The Russian Blue Cat
Russian Blue cats range in size from medium to big, with an elegant, graceful physique and long, slender legs. The cat walks on its toes. The wedge-shaped skull features prominent whisker pads and huge ears. The vibrant emerald eyes are almond-shaped and spaced widely apart. Double-coated with a strong undercoat, the coat feels fine, short, and silky. The Russian Blue cat's coat is unlike any other breed in terms of texture and is the truest representation of the breed. Although the Russian Blue is the official designation, black and white Russian cats may occasionally arise. The coat colour of the most popular blue type is a clear even blue with a silvery shine.
The Russian Blue cat was previously called the Archangel Cat due to its alleged arrival in Europe on ships from the Russian port of that name (Arkhangel'sk). Additionally, it has been referred to as the Spanish Cat and the Maltese Cat, most notably in the United States, where the latter term remained until the turn of the century. However, there is compelling evidence tying the cat to Russia. Scandinavia is home to a large number of cats with similar coat colours, and their dense coat is suggestive of living in a northern environment. Although blue is considered the breed's standard colour, black and white Russians are also known. These colours developed during WWII, when the few remaining Russian Blue cats were bred with British Blue and Siamese to preserve population levels.
Russian Blue cats are calm and sensitive, occasionally shy and reticent, but are reputed to be incredibly faithful to their chosen human. They may be wary of strangers and take time to form human friendships. Once acclimatised to a caring home, they like playing with toys, leaping, climbing, and racing about. They are highly nimble and light on their feet.