Norwegian Forest Cats
A Little About Norwegian Forest Cats
Vikings, what do they have to do with Norwegian Forest cats? Well, there is a strong legend suggesting that the Vikings brought the first cats back to Norway around 1000AD. The theory is that they installed the moggies on their long ships following raids around Europe and then employed them as the expert mousers that Norwegian Forest Cats still are to this very day. Norse legends also speak of the “Skogkatt” or fairy cat that could climb trees and even rocks, which incidentally the this breed can do. The breed has a very handy longish water shedding top coat and a thick undercoat for insulation. Thanks to this it is well adept at coping with the harsh Nordic winters and it has probably evolved through selective survival over generations to this very end. The breed has virtually been accepted in folklore as Norway’s national cat and it is now a popular breed both in Europe and the USA.
Norwegian Forest Cats and Survival of the Fittest.
Norwegian Forest Cats are superb hunters and probably lived off rodents and fish along with the odd bird well before their human masters decided to share any of their hard earned food with them. In fact the breed has a close history with the countries farmers being employed (even today) as mousers and vermin controllers. During the second world war the breed was almost lost to cross breeding amongst the feral and domestic cat population. However after the war and as recent as the 1970’s an official breeding program was initiated. The pedigree recovered and is now recognised by many cat fancier associations around the world. Unlike many force bred pedigree animals the breed is relatively free from genetic faults and health issues but when buying kittens its always a good idea to have sight of any documentation of linage at least a few generations back.
Do Norwegian Forest Cats Make Good House Pets?
If you intend having a Norwegian Forest Cat as a house cat you should be aware that its thick coat is going to malt in relation to the settings of the dial on your central heating thermostat. Apart from that they adore the outdoors anyway and are happiest coming and going as they please. Despite their farm yard heritage as pest control agents they are surprisingly laid back. They are however very territorial and have been known to defend their turf quite strongly so you may have a few front yard spats. They are great with kids and love to be entertained rather than lounge around the house. If you should decide to keep this breed as a house cat its important to make sure they get plenty of exercise. This is easily achieved with a few cat toys and some attention during the cats “mad hour” usually roundabout dusk. It is also worth bearing in mind that Norwegian Forest Cats eat more than your average moggie which makes that exercise all the more important. You can learn more about this lovable breed here.