The Siberian is the national cat of Russia.
Although no one knows exact time and place of origin of these magnificent cats, populated Russia for years, it is hardly disputable that Siberians have ancient origins. Many stories have been told about cats that made their way to Siberia and Far East parts of Russia, surviving they developed into a hardy, longhaired breed able to withstand the unforgiving conditions of that region.
It is suggested that the longhair mutation occurred in Russia and spread from there to Turkey (Angoras) and Persia (Persians) or even that all long-haired breeds ultimately have their origins in Russian cats. The similarities between the Siberian and the Norwegian Forest Cat and Maine Coon suggests a common origin and some researchers suggest that the Siberian is the ancestor of both the Norwegian Forest Cat and the Maine Coon. Equally, it could be parallel evolution where similar environments have led to unrelated cat populations evolving similar traits through natural selection. The cats of Russia and Siberia are little changed from medieval times, perhaps earlier.
As far as recording history goes, Siberians were recorded as participants in the first organized cat show in England in the 1700's. That event is recited in the book "Our Cats and All About Them" (1889), written by father of the Cat Fancy, Harrison Weir.
The first Russian official standard for the Siberian cat was established in Russia in 1989, Siberians were first imported to U.S. in 1990.
Russia's Native Forest Cat, the Siberian, has natural and harmonious exterior, sweet facial expression and surprisingly soft voice that consists of chirps and squeaks. General impression of the body is one of circles and roundness. The breed is slow to mature, taking as long as 5 years to reach full maturity.
It is one of the largest domestic breeds, males ranging from 14-18 pounds, females considerably smaller (around 10 lb). Despite their size, Siberians are very agile, and are great leapers.
Siberians strongly carry their natural instincts for hunting, quick learning and problem solving, so it is easy to teach them to fetch and do other tricks. They also seem to have a fascination with water.
The Siberian, as breed, have stable, well balanced temper and excellent health. They easily adapt to any type of living conditions (indoors/outdoors), are affectionate, playful, loyal to their families and amenable to handling.
Siberians poses magnificent semi-long, triple coated, waterproof coat that comes in most colors. Despise its density, the coat is easy to manage, it does not shed intensively or matt. Their regal collars and bushy tails add to Siberians unique elegance.
The Siberian & Allergy Sufferers:
It is known that Siberians provoke less allergic reactions than other domestic cat breeds. We believe that people who might have mild allergies do very well with this breed, but those with more severe allergies, although they tolerate Siberians better than other cats, do still react in some way.
Siberian cattery of Chicago, IL U.S.A.