THE CAT OF THE SUN

A bit of history

 

There is a cat breed whose origins are mysterious: the Abyssinian. Its exotic name evokes Ethiopia, but there is no proof that it is its country of origin, even if Captain Barrett-Lennard, owner of Zula, first known Abyssinian, claimed that he had imported it from Addis-Abeba to Great Britain at the end of the 1868 war. According to other sources, the breed would be originating from India or South East Asia (Thailand). Nothing is certain, except that, very soon in England, kittens with ‘Abyssinian colour’ were regularly born in England-produced litters! As their coat was looking like hare’s, they were called ‘bunny cats’ before the orientalist trend of the time had them called Abyssinians. The breed was recognized in Great Britain in 1886 and the first Abyssinian in France arrived in 1927.

 

Its look

 

The Abyssinian is an elegant cat with a coat of exception. Its head is triangular with rounded contours. Its slightly almond-shaped large eyes are gold, hazelnut or green. Its wide-based large ears have the shape of a cup, and may sometimes display lynx tips. Its neck is supple and arched, the muscles of its body are tensed as if it was always about to jump. Its tail is long with a slightly rounded tip. Its coat is unique: short, it is called ‘resilient’, i.e. elastic to the touch. In ruddy and sorrel (the most common colours of the breed), the coat is particularly warm and shiny. Nowadays, the diversity of colours is larger but the coat pattern is still the same. Ticked, it has a special quality that reflects light and makes it look uniform.

 

What kind of a companion is it?

 

The standard of the Abyssinian describes it as a cat with a royal look, agile like a panther but also close to humans. ‘Sunny’ would be the best word to describe its character. Everything in the Abyssinian is light, most of all when it crosses the look of its owner, to whom it is totally devoted. Active, intelligent, it does not like being alone and will share all your activities.