Hardwired To Please

The American Wirehair Cat

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Breed Group:

Domestic.

Size:

Medium. Average body.

Weight:

Lightweight Mouser. From 8-15 lbs.

Exercise Needs:

Moderately active. Needs decent exercise.

Ability To Adapt:

High. Quickly adjusts to surroundings.

Health:

Excellent. No health issues.

Average Lifespan:

14-18 years.

Need For Grooming:

Once a week. Low shedding.

Compatibility:

Great with children & other pets.

Potential For Playfulness:

Ideal playmate.

Breed Group:

Domestic.

Size:

Medium. Average body.

Weight:

Lightweight Mouser. From 8-15 lbs.

Exercise Needs:

Moderately active. Needs decent exercise.

Ability To Adapt:

High. Quickly adjusts to surroundings.

Health:

Excellent. No health issues.

Average Lifespan:

14-18 years.

Need For Grooming:

Once a week. Low shedding.

Compatibility:

Great with children & other pets.

Potential For Playfulness:

Ideal playmate.

Breed Group:

Domestic.

Size:

Medium. Average body.

Weight:

Lightweight Mouser. From 8-15 lbs.

Exercise Needs:

Moderately active. Needs decent exercise.

Ability To Adapt:

High. Quickly adjusts to surroundings.

Health:

Excellent. No health issues.

Average Lifespan:

14-18 years.

Need For Grooming:

Once a week. Low shedding.

Compatibility:

Great with children & other pets.

Potential For Playfulness:

Ideal playmate.
The American Wirehair Cat is best known for its unusual springy coat. The wiry coarse coat is the result of the spontaneous mutation that separates the American Wirehair from other cat breeds. So far this mutation was only noticed in America, making the Wirehair a true American breed. Physically the Wirehair resembles the American Shorthair Cat and has a muscled body and round head with large round keen eyes. This is a good-natured, adaptable, affectionate and playful breed that gets along with people and other pets. The Wirehair doesn’t require constant attention and is more than capable of entertaining itself if left at home alone. Highly intelligent, and playful, this breed is easy to train and requires toys that will stimulate its mind and keep it busy. Overall, the American Wirehair Cat is easy to maintain breed with a long lifespan and excellent health.

Breed History

The trademark of the American Wirehair Cat, its springy coat is the result of the spontaneous genetic mutation. And although these mutations aren’t uncommon in cats, this is the only breed in existence with this coat type. The first recognized American Wirehair Cat was born in Verona, New York in 1966 in a litter of a domestic shorthair. The only kitten that survived from that litter was a red tabby and white male with an unusual wiry coat and coiled whiskers. The local cat breeder Joan O’Shea heard about the unusual kitten, she was intrigued and wanted to see him. However, the owner Nathan Moser was at first reluctant to give the kitten away. After O’Shea explained to him the importance of an allowing this new breed to be properly matted, he let her have the kitten for the price of $50. Joan named the kitten Council Rock Adam of Hi-Fi and was set in establishing the new breed. Adam was bred to a neighboring cat who produced a litter in which two kittens had wired coats. O’Shea bought these two kittens from her neighbors and that was the beginning of the new breed. Being a Rex breeder herself, Joan sought help from colleges Bill and Madeline Beck who started a breeding program. The American Wirehair Cat as we know it today was mostly developed from crosses to the American Shorthair Cat. Its standard play a great role in establishing the standard for the Wirehair. Even now, the American Shorthair is the only acceptable outcross for the Wirehair breed. In 1978 the Cat Fanciers Association granted full recognition to the American Wirehair. The breed is also recognized by American Cat Fanciers Association, the Canadian Cat Association, and the World Cat Federation. On the other hand, The International Cat Association considers the Wirehair as a type of American Shorthair.

Size Standards

The American Wirehair Cat is a medium to large cat with a well build muscled body, broad head, prominent chin, and well-developed cheekbones. The medium-sized ears are widely set and slightly rounded at the tip and this breed has a pronounced muzzle. Male Wirehairs are slightly larger and weigh from 12-15 pounds. Females are smaller with an average weight of 8-12 pounds. The powerful body gives off the impression of stockiness and this breed seems heavier when picked up. Since Wirehair is moderately active it is important to invest in proper diet like IAMS Proactive Health to keep the cat at the ideal weight.

American Wirehair Cat Personality Traits

The American Wirehair personality is easy going, affectionate, tolerant and well behaved. These traits make this breed ideal for families, singles, and seniors. The Wirehair is affectionate towards its owner and all other family members without being overbearing. When this cat wants attention it will look at its owner or gently bite him to indicate her desires.
These cats are friendly and social and aren’t afraid of guest and strangers. Their tolerant nature allows them to get along well with children, other cats, and cat-friendly dogs. Depending on the cat, some Wirehairs are lap cats, others aren’t. However, this breed enjoys spending time with its owner and likes having a spot close by where it can curl and nap. Its also an intelligent and easy to train breed. So you won’t have problems teaching your cat to use scratching posts instead of your sofa. This breed possesses excellent hunting instincts and enjoys spending hours bird watching. Consider installing a cat window perch hammock that will become a designated bird watching area.

Adaptability

The Wirehair is a highly adaptable breed that adjusts quickly to changes and new environment. This breed is adaptable to the needs of its family, which is a great trait in a cat. The American Wirehair retains this quality during her whole long life. Hence you don’t have to worry if the changes in scenery or your lifestyle will have a negative impact on your cat. This is a moderately active breed, that enjoys playing but can benefit from more activities. Thanks to excellent hunting abilities the Wirehair loves chasing after feather teasers. This is a great toy that can keep this breed entertained and at an ideal weight. Try to intrigue your kitty with cat wands and interactive play sessions every day.

Health and Potential Health Problems

Thanks to diligent breeding programs and diversity in their bloodline, this breed doesn’t have any known genetic health problems. However, make sure that your cat goes to regular vet checkups and keep her vaccinations up to date. The American Wirehair can suffer from following conditions:
  • Sensitive Skin: Many Wirehair cats are prone to having sensitive skin that can become oily. It is best to use cat shampoos that will relieve discomfort. Furthermore, some cats can develop sunburns if left outside. So invest in proper sunscreen like this one by Sit. Stay. Forever.
  • Ear Infections: The thick hair growing inside the Wirehair’s ears leads to waxy buildup. This means that the ears need to be cleaned regularly with ear cleaners. The EarWell Cleaner will do the job. This will prevent the wax buildup and frequent ear infections.

Lifespan

The American Wirehair Cat has an excellent health and an average lifespan of 14-18 years. With proper care and regular vaccinations, some cats can live over 20 years. Just manage the food portions with an automatic feeder and be diligent with skin and ear care.

Grooming Needs

As we already said, the American Wirehair Cat has a unique coat that comes with unique grooming needs. The coat is springy, coarse, and resilient but soft, and by touch resembles the lamb’s wool. All hair are hooked at the ends and kinky throughout their length and sometimes form tight ringlets. This breed is bred to have a dense and short fur and it is fairly uncommon to see long-haired American Wirehair cats. When it comes to grooming this breed can be brushed only once a week. Since frequent grooming can damage their hair. For this breed less grooming is better. However since they tend to have oily skin, regular bathing is required. Cat shampoos like this one will soothe your cat’s skin problems and make the coat clean and shiny. To get your cat to be more used to bathing introduce this routine from a young age.

American Wirehair Cat Coat Colors

When it comes to the coat the American Wirehair can be found in a variety of different colors and patterns. With so many variations future owners won’t have problems finding a cat according to their liking. Some of the most common colors include White, Blue, Cream, Bluecream, Golden, Brown, Seal, Cameo, and Red. The American Wirehair can also come in Chocolate and Lilac colors. But these cats aren’t allowed to participate in competitions. With a variety of colors comes the variety of patterns, and this breed covers the whole spectrum. Still, the most common patterns you will see include Tortoiseshell, Tabby, Bicolor, Solid, Smoke, and Calico.

Compatibility with Children and Other Pets

An affectionate and friendly breed, the American Wirehair gets along nicely with children and other pets. Thanks to its immense patience, tolerant and easy-going nature, this breed becomes fast friends with children who know how to play nicely. This Wirehair gets along well with cat-friendly dogs as long as they are introduced in proper manner. The American Wirehair Cat has excellent hunting skills, hence all smaller birds have to be kept in another room if you don’t want them to fall prey to their mighty paws. The Wirehair enjoys playing with children that can treat her with respect and match her energy levels. These cats enjoy puzzle toys and can spend hours playing alone. Still, this is a friendly breed that likes interacting with people so spend some time every day playing with your kitty.