Domestic Cat Varieties

Domestic Cat Varieties

The number of cat breeds (see cat pictures) is quite large: many cat registries recognize between 35 and 70 breeds of cats, and even more are in development, with one or more of new breeds being recognized each year on average, having distinct features and heritage. Owners and breeders of show cats compete to see whose animal bears the closest resemblance to the "ideal" definition of the breed (see selective breeding). But due to common crossbreeding in populated areas, many cats are simply identified as belonging to the homogeneous breeds of domestic longhair and domestic shorthair, depending on their type of fur. In Australia and the UK, non-purebred cats are referred in slang as moggies (derived from "Maggie", short for Margaret, reputed to have been a common name for cows and calves in 18th-century England and latter applied to housecats during the Victorian era).   In the U.S., non-purebred cats are sometimes referred to as an alley cat, even if it is not a stray.

Cats come in varieties of colors and patterns. But these are physical properties and should not be confused with a breed of cat.

Most household cats are divided into Domestic longhaired and Domestic shorthaired.

There are lots of varieties of cat coat patterns. Some of the most common are:

Cats also come in several different body types which range between two extremes - oriental and cobby: