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Chartreux

A cat or a dog?

Chartreux
origin:France
weight:3 to 7 kg
size: Medium-Largefur type: short
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History [ edit ]

The Chartreux is an ancient breed of cat that is said to have been originally raised by the Carthusian Catholic monks at their monastery in Grenoble both as as companion and mice hunter. It is a natural breed, that has remained unchanged since its first appearance in a cat show in 1928. The Chartreux’s ancestry is a deep mystery. One of the legends says that the Chartreux’s ancestors were Syrian feral mountain cats brought into France by the Crusaders in the 13th century. The first references to the “blue cats of France" and that this breed descended from the “Cat of Syria” (a stocky, wooly ash-gray coat cat with copper eyes) go back to the 16th century but the first documented reference to the breed was made by the French naturalist Buffon in the 17th century. It was probably also in the 17th century that the breed was given the name “Chartreux”. The reason for the name is also controversial: some say the breed was named by the Carthusian monks after their famous Chartreuse liqueur, others allege that because of the woolly texture of their fur, they were given the name of a Spanish wool well known in the beginning of the 18th century. Until the 20th century the Chartreux lived in natural colonies and were prized as working cats (ratters) or for their fur and meat. It was not until the end of the First World War that some French cat breeders became interested in preserving the Chartreux. They formulated a breed standard based on the descriptions made by Naturlists of the 18th century and started breeding from a stock originated in geographically isolated colonies such as  Belle Ile island. The breed was first exhibited at a cat show in 1928. Today, these purebred cats are not very common, even in France, and breeders still pursue their efforts to maintain this magnificent animal’s original characteristics unchanged.
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General Appearance [ edit ]

The Chartreux is a large, sturdy, well muscled and powerful built cat , but also refined. It has very fast reflexes being extremely agile and supple. The shape of its head gives the breed a smiling expression and it has a beautiful grey-blue colour.The BODY is medium-long, well proportioned and robust with broad and muscular shoulders and a deep chest, giving the animal a solid, sturdy appearance. The legs are straight and sturdy, relatively short and fine boned with medium-sized, round feet. The head is large and broad but not round, and is in balance with the body. The nose is boad, straight and of medium length with a slight stop at eye level.The softly contoured forehead tapers to a narrowed, long muzzle, but not pointed, the cheeks are full, well develop and the chin is wide this structure giving the animal a soft, smiling expression. The Eyes are Large, rounded and wide open, copper to gold in colour, with an alert expression. The slightly round tipped EARS are small to medium size and set high and erect on the head. The Tail is heavy at base and of moderate length, tapering slightly to tip.The COAT is medium-short and slightly woolly in texture. The topcoat is lustrous, not flat but slightly raised and the undercoat is dense, resilient. Chartreux’s come in any shade of blue-gray from ash to slate with the tips lightly brushed with silver.
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Temperament [ edit ]

Chartreux quiet, calm attentive, gentle, and adaptable cats, less talkative than other breeds and some are mute. The are very intelligent and are known for their dog-like behavior, learning quickly to fetch small things, to operate on/off buttons and to open door latches. They observe the world attentively and are very playful well into their adult years. Chartreux are affectionate and good with strangers, children and other animals. They are not aggressive and generally they withdraw from conflict by walking away. They tend to bond with one person in their household while being still loving and affectionate towards the other family members. However they do not demand lots of attention and are happy just by sitting close to its favourite family member. Chatreux adapt very well to any situation and do not mind travelling or being left alone for long periods. But they are extremelly devoted to those they love, following them wherever they go, comfort them and sleeping with them if given the opportunity. They also enjoy watching television with their masters. The sweet-tempered Chartreux make wonderful pets for any family, especially for elderly people and people living alone.
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Varieties [ edit ]

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Health [ edit ]

Chartreux may suffer from Patellar luxation (displacement of the kneecap).
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Cat Trivia [ edit ]

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