and
without the nervousness of some breeds. They make a
wonderful family cat.
Breeders warn that the American Wirehair doesn't tolerate
stress or harsh weather well and should be an indoor cat.
Stress can cause the coat to shed out temporarily. Cats of
this breed are often prone to skin allergies, so careful
cleanliness is required. They also recommend that this breed
be give a hairball preventative regularly, since the hairs
of the coat are thicker and coarser than those of other
Hairball Prevention for American Wirehair Cats
Keeping your American Wirehair cat well groomed will require
occasional brushing, and since their fur tends to be oily,
you may want to bathe your cat as needed. If you begin to
bathe your cat as a kitten, it is not likely to complain
much about its bath even when adult. During grooming be sure
to check the cat's ears and watch for excess wax or dirt
buildup as all "rex" type cats are more vulnerable to ear
The gene that creates the special coat is not completely
dominant, so litters of American Wirehairs usually have
kittens with varying degrees of coarseness, and some without
the trait at all. Breeding show quality versions of this
breed remains a challenging task requiring an experienced
and dedicated breeder.
Nevertheless, American Wirehair cats are now also being bred
and shown in Europe and Asia, and their sweet personalities
and striking appearance is giving them ever increasing
popularity. And, even the pet quality cats are still
wonderful friends and pets.
Picture American Wirehair Cat
Special Care for your American Wirehair Cat
By: Jane R. Bicks, D.V.M.
Because of the American Wirehair's breed's lightly
curled, springy coat, it's important that this cat's hairs
grow evenly - unless of course, you don't mind living
with an animal that will look like a used Brillo pad on paws.
Since the coat is the first area to show nutritional
deficiencies, a balanced diet is essential.
When dinner time comes this is the ultimate, Dining Experience for
your American Wirehair Cat
Avoid feeding table scraps and treats that could interfere
with the Wirehair's cat's intake of quality protein and fat.
Add a vegetable enzyme for insurance.