Boarding ships such as the historic Mayflower, accompanied by some of the nation?s first settlers, a group of four-pawed pilgrims set sail in a bold quest for freedom. Today the American Shorthair is representative of the spirit of the pioneers; a strong breed developed through decades of natural progression.Description:This cat is a working cat, displaying the patience of a hunter and the strength of an athlete, in complete control of its environment and reflexes. Its powerful legs are long enough to cope with any terrain. The strong muzzle is of adequate length to permit an easy catch with steel-trap jaws. The all-weather coat is dense, to protect it from rain and cold or skin injuries, but short enough to resist matting or becoming tangled in heavy vegetation. No one part of the anatomy is too extreme. The general effect is that of a well-trained athlete, with all the muscles lean and hard with great power held in reserve.
The Ancestors of the American Shorthair are thought to be the first domestic felines brought to the Americas by the early settlers. The immigrants who followed most certainly brought more cats, as they were needed for rodent control on ships and land; they also served as companions. These cats settled North America right along with the pioneers and were allowed to breed freely among themselves. The resulting kittens grew up to be strong, healthy cats who easily adapted to extremes of weather and could survive in the wilderness.The first cat in this genealogy actually came from Britain and was born on the first of June 1900. Later, this and another cat sent from Britain were bred to resident American shorthaired cats, with the first offspring called, simply, Shorthairs. Later they were called Domestic Shorthairs and in 1966 were renamed American Shorthairs. In order to keep its natural gene pool, the American Shorthair was allowed for years to breed to cats of unknown pedigree, developing according to the whims of nature, aided only slightly by mankind. Unfortunately, this is no longer true in most organizations. The American Shorthair has only one accepted outcross in TICA: the American Wirehair.
American Shorthairs make delightful pets. They are intelligent, friendly, affectionate and healthy with an even temperament. They are pleasing to look at, to hold, to touch and to communicate with. This is a sweet cat who is gentle and relaxed, mellow and strong. Its hunting instinct is so strong that it will practice or play at hunting in the house.
Southern Alberta Cat Fanciers - Rene Copeland