The Oriental Shorthair Cat Breed

The Oriental Shorthair originated from Thailand just like the Siamese breed.

In fact they share most of the Siamese characteristics except that they have a solid coat colour or pattern and do not have the colourpoints on their faces, ears, legs and tail and generally have green eyes rather than blue.

The breed comes in virtually all colour and pattern varieties and so is one of the most diverse breeds and groups at cat shows.

The breed also shares its temperament with the Siamese cat and enjoys human contact and prefers not to be left alone for too long. It is often said that they behave rather more like a dog than a cat, running to greet their owners at the door and demanding to be played with.

The Oriental is very athletic and has a very long body, again comparable to a dog breed such as a whippet, especially in the way they move and their similar whip like tail.

Colour Variations

All colours are grouped together under the term oriental Shorthairs, except in the UK where the different colours and markings have their own categories. The four main categories are:

  • Solid colours

  • Shaded

  • Smokies

  • Tabbies

Breed Characteristics

Coat: The Oriental has a very soft, short coat with fine hairs that lay flat against the body.

Eyes: The cat has almond, slanted eyes. Generally green with no flecks, the exception to this is the Foreign white who has brilliant blue eyes.

Grooming: The cat does not need much extra grooming from their owners due to the fact that the coat is so short and fine. However with the use of a soft glove the coat can be polished to bring out the shine in the coat.


This cat breed has a very intelligent and lively character that needs company and the ability to explore and be active. Like the Siamese they are also very vocal which can be quite loud and it is said that they have a big personality.

So if you choose this breed be prepared to pay it a lot of attention and perhaps even be pushed around by your pet! 

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