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What kind of cat do I have, anyway? - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
What kind of cat do I have, anyway?
So, my cat is distinctly mixed breed, but I'm deeply curious as to which breeds are mixed into her. She has the ruff and "britches" of a Maine Coon, but she's, well... tiny. Seriously, she's maybe eighteen inches from the tip of her nose to the tip of her tail, and she weighs less than seven pounds (the vet says this is because she had kittens before she finished growing, but even that, I don't think would make her that small if she were naturally huge).

She's very vocal, with a lot of different sounds. She's polydactyl. She has a very affectionate personality--the cable guy once came two days in a row because of problems with our connection, and on the second day, she apparently decided he was part of the household, because she jumped into his lap while he was working. She makes friends with other cats very quickly. Her ears are straight up (no fold), and her hair is straight. She's of average cat intelligence, I think. So... anyone who knows more about cats than I do, thoughts? This is pure curiosity--her extra toes by themselves (though I think they're adorable) make her ineligible for cat shows, and if they didn't, a little bit of her ear that died from frostbite while she was out on the street with her kittens certainly would. Besides, I don't think she'd enjoy herself!

Cinderpelt, in profile Cinderpelt, in profile
A fascinated Cindy watches the installation of the new water bowl.
Cindy and Jelly Cindy and Jelly
They're both a little annoyed at me for waking them up here.
Please to be picking me up now, kai? Please to be picking me up now, kai?
Cindy on the desk Cindy on the desk
Cindy was freaking out a little as I packed, but she kind of dug having my desk free, so she could crawl all over the place.
C'mon, Mom, I'm tryin' to sleep here. C'mon, Mom, I'm tryin' to sleep here.
Blurry Cindy Blurry Cindy
Turning off the flash works beautifully for stopping red eye--not so great for making her non-blurry.

34 comments or Leave a comment
djin7 From: djin7 Date: June 30th, 2009 03:57 am (UTC) (Link)
She looks like she could be a wee British Longhair mix. Adorable, that's for sure!
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 30th, 2009 05:11 am (UTC) (Link)
I definitely go along with "adorable." I'm very lucky in the cat department.

British Longhair. Hmm.
From: severely_lupine Date: June 30th, 2009 04:20 am (UTC) (Link)
Holy crap, your cat looks like a black version of my cat. My kitty (named Luna) is a grey tabby, but her fur's the same length and she also weighs like five or six pounds. She's very petite, even full grown. I know she never had kittens, as she was spayed at like 8 weeks (the rescue I got her from spayed her as soon as she was big enough for it, which took longer than most cats, as she was always small). The tabby markings are actually very subtle. She looks mostly grey, but when her fur is wet, you can see that it's grey on the outside, but the hair is white closer to her body. She's not vocal, but she is rather mouthy (as far as play biting and such). But yeah, as soon as I saw your cat, I thought how much she looked like mine.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 30th, 2009 05:10 am (UTC) (Link)
The shelter I got Cindy from found her when she was a little under a year old, and she was nursing her kittens. They spayed her as soon as she was strong enough.

Cindy's got a little bit of brown in her undercoat, but no tabby pattern.
From: severely_lupine Date: June 30th, 2009 05:41 am (UTC) (Link)
I suppose it's not all that uncommon for strays to have kittens so young, unfortunately. Mine came from a litter where the mom and the kittens were all taken to the shelter, and then the rescue got them and adopted them all out, so fortunately Luna didn't have to be a stray for long enough to affect her. Although from how you've described yours, it doesn't sound like her personality suffered from being a stray, so that's good.

Would be curious to know the breed. I wouldn't be surprised if they're the same (or same mix). Luna wasn't all that fluffy as a kitten, but she did have funny little tufts behind her ears, which are actually what made me pick her. I love her coat, though. I think it's the perfect length for a cat. Unfortunately I didn't see any pics of the mom or siblings. Might have given me a better idea of the breed.
3bird From: 3bird Date: June 30th, 2009 04:57 am (UTC) (Link)
Oh she's so pretty! She does look like a maine coon. But yeah I have one of those and he's gigantic. Does she have a super high pitched meow?
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 30th, 2009 05:08 am (UTC) (Link)
Some of her meows are high-pitched, some aren't. She has a whole lot of them! (Though Jelly, the big gray and white tom in the second picture, had a higher pitch... very weird.)
alkari From: alkari Date: June 30th, 2009 05:02 am (UTC) (Link)
She's what we'd call out here a Moggy! :) Bits of this and that, and you'd never work it out. She's just a Seriously Cute Cat.

Sigh - I *miss* having a cat, and I've always had black ones. Every time you post a pic of Cindy, I start wondering if I can change the body corporate rules in my block some day ...
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 30th, 2009 05:09 am (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, Moggy's probably the best description. ;p But I have an insatiable curiosity about where she came from, too. What kind of bizarre people would have let her wander, and why?

Eh, maybe the rules will change. Just remember to stress the health benefits. Lower blood pressure and everything. It's good for everyone to allow cats. Yeah.
alkari From: alkari Date: June 30th, 2009 06:41 am (UTC) (Link)
There's a few of us who would like to have pets, but we have to 'hasten slowly' with any proposed changes.

My last cat, Jamie, was one of two kittens just dumped in a sack in the gardens near the local swimming pool. (At least they weren't thrown in the creek to drown). Neighbours found them, and came round asking if anyone would like a kitten ... Jamie was black except for a few little white hairs on her chest, and I had her for 17 years. She was just such a 'people' cat.
amamama From: amamama Date: June 30th, 2009 06:44 am (UTC) (Link)
If she's polydactyl, she's a Ship's Cat. At least that's what we call'em here. Supposedly the extra toes makes walking on deck easier. And they bring good fortune. She looks like she's got some forest cat blood, so maybe she's a little viking?
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 30th, 2009 06:51 am (UTC) (Link)
Quite possible. And man, are those extra toes an advantage to her... I swear, it's almost as good as opposable thumbs for grabbing things (like my hands, if I'm not quick enough to pet her!) They're such an advantage that I'm surprised they aren't the norm for cats.
From: msdrby Date: July 2nd, 2009 02:49 am (UTC) (Link)
You know, Hemingway 's cats are all polydactyl.
From: (Anonymous) Date: June 30th, 2009 07:07 am (UTC) (Link)

Greetings from Mexico

Fernwithy! I was tempted to join livejournal just to message you! I know it is completely off topic, but I couldn't find where to leave this comment. I just finished reading Shades, and its been three years and you haven´t done a sequel:S ! Does that mean you're never going to do it? I really hope you do, as JK Rowling left us all very dissapointed killing both Remus and Tonks. But I think her story left you a lot of ways to continue Shades and finally know what happened during the seventh book. I do hope you continue your work on Remus and Tonks and thus give Shades and Shift their proper ending :)
Anyhow, congratulations on your work, haha here you have me at 2:00 am begging for more:P

fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 30th, 2009 08:01 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Greetings from Mexico

Thanks, but their ending in canon left me with no feasible ending, other than the Teddy stories. They're the sequel to Shades.
mctabby From: mctabby Date: June 30th, 2009 09:00 am (UTC) (Link)
Aww! She is adorable. Yay for tiny cats! *waves a 7-pound Imperio*
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: July 1st, 2009 06:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
I always wanted to mention--best pet name ever. ;p
(Deleted comment)
gentlespirit From: gentlespirit Date: June 30th, 2009 10:51 am (UTC) (Link)
I've got nothing of worth to add since I've no idea what breeds she might be. I just wanted to chime in to say she is seriously adorable. She looks quite at home lurking around your computer.:)
fiatincantatum From: fiatincantatum Date: June 30th, 2009 12:33 pm (UTC) (Link)
Seriously gorgeous and queen of all she surveys, no doubt!

And actually, she'd fit perfectly into the Companion Cat class in CFA shows. Non-pedigreed, neutered/spayed, and doesn't freak out around strangers/strange cats are pretty much it. Her missing ear tip isn't enough to disqualify her the way a missing limb or eye would. They don't allow cats with major disabilities in the Companion class, not because those cats aren't worthy, but because there are people out there who'd inflict those injuries on their animals in order to stand a better chance of winning (cats are lovely, people can be scummy.)

So, yeah. No idea what breeds she is, but she's gorgeous!
thunderemerald From: thunderemerald Date: June 30th, 2009 01:55 pm (UTC) (Link)
I have no answer to your breed question, but Cindy looks an AWFUL lot like my aunt's kitty Olive. Same fur, same eyes, same tiny size. (They didn't know what kind of kitty, either.)
itsjulia From: itsjulia Date: June 30th, 2009 03:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
I also don't know what she is, but like others, she reminds me of my childhood cat, Mitten. Mitten was 5 lbs, had the extra toes, and the Maine Coon fur with tabby-like markings. Anyway, she's lovely.
scionofgrace From: scionofgrace Date: June 30th, 2009 10:24 pm (UTC) (Link)
Well, I don't have any clue "what" she is, except gorgeous. Wow. You must have to brush her alot, though.
From: (Anonymous) Date: July 1st, 2009 12:41 am (UTC) (Link)
The very angular shape of her head, the petite-ness, and the chatty-cathy syndrome make me wonder if she's got some Siamese in there.

My boys, Red and Blue, are half Siamese. They're about 8 pounds each, full grown and neutered (which tends to make boy cats chubby). They've got little pointy faces like your Cindy and they TALK TALK TALK. All the time. Almost conversationally. Red will literally follow me around in the morning going, "Meh. Meh meh meh. Meh? Meh." He sounds like Beaker from Muppets.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: July 1st, 2009 02:35 am (UTC) (Link)
Ha! That's exactly it. At night, it's the full-throated, "Oh, woe is me, I am not being adequately played with!" one, but we can definitely have whole conversations--"Mew?" "Mew-meow" "Mee--ew?" "Mew!"
From: (Anonymous) Date: July 1st, 2009 03:04 pm (UTC) (Link)
Haha, yes. I know the sad, sad song cry as well. I'm convinced that Blue gets seasonal affective disorder, because all winter he just wanders the house at all times of the day, yowling like somebody just killed his best friend.

From the responses here, maybe Cindy is part European Longhair and part Siamese?
From: (Anonymous) Date: July 21st, 2009 02:46 am (UTC) (Link)
Ha, I named my cat after Beaker the Muppet! He's not all that talky, though. Oh, well. (However, he does look a bit Siamese!)
tristisoryza From: tristisoryza Date: July 1st, 2009 02:45 am (UTC) (Link)
Your cat looks exactly like my cat, except mine is bigger and has the normal number of toes. He is also exceptionally furry and talkative. Even the expressions in pictures are identical! He was part of a litter that was left at a shelter in Virginia. Perhaps our cats are related?
From: (Anonymous) Date: July 1st, 2009 03:44 am (UTC) (Link)

Your cat

I have been told, by sources I trust, that the Maine Coon Cat is a derivation of the standard European Longhair, bred for its size. I have a very handsome male by the name of Comet, who is 40 inches nose-to-tail, and stands about 14 inches at the shoulder. Except for a slight under-bite, he is strictly regulation as Maine Coon Cats go. Yours appears to be a fairly standard, if slightly small, European Longhair. You mention a missing portion of her ear - her right one, it appears, but if I hadn't been looking for it, I would have missed it.

The senior cat at our house is a domestic short hair, with orange and white markings, going by the name of Marmalade. She did her basic training on a farm and thinks that outside is where cats belong. She is a very personable cat and figured out what laps are for very early in her career.

You have a good-looking cat; I wish her the best of health. She seems to have gotten herself a pretty good gig at your house.

fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: July 1st, 2009 05:33 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Your cat

Oh, I had a farm cat once, too, Popoki. Best mouser around, though she was even smaller than Cindy!

I'd bet the basic European Longhair is the root of the Maine Coon and the Norwegian Forest Cat mentioned above. She's probably got some of both.

Her ear isn't noticeable unless you're looking, but I felt just horrible for her when my vet told me what that was. Poor thing, her ear freezing off.
lilacsigil From: lilacsigil Date: July 1st, 2009 10:12 am (UTC) (Link)
Her size and the shape of her face look quite Siamese - my cats are Tonkinese, and two of them are tiny. The one in the icon is 6 pounds at the most and her brother was just over 4 pounds fully grown (yes, he was a pocket cat!) They're also very, very vocal, in ways than other cats aren't.
From: (Anonymous) Date: July 1st, 2009 03:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
I like to think the Siamese are a bit smarter as well. But maybe that's just the vocal-ness. The way they talk, and the way it actually has inflection, I half expect my cats to actually start sounding out words in English one of these days.
lilacsigil From: lilacsigil Date: July 2nd, 2009 11:32 pm (UTC) (Link)
Siamese definitely have a kind of intelligence more recognised by humans! Mine like to play fetch.
littletwitchy From: littletwitchy Date: July 7th, 2009 09:21 pm (UTC) (Link)
that looks just like my roommate's cat! not sure of the breed, but i opened up the pictures and did a double-take lol.

your cats are beautiful!
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