Turkish Angora Cat Breed: Facts, Information, & Health

A true Turkish delight! 

The Turkish Angora is a magnificent long-haired cat hailing from Ankara, Turkey, where it was originally bred. 

This magnificent cat has a long history, with some theorizing the Angora’s introduction to Europe on Viking ships. What is well documented in the Angora’s history is the breed’s decline towards extinction while being heavily used in the breeding of the Persian cats of today. 

The Turkish Ankara zoo halted this decline, which ran a successful breeding program of the exclusively white variety of Angora cats. The breed itself was fully recognized in 1978. 

Turkish Angora
Turkish Angora

Quick facts about the Turkish Angora

Weight: 5 to 9 pounds Height: 9 to 14 inches
Life span: 12 to 18 years
Intelligence: high Temperament: social
Playfulness: high Activity level: active
Vocalness: when necessary Coat length: long
Shedding amount: normal
Good with: seniors | dogs | other cats | families
Traits: Turkish Angora cats are a popular breed of domesticated cat. They are known for their long, silky fur that often comes in a variety of colors. This breed is also known for being very friendly and easy to train.

Turkish Angoras are also recognized with tabby, calico, and tortoiseshell coloring. Regardless of the color, though, the Angora’s fur is silky smooth, long and luscious, while still being easy enough to groom. 

These pretty cats have no undercoats, meaning that mats and tangles are unlikely if you maintain a regular grooming schedule. Their shedding amount is not excessive, though, especially if you keep up with their grooming needs. 

The eyes are another striking feature of the Turkish Angora. Well known for upward-slanting almond-shaped eyes in astounding shades of blue, green, gold, and amber, some Angoras sport odd eye combinations, blue-green or amber-green as examples.  

White Angoras with one or both blue eyes are prone to deafness in one or both ears, and this should be monitored closely. While they are not especially vocal animals, a deaf Angora may become a little noisy, because it cannot hear how loudly it is vocalizing. 

Be sure to keep a regular tooth-brushing routine with your silky Turkey (as the breed is affectionately known). This will prevent periodontal disease and regular ear cleaning using a cotton ball and a half-and-half mixture of warm water and cider vinegar. 

Turkish Angora

If you socialize your Turkish Angora well, you will get a pet that is comfortable with children and other animals. These are intelligent cats that form close family bonds, often finding and favoring one particular member over others. Given this, though, they are not dependent and are comfortable being on their own for a time. 

Angoras live between 9-14 years, have a medium but slender build, and highly playful and intelligent nature. Your Turkish Angora will keep you endlessly entertained with their clever antics. They can be stubborn, though, and are difficult to convince out of the behavior they have picked it up. 
Patience is an important value when owning one of these special cats. 




Dr. Adedapo Adisa:

Turkish Angora cats, also called Angoras or Ankara cats, are naturally bred cats native to Turkey.

Known for their silky and long coats, the Turkish Angora cats are a remarkably healthy cat breed with a life expectancy falling between 8-16 years.

Although full of life and health, the Turkish Angora cats are prone to deafness. This has been associated with the gene causing white fur or blue eyes. However, this doesn’t pose any health threat to the Turkish Angora cats.

Turkish Angora cats are prone to an inherited condition that affects the heart known as Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy despite their good health.

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is characterized by thickening of the heart’s muscular wall, especially the left ventricle, responsible for pumping out blood to the body in the Turkish Angora cats. The increase in the muscular walls of the ventricles affects the amount of blood it can hold and its ability to contract and pump blood adequately.

The blood stays longer than usual in the left ventricles. The other chambers of the heart also fill up with blood, which eventually leads to the formation of clots and fluids in and around the lungs of Turkish Angora cats. This finally leads to congestive heart failure in the Turkish Angora cats.

Here are a few signs to watch out for in the Turkish Angora cats with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy;

● Cardiac murmurs would be audible. (sound of blood coming from the heart).

● Increased heart rate and beats

● The cats would show irregular heart rhythm

● Fluid may build up around the lungs.

● Cats may begin to show exercise intolerance.

● Severe pain and paralysis resulting from clots blocking blood vessels.

It is important to report immediately to your veterinarian if one or more of these signs show up in the Turkish Angora cats. Your veterinarian would carry out an echocardiogram to view the heart to diagnose hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

In some cases, Turkish Angora cats with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy present without symptoms. Hence it is important to always screen the Angora cats for the mutant gene causing hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

In situations where the Turkish angora cats have been found to carry the defective gene, it is important to discontinue them from breeding activities.

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