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European Shorthair Breed Description

This European Shorthair Breed Description Article is Listed in European Shorthair Cat Breed Information

European Shorthair Breed Description

European Shorthair Cat | Breed Profile | Breed Description

The European Shorthair, like the British Shorthair, dates back to ancient times. Its origins stem back to the tough and hardy cats brought from Egypt to Europe by the Romans. The European Shorthair (ESH) is a gentle, laid back and relaxed individual. It is a quiet cat that rarely voices its opinions. When it does choose to speak its voice is soft and pleasant. In spite of its carefree attitude it remains an active cat.

More reserved than its cousins the American and British Shorthairs the European Shorthair remains a playful cat that is very good with children. Its enjoyment of play makes him well suited to homes with children. It takes much pleasure from its human family and is a very affectionate loving creature. This dignified feline is quite hardy.


If its personality is not enough to win you over this cat is quite able to work its way into your heart. An excellent hunter this cat has been used for generations to hunt annoying pests. Finally, the European Shorthair is a very adaptable cat and is able to easily adjust to a variety of new situations. Finally, the European Shorthair is a highly intelligent individual; its intelligence manifests itself clearly in its inquisitive curious nature.

A relatively large cat, the European Shorthair it possesses a strong, muscular body of medium to large size, with a thick, short to medium length tail. It is a stocky cat, yet less so than its British cousin. Its legs are also strong and well muscled, typically of medium size.

Its coat is dense with short fine hair. Its undercoat and bristly outer coat are quite thick, likely an adaptation to the harsh European winter climates. The thickness of its undercoat in addition to the touch of roughness lent to the outer coat suggests the possibility that somewhere in its heritage lays a European Wildcat (Felis sylvestris).

Its coat is almost never of the mackerel variety it is typically seen in one of the following tabby patterns, blotched or classic. A wide variety of colors are accepted though the most common are black and blue. Its round head supports two blunt widely spaced ears and a square muzzle. Its eyes are large and round, typically seen in yellow though it has been seen in all color variations.

The European Shorthair was originally bred in Finland. While very popular in its native country, the European Shorthair is not widely accepted among breed registries and has not yet reached the global popularity of its cousin the British Shorthair.