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Korat Breed Description

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Korat Breed Description

Korat Cat | Breed History | Breed Description There are many romantic stories about the Korats of old, and the place they held in society in their native Thailand. It has been suggested that Korats were given in pairs as a wedding gift to bless a couple with fertility; Korats were supposedly honoured in rain-making ceremonies during the dry season to tempt the rain to fall; male Korats were even said to have launched into battle, hissing and growling fiercely on the shoulders of warriors, against enemies of their land. We can’t say for sure which of these stories are based in truth, but they do seem to suggest that the Korat has always been revered in its native Thailand. “The eyes of the Korat are like those of no other cat; expressive and oversized for the face with a depth and intense gaze that takes your breath away…as sparkling as the ‘dewdrops on a lotus leaf.’ ” Like all newborn kittens at first the eyes are blue, changing to amber with a green tinge around the pupil during adolescence.    Then, when the cat reaches approximately two to four years of age, the eyes are luminous green.Korats have extraordinary powers of hearing, sight and scent. They are gentle pets, moving softly and cautiously, disliking sudden, loud or harsh noises. Those destined to be shown must be trained from birth to accept noise and handling, possibly by keeping a radio on in the nursery, and by lifting and posing the kitten as judges do. Korats form an exceptionally strong bond of affection with their owners and respond warmly to cuddling, setting as close as possible. They mix well with other cats but tend to want to have the upper hand and will not let the others keep them from their rightful place at their owner’s side. They have been cherished for centuries in their native Thailand and they naturally expect this tradition to be maintained wherever they go. Korats are active in their play, but are very gentle with children.Their hair does not float off when they are being stroked and petted, so many people with an allergy to cat hair find their proximity tolerable. The roots of the hair are a light bluish color, darkening before the ends become silver-tipped. This silvering over the whole body should make a halo, or aura, effect and the close lying fur shines like a polished silver dollar. They are considered a symbol of good fortune by the Thais. Many good luck traditions surround the Korat: they are the color of silver, signifying wealth; they are the color of rain clouds, with eyes the color of young rice, meaning good crops. The gift of a pair of Si-Sawat cats to the bride...

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Korat Breed History

This Korat Breed History Article is Listed in Korat Cat Breed Information

Korat Breed History

Korat Cat | Breed History | Breed Description The earliest known picture of a Korat, or ‘Si-Sawat’, cat is to be found in the ancient book of paintings and verses, known as THE CAT-BOOK POEMS, in Bangkok’s National Library. It is believed by the Fine Arts Dept., a Division of Thailand’s Ministry of Education, to have been produced some time during the Ayudhya Period of Siamese History (1350-1767). Identity of the artist is lost. Cat, as well as dog and bird books, represent a cultural tradition in Siam (which became Thailand on June 24, 1939). Of the fifteen or so ancient MSS, in the National Library, nine contain pictures of cats. A high-ranking monk, Somdej Phra Buddhacharn Buddhasarmahathera, was commissioned by King Rama V (1869-1910) to copy “The Cat Book Poems” on a special Khoi paper. Known as the SMUD KHOI OF CATS, it hangs in a high glass case in the Minor Arts Room of Bangkok’s National Museum. Books were folded, not bound as is a more recent version, known as THE BOOK OF THE CAT, also in the National Library, apparently a twentieth century version of the cats and their accompanying verses. This shows seventeen cats whose ownership brings good fortune and six with boding of the very reverse. Among the Good Luck cats is the KORAT.    A translation of the verses by Khun Prasit Sahkorn says: “The cat ‘Maled’ has a body colour like ‘Doklao’. The hairs are smooth, with roots like clouds and tips like silver. The eyes shine like dewdrops on a lotus leaf”. ‘Maled’ means seed. ‘Dok’ means flower, and ‘lao’ can be translated as ‘lemon-grass’, ‘pampas grass’, or ‘reed blossom’. All of these are silvery and silky smooth, so are applicable to the Korat coat. King Rama V is said to have named the breed when he remarked: ‘what a pretty cat – where is it from?’ and was told “KORAT”. A Mr. Robins, of New York City, attested to their existence in that Province in 1906. It is said that their coloring protected them, among the granite areas of Pimai District, from extinction in the constrant wars that raged between Siam and her neighbors. Nowadays in Thailand, the Korats are generally referred to as the “SI-SAWAT” cats (see-sah-waht) and, of course, they are found in other provinces. ‘SI’ means color. SAWAT has several meanings, including good fortune or prosperity. Si-Sawat is also a compound Thai work meaning a mingled color of grey and light green. The seed (Maled) of the Look Sawat, a non-edible fruit that grows wild in Thailand is this mingled color, with a smooth, glossy shell. There’s no changing the color of the breed. It can only ever be ‘Si-Sawat’. Korats are silver-blu from birth until death;...

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Korat Cat

This Korat Cat Article is Listed in Korat Cat Breed Information

Korat Cat

Korat Cat | Breed History | Breed Description The Korat is one of the oldest stable breeds of cat. Originating in Thailand, it is named after the Nakhon Ratchasima province, although in Thailand it is often known as Si-Sawat, which means good fortune. In fact they are often known colloquially as the “Good Luck Cat” and are given in pairs to newlyweds or people of high esteem as a wish for good luck. Korats are a slate blue-grey shorthair domestic cat with a small to medium build and a low percentage of body fat. Their bodies are semi-cobby, and are surprisingly heavy for their size. They are intelligent, shy, soft-voiced, playful, active cats and form strong bonds with people. Korats have several characteristics distinguishing them as a breed. One is its head, frequently described as “heart-shaped”. Korats are known for their relatively large green eyes and are one of a few breeds that have only one color.    The first known written mention of the Korat was in “The Cat-Book Poems” authored between 1350 and 1767 AD in Thailand, now preserved in the National library in Bangkok. They first appeared in America in the 1950s and arrived in Britain from there in 1972.  The Korat is one of the oldest stable cat breeds. Originating in Thailand, it is named after the Nakhon Ratchasima province. In Thailand it is known as Si-Sawat, meaning “Color of the Sawat Seed”. They are known colloquially as the “Good Luck Cat” and are given in pairs to newlyweds or to people who are highly esteemed, for good luck. Until recently, Korats were not sold, but only given as gifts. The first mention of the Korat is in “The Cat-Book Poems” authored between 1350 and 1767 AD in Thailand, now in the National library in Bangkok. They first appeared in America in the 1950s and arrived in Britain from there in 1972. Jean Johnson introduced Korats to the US in 1959. She had lived in Thailand, where she encountered the breed. Her first pair were named Nara (male) and Dara (female). Korats are a shorthair with a small to medium build and a low percentage of body fat; their bodies are often described as semi-cobby, and are surprisingly heavy for their size. They are an active cat and form strong bonds with people. Korats have several characteristics that together distinguish them as a breed: Korats are one of a few breeds that have only one colour: a silvery gray that often has lavender undertones – generally called blue in the cat world, although it is notably different in viewing from other ‘blue’ cats. Their eyes are a shade of yellow from birth (sometimes described as a “pale amber”) but change to an emerald or peridot green...

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