Chartreux Cat Breed. From France With Love

History and origin of Chartreux Cat Breed

The Chartreux Cat is believed to have originated from Syria in the 15th or 16th century because of its unique cloak of gray fur. And that the Crusaders who were going to France from Syria came with the ancestors of Chartreux. It became the best way of controlling the rodent (rats and mice) population while in France. The Chartreux history is traced to French Carthusian monasteries, which explains the quiet nature of the Chartreux Cat Breed. The Carthusian monasteries were from the Chartreuse Mountains north of Grenoble.

In the Jacques Savary des Brulons’ book, Dictionnaire Universel de Commerce is where the name Chartreux was first mentioned. But the origin of the name is not exactly known.

In 1925, it was recorded that two sisters, Christine and Suzanne Leger, who were in breeding animals, came across a group of blue-gray cats on the island of Belle-Île-en-Mer in France. They started taking care of the cats and, after that, started selective breeding. The unique woolly coat and appearance of the cats made the outstanding. After the encounter, the two sisters began domesticating them. In 1933, the cats were displayed at a cat show in Paris, and the Chartreux cats were notable.

Cat Club de Paris started breeding with blue cats from a colony in the Massif Central after Christine and Suzanne began breeding. In 1936, Cat Club de Paris acquired Japouk du Fouillox, a male blue Persian, to mate with the feral cat and improve the eye’s color.

Like many other breeds, the existence of the Chartreux’s species was threatened by World War II. But Keeley de Champion, one of the sons, was not affected and was mate a feral cat. In 1948, Keeley de Champol fathered Weekly de Trevise, a male cat that played a major role in the Cat Club’s breeding program.

Nevertheless, the earlier cats did not vanish due to their selective crossbreeding with the Persian, British Shorthair, and Russian Blue cats. The breed became renowned in France. The Chartreux Cat was recognized for its hunting prowess and intelligence, calmness, friendliness, and beautiful woolly coat. The cat breeders globally became aware of them. In 1970, the first Chartreux cat was brought to the United States by John and Helen Gamon. Its entrance to the United States made way for its acceptance into the Cat Fancier’s Association.

The Chartreux has now become the national treasure of France. The Chartreux Cat Breed cannot be easily found outside of Europe since they were returned to France by the breeding programs in the United States.

Physical Appearance and Other Characteristics of the Chartreux Cat Breed

The Chartreux cat breed has:

  • A blue-gray coat with a woolly texture
  • Orange eyes
  • Small, fine-boned legs
  • A round face, high forehead, full cheeks, and broadhead
  • Narrow muzzle and moderately long, broad, and straight nose
  • A weight of 12 to 16 pounds
  • A height of 9 to 11 inches

Chartreux cats are shorthair breeds with a muscular body. Their incredible strength, intelligence, and adaptability enable them to survive in the wild for a long time.

Personality of Chartreux

The Chartreux is silent but very communicative. Their playtime is short, and they take the rest of the day sleeping and relaxing. There get used to one habit, making them enjoy and expect the same game daily. They are good learners as they learn from themselves and the owners. They are also very friendly and calm; therefore, they can associate well with children and other animals. The Chartreux is known to bond closely with a person in the family, but they are also affectionate with others. They are very gentle and quiet, only meow when the need arises.

They mostly enjoy playing pouncing and catching games. Their high intelligence makes them taught able and do not require much attention. They are good companions to the elderly and those living alone because of their supportive and cheerful personalities. Their adaptability makes them very accommodating.

Lifespan of Chartreux

The life expectancy of the Chartreux cat breed is between 11 to 15 years.

Common Health Problems found in The Chartreux Cat

Chartreux cats are generally healthy but can also experience some health problems. The common health problems associated with the Chartreux cat include:

  • Luxating patella
  • Struvite crystals
  • Polycystic Kidney disease

The Care for The Chartreux

The Chartreux is easy to care for every week by brushing because of its short and thick coat. It doesn’t always require a bath. Brush the teeth of the cat daily to prevent periodontal disease. The nails should also be trimmed. With a soft and damp cloth, wipe the corners of the eyes to remove any discharge. Always check the ears every week to look for any dirty. The dirty should be wiped out with a cotton ball moistened with a mixture of cider vinegar and warm water.

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